6.4/10
2,431
55 user 69 critic

Combat Shock (1984)

A dangerously disturbed Vietnam veteran struggles with life 15 years after his return home, and slowly falls into insanity from his gritty urban lifestyle.

Director:

Buddy Giovinazzo

Writer:

Buddy Giovinazzo (as Buddy G)
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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Rick Giovinazzo ... Frankie Dunlan (as Ricky Giovinazzo)
Veronica Stork Veronica Stork ... Cathy Dunlan
Mitch Maglio ... Paco - Gang Leader
Asaph Livni Asaph Livni ... Labo - Gang Member
Nick Nasta Nick Nasta ... Morbe - Gang Member
Michael Tierno ... Mike - Junkie
Arthur Saunders Arthur Saunders ... Pimp
Lori Labar Lori Labar ... Lead Prostitute / Vietnamese Woman
Jim Cooney Jim Cooney ... Interogating GI
Ray Pinero Ray Pinero ... Welfare Worker
Leo Lunney Leo Lunney ... Frankie's Father
Eddie Pepitone ... Terry - Strung-Out Junkie (as Ed Pepitone)
Martin Blank Martin Blank ... Doctor
Bob Mireau Bob Mireau ... Security Guard
Tom Desantis Tom Desantis ... Man Behind Frankie
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Storyline

Frankie is a war vet whose life sucks. He has no money, a nagging wife, junkie friends, and a deformed baby. This is the story of one day in his pathetic post-war life. Written by Josh Pasnak <chainsaw@intouch.bc.ca>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Fighting, killing, maiming. Agent Orange and the torture cages were the easy part!...

Genres:

Drama | Horror | Thriller | War

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

14 May 1986 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

American Nightmare See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$40,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (director's cut)

Sound Mix:

Mono

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

1.37 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The wardrobe was purchased from the Salvation Army. See more »

Goofs

When Frankie inspects the revolver drum magazine after loading it, some of the cartridges have a dent in the primer made by a firing pin, meaning that they've already been fired. See more »

Quotes

Frankie Dunlan: I go back there every night, without fail...
See more »

Alternate Versions

The original DVD version released by Troma is missing several scenes, most notably the scene where Frankie drinks sour milk toward the beginning and several trims throughout the film, especially noticeable during the film's climax. These scenes were intact for the unrated Troma VHS release in the late 1990s, which is currently the only way to see the uncut version of the Troma theatrical edit. Buddy Giovinazzo confirmed that he did not sanction any of these edits in an interview with Troma fan webmaster Justin Channell in January 2004, though Troma president Lloyd Kaufman adamantly claimed there was no missing footage in an interview later that year. The same version of the "theatrical cut" is present on the 2-disc DVD edition released in 2009 (which also includes the full-length original "American Nightmares" cut), likely to allow the inclusion of the initial release's commentary track. See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

Gritty, disturbing urban nightmare
24 January 2003 | by squeezeboxSee all my reviews

Gritty, disturbing nightmare movie about a pathetic Vietnam veteran living in poverty in New York City, who's slowly disintegrating mind finally snaps after one too many days of unemployment, loan sharks, a nagging wife, flashbacks and, worst of all, his constantly crying baby, monstrously deformed as a result of his exposure to Agent Orange. Relentlessly downbeat, and filled with horrific imagery of violence and drug abuse, this may be too much for many viewers to take. Borrows a bit from ERASERHEAD and TAXI DRIVER, but does so fairly well, with good performances, a seedy atmosphere and some imaginative directorial touches despite it's ultra low budget. Released on DVD by Troma for the first time in its uncut form, this is a movie truly worthy of rediscovery.


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