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  • It's hard to believe that the Phantasm series started back in 1979 and sporadically released it's 5 movies across the decades.

    What's even harder to believe is that every major player from the franchise has stuck through it and is right here in 2016 for the final chapter.

    Reggie returns one last time to reunite with his friends, fight the forces of evil and go toe to toe with the Tall Man for the ultimate confrontation.

    Now I don't think that the Phantasm franchise is that great, I think they are original titles and I applaud them for lasting as long as they have but they've tended to be confusing disconnected movies.

    Alas this is no different, in fact I have to say it's the most confusing of them all. Regardless it's a nostalgia trip, everyones along for the ride including the films original creators.

    Though the sfx are ropey and the plot makes very little sense Ravager isn't that bad, it's just not a fitting finale for a series that has lasted this long! What makes it worse is that the highly ambiguous finale does it no favours.

    I'd say this is essential viewing for fans of the series but all things considered it should have been considerably better.

    RIP Angus Scrimm

    The Good:

    Nostalgia filled

    Some new and interesting ideas

    The Bad:

    Plot isn't great

    Pacing is a bit of a mess

    Finale is terrible

    Things I Learnt From This Movie:

    Reggie Bannister is immortal

    When a franchises sfx haven't improved since the 1970's you need to have serious words with your sfx guys
  • PHANTASM: RAVAGER is perhaps the most disappointing and horrifically executed follow-up in a film series since TROLL 2, a declaration I only wish was hyperbolic. It almost single-handedly unravels all the value and merit gathered from the previous installments and it does so with almost neolithic incompetence.

    While we all knew that RAVAGER was the least-capitalized of the series, it's shocking at how poorly made it is, especially considering what Don Coscarelli was able to do with a comparable budget 37 years earlier. The film has all the production value of a SyFy Channel Asylum monster movie (complete with unprocessed production audio), and with even less narrative cohesion. The script is cringe-inducingly bad, with little-to-no plot or agenda beyond wanting the viewer to question how much of Reggie's reality is real, and the dialogue is almost a parody of bad movies done without irony. The actors, many of whom have had decades of experience under their belt, behave as if they're in their first student film, and every performance looks so horrifically under-rehearsed that it feels like they're reading their lines off of cue cards taped to the other actors' heads.

    It's also the least consistent with the style of the rest of the series, and the film opens with a recap introduction that was so inept that I thought it was tacked on by an executive producer. And so many stretches of the movie involve the characters wandering around a desert simply to pad time with a free location. To put it another way: I've waited 18 years to see this film and I actually fast-forwarded through certain scenes simply to see if they were going somewhere or to bypass the sheer ineptitude of the filmmaking. That's how bad this film can be. I have seen fan films on YouTube made for pocket change that showed more talent, creativity, and cinematography than this.

    I suspect that all this may have been done on purpose to ensure that no one would ask for another film (rendered moot since Angus Scrimm has now passed on), as Coscarelli has expressed a desire to move on from PHANTASM films. It would have been better for all if Coscarelli had simply loaned out the film to screenwriters who wanted to take a whack at it instead of wasting decades until he came up with an idea. As it is, we've now lost so many potential sequels and have to suffer the indignity of this entry as its finale. The lack of any talent on display in this film is almost an insult to fans of what was one of the most unique and beloved horror film series of the century.

    RAVAGER is for completists only, and even then...I pity them for what they have to endure.
  • I've now seen it twice and I really loved Ravager. Yes, it was made with modest resources, and that is visible, but it accomplishes all of the important things a film in this series should accomplish. It explores a story about how fear manifests when faced with terribly difficult realities.

    I love how the first film is about a young person coping with the deaths of their family, and Ravager is about an aging person coping with the loss of their memories as they face death. I love that full-circle, complementary nature of it. Without spoiling, I love that the Tall Man undergoes a real kind of transformation in it. In fact, it might be the most humanistic film in the whole series.

    I just really think the movie was made with real care and understanding of the heart of Phantasm. I'd much rather see a low- budget film that really gets it, than a higher-budget film that doesn't.

