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Phenomena (1985)

 -  Horror | Mystery  -  2 August 1985 (USA)
6.9
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Ratings: 6.9/10 from 13,562 users  
Reviews: 165 user | 115 critic

A young girl, with 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.

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Title: Phenomena (1985)

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Edit

Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
...
Daria Nicolodi ...
Fiore Argento ...
Vera Brandt
Federica Mastroianni ...
Sophie
Fiorenza Tessari ...
Gisela Sulzer
Dalila Di Lazzaro ...
Headmistress
...
Inspector Rudolf Geiger
...
Professor John McGregor
Alberto Cracco ...
UBS Bank Teller
Kaspar Capparoni ...
Karl, Sophie's Boyfriend (as Gaspare Capparoni)
...
Morris Shapiro
Antonio Maimone ...
EEG Doctor
Davide Marotta ...
Patua, Bruckner Child
Fulvio Mingozzi ...
Mr. Sulzer
Francesca Ottaviani ...
Nurse
Edit

Storyline

Jennifer Corvino, the daughter of a famous actor, has had trouble with sleepwalking for some time. Her doctor said that it can develop a split personality. She discovers her alternate personality when she stays at a boarding school that was once the home a Richard Wagner. But someone has been killing the students, and it relates only indirectly to the criminal sanitorium nearby. So it's up to "the two greatest detectives the world has ever known, or should I say, unknown" Written by Scott Hutchins <scottandrewh@home.com>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

A nightmare ALIVE! See more »

Genres:

Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

X | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
Edit

Details

Country:

Release Date:

2 August 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Creepers  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,800,000 (estimated)
 »

Company Credits

Production Co:

 »
Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (integral) | (re-release) | (edited)

Sound Mix:

Color:

(Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »
Edit

Did You Know?

Trivia

Director Dario Argento often cites this film as his personal favorite among his works. See more »

Goofs

(at around 1 min) The girl in the opening is allegedly Danish, but clearly speaks Norwegian. See more »

Quotes

[last lines]
Frau Brückner: [attempts to kill Jennifer with a slide] He was diseased; but he was my son! And you have... Why didn't I kill you before? I killed that no-good inspector and your professor friend, to protect him! And now... I'm gonna KILL YOU TO AVENGE HIM! Why don't you call your INSECTS! GO ON! CALL! CALL!
[Inga then attacks Frau and slashes her to death]
See more »

Crazy Credits

The English language credits claim that this film was "shot in Panavision." This film was shot with Panavision cameras and Panavision spherical lenses for the European spherical widescreen format of 1:1.66. See more »

Connections

Featured in Stephen King's World of Horror (1986) See more »

Soundtracks

Sleepwalking
(uncredited)
By Goblin
Performed by Goblin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
Absolutely Phenomenal!
19 January 2007 | by (Salzburg, Austria) – See all my reviews

This Is A Review Of The Uncut Version.

Dario Argento's "Phenomena" of 1985 is an absolute masterpiece of horror coming along with an ingenious soundtrack by Goblin. Argento has enriched the Horror/Giallo genre by quite a bunch of brilliant films, including such stunning pictures as "The Bird With The Crystal Plumage" (1970), "Tenebre"(1982) and "Opera" (1987), "Penomena" is (in my opinion) his greatest achievement alongside his masterpieces "Suspiria" of 1977 and "Profondo Rosso" of 1975. A brilliant, extremely scary, stunning and visually breathtaking film, "Phenomena" is an absolute must-see for every Horror-fan.

Jennifer Corvino (Jennifer Conelly), the daughter of an American movie star, is sent to an elite girl's boarding school in the Swiss mountains, more precisely in a part of Switzerland referred to by locals as 'The Swiss Transylvania'. The area is currently terrorized by a serial killer of girls, whose victims are always heinously dismembered. Although a friendly and lovable person, Jennifer does not make too many friends in the boarding school, and due to her sleepwalking most of the other girls think of her as weird. But sleepwalking is not her only unusual characteristic. Jennifer loves insects, and insects also seem to have a strong affection for her. While Inspector Geiger (Patrick Buchau) is investigating the brutal murders, Jennifer befriends wheelchair-bound entomologist Prof Mc Gregor (Donald Pleasence), who helps the police with their investigations...

Then 15-year-old Jennifer Conelly's acting is simply outstanding, a perfect performance from the beginning to the end. The supporting cast is also very good, the great Donald Pleasence's performance as Prof Mc Gregor is just one of many very memorable performances in "Phenomena". As usual for Argento, the movie is impressively photographed on great, scary locations. Dario Argento has always placed great emphasis on impressive colors (especially red, of course), and hardly ever have I seen a movie as visually stunning and awe-inspiring as Phenomena. The brilliant Progressive Rock Soundtrack by Goblin manages to even intensify the suspense, and is one of the best scores I have ever heard in a horror film.

Partially a Giallo, and partially a horror film with psychic and transcendental elements, "Phenomena" is a creepy film that is scary as hell. It is also easily one of Argento's most brutal movies, and therefore maybe not the kind of film for people who are too sensitive when it comes to violence in movies. Phenomena was also released under the title "Creepers" in the US, but that was a cut (or should I say mutilated) version of only 82 minutes. I have always seen the uncut version, which runs about 111 minutes, and I definitely recommend anybody else to do so, since every minute of the movie is stunning and indispensable, and I can't even imagine which (certainly essential) 29 minutes they cut out in the other versions. A true masterpiece of horror cinema, "Phenomena" is, in my opinion, Dario Argento's greatest movie besides "Suspiria" and "Profondo Rosso". Superbly written and directed, outstandingly acted, impressively photographed and extremely creepy and scary from the beginning to the end "Phenomena" is absolutely phenomenal. A stroke of genius! 10/10


41 of 54 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

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The. Worst. Movie. Evah. deb-290
Best Ending To Any Film. Period. vaughn145
maybe argento's best film? teejay6682
She is very pretty in this movie Samiria
translation needed Brad481
this movie looks, well, phenomenal! mr-murph
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