Retro Skin is a regular look back at outrageous, obscure, and even unknown films from the wild world of skinema history that broke naked ground in their day and now live forever at

DIRECTOR:Lucio Fulci
NUDES:Alexandra Delli Colli, Daniela Doria, Zora Kerova, Cinzia de Ponti

In the annals of “spaghetti splatter” gore films from Italy in the 1970s and ’80s, the name Lucio Fulci ranks among the most revered.

From his breakthrough shocker A Lizard in a Woman’s Skin (1971) through his signature classic Zombie (1979) to his meta-horror freak-out Cat in the Brain (1990), Fulci established an over-the-top style in which flesh and blood exploded with orgiastic abandon.

Released during the first post-Halloween/Friday the 13th boom of slasher blow-outs, The New York Ripper presents Fulci’s plasma-drenched take on the trend, along with one-of-a-kind oddball touches such as having the titular homicidal practitioner taunt police by quacking in a Donald Duck voice.

Exquisite violence is a given when Fulci is at his finest, and, in addition to stunning footage of the decaying Big Apple in its early-’80s collapse-into-sleaze heyday, The New York Ripper also comes chock-full of tantalizing B-movie Euro beauties at their most alluringi.e., gloriously naked and horribly mutilated.

Busty Alexandra Della Colli actually escapes the Ripper’s blade by chewing her way to freedom through his ropes. It’s her finest performance since playing an anthropologist who gets strapped to a giant dinner plate by cannibals in Zombie Holocaust (1979)the gut muncher that would evolve (by dropping in footage from student films and other movies) into 1982’s immortal Dr. Butcher, M.D. (Medical Deviate).

The New York Ripper marks the third naked appearance in a Fulci film by plucky Daniela Doria, who previously peeled for the maestro in The House by the Cemetery (1981) and The Black Cat (1981).

Doria also went full frontal for fellow Italian brutalist Joe D’Amato in Il Ginecologo della mutua (1977), the title of which, perhaps not so curiously, translates as “gynecologist of the health insurance.” It’s a comedy.

Cinzia de Ponti won the coveted Miss Italy 1979 crown, then immediately took to shedding her sash and gown in big-screen bedroom farces.

In Ripper, Cinzia portrays a Staten Island commuter who boards the famous ferry and is next seen as one of Fulci’s infamous hacked-up victimswith her boobs out, of course.

Most significant among the Ripper ravishers, though, is Zora Kerova, who portrays a live sex performer at a Times Square peep show. She is, of course, doomed.

Zora rides a dusky cocksman’s rod atop a shaggy mattress on stage for an audience of rain-coated onlookers prior to falling prey to a broken liquor bottle at the hands of the Ripperwhich he shoves directly into her unsuspecting money-maker.

Pert-breasted, brickhouse-butted, bleached-blonde powerhouse Zora stands as one of the era’s most electrifying exploitation sirens. In addition to Ripper, she nakedly illuminates the grindhouse milestones Escape from Women’s Prison (1978), Bruno Mattei’s The True Story of the Nun of Monza (1980), Les Filles de Madame Claude (1980), and, most indelibly, as the iconic chick who gets hung up by hooks through her tits in Canibal Ferox (1981).


The New York Ripper is a great, gross feast of everything that was simultaneously fun and disgusting, arousing and upsetting about the slasher films of the drive-in era.

As a fan, you could ask for no greater artist than Lucio Fulci to supply you with such sensations and no hotter collection of continental lovelies to strip nude and let the special effects teams run wild.

Blue Underground just issued an awesome special edition of The New York Ripper on Blu-Ray. Be sure to buy it (and don't rip it!).