    So, in summary, Ravager is totally in the spirit of the films and gives tons to think about. If you're watching it and just griping about CGI, you're probably not watching Phantasm for what I consider the right reasons. This is really a film for people who love the first four films, and for us, it is a solid, sentimental payoff.

    I really appreciated all four previous films and now I love the fifth as well.

    And if you're writing a review that treats the series as literal narrative, and you are complaining that your literal narrative questions were not answered, please back away from the Phantasm movies slowly, because you are likely to trip over your own shoelaces.
  • Essentially a glorified fan film, Phantasm: Ravager brings all key cast members together with underwhelming results. Don Coscarelli's assured touch is sorely missed here, with veteran actors badly in need of direction. Michael Baldwin and Bill Thornbury in particular appear lost and unmotivated. Reggie Bannister gives an enthusiastic performance and still has a lot of charisma, but that's not enough when pitted against woefully poor dialogue and amateurish mise-en-scène. Angus Scrimm as the Tall Man talks way too much (he even unashamedly bargains with Reggie at one point) and fails to project much menace. Kathy Lester's cameo as Lady in Lavender serves no purpose. One wishes Gloria Lynn Henry had stepped in earlier on in the film. Dawn Cody, Daniel Roebuck and Daniel Schweiger barely register in their roles. Only Steven Jutras (Chunk) makes an impression, but his thinly-written character, essentially a mean parody of an 80's action hero, is given awful dialogue and remains unlikable. The Phantasm saga was never known for its plot coherence, relying on atmosphere, dream logic and assaulting the viewer with stylish visuals instead. Ravager has neither the visual splendor nor the suggestive, subliminal creepiness of the previous films. The story is a mere series of vignettes, with the befuddled Reggie zipping from one less-than-photogenic location to another. With its extremely erratic framing and frenetic editing Ravager doesn't fit stylistically with the previous films at all. The sound design is threadbare and new rendition of the classic Fred Myrow/Malcolm Seagrave theme is embarrassingly bad. The machismo, muscle car worship and bad language have taken place of eerie poetic minimalism that made the 1979 film a genre classic. Embarrassingly short on meaning, chock full of bad CGI (the lethal flying spheres have never looked so laughable), mismatched stock footage, shaky camera work and choppily-edited action scenes, Ravager is a chore to sit through. There's no journey for the original characters and the new characters are too sketchy to make them interesting. Phantasm:Ravager is bound to disappoint most Phans. It's unfortunate that Don Coscarelli has authorized this atrocity to be made and released. The low-key Phantasm:Oblivion was a more fitting final installment of the much-loved Phantasm saga.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I enjoyed the first four Phantasm films, but the fifth and final edited, co-written and directed by David Hartman has finally reached its end of life with me. Which is sad, because there were elements that were positive about it like questioning what is reality and what is perhaps just a delusion. But, this story is 18 years later and now everybody is old...not just The Tall Man. Reg (Reggie Bannister) now has dementia and Mike (A. Michael Baldwin) is wanting to hear his story of how he got there to engage his mind by orders of his doctor. So, we the viewer keep dropping from one reality to the other along Reg's storyline until we are not really sure what is reality. The two bad points that drop this movie are what was humorous or funny in previous entries they have now brought in silliness or making things ridiculous which strains on making something believable. Which maybe in part has to do with Reg's dementia, but I do not feel that was the reason behind why they did this. The other is this is the first Phantasm movie where the effects sucked. And yes I thought they were just brutal computerized effects that looked like some grade seven student performed on his home computer. As well Gloria Lynne Henry returns as Rocky...for like 2 minutes...after the final credits have started. Why? Is there a really good reason why she couldn't have been included in the script. I would have rather had her than the Dawn character (Dawn Cody) and Reg striking out trying to bed her. Will likely be the last Phantasm due to the fact that Angus Scrimm who played The Tall Man has passed away.
  • I've been a die hard Phantasm phan for almost 30 yrs ..And,I've waited for this movie to come out for almost 20 yrs .. I have never been SO damn disappointed in a movie and it's creator in my life !!..The movie ended the way it should of began !!!..It didn't have the dynamics like any of the previous sequels​(including Phantasm : Oblivion).. Nothing to scare you , excite you or make you even give a sh*t about the story anymore .. I think,NO pretty sure,that the series died when Scrimm died !!Now , Coscarelli has not only sold-out the phans ...But,now he's selling the rights to the highest bidder from any Hollowood studio !..BTW ,Where did they find that sh*tty rapper to do that Disney-style pop-rap song during the end credits ??
  • Having seen all the others films in this series, I felt this one was a big disappointment. The acting and effects are good but definitely not the script. Though it was a novelty having an entire cast stay together long enough to make this many movies, and seeing a montage in which they age, this, as the final film in the franchise, went out not with a band nor a whimper, but simply...went. With all the switches from one dimension to another, soon the audience is apt to soon be as confused as Reggie.

