The Boston Strangler

Synopsis: Boston is being terrorized by a series of seemingly random murders of women. Based on the true story, the film follows the investigators path through several leads before introducing the Strangler as a character. It is seen almost exclusively from the point of view of the investigators who have very few clues to build a case upon.
Genre: Crime, Drama, Mystery
Director(s): Richard Fleischer
Production: 20th Century Fox Film Corp.
  Nominated for 1 Golden Globe. Another 2 nominations.
Rotten Tomatoes:
116 min



This is John Cameron Swayze in Boston.

A turnout of Bostonians unsurpassed

in numbers and enthusiasm...

...roars its welcome for Al Shepard

followed by Gus Grissom...

...sharing the popular tribute with their

fellow astronauts of Project Mercury.

There's Johnny Glenn.

Joy in this usually reserved city

of Boston is unconfined.

Recognizing Glenn's

morale-boosting feat...

...that proved three men will have their

say in space when the chips are down.

There's a pandemonium of pride as the

Mercury astronaut arrives at City Hall... be welcomed by the mayor

and other privileged dignitaries...

...a moment long to be remembered

by all who witness this stirring event.

Leaving the municipal center,

the tempo is stepped up...

...and the triumphal motorcade

is cheered by additional city multitudes.

At the Hilton, where the luncheon

in honor of Glenn...

...and his astronaut associates

will be held...

...a thousand notables are seated

to supplement the public tribute... Boston toasts another "well done"

for Al Shepard and Johnny Glenn.


Come in. We're all finished.

- How long has she been dead?

- Four or five hours.


There's no semen,

but she's been mauled and bitten.


All these taxes, and they still

can't deliver the mail on time.

They're too busy

blowing everything up with money.

Well, I heard on TV that

they're cleaning up some African jungle.

Imagine, with parts of Boston

the way they look.

I guess Mara's stuck at the hospital

with another case.

No, she's home.

I heard her take the milk in.

Did I ever tell you, when I was nursing,

about Mr. Peavis?

- He was from Worcester, and I...

- You told me.

If... If she was home,

she'd come out and get her mail.

Mr. Harris, did you see Mrs. Edwards

go out this morning?


The only thing he ever hears

is the racetrack reports.

Maybe she's sick.

You know she gets

those terrible migraines.


Mara? Are you there?

She wouldn't leave her door open.

Mr. Harris!

Mr. Harris!

Usually in a homicide

where nothing's stolen...'s a personal enmity,

a grudge killing.

Two cases of personal enmity

against two harmless old ladies... the same neighborhood in one week?

Come on, captain.

Looks like a nut's loose.

Nuts don't ransack apartments.

Nothing was stolen. Was there?

Oh, let him have his story.

Maybe the nut was looking

for something imaginary.

- Uh-huh. Like what?

How do I know?

A fire engine he thinks

someone stole from him...

...when he was 3.

Don't you watch television?

You know what that's called?

Double-square knot. Surgeon's knot.

Not a very commonly used knot, is it?

So the women were strangled

with a double-square knot.

What are you trying to tell us,

that it was a doctor or an Eagle Scout?


What about the sex?

What did he actually do to them?

- What's the difference?

- People like to read about it.

Let them read paperbacks. We

withhold till we check out confessions.

- Do you have any?

- We have a group we rely on... confess to any homicide

committed in greater Boston.

I'll see you later.

Thanks, captain. Gentlemen.

Teletype from the Lynn Police.

They found a 68-year-old retired nurse

by the name of Louise Penny...


Was she raped?

With a wine bottle.

We've got a full-blown maniac

on our hands.

I've got him all set up for you.

Now, this regular, the one in the bar,

his name's Arnie Carr, isn't straight.

I don't have any real straight ones,

but he is special.

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Edward Anhalt

Edward Anhalt (March 28, 1914 in New York City – September 3, 2000 in Pacific Palisades, California) was a noted screenwriter, producer, and documentary film-maker. After working as a journalist and documentary filmmaker for Pathé and CBS-TV he teamed with his wife Edna Anhalt during World War II to write pulp fiction. (Edna was one of his five wives.) more…

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Submitted on August 05, 2018

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