Lucio Fulci (17 June 1927 13 March 1996) was an Italian screenwriter and director, best known for splattery gialli and horror films (though he also made westerns and comedies). His films seldom pass up an excuse for gore, and the effects are consistently over-the-top sometimes horrifyingly convincing, sometimes amusingly fake, but always extreme. His films are driven by theme and visual style rather than coherent plot; they tend to be deeply pessimistic, and propelled toward nihilistic Downer Endings. Compare Dario Argento.
His best-known films (all from the period 1971-1984) are:
- Lizard in a Woman's Skin, a psychedelic Police Procedural.
- Don't Torture a Duckling, an extremely pessimistic giallo touching on themes of small-town xenophobia as the townspeople suspect all of the "outsiders" for a rash of child-murders. Fulci himself considered it his best film.
- Seven Notes in Black (called The Psychic in its English dub), a giallo about a clairvoyant woman who turns detective after receiving visions relating to a murder apparently committed in her house.
- Four of the Apocalypse, a dark Spaghetti Western based on stories by Bret Harte.
- Zombi 2 (known as Zombie Flesh Eaters in the UK and Zombie in the US), where a Caribbean island is infested with zombies. The title Zombi 2 is a case of Dolled-Up Installment: Dawn of the Dead (1978) was titled Zombi in Italy.
- City of the Living Dead, zombie flick with religious elements which was followed by two loose "sequels" (Read below)
- Contraband, his sole poliziotesco picture, which was funded by actual mobsters after the original producer died suddenly and his widow nearly pulled the plug.
- The Beyond (a.k.a. Seven Doors of Death), a sad, thoughtful horror film based on the works of H. P. Lovecraft and Clark Ashton Smith. Features extra zombies thanks to Executive Meddling.
- The House by the Cemetery, a Mind Screw Haunted House film. Features a character named Freudstein and goes from there.
- The New York Ripper, a Serial Killer film widely decried as misogynistic and has a serial killer that sounds like Donald Duck.
- Conquest, Fulci's surreal contribution to the Sword and Sorcery craze of the 80's.
- The New Gladiators, a sci-fi action film set in a dystopian future heavily inspired by The Running Man and Blade Runner. Suffers from some padding but has great action pieces, sets, and miniatures.
- A Cat In The Brain, an extremely meta horror film starring Fulci As Himself — a horror-film director who seeks psychiatric help when he begins seeing the world Through the Eyes of Madness.
Other films he made include:
- Massacre Time, one of three Spaghetti Westerns he directed.
- The Silver Saddle, one of three Spaghetti Westerns he directed.
- White Fang, a rare family film in his repertoire.
- Zombi 3D, a "sequel" to his own Zombi 2 that is one part The Return of the Living Dead, one part Day of the Dead (1985), and one part The Crazies, telling the story of a conflict between scientists and the military following a zombie-inducing contamination and a group of survivors trying to get out of Dodge alive.