    No explanation was ever given in any of the movies for why all this was happening and it isn't given here, the little speeches of "loyalty" which should really read "friendship" notwithstanding. Although the actors do a credible job, and the special effects are well-done, along with brief glimpses of black humor, the plot is a confusing mess leaving nothing but disappointment in its wake. This movie doesn't tie up any loose threads or offer any explanations. Technically, it's not even a final entry since the story merely stops...with an open ending which could conceivably herald another episode, if the "Tall Man" himself, Angus Scrimm, were going to be around. Once wonder if perhaps since this film was dedicated to his memory, everyone thought it would be too difficult to replace someone fitting that role so aptly.

    Whatever the reasons, I felt it was time wasted and was left with the feeling the spirit as well as the fright of the original film had long since fled.
  • kbf112315 October 2016
    I had such high hopes for this film. Reggie and Angus, as usual, were awesome but even they couldn't carry this stink fest. The story was bad, the graphics horrid and the acting by the newcomers to the show mediocre at best. As for Reggie and the veterans, I don't blame you guys. You did the best you could with what you were given. The director had a real opportunity here to make a masterpiece that would crown an otherwise wonderful series but completely dropped the ball. It seems like he hadn't even watched the previous films and didn't even care. The whole thing made no sense. It was all over the place with no continuity. It tied up no loose ends and left me wondering what the heck I had just seen. Considering this was Angus Scrimms swan song, it's such a shame they blew it so badly. So sad!
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Let me first start by saying if you are not a fan of the phantasm movies thus far you are probably not going to like this one and it helps to watch the others to understand where this one starts.

    I like they way they continue the mostly vague origins of "The Tall Man" and how it skips around in time and dimensions, where you really don't know what is and isn't "real" but could all be "real". Reggie is the main player this time around and it mainly focuses on him and his trying to come to grips with something unfathomable and likely to result in driving him insane or just making it out alive.

    On a personal note, I always thought this would have made a great television series bringing these guys to the small screen and not just in theaters or straight to video. I can imagine the cult following like that of Ash and the evil dead would likely eat this up, especially seeing the success of shows like The Walking Dead and Z-nation and the like that are very popular now days and have a rabid fan-base.

    In summary, if you're a fan watch it. If you haven't seen the previous installments then you may wanna go back and catch up and binge them before watching this one. Have fun everyone.
  • I am that fan. I sat through it. All of it. I forced myself; Clockwork Orange style, to watch every minute of it.

    I can't say it was terrible, but it wasn't good either. I had medium to average hopes for this movie. Given the time that has passed since Phantasm 4, and bringing back some of the original characters, is a tough thing to do. I think that part, they handled rather well, they tied things up in a rather roundabout way. So if you want to experience some kind of closure, this movie does offer a bit of that.

    The production value of this movie is non-existent. It's just above a college level movie. There are maybe 2-3 good SFX moments, and some of the deaths are amusing. The writing is just a continuation of the previous movies... literally the same.. expect 1980's-1990's dialogue here...

