He Knows You're Alone


1h 34m 1980
He Knows You're Alone

Brief Synopsis

A killer stalks a brides-to-be.

Film Details

MPAA Rating
Genre
Horror
Thriller
Release Date
1980
Production Company
Magno Sound Inc; Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.; Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.
Distribution Company
Cic Productions; United Artists Films

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 34m

Synopsis

After Amy and her friends get married at the same time, the new husbands decide to leave their new wives and go on vacation. The young women who are left behind are stalked by a psychotic killer, and Amy tries to get help from a local policeman and one of her friends who works at a morgue.

Crew

David Abramson

Sound Effects Editor

Tom Allen

Production Assistant

Duane Arthur

Key Grip

Joseph Beruh

Executive Producer

Vini Canall

Song Performer ("It'S The Night Again")

Vera Dika

Assistant Editor

Vera Dika

Script Supervisor

Robert E Dimilia

Camera Operator 2nd Unit (2nd Unit)

Robert E Dimilia

Unit Production Manager

Robert E Dimilia

Co-Producer

Mike Edwards

Camera Assistant

Gerald Feil

Director Of Photography

Sandy Hamilton

Props

Jack Higgins

Sound Rerecording

Darrell Jonas

Production Coordinator

Susan Kaufman

Art Direction

Edgar Lansbury

Executive Producer

Rose Lansbury

Stills

Joseph Lesko

Music Supervisor

Ellen Lutter

Costumes

George Manasse

Producer

Costa Mantis

Assistant Director

Jane Mcauley

Sound Effects Editor

Bob Millman

Unit Manager

Bill Minet

Production Assistant

Jeanne Napoli

Songs

Jeanne Napoli

Song Performer ("Mysterious Lover" "I'Ll Never Tie You Down")

George T Norris

Editor

Jacki Ochs

Camera Assistant

Robert Paone

Camera Assistant

Rolf Pardula

Sound

Scott Parker

Screenwriter

Alexander Paskanov

Songs ("Mysterious Lover" "I'Ll Never Tie You Down" "It'S The Night Again")

Alexander Paskanov

Music

Nan Pearlman

Co-Producer

Mark Peskanov

Music

Mark Peskanov

Songs ("Mysterious Lover" "I'Ll Never Tie You Down" "It'S The Night Again")

Roberta Presser

Production Office Coordinator

Guilherme Lessin Rodrigues

Production Assistant

Deborge Roggeman

Songs ("Mysterious Lover" "I'Ll Never Tie You Down")

Bill Rosenfield

Production Assistant

Rob Schweber

Production Assistant

Lise Seidenberg

Production Assistant

Taso Stavrakis

Special Effects

Robert Stecko

Screenwriter

Robert Stecko

Music

Jeff Stern

Sound Effects Editor

Bob Thomas

Sound Effects Editor

Cindie Verardi

Makeup

Brooksie Wells

Song ("It'S The Night Again")

Film Details

MPAA Rating
Genre
Horror
Thriller
Release Date
1980
Production Company
Magno Sound Inc; Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.; Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios Inc.
Distribution Company
Cic Productions; United Artists Films

Technical Specs

Duration
1h 34m

Articles

He Knows You're Alone


After the success of John Carpenter's independent horror hit Halloween in 1978, major studios were scrambling to find the same return on investment with knife-wielding killers stalking teenagers all over North America. By 1980 the floodgates had truly opened, and Paramount led the pack with its immensely popular Friday the 13th. Often considered an also-ran but quite entertaining in its own right is He Knows You're Alone, an indie shot entirely in Staten Island and picked up by MGM for a nationwide theatrical release in late August of 1980.

Best known now as a director of made-for-TV films, the feature marked the big screen directorial debut for Brooklyn-born Armand Mastroianni, a horror fan who won his first film festival prize at 16 for an 8mm short. His ability to deliver a commercial shocker on time and on budget kept him in the genre for most of the remainder of the decades thanks to films like The Killing Hour (1982), The Supernaturals (1986) and Cameron's Closet (1988), all of which fared far better on home video than in theaters.

