Lamberto Bava was born in Rome, Italy on 3 April 1944. Lamberto's father Mario Bava was a film director known primarily as a director of horror films. Lamberto's film career began in the mid-1960s working as an assistant director on his father's film Planet of the Vampires. Lamberto would later collaborate with his father on several of his projects, including Danger: Diabolik (1966), Twitch of the Death Nerve (1971) and Shock (1977) (On Shock, Lamberto Bava was credited as a screenwriter as well as an assistant director.) Lamberto Bava had a co-directing credit with his father Mario on the television film La Venere d'Ille, which was an entry in the Il Giorno del Diavolo tv series. Besides the work he did with his father, Lamberto also contributed to making films with Italian director Ruggero Deodato, such as Ultimo mondo cannibale (1977) and Cannibal Holocaust (1979).
A meeting with director Pupi Avati led to Bava directing his own feature film Macabre in 1980 which was co-written with Pupi and Antonio Avati. The film stars Bernice Stegers as Jane, a woman who has an affair with a man Stanko Molnar, who dies. After his death, Jane keeps his severed head in her refrigerator and performs erotic acts with it. According to Lamberto Bava, after seeing Macabre, Mario told him "Now I can die in peace". Mario actually died later in 1980.
Following the release of Macabre, Lamberto Bava worked in advertising and continued to write stories for potential future film projects. He was approached by director Dario Argento to assist him with his giallo film Tenebre (1982), wherein Bava is credited as an assistant director. In 1983, Lamberto Bava directed his second feature film as a director, the giallo film A Blade in the Dark. A Blade in the Dark was originally developed as a television film shot in four 25-minute segments on a very low budget. The film stars Andrea Occhipinti as the music composer Bruno, a man who becomes involved in a series of murders while staying at a secluded villa.
Bava's next two film projects were in different genres than his previous giallo and horror film output. Bava was given a script for Blastfighter, a film originally written as a remake of the Australian film Mad Max with the intention of giving it to director Lucio Fulci. Blastfighter starred Michael Sopkiw as Tiger, a detective who had been released from prison for shooting the man who killed his wife. Tiger moves into the woods with his daughter where he is terrorized by a group of thugs. Lamberto's next film, Monster Shark, was a science fiction film about a mutated shark that goes on a killing spree with two marine biologists attempting to track down the creature to stop it.
In 1985, Lamberto Bava reteamed with Dario Argento on the film Demons. Argento co-wrote and produced Bava's film about a theater showing invitation-only screenings of a horror film. In the theater's lobby, a young woman is scratched by a display in the lobby and transforms into a hideous creature who then attacks other audience members, spreading her demonic infection. The film was followed by the sequel Demons 2 in 1986 which had many of the same cast and crew members from Demons. Demons 2 features a television program which causes an outbreak of zombies in an apartment complex. Bava also made the television film Midnight Killer the same year. The film is about a series of murders which are similar to one that was committed 15 years prior, despite the fact that the murderer supposedly died in a fire. Bava makes a cameo in the film as a photographer at the beginning of the film. While working on Midnight Killer, Bava began preparing his next film, Delirium (1987). Delerium stars Serena Grandi as Gioia, a model for Pussycat magazine. Gioia's co-workers end up murdered through bizarre means including pitchforks and bees and then their corpses posed in front of photos of her, which Gioia receives in the mail from the murderer.
Bava returned to television work making several episodes of a series of hour-long films produced by Dario Argento. Bava's episodes included "E ...di Moda la Morte", "Heavy Metal", "Buona Fine È Migliore Principo", "Giubetto Rosso", "Il Bambino Rapito" and "Babbao Natale". Between 1987 and 1988, Bava directed feature-length films for the Italian television program Brivado Giallo, including Dentro al Cimitero, Per Sempre, La Casa dell'Orco and Cena con il Vampiro. Between 1989 and 1990, Bava continued making television films and two remakes: Testimone Oculare, a remake of a television episode of the same name made by Argento in the early 1970s and La Maschera del Demonio, a remake of Mario Bava's Black Sunday (1960).