    This movie is definitely geared at fans. It follows through and continues the Tall Man mythos, and if nothing else, this is your last chance to watch Angus Scrimm one last time reprising his role. That, in itself, for fans, is worth it. If you've never watched any of the Phantasm films, you will want to avoid this. Watch the old movies instead.

    I hope they reboot the franchise with a real budget, real writers, etc.
  • kingramze4 October 2016
    I'm a fan of the series. I had hoped for more insight into the Tall Man, the orbs, their plan, etc. I'd hoped for a resolution to the "fight" or at least more of a progression and a better idea of what we're fighting against. Ultimately, this movie accomplishes nothing. It's not even funny or scary.

    It doesn't add any new info to the series or progress any story arc in any way. Imagine if another series like say... Evil Dead had another movie added that did nothing new and had no real resolution. Ultimately boring. At least its predecessor, Phantasm IV, though flawed introduced new information about the villain.

    I could (and likely will) dream up a more satisfying story line and adventure for the series than what was presented.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Phantasm is one of those magical movies that has stood the test of time, unique in its narrative and atmosphere. For many years fans were told a Phantasm 5 would never happen. That it would simply be too expensive and ambitious for the budget they wanted, and I still think they were telling the truth. But in trying to go big, it lost sight of what made Phantasm so great to begin with.

    Long gone are the quiet nights filled with emptied graveyards, ruined towns, and looming mausoleums. Replacing it in this last outing is jumbled transitions of walking around in the desert, and behind green screens. None of the questions of the past four films are ever answered. The Tall Man is never defeated, and our heroes are never given any sense of closure. Only put upon another road that this time their will be no end to. This was a movie made for the fans out of love, but I have to wonder why Coscarelli and Hartman would squander such an opportunity to finish the story started back in 1979. As a fan it is truly upsetting to know Angus Scrimm is gone, and we will never again have a new movie to look forward to.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    Cult classic film fans will appreciate the visionary elements of Director, David Hartman's glimpse into the bizarre and fantastical world of the "Phantasm" series in this disjointed but entertaining final chapter in a long-time saga of weirdness and mayhem. This is the first of the "Phantasm" films that is not directed by originator, Don Coscarelli and the final performance of the late and great Angus Scrimm as the "Tall Man" who passed away at age 89 in 2016. He returns along with much of the original cast of the "Phantasm" films including: Reggie Banister, Michael Baldwin, Bill Thornbury, Kelly Lester, Gloria Lynne Henry and the awesome '71 Cuda as they battle the evil army of graveroobbers that continue to populate the countryside with living-dead dwarfs, zombies and of course, the dreaded silver spheres. Its been 17 years since "Phantasm IV" and this picks up where that film left off, but with a significantly older Reggie Banister wandering the mid-west after his subsequent escape from the "Tall Man" and his minions. Don't fret since it has been a while since the film's opening quickly recaps the basic highlights of previous films including Phantasm IV's revealing of the identity and origins of the "Tall Man", Morningside Cemetery and the mystery of the flying spheres.