"When people see a spooky old castle with lightning flashing around it, they know they're supposed to be scared," Mastroianni said about the conventions of horror films at the time in the film's press kit. "It's been done, pardon the expression, to death. But when the scene of the crime is friendly and familiar, they're lulled into a false sense of security." Of course, anyone who had seen Carpenter's film will also note some familiarity when they hear the opening notes of Alexander and Mark Peskanov's score! More original is the sampling of original songs in the film, particularly the catchy "It's the Night Again" (composed by the Peskanovs and sung by Vini Canali), which has sadly never seen a commercial release of any kind.

The film also boasted an unusually high number of producers at the time for a small horror film, totaling five between producer George Manassee, executive producers Joseph Beruh (perhaps most notable in Hollywood for losing out on the Frank Sinatra role in From Here to Eternity) and Edgar Lansbury (former art director and brother of Angela Lansbury), and co-producers Nan Pearlman and Robert De Milia. The team of Beruh and Lansbury had earlier brought the hit musical Godspell to the stage and screen and had gone down to Georgia for Jeff Lieberman's cult killer worm shocker, Squirm (1976).

The wide variety of Staten Island locations included the abandoned Sea View Hospital and its adjacent city parks and streets. The tunnels beneath the structure had been built in the 19th century during a tuberculosis epidemic to remove bodies without risk of infection, which made it ideal for the final stalking climax. The striking opening scene (lifted nearly verbatim in Scream 2) was shot in a long-abandoned movie theater from the director's youth. Upon opening the building, they found the heating no longer worked, so if you look closely in some shots, you can see the actors' breath when they're speaking.

The leading lady duty was given to Caitlin O'Heaney who was fresh off the upstate New York slasher film Savage Weekend (1979) and would go on to a long TV career as well as the enjoyable werewolf outing, Late Phases (2014). She was also involved in the film's most dangerous mishap when her vehicle flipped in the water during a pursuit with killer Tom Rolfing when she was supposed to cut his hand. Her leading man, Don Scardino, was another Squirm alumnus, also seen earlier in 1980 as the ill-fated good guy neighbor in William Friedkin's Cruising. However, he would find his greatest success behind the camera as a TV director with tenures on such programs as Law & Order, 30 Rock and 2 Broke Girls. Also peppered through the cast are many familiar character actors including the late Paul Gleason from The Breakfast Club (1985) and Die Hard (1988), James Rebhorn from Scent of a Woman (1992) and The Game (1997) and a young Dana Barron before she became Audrey Griswold in National Lampoon's Vacation (1983). However, one actor in his screen debut would have the greatest success of all: Tom Hanks, whose horror-savvy role as Elliot is a highlight of the film. That same year, he would star in the TV sitcom Bosom Buddies, which would launch him to a career as one of Hollywood's most reliable leading men, a two-time Oscar winner and the voice of Woody in the Toy Story series.

He Knows You're Alone was originally announced as an available acquisition in Variety on April 18, 1980 under the title Blood Wedding, with key art featuring a skeleton in a bridal outfit with the tagline, "A Chilling Nightmare of Terror!" By the time it opened, the critical tide was turning against slasher films with Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert mounting a particularly vociferous campaign. On the October 23, 1980 edition of Sneak Previews, they savaged this film as "gruesome and despicable" (which will come as a surprise to anyone who's seen how restrained it actually is) along with When a Stranger Calls, Friday the 13th, Prom Night, and Terror Train. The New York Times was only slightly more charitable, calling it "the latest in a ghouls' parade of cheaply made horror movies by young and unknown film makers." However, time has proven the subgenre to have an enduring appeal that's easily survived the slings and arrows of its attackers, with this one holding a particular fascination as an early and quirky offering at the dawn of the big studio slasher boom.

