Up 483 this week

Phenomena (1985)

X  |   |  Horror, Mystery, Thriller  |  2 August 1985 (USA)
Your rating:
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 -/10 X  
Ratings: 6.9/10 from 14,987 users  
Reviews: 172 user | 117 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.



(story), (story), 2 more credits »
Watch Trailer
0Check in

Watch Now

$0.00 with Prime Video


Celebrate IMDb's 25th Anniversary with Photos We Love

IMDb turns 25 on October 17! To celebrate, we put together a gallery of some of our favorite movie, TV, and event photos from the last 25 years.

See the Photos We Love

User Lists

Related lists from IMDb users

a list of 47 titles
created 30 Sep 2011
a list of 28 titles
created 30 Oct 2011
a list of 23 titles
created 01 May 2013
a list of 37 titles
created 13 Nov 2013
a list of 47 titles
created 2 months ago

Related Items

Search for "Phenomena" on

Connect with IMDb

Share this Rating

Title: Phenomena (1985)

Phenomena (1985) on IMDb 6.9/10

Want to share IMDb's rating on your own site? Use the HTML below.

Take The Quiz!

Test your knowledge of Phenomena.
1 nomination. See more awards »



Learn more

People who liked this also liked... 

Tenebre (1982)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

An American writer in Rome is stalked by a serial killer bent on harassing him while killing all people associated with his work on his latest book.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Anthony Franciosa, Giuliano Gemma, Christian Borromeo
Opera (1987)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.1/10 X  

A young opperata is stalked by a deranged fan bent on killing the people associated with her to claim her for himself.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Cristina Marsillach, Ian Charleson, Urbano Barberini
Inferno (1980)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

An American college student in Rome and his sister in New York investigate a series of killings in both locations where their resident addresses are the domain of two covens of witches.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Leigh McCloskey, Irene Miracle, Eleonora Giorgi
Deep Red (1975)
Horror | Mystery | Romance
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.7/10 X  

A musician witnesses the murder of a famous psychic, and then teams up with a fiesty reporter to find the killer while evading attempts on their lives by the unseen killer bent on keeping a dark secret buried.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: David Hemmings, Daria Nicolodi, Gabriele Lavia
Certificate: GP Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.2/10 X  

A writer is stalked by a serial killer after witnessing a murder attempt on one woman's life.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Tony Musante, Suzy Kendall, Enrico Maria Salerno
Suspiria (1977)
Horror | Mystery
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.5/10 X  

A newcomer to a fancy ballet academy gradually comes to realize that the school is a front for something far more sinister and supernatural amidst a series of grisly murders.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Jessica Harper, Stefania Casini, