10/19/22 – OCTOBER HORROR MOVIE PICK #19 – Phenomena (1985).

Phenomena, aka Creepers, is another in the lengthy and wonderful Dario Argento oeuvre. And boy oh boy, I know our lovable Dario has directed some bonkers movies across the years, but this one has always stuck out to me as one of his most insane. I like to call this his “everything but the kitchen sink” movie. It’s just crazy fun. Here is the brief IMDB synopsis:

A young girl who has an amazing ability to communicate with insects is transferred to an exclusive Swiss boarding school, where her unusual capability might help solve a string of murders.

When I say “kitchen sink”, I really mean it. This movie has a little bit of everything. First of all, let’s start with the fact that this was one of Jennifer Connelly’s very first movies. She’s only like 14 or 15. She plays the daughter of a famous celebrity. And she can talk with bugs. Don’t ask why, she just can. Then you throw in Donald Pleasance, one of the horror greats (Halloween, Prince of Darkness, etc.) He plays a bug scientist who’s studying how long it takes for maggots to decompose bodies. Oh, and he has a chimpanzee assistant. Because, sure. And that chimp likes straight razors. But wait there’s more! You’ve also got a serial killer out there, and beheaded bodies, and sleepwalking, and telepathy, and a boarding school with secrets, and people with deformities, and, and, and… Okay, you now get the point when I say “kitchen sink” movie. This movie kinda has everything. And yes, any time you’ve got a movie with a million things going on there will be a few discrepancies in logic or plot holes, but forgive those please, and just enjoy the bonkers ride. Dario is one of the horror greats and when his imagination is in overdrive, it’s a joy to behold.

Oh, and like I did yesterday with The Cursed, I always liked these alternate box covers for when this movie was called Creepers, so I posted them just below for fun.

Where to Watch: Streaming on Shudder, AMC+, Tubi, and Kanopy.

Food/Drink Pairing: Fried grasshoppers

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