10/27/13 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE RECOMMENDATION #27 – Phantasm

Phantasm

Okay, let’s get bizarre. But let’s not just get typical bizarre, let’s get 70’s bizarre! Oh man, Phantasm is such an amazingly insane movie. There’s a reason it’s considered a cult classic. Let me attempt to describe the premise. Hmm, let’s see. There’s this VERY tall man (aptly named, the Tall Man), who seems to be the mortician at a cemetery, but actually is a visiting alien who turns dead bodies into weird little Jawa creature slaves. Oh, and he’s protected by these little awesome flying spheres that drill into your head and drain your blood. And there’s this kid and an ice cream man named Reggie that try to take him down. That’ll have to work for now. Trust me, as mad as that sounds, it’s even madder. There is nothing normal about this film at all, which is one of the main reasons why it’s so damn fantastic. Sometimes you’re watching it, can’t quite understand, let alone believe, what the hell you’re watching, and yet, for some undeniable reason you just love every second of the insanity. I still remember the first time I saw this film, my initial reaction was, “what the hell just happened?” So I had to watch it again. It was then that I started to see the mad genius at work. This film is pretty much created from top to bottom by Don Coscarelli, who also did other insane films like Bubba Ho-Tep, John Dies at the End (which I wrote about a few weeks ago), and Beastmaster! Here, Don did everything, and I mean everything. Watch the credits and you’ll laugh. He wrote it, produced it, directed it, shot it himself, and even edited it as well. This is Don’s brain on screen here, and we are the beneficiaries. Just trust me on this one. It’s got an incredible iconic villain in the Tall Man (you’ll love his thundering, “BOY!!!!!”) The spheres are a stroke of genius. The weird zombie Jawas? Oh man. Look, it’s horror. It’s sci-fi. It’s utter madness. Just sit back and go along for the trip.

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