    This falls short of everything you would expect from a continuation of the Phantasm saga, but as a long time fan its nice to hear that original Fred Myrow/Malcolm Seagrave musical score that once again sets the mood for this outstandingly strange world. Ultimately, this utilizes the fact that the original characters are at the mercy of old age and lost time, especially Reggie as he is diagnosed with dementia, institutionalized and cannot tell the difference between nightmare and reality and must reprise everything he already experienced and more. The final moments of Angus Scrimm combined with Reggie's journey into past reflections are handled quite well by director/writer, David Hartman whom you can tell is a devoted fan of the series. Presumably, this is on a modest budget, but that is no surprise, and it seems to contribute to the comic relief and overall ambiance of the film. The problems with this movie arise with Reggie's memories and whether or not they corroborate the events in the story, as this is the whole point and meaning of "Phantasm". What may be conceived of as real may not be, and what is remembered may just be a glimpse into an alternate reality. Are Reggie's memories just another attempt by the Tall Man to destroy him, or will he actually reunite with his friends Mike and Jody and defeat the Tall Man once and for all? Its inevitably a battle between Reggie's blurred fantasy of world domination as he struggles between dreams and reality. The film is definitely flawed, Dawn Cody is terrible as the female interest and Angus Scrimm's character is obviously transposed into many scenes from the older prints. Cheap CGI effects are evident and the last half hour is so confusing and pointless leaving no closure to the overall story except a messy and convoluted ending, but as a fan, its nice to see the cast reunited, and some fresh ideas. Its too bad it took so long to materialize this final chapter and why they couldn't perfect it due to so many production and writing difficulties which are obvious. Its not satisfying, but I had some fun with it for what it is.. I guess its up to the fans to decide after all these years whether or not it can hold a candle to its predecessors. Not great, but can't say I found it completely worthless. Think of it as a homage to an original and intriguing concept and a farewell to those who contributed to it.
  • The people who watch this film are the hard core fans who were entranced by the disorientating chilling imaginative world of the First Phantasm Movie. Most likely viewed multiple times at late night triple features in actual cinemas, like me. So when the franchise lays this confusing mess in your lap it is with sadness we view the results rather than dismissively as consumers of media. This was the last chance Angus Scrimm got to play his iconic Tall Man roll, and he totally delivered on his lines yet again, creepy, with a plan we can't understand, everything we could ever want from him. But how those nuggets fitted into an overlaying story, well, really they don't. There was nothing there for them to slot into, for them to make sense in. Granted, part of the original movies charm was how sense was tossed out the window; but everything in the original movie fitted within the universe of Phantasm; everything had a point, and a result to that point.

    In this 5th installment most things that happened went nowhere; were smoke and mirrors; a collection of disconnected setups; some with style; many executed with cringe-worthy cheesiness; naff effects, and an edge of unintended sadness, as they chipped away at the legacy of the original.

    What was it all about? I don't really know and it gives the feeling that no one, particularly the director did. It didn't make any sense, and not in a good way, just looping round some vague concept of "is Reggie dreaming, or is it real"?, but it's done so poorly the end result is a wasted opportunity to do something solid with an all-original-cast back together to pay tribute to a legendary movie franchise.

    Reggie was OK as a disposable side man, but it was the 2 brothers that were the interest factor in the original. To be honest, it was kind of boring,....

    .... of note, the music was a reasonably decent reworking of the original catchy score orchestrated excellently, although the original did use non classic orchestra sounds and rock instruments well, so it deviated from that innovation. The only jarring thorn in an otherwise stellar soundtrack was the cringe-worthy Ravenger rap over the score as the credits rolled. Utterly awful.

    Either the director has no understanding of what was good about the original , or Coscarelli totally 'George Lucas'd' his own series, and also didn't understand what he got right in the original.

    Farewell Phantasm. I wish you could have had a better send off than this. Thanks for the original though. A true iconic milestone in disorientating creepy cinema.
  • Great way to wrap it all up, fun movie! I read some bad reviews, but what are they expecting? Angus Scrimm (RIP) was a real gem, and he will be missed as the Tall Man. Phantasm V Ravager had a lot of good scenes and some new characters. There are funny moments, punctuated with horror, and we're just as confused as Reggie the Ice Cream Man. Loved the weapons and '71 Baracuda! It's a fun jaunt down memory lane! Watch a Phantasm Marathon to catch up if you can. I highly recommend to Phantasm fans. But if you're new to Phantasm, you should still be able to enjoy Ravager. We get insight into the plague of the Tall Man, causing trouble in multiple universes and find out others are fighting him as well in what seems like a hopeless battle through space and time.
  • Reggie (Reggie Bannister) is wandering through the desert seeking out his friend Mike (A. Michael Baldwin) and the evil The Tall Man ( Angus Scrimm). Along his journey, he is hunted down by the dangerous spheres and stumbles upon the gorgeous Dawn (Dawn Cody). Out of the blue, he finds himself in an institution with Mike explaining that he has dementia and then in another dimension. Where is Mike?