In 1992, Bava made the film Body Puzzle, which starred Joanna Pacula, who learns that her late husband Abe had a lover named Tim Bell. When Tim learns that Abe was an organ donor, Tim begins killing people in order to rebuild him. Bava also worked in television. In 1991, Bava directed Fantaghiro, a television miniseries that was influenced by films such as Legend, Willow and Ladyhawke. The series was aimed more at family audiences than Bava's previous work and violence is kept to a minimum. The series concluded in 1997 with eight feature-length episodes. Before finishing the series, Bava worked on other television projects, including Desideria, between 1994 and 1995, and a second fantasy series titled Sorellina e il Principe del Sogno (1996). In the late 1990s, Bava made another television film entitled Caraibi. Bava's more recent film work includes L'Impero (2000) and Ghost Son (2006).Shock (1977) a.k.a. Beyond the Door 2 (Lamberto co-directed this film with his father Mario Bava)
La Venere d'Ille / The Venus of the Island (1979) TV movie co-written & co-directed with his father, Mario Bava
Macabre (1980) (Italian: Macabro) a.k.a. Frozen Terror
A Blade in the Dark (1983) (Italian: La casa con la scala nel buio / The House With the Dark Staircase)
Blastfighter (1984) a.k.a. Force of Vengeance (a "First Blood" Rambo take-off)
Monster Shark (1984) (Italian: Shark: Rosso nell'oceano) a.k.a. Devil Fish
Demons (1985) (Italian: Dèmoni)
Demons 2 (1986) (Italian: Dèmoni 2) a.k.a. Demons 2: The Nightmare Returns
Midnight Killer (1986) (Italian: Morirai a mezzanotte / You'll Die At Midnight)
Turno di notte (1986) (Italian TV series) – he directed six episodes, including "E' di Moda la Morte", "Heavy Metal", "Buona Fine e Miglior Principio", "Giubetto Rosso", "Il Bambino Rapito" and "Babbo Natale"
Delirium (1987) (Italian: Le foto di Gioia / Photos of Gioia)
Dinner with a Vampire (1987) (Italian: A cena col vampiro) (TV movie; part of the Brivido giallo series)`
The Ogre (1987) (Italian: La casa dell'orco / House of the Ogre) (TV movie; part of the Brivido giallo series) a.k.a. The Ogre: Demons 3
Until Death (1987) (Italian: Per sempre / Forever) (TV movie; part of the Brivido giallo series)
Graveyard Disturbance (1987) (Italian: Una notte al cimitero / A Night in the Cemetery) (TV movie; part of the Brivido giallo series)
The Prince of Terror (1988) (Italian: Il maestro del terrore) (TV movie; part of the Alta tensione series)
The Man Who Didn't Want to Die (1988) (Italian: L'uomo che non voleva morire) (TV movie; part of the Alta tensione series)
School of Fear (1988)(Italian: Il gioko/ The Game) (TV movie; part of the Alta tensione series)
Eyewitness (1988) (Italian: Testimone oculare) (TV movie; part of the Alta tensione series)
Protezione a vista (1989) translation: Protection on Demand
Mask of the Demon (1989) (Italian: La maschera del demonio) a.k.a. Demons 5: The Devil's Veil
Fantaghirò (1991) (TV movie)
Body Puzzle (1992) a.k.a. Misteria
Fantaghirò 2 (1992) (TV movie)
Fantaghirò 3 (1993) (TV movie)
The Dragon Ring (1994) (Italian: Desideria e l'anello del drago) (TV movie)
Fantaghirò 4 (1994) (TV movie)
Princess Alisea (1996) (Italian: Sorellina e il principe del sogno) (TV movie)
Fantaghirò 5 (1996) (TV movie)
The Princess and the Pauper (1997) (Italian: La principessa e il povero)
Pirates: Blood Brothers (1999) (Italian: Caraibi) TV miniseries
Human Currency (2001) (Italian: L'Impero) TV miniseries
The Torturer (2005)
Ghost Son (2007)
Visions of Murder (2012) (Italian: Presagi) (TV movie) a.k.a. The Medium (TV movie in the 6 passi nel giallo series)
Tailor-Made Murder (2012) (Italian: Omicidio su misura) (TV movie) a.k.a. Perfect Murder (TV movie in the 6 passi nel giallo series)
Kammerspiel (2012) (Italian: Vite in ostaggio / Hostage Lives) (TV movie in the 6 passi nel giallo series)