Sunday, October 30, 2011

31 Nights of Terror #23 - Phantasm III (1994)

Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead (1994)
Director: Don Coscarelli
Starring: Reggie Bannister, Michael Franklin, Bill Thornbury, Angus Scrimm
Format: VHS (Village Roadshow)

- Disclosure: I haven't seen Phantasm 2, and it's been at least 10 years since I last watched the original Phantasm.
- Nice recap of previous happenings to bring us up to speed. In a nutshell: The Tall Man won't die.
- Exploding midget head!
- Serious laugh out loud moment as Reggie shoots into a tree and several killer dwarves drop out dead.
- So apparently the character of Mike was played in part 2 by James LeGros (SOLAR WARRIORS). But Don Coscarelli had more control over this sequel so brought back Michael Franklin to play Mike, 15 years after the first movie.
- Deserted town. Cool.
- Haha, it's like an R-rated Home Alone.
- Gotta love the sphere kills. So different than anything else in horror movies.
- Rocky is one kickass chick.
- Reggie, trying to get into Rocky's pants: "You ever try vanilla?". Rocky: "Didn't I tell you, dairy products give me gas". Bah-dum-psh.
- I wonder if Coscarelli got a bulk-buy discount on laser-light machines, 'cause he sure likes using them.
- Well, that was an action-packed last half hour. Zombies, spheres, nunchucks... yep, it had it all.

Overall thoughts: "Seeing is easy, understanding takes a little more time." That is a line from Phantasm III and it pretty much sums up the movie. Don't try to apply any logic to this movie, because the stuff with the spheres, killer midgets and zombies doesn't make a lick of sense. But if you just watch it without trying to figure everything out, it's pretty damn fun. I'm sure there are Phantasm purists who don't appreciate the amount of humour, which does detract from the suspense and atmosphere that I remember the first movie had. But non-purists should enjoy it - Coscarelli throws martial arts fights, zombies and a "good" sphere into the mix with the usual Tall Man, sphere and killer dwarf action and it's never boring.

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