World Library  
Flag as Inappropriate
Email this Article

The Boston Strangler (film)

Article Id: WHEBN0012788657
Reproduction Date:

Title: The Boston Strangler (film)  
Author: World Heritage Encyclopedia
Language: English
Subject: Split screen (filmmaking), Tony Curtis, 2001 in film, 1997 in film, 1998 in film, 1993 in film, 1986 in film, 1968 in film, Golden Globe Award for Best Actor – Motion Picture Drama, Edward Brooke
Publisher: World Heritage Encyclopedia

The Boston Strangler (film)

The Boston Strangler
File:The Boston Strangler.JPG
Theatrical release poster
Directed by Richard Fleischer
Produced by James Cresson
Robert Fryer
Screenplay by Edward Anhalt
Story by Gerold Frank
Starring Tony Curtis
Henry Fonda
Sally Kellerman
William Hickey
Music by Lionel Newman
Cinematography Richard H. Kline
Editing by Marion Rothman
Studio 20th Century Fox
Distributed by Twentieth Century Fox
Release date(s)
Country United States
Language English
Budget $4.1 million[1]
Box office $17,810,894[2]

The Boston Strangler is a 1968 film based on the true story of the Boston Strangler and the book by Gerold Frank. It was directed by Richard Fleischer, and stars Tony Curtis as Albert DeSalvo, the strangler, and Henry Fonda as John S. Bottomly, the chief detective now famed for obtaining DeSalvo's confession.[3]


The first part of the film shows the police investigation, with some examples of the seedier side of Boston life, including promiscuity in the adult quarters of the city. The second part shows the apprehension of DeSalvo. Bottomly's intent is to answer the question presented in the film's famous print ad:

Why did 13 women open their doors to the Boston Strangler?




When released, film critic Roger Ebert gave it three stars out of four but criticized the film's content, writing, "The Boston Strangler requires a judgment not only on the quality of the film (very good), but also on its moral and ethical implications...The events described in Frank's book have been altered considerably in the film. This is essentially a work of fiction 'based' on the real events. And based on them in such a way to entertain us, which it does, but for the wrong reasons, I believe. This film, which was made so well, should not have been made at all."[4]

In the same vein, The New York Times film critic Renata Adler, wrote "The Boston Strangler represents an incredible collapse of taste, judgment, decency, prose, insight, journalism and movie technique, and yet—through certain prurient options that it does not take—it is not quite the popular exploitation film that one might think. It is as though someone had gone out to do a serious piece of reporting and come up with 4,000 clippings from a sensationalist tabloid. It has no depth, no timing, no facts of any interest and yet, without any hesitation, it uses the name and pretends to report the story of a living man, who was neither convicted nor indicted for the crimes it ascribes to him. Tony Curtis 'stars'—the program credits word—as what the movie takes to be the Boston strangler."[5]

More recently, film critic Dennis Schwartz discussed the film's style, writing, "What mostly filled the split-screen was the many interrogation scenes, where on one side was the suspect and interrogator in the present and on the other side the suspect and his interrogator in flashbacks. Fleischer eschews the graphic violence in the murders and aims instead to try to understand the killer through the script's bogus psychology. The big things the film tried didn't pan out as that interesting, as the flashy camera work counteracts the conventional storyline chronicling the rise, manhunt, fall, and prosecution of De Salvo."[6]




External links

  • Internet Movie Database
  • YouTube
  • at DVD Beaver (includes images)
This article was sourced from Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike License; additional terms may apply. World Heritage Encyclopedia content is assembled from numerous content providers, Open Access Publishing, and in compliance with The Fair Access to Science and Technology Research Act (FASTR), Wikimedia Foundation, Inc., Public Library of Science, The Encyclopedia of Life, Open Book Publishers (OBP), PubMed, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Center for Biotechnology Information, U.S. National Library of Medicine, National Institutes of Health (NIH), U.S. Department of Health & Human Services, and, which sources content from all federal, state, local, tribal, and territorial government publication portals (.gov, .mil, .edu). Funding for and content contributors is made possible from the U.S. Congress, E-Government Act of 2002.
Crowd sourced content that is contributed to World Heritage Encyclopedia is peer reviewed and edited by our editorial staff to ensure quality scholarly research articles.
By using this site, you agree to the Terms of Use and Privacy Policy. World Heritage Encyclopedia™ is a registered trademark of the World Public Library Association, a non-profit organization.

Copyright © World Library Foundation. All rights reserved. eBooks from School eBook Library are sponsored by the World Library Foundation,
a 501c(4) Member's Support Non-Profit Organization, and is NOT affiliated with any governmental agency or department.