Monday, October 22, 2012

Phantasm

  
  (1979) ****

I was 14 years old when this film came out; our parents wouldn’t let us go see it so my friend Carol and I concocted a plan. We talked my parents into taking us to the Seekonk Twin drive-in to see some Disney film or something like that. Then had them park at the outer edge so we could not only see the other screen, which of course was showing Phantasm, but we could kind of hear the speakers as well. So we propped ourselves up in the back of the station wagon and relished in the reward of out master plan. 
 Well. We both ended up having horrible nightmares that night, I’d like to say it was just the spotty intermittent sound but I know better. This was some kind of crazy shit the likes of which we had never seen before! Those relentless little hooded guys, the Tall man who said, “Boooooy” and that ever-loving ball of death! Now I know that by today’s standards this film seems pretty mild but remember we talking pre-Friday the 13th here. Just think about the effect of that murder ball zipping through the hallways of the mortuary, no biggie for today with CGI but in 1979 that was pretty amazing stuff. 



This was the source of my nightmare.
Two seconds later a whole bunch of hands
come out of the ground grabbing at him.
 
 Phantasm still packs a good punch to this day. Angus Scrimm is just as intimidating and it still freaks me out when he effortlessly picks up that heavy casket by himself and tosses it into the back of the hearse. The man has such presence. If for some reason you haven’t ever seen Phantasm then do so, it’s really required viewing for horror addicts. If you still aren’t convinced then watch this trailer:


6 comments:

Abduscias said...

Boooooy!

Johnny Sweatpants said...

I love that drive-in story - brilliant strategy!

I agree, Phantasm is a classic that everyone should check out.

Landshark said...

Oh man, this brings back memories. When our parents were courting, Octo and DCD came down to Virginia for the first "whole family" weekend. One lasting memory of that trip is that somehow Octo got us to watch Phantasm--must have just been the older kids. Probably just me, him and DCD, actually.

DCD said...

Totally, Landshark! I love this movie, not only for how awesome it is but also due to the fond family memories of getting freaked out together.

AC said...

never seen, sounds like i need to remedy the situation.

Octopunk said...

Yay! Sometimes I feel like Phantasm is THE Horrorthon movie, if that makes any sense. The perfect combo of scary and goofy -- although it mostly feels like it takes itself seriously, which is important.