    "Phantasm: Ravager" is a messy and unnecessary fifth return of this cult franchise. The story is confused and pointless, for the sorrow of the fans and in the end is hard to know where Mike is indeed, what is daydream and how The Tall Man would be defeated with his powers and his powerful army of spheres. My vote is four.

    Title (Brazil): Not Available.
  • mindsclay14 October 2016
    Not at all what I expected. At first I was all enthralled, but then as I saw what they were doing with the story I was more like "What the heck, guys?"

    For this being the "last" one, they sure didn't tie up any loose ends. I felt the general theme was a cop-out. I waiting for it to resolve, but it never did. Well, it kind of did. Too much bouncing around and not enough substance. Perhaps if it were another 20 to 30 minutes of substance, it would have been an awesome movie. Substance as in meaningful human interaction, dialog, dynamic plot devices... cutaway scenes to previous movies did not help.

    Don Coscarelli did not direct it and I hear it had a really low budget, so maybe that's what happened??

    I thought Reggie Bannister did a good job.

    I can't go into details as I do not want to generate a spoiler alert.
  • I haven't seen the originals since I was a kid, literally like, eighteen years ago! so I watched the first four again, to catch me up to speed because I forgot most of the details and boy I tell ya what, they were much better than I remember. Just finished watching this one, RaVager, and I was nervous about how a lot of people on here said it wasn't that good. Turns out it was great, for me at least. It had a low budget, true, it's special effects weren't the best you've ever seen but when has that ever been the case with these films, huh? for me, it was still very entertaining and great send off to what is now a favorite horror series of mine. Rented it just in case I wouldn't like it, but it is a definite buy now. If you loved the first four films (especially 1 and 4) like I did, you will want to see this at least once! Who knows, maybe you'll love it too.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    I'm a longtime fan of the Phantasm series and was genuinely excited by this one. The trailer looked fantastic and promised an ending that would deliver. Sadly, none of this was ever to be and it was truly awful.

    Yes the CGI is terrible and the acting atrocious, but would that matter of the story was kick-ass? But that's just it.....the story is completely unintelligible. Sure it's a Phantasm film in the sense that you can't tell what's a dream and what's not. But do we really need this aggravation of no closing or ending? A couple of new characters are introduced which helps because Reggie is the only character for the first 45 minutes of this show. The Tall Man, well I know Angus Scrimm was dying as this was made so he couldn't do much, but to not even pick up on or build off anything that was established by him in earlier films is just plain wrong. This nonsense of him serving as the catalyst for the Apocalypse complete with zombies is so laughable. It's like nobody even took the time out to ask, "how can this end definitively and somewhat understandable?" I wish I hadn't wasted my time and $8 on this because it's quite possibly the worst film I've ever seen. There was no service to fans here and it's sad now because Angus is gone and I'm guessing if there was a VI, that it would just further be as incoherent and awful.
  • I admit...I'm writing this review and still have 25 minutes of the movie left to watch - however I know things are not going to change. The Phantasm series descended into an incoherent mess from part 3 onwards. The first was a great horror film...the second though not being many people's favourite, took it in a more action and fun direction. It captured 80's cult horror well - now to be honest even after these 2 films you are left scratching your head at the plot - I don't even think the director had a totality in his head. But it was watchable and you could make sense of it loosely. Phantasm will have its die hard fans who love all the sequels but from 3 onwards it digs itself deeper and deeper with each scene into utter confusion. How difficult would it be to have at least some through line. Each scene just becomes a surreal set piece sometimes completely disconnected with even the scene before it, and within 2 months of watching those sequels I can't really remember anything. Ravager just continues in that vein with one surreal disconnected scene after another.....and then just thrown in for variety, some more totally bizarre and surreal scenes thrown in. You need some kind of plot or logic in a film, even one which is fantastical or surreal or you just get left with nothing. I'm sure within a week I won't remember a single thing. Should have quit after part 2
  • rdoyle2917 November 2017
    Jesus ... what is this crap? Reggie wanders around the desert fighting balls and (surprise!) meets up with a foxy chick. No, scratch that ... Reggie is in a hospital suffering from dementia and Michael visits him. No ... he's in an apocalyptic future where the Tall Man has destroyed everything. You know what? I don't care. I understand what they tried to do here, and (maybe) I admire the idea a tiny bit, but look ... their ambition clearly outstripped their resources and the results look horrible. Video game cut scenes look better than this film. It's a nonsensical that looks terrible.
  • thewad-472-9066687 October 2016
    I waited 17 years for this production. Elated and ready to be excited, sad ,happy and scared . None of this happened . I felt the slap to the face for Phans of the Phantasm movies .It was confusing ,without content and just downright "Lets get this done and out of the way" I can see why a few years ago Don Coscarelli said he was done with the Phantasm movies as it is NOT directed by him and it shows . He had only acted as producer and co-writer and very poorly I might add . He did not care to add content only to get his name added for the other Phantasm movies and after you watch this crap fest , you will be as PO'ED as myself if you are honest with YOURSELF .
  • snowboarderbo25 October 2016
    I finally had a chance to watch Phantasm: Ravager the other night. I went ahead and got the HD streaming thru Amazon.

