ARROW IN THE HEAD REVIEWS

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Phantoms (1998)
Written by: The Arrow
Director: Joe Chappelle

Starring:
Rose McGowan/Lisa
Joanna Going/Jennifer
Liev Schreiber/Deputy Stu
Ben Affleck/Sheriff Bryce
PLOT-CRUNCH
Big sister Jennifer is taking younger sister Lisa to "Snowfield/Colorado" so they can visit their parents. When they get there they find the town empty, some dead bodies and a lot, I mean a lot of weird stuff going on. They pair off with a few remaining police officers…Bryce (Affleck) the man with the past, crazy Stu (how anyone can make this nut a cop beats me) played by stuttering "Schreiber" and some other dude that you know is gonna bite it real fast. They try to find out what’s going on, tabloid journalist Timothy Price (O'Toole) shows up (he's somehow linked to all this) and then finally the government scientists arrive in their shiny white suits ready to die horribly. Party!
THE LOWDOWN
This movie really wants to scare you. Every horror device ever written is here. Lights going on and off, weird sounds, cars that don't start, possessed dogs, dead bodies, people coming back to life, creepy phone calls….the works. The evil creature of this film must have watched a lot of movies cause we get scenes straight out of "The Thing", "The Blob", "Body Snatchers", "Sphere", Scream, Mimic, The Stand and then some. But call me "sell out" I still liked it and it did scare me. It starts off fast, setting up a dreadful tone and doesn’t let up for an hour. We get fun action sequences, tense chase scenes, creepy set ups that almost always deliver, some gunplay, a few surprises and decent effects. I will admit that the second half of the movie doesn’t live up to it’s first half. It slows down a bit and kinda gets a bit silly when they try to explain what’s going on but on a whole it’s an entertaining ride. Lets peek under McGowan’s skirt…
GORE
Some good gore scenes. Sucked out face, blown up head, decaying bodies but the strength of the movie lies in it’s optical effects (which I thought looked good, I think audiences are becoming too prissy). The "tentacle" action was great, a lot of morphing and the "crazy Butterfly scene" kicked ass. That demon butterfly looked good.
ACTING
The movie rolls so fast, that there isn’t much time for character depth. But for some reason it didn’t bother me. Rose McGowan (I call her mumbles) does ok but should articulate more cause I had a hard time understanding her. Joanna Going (Jennifer) brings class and beauty to the movie and she looks great holding a shotgun. Ben Affleck plays Ben Affleck (again) very well. And Liev Schreiber plays Liev Schreiber…again…always weird, always stuttering, always trying to be "Dustin Hoffman". Peter O’Toole (Timothy Price) should be arrested by the "acting" police for giving one of the worst performances this side of "Gary Coleman". Where McGowan doesn’t articulate enough, he articulates TOO much. He’s so trained as an actor that he doesn’t speak like a human being anymore…his performance is a mess and he kind of takes you out of the movie cause everytime he opens his damn mouth you know he’s acting! Goddamn "British" actors…this ain't "Shakespeare" O’Toole!!! It’s a horror flick!!! Tone it down!!!
T & A
Zilch. The movie moves so fast, that McGowan or Affleck for that matter don't have the time to drop their tops. What a shame.
DIRECTING
The only thing I liked about "Halloween 6" was the directing and "Chappelle" keeps it up. The movie looks slick. If you like strobe lights, quick camera movement and tight editing…you’re in for a treat…if not…you’re fucked cause that’s all "Chappelle" is about. He’s the "Michael Bay" of horror movies. Quick Quick Quick.
SOUNDTRACK
I loved those old songs that kept coming on the radio by themselves…gave me the heebie-jeebies.
BOTTOM LINE
Don’t see it as a rip-off, see it as an "homage". I know the characters are interchangeable, I know O'Toole sucks like a porn star and I know McGowan keeps her breasts hidden but where else can you see 10 horror flicks all rolled up in one? This movie is like a Chinese buffet, all you can eat…and boy was I hungry…miam miam…burp.
BULL'S EYE
After years of bitching that filmmakers were wrecking his books, Dean Koontz finally adapted his book himself. He wrote the screenplay. So shut up already.

The "Boom" mike should get an Oscar for best supporting actor cause he shows up a few times (the scene where the body disappears). Great acting.

Why is McGowan married to that sissy boy "Marilyn Manson"? He’s a joke and his face is the punchline.
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