Reviewer: Julie Lynn Hayes
Phantasm 5: Ravager
Reggie (Reggie Bannister) is trying to find Mike (A Michael Baldwin) and rescue him from the Tall Man (Angus Scrimm). And also save the world.
I know, that’s an oversimplification of the plot, but seriously, this is the plot for every entry in this series. And this is the last one (I don’t believe, at least I hope there will not be a sixth Phantasm. No reason there should be to be honest).
How does this one compare to the others? The series has been going downhill after the second one. This one is no exception. It’s terrible. We have Reggie who yo-yos back and forth between the future where he is an old man in a nursing home and Mike tells him he has dementia and none of what he knows is real and a present where he is fighting the Tall Man.
The only redeeming quality of this film is that someone figured out that Reggie Bannister is a better actor than A Michael Baldwin and they made the plot Reggie-centric. I do use the word plot loosely. And, of course, Reggie being Reggie, there has to be a girl involved. Cause he’s this chick-magnet, don’t you know? And hey, we even get to see Jody (Bill Thornbury), Mike’s brother again.
All in all, a terrible film. I only give it 2 Stars because Reggie amuses me. Unless you’re compelled to finish the series, I would skip it.
A group of medical students are taking a ski vacation at the cabin in the mountains. Fun and friends, the recipe for a fun vacation, right? Well, unfortunately for these medical students, they’re not only in the middle of nowhere, but they are about to enter a nightmare they could never have dreamed of before
The group reaches the cabin, anticipating the arrival of its owner, Maria. But unbeknownst to them, Maria has met with foul play and she won’t be coming. Everyone decides to relax, drink, and play games, including Twister. This cabin is so rustic that it has no indoor plumbing, necessitating the use of an outhouse. An unexpected knock on the door frightens them, but it turns out to be an older man, who asks for a cup of coffee. Familiar with the area, he is dismissive of the young people and their lack of preparation for their trip. Do they even know the history of this area? He tells them a story about German occupation and how the locals fought back after three years of oppression. But, he concludes, there is an evil here, a presence that can’t be denied. He drinks their bad coffee, smokes a hand-rolled cigarette and is on his way. They dismiss his words as so much nonsense.
But then they begin to hear things. When one of the young men goes to the outhouse, he is joined there by one of the women, and more fun ensues. Afterward, he returns to the cabin first…but she is not so lucky. Attacked in the outhouse, she tries to make her way back to the cabin, but never makes it. While they try to figure out what is going on, they find themselves under attack…by Nazi zombies! The fight is on!
At first, I admit, this film is pretty much the standard young people in a cabin in the woods terrified by a menacing presence they have to overcome. As such, it’s a little slow at first. But the difference is – Nazi zombies! That’s something you don’t see everyday. The make-up on these guys is great! And they are pretty terrifying. Not sure what I would do if faced with this bunch. And they turn an okay film into a more terrifying and interesting. Be aware, there is a lot of blood and guts and such, so not recommended for the squeamish. But it was definitely worth watching, and I’m looking forward to the sequel. I’ll give this film 4 Stars.