    The movie looked great. It still retained quite a B-movie look as far as camera angles, sets & settings, etc., but it also had a modern-ish sheen to it. I was reminded of the way that the Tarantino/Rodriguez Grindhouse movies were given a '70s schlock veneer in post because Ravager was clearly shot with the intent to evoke late '70s/early '80s B-list horror movies. The gore was well done and was true to the previous Phantasm movies.

    There was plenty of stilted semi-ridiculous and banal dialogue, most of which was delivered with the appropriate amount of ham-fistedness that the franchise and the genre require.

    The acting was good; the best ever for a Phantasm movie, IMO. Angus Scrim once again delivers an iconic performance; a fitting swan song for a pretty cool life and lifetime's works. RIP, Mr. Guy.

    The second best thing about all the Phantasm movies isn't the movies themselves, it's the story they tell. It's an incredibly rich and complex story that starts with a young boy who's mental image of "life" is constantly disrupted, first by the death of his parents and then by his discovery of The Tall Man. This is the central theme of the Phantasm story: the way you think things are is not the way things are. Ravager continues to explore and exploit this premise, to the point that even we can't be sure if what we're seeing is happening, has happened, will happen or never happened at all. We share in Reggie's confusion, his frustration at how unlikely it is he will win out and can admire his unwillingness to stop trying to restore order to his life and ultimately to reality.

    Those moments of lucidity within each sequence where Reggie is trying to make sense of things without knowing if he is able to make sense, where he realizes that he may be delusional and just ranting crazy stuff, are excellently realized and for me elevated this film far above the action sequences. I loved all the instances of the silver spheres flying around and killing and especially liked the huge and menacing spheres, don't get me wrong, but the best parts of this movie aren't those parts.

    The best thing about Ravager (and all the Phantasm movies, IMO) is the way that the story engages our imagination and how we fill in the gaps and order the story for ourselves. Instead of everything being explained for us or being familiar enough that we allow our expectations to explain things for us, the way Ravager's narrative is constructed, we are forced to discard preconceptions and have to process and evaluate the information we are being given on screen, which seems to constantly contradict itself. The film goes to great pains to show footage from the previous films, as if to underscore that even those reference points may not be valid anchors to what is currently happening.

    And that's the genius of the Phantasm story is that it actively engages people's heads, which allows each of us to have a lot invested in the story. We are actively writing part of the story in our heads all the time. It doesn't matter if something later contradicts what we had imagined; the story encourages us to simply take the new information into account and proceed from there, just like the characters on screen, which reinforces that mental investment. It's a terrific passive/active feedback loop.

    And so everyone can stop wondering: the 'Cuda is freaking awesome! It totally freaking rocks!