By Nathaniel Thompson
He Knows You're Alone

He Knows You're Alone

After the success of John Carpenter's independent horror hit Halloween in 1978, major studios were scrambling to find the same return on investment with knife-wielding killers stalking teenagers all over North America. By 1980 the floodgates had truly opened, and Paramount led the pack with its immensely popular Friday the 13th. Often considered an also-ran but quite entertaining in its own right is He Knows You're Alone, an indie shot entirely in Staten Island and picked up by MGM for a nationwide theatrical release in late August of 1980. Best known now as a director of made-for-TV films, the feature marked the big screen directorial debut for Brooklyn-born Armand Mastroianni, a horror fan who won his first film festival prize at 16 for an 8mm short. His ability to deliver a commercial shocker on time and on budget kept him in the genre for most of the remainder of the decades thanks to films like The Killing Hour (1982), The Supernaturals (1986) and Cameron's Closet (1988), all of which fared far better on home video than in theaters. "When people see a spooky old castle with lightning flashing around it, they know they're supposed to be scared," Mastroianni said about the conventions of horror films at the time in the film's press kit. "It's been done, pardon the expression, to death. But when the scene of the crime is friendly and familiar, they're lulled into a false sense of security." Of course, anyone who had seen Carpenter's film will also note some familiarity when they hear the opening notes of Alexander and Mark Peskanov's score! More original is the sampling of original songs in the film, particularly the catchy "It's the Night Again" (composed by the Peskanovs and sung by Vini Canali), which has sadly never seen a commercial release of any kind. The film also boasted an unusually high number of producers at the time for a small horror film, totaling five between producer George Manassee, executive producers Joseph Beruh (perhaps most notable in Hollywood for losing out on the Frank Sinatra role in From Here to Eternity) and Edgar Lansbury (former art director and brother of Angela Lansbury), and co-producers Nan Pearlman and Robert De Milia. The team of Beruh and Lansbury had earlier brought the hit musical Godspell to the stage and screen and had gone down to Georgia for Jeff Lieberman's cult killer worm shocker, Squirm (1976). The wide variety of Staten Island locations included the abandoned Sea View Hospital and its adjacent city parks and streets. The tunnels beneath the structure had been built in the 19th century during a tuberculosis epidemic to remove bodies without risk of infection, which made it ideal for the final stalking climax. The striking opening scene (lifted nearly verbatim in Scream 2) was shot in a long-abandoned movie theater from the director's youth. Upon opening the building, they found the heating no longer worked, so if you look closely in some shots, you can see the actors' breath when they're speaking. The leading lady duty was given to Caitlin O'Heaney who was fresh off the upstate New York slasher film Savage Weekend (1979) and would go on to a long TV career as well as the enjoyable werewolf outing, Late Phases (2014). She was also involved in the film's most dangerous mishap when her vehicle flipped in the water during a pursuit with killer Tom Rolfing when she was supposed to cut his hand. Her leading man, Don Scardino, was another Squirm alumnus, also seen earlier in 1980 as the ill-fated good guy neighbor in William Friedkin's Cruising. However, he would find his greatest success behind the camera as a TV director with tenures on such programs as Law & Order, 30 Rock and 2 Broke Girls. Also peppered through the cast are many familiar character actors including the late Paul Gleason from The Breakfast Club (1985) and Die Hard (1988), James Rebhorn from Scent of a Woman (1992) and The Game (1997) and a young Dana Barron before she became Audrey Griswold in National Lampoon's Vacation (1983). However, one actor in his screen debut would have the greatest success of all: Tom Hanks, whose horror-savvy role as Elliot is a highlight of the film. That same year, he would star in the TV sitcom Bosom Buddies, which would launch him to a career as one of Hollywood's most reliable leading men, a two-time Oscar winner and the voice of Woody in the Toy Story series. He Knows You're Alone was originally announced as an available acquisition in Variety on April 18, 1980 under the title Blood Wedding, with key art featuring a skeleton in a bridal outfit with the tagline, "A Chilling Nightmare of Terror!" By the time it opened, the critical tide was turning against slasher films with Gene Siskel and Roger Ebert mounting a particularly vociferous campaign. On the October 23, 1980 edition of Sneak Previews, they savaged this film as "gruesome and despicable" (which will come as a surprise to anyone who's seen how restrained it actually is) along with When a Stranger Calls, Friday the 13th, Prom Night, and Terror Train. The New York Times was only slightly more charitable, calling it "the latest in a ghouls' parade of cheaply made horror movies by young and unknown film makers." However, time has proven the subgenre to have an enduring appeal that's easily survived the slings and arrows of its attackers, with this one holding a particular fascination as an early and quirky offering at the dawn of the big studio slasher boom. By Nathaniel Thompson

Quotes

Trivia

Miscellaneous Notes

Released in United States Summer September 1, 1980

Released in United States Summer September 1, 1980