Horror / Sci-Fi / Thriller

IMDb Rating 5.5 10 19733

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Uploaded By: FREEMAN



Rose McGowan as Lisa Pailey
Liev Schreiber as Deputy Stuart 'Stu' Wargle
Robert Knepper as Agent Wilson
Joanna Going as Jennifer Pailey, M.D.

Movie Reviews

Reviewed by Bogmeister 7 / 10

Beware that Thing which Lives Forever

Inappropriately titled, like the book itself by Koontz, Phantoms is a surprisingly effective monster movie, especially in the first half. The best monsters are the ones which are very difficult to kill; in addition, these types of monsters can destroy fragile human beings with ease. This is what is confronted here, with humans little more than insects to be crushed and absorbed. Of course, certain insects can cause a lot of damage when they put their minds to it. The atmosphere in the first half hour is very eerie and there's a lot of mystery. You have pretty much an empty town, a couple of young women just arrived, and a couple of bodies - no answers. That gloom & foreboding of doom may not be too difficult to create, but we hardly see it anymore, even in horror films. Even if one has seen this film, however, they may be compelled to watch that first half hour again just to get that sense of doom all over. When some cops show up, things get even worse. Then an entire army shows up and, of course, we think things are under control now, but it makes no difference. At least the pic is consistent with its menace.

This picture was virtually ignored on release and I don't think video has helped it much. When the monster is revealed, it obviously takes away all the suspense built up earlier, but it's still creepy going (without revealing too much, the monster is a more advanced version of a famous one from the fifties; think also along the lines of "The Thing" remake by Carpenter in '82). Writer Koontz was involved in the adaptation, which always seems to help. Actor O'Toole appears around the midway point as the only so-called expert on the creature, all based on conjecture, of course. He lends a bit of gravity to it all, tho I suppose he's slumming here in a 'typical' fright flic. The rest of the younger cast do fine, with Affleck a bit irritating as usual. I'm not sure what Schreiber was aiming at, but he was almost as creepy as the creature. There's a bit of a twist ending, which wasn't really necessary.

Reviewed by Wilbur-10 6 / 10

Solid horror storyline compensates routine production.

Reasonable supernatural horror, the action taking place in a small town where all the inhabitants have vanished or are dead.

The first half hour builds up tension quite well as two sisters return to the town only to find a few dead bodies and some dismembered body parts. Ben Affleck comes on the scene as a very young looking Sheriff, and the plot sort of meanders along until the introduction of Peter O'Toole as an expert in strange phenomenon. The horror turns out to be an evil entity from the depths of the earth, having similar Devil characteristics to those seen in 'Quatermass and the Pit'.

The film is forgetable but is still better than most horror/monster movies that are churned out these days. 'Phantoms' rarely resorts to cheap humour or trite one-liners and, despite the presence of Affleck, doesn't fall back on any romance to pad out the plot. The horror theme stays strong throughout, and while there are obvious ideas lifted from other films - 'The Andromeda Strain' and particularly the metamorphosising dog from 'The Thing'- at least the film remains true to its roots.

The second half of the film begins to wilt but fortunately things are wrapped up quite quickly, and while the performances, effects and script are all routine, the story element itself is allowed to dominate and this is strong enough to carry the film past the average mark.

Reviewed by Zombie_Kickboxer 6 / 10


**Possible minor spoilers** I rented this primarily based on Jason Mewes' classic "Jay and Silent Bob Strike Back" line, "Affleck, you da bomb in Phantoms!" so I really had no expectations going into this film.

Turns out it's a nicely suspenseful film with some problems here and there. The steady pacing really stumbles around the last third of the film while the characters are basically just sitting around figuring out what to do, and the filmmakers took what I felt was a little too long to finally reveal the creature, in any of its forms.

I didn't find the concept fiercely original either, and I was constantly reminded of H.P. Lovecraft (nasty betentacled creature from the depths of the earth, older than man, etc.)

The acting was decent all around, and though some other people may criticize Liev Schreiber, I thought his delivery of "You wanna see somethin'?" was just great.

Not a fantastic film but good entertainment for a boring afternoon. 6/10.

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