    Overall, I'm giving this movie a 7/10. If you aren't a fan of schlocky 70s/80s horror movies, the purposely-lower-than-Hollywood-blockbuster production values may turn you off.
  • Warning: Spoilers
    SPOILERS!!!!! Stop looking at this series as a literal interpretation of man vs. alien. It is more like yin vs. yang! Stop assuming no questions were answered. It is a metaphorical journey into a person's psyche.

    Part one deals with a kid experiencing the loss of loved ones (either his brother or his parents, or both, depending on what dream reality you are following). Reggie experienced that loss too.

    In life we all face our mortality, suffer through fears, and our own human ego / Satan chattering it up with negativity in our heads. As an ongoing battle for enlightenment within your own mind the Phantasm series puts an entertaining experience to that representation. "It's all in your head".

    If you are confused and complaining about Ravager you are missing the point. The series hit on action, goof ball slap stick comedy, horror, metaphysical and multi-dimensional layers, and vibrations (which is what forms the Universe). The tuning forks is the visual representation... ie: control your vibration and you prevent fear from taking control of your life. Control your mind away from playing tricks on you by inventing up negative stories that are not even true, you find happiness.

    In Oblivion, Mike found peace in the desert scene after blowing up The Tall Man. He had resisted all his life up to this point and when he finally killed The Tall Man, another one steps out of the dimensional gate, totally deflating any form of celebration. However, this is exactly what was needed... Mike let go... gave up fighting fear and death (The Tall Man is symbolic of those) and that's when IT took the sphere out of Mike's head and left. Mike won. He found peace and no longer was it all eating away at him inside. This is shown by the camera entering his "single eye", it morphing into an eye that is letting a lot of light in by shrinking his pupil, and showing him as a kid with Reggie. Reggie hears negativity... "I'm dying"... while Mike, finally at peace, says "it's only the wind". The fitting ending... to his story. He found his way out of Limbo.

    Bible Quote... Matthew 6:22 "The light of the body is the eye: if therefore thine eye be single, thy whole body shall be full of light." The spheres attack your third eye... they drill into them. Those who cannot see within... aka... are not in alignment with truth and Spirit, die inside. Their 3rd eye is blocked and they are stuck in the 3rd dimension of the material and death.

    Ravager is Reggie's story because at the end of Oblivion he kept fighting... by running into the dimensional gateway after the new Tall Man. He didn't find peace. Ravager is the outcome of that choice... a man facing dementia trying to find peace but still fighting it through the alternative reality of what ever happened when he went running through the gate in the desert.

    There are two endings in Ravager during the end credits. 1... Reggie dies old surrounded by his friends. The other, he remains in a never ending battle with the Tall Man while still wearing the ice cream man uniform from Oblivion. His peace was from being reunited with his friends, which "The Trio" is all he ever wanted to be happy. Both possible realities play out... and it is up to us, as viewers, to accept that all choices are possible depending on how we decide to live our lives. Do you accept fear and hide from it or do you face it, find peace with it, and go live your dreams in peace? For Reggie, facing it means fighting on in one dimension, side-by-side with his buddies, or by letting go and dying surrounded by loved ones in the other because too much time had passed.

    I love the Phantasm series because I get it... I get the theme, the metaphors, and the Tall Man, for he is watching us all. What / who will you be on your death bed? What regrets will you have? Thank you Phantasm!
  • I wish Coscarelli returned to direct this. The bad pacing, acting and overall shoddy directing distract from a very cool script and some fine cinematography and no-budget FX.

    I like how the ending was poetic and a bit of a mindf*ck, tying back to the original film's. This was sorta The Force Awakens for the Horror B-movie genre. After 30 years, it all wraps together, but unlike that really uneven box office hit, Ravager actually ties back to ALL of the previous films and has the influence and blessing of the original creator. And the original Phantasm is fun and eerie, but it was far from a masterpiece so I'm not so offended with the weakness of this last film. If this series went mainstream, we would never have gotten a clear and logical ending with ALL of the original cast reuniting like this. Now at least if they reboot it, the original universe won't be effected or tarnished.
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