Also known as The Town That Cried TerrorNight Hunter Assault in Paradise and Maniac*, this was directed by Richard Compton (Angels Die HardMacon County Line, tons of episodic TV) and written by John C. Broderick (who wrote and directed The Warrior and the Sorceress; well, kind of…read my interview with William Stout) and Ronald Silkosky (The Dunwich Horror).

The town of Paradise is run by the rich William Whitaker (Stuart Whitman). He’s being targeted by a Native American named Victor (Paul Koslo), who starts killing people and demands a million. If he’s not paid, more will die. Instead of relying on the police, Whitaker pays Nick McCormick (Oliver Reed) to end his problems.

Seeing as how the desert is an area he doesn’t know, Nick hires a tracker (Jim Mitchum). Now, both these two are supposed to be efficient killers, yet they keep getting lost and Nick spends most of his time drinking — Oliver Reed, playing not against character — and getting down with a TV reporter named Cindy (Deborah Raffin).

Somehow, this movie also has an end song by The Byrds’ Roger McGuinn and Patrick Ferrell, as well as a score by jazz musician Don Ellis, who also did the score for RubyThe French Connection and Kansas City Bomber.

It’s kind of a slasher, kind of Native Americansploitation, kind of a socially aware movie and also, totally not because Paul Koslo is a white guy with blonde hair playing a Native American.

*See all the ads in this article at the essential Temple of Schlock. 1977’s Maniac! release has a different opening scene by Miller Drake and Joel Rapp where a killer in a clown mask shoots a young couple in a convertible Son of Sam style.

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