Sunday, October 02, 2011
31 Days of Halloween - Day 2 - Movie
I really like the movie Phantasm. It's unique and has a wild anything can happen and happens without any explanation, yet still makes complete logical sense in the context of the movie as a whole. It's simply a cool movie with cool characters, a cool car, weapons, freaky creatures, atmosphere and an imposing villain.
Phantasm II (1988) has plenty of atmosphere, but none of the wild anything can happen inventiveness of the original. The same villain, creatures, trappings, and even the spheres of the original are back, but feel a bit tired now. One of the things that made Phantasm so successful was the relationship between the three protagonists played by Michael Baldwin, Bill Thornbury, and Reggie Bannister. In this movie Reggie Bannister is teamed up with James LeGros who replaces Michael Baldwin as an older version of the same character, Mike. The chemistry between the two characters is absent in this movie, and it makes it feel like everyone is simply walking through the paces of this sequel. The two new characters (played by Paula Irvine and Samantha Phillips) don't really bring anything to the movie either. There isn't anyone to really care about here, and with a plot in which not very much happens for very long periods of time except for characters walking very slowly and looking worried, there isn't much to hold a viewers interest either.
This movie introduces an arsenal of customized weapons, meant, I suppose to come across as really badass, but the whole slew of them can't compete with the hammer and bullet moment in the first movie. There are a few moments of cool special effects and ideas that give just enough of a hint of the magic of the first movie that it only makes you recognize how lack lustre this sequel is in comparison.
That beautiful car is back, and I was sorry to see it meet its end here, and only wish I felt the same way about the movie itself.