The film centers around a rapist and murderer in Miami who stalks his victims and then calls them repeatedly before raping and killing them. The movie opens with a body being discovered underwater. After the introduction of the dead body, the film begins to follow the murderer stalking a blonde woman on her way home. The murderer begins calling the woman which leads to her calling the police. Before the police arrive, both she and her boyfriend are murdered. Jane, a television news anchor, begins to suspect her neighbor of committing the series of murders she's been covering. As Jane searches for evidence to share with the police, she inadvertently alerts the murderer and must fight for her life and the life of her disabled sister, Tracy.
- Lauren Tewes as Jane
- Jennifer Jason Leigh as Tracy
- John DiSanti as Stanley Herbert
- Peter DuPre as David
- Gwen Lewis as Debbie
- Kitty Lunn as Annette
- Timothy Hawkins as Jeff
- Ted Richert as Roger England
- Toni Crabtree as Mona
- Robert Small as Dr. Bob (as Bob Small)
- Stella Rivera as Dancer
- Dan Fitzgerald as Bartender
- Jose Bahamonde as Jimmy (as José Bahamande)
- Luke Halpin as Tape Editor
- Ru Flynn as Woman in Car (as Rhonda Flynn)
Eyes of a Stranger was released in 180 theaters in the United States by Warner Bros. on March 27, 1981, earning $546,724 during its opening weekend. It eventually grossed an estimated $1.1 million.
The film was originally cut for an R rating, removing many instances of violence including a decapitation from the film, leaving only the final head shot uncut. As a result, many of Tom Savini's gore effects were cut out or edited. The uncut version was released on DVD as part of Warner's Twisted Terror Collection with an R-rating on the packaging.
Janet Maslin of The New York Times called it "a cheap, sleazy horror movie," but praised Jennifer Jason Leigh as "the only thing worth seeing." Allmovie wrote, "this tired, unimaginative slasher-thriller plays like a sleazy TV movie-of-the-week punctuated with gory murder scenes". Siskel & Ebert gave the film "No" votes on their TV show but both critics said the film was unusually well-made and technically sound for a slasher film, with Siskel mentioning the director's past work on PBS shows by way of stating that he probably had better material for future movies.
- Eyes of a Stranger (1981 film) at Box Office Mojo
- Maslin, Janet. "A Killer Stalks in Eyes of a Stranger," The New York Times, Friday, March 27, 1981. Retrieved November 15, 2018
- Cavett Binion. "Eyes of a Stranger (1981)".. Retrieved on 18 June 2012.
- Eyes of a Stranger (1981 film) at AllMovie
- Eyes of a Stranger (1981 film) at the TCM Movie Database
- Eyes of a Stranger at the American Film Institute Catalog
- Maslin, Janet (1981-03-27). "A Killer Stalks in 'Eyes of a Stranger'" (in en-US), The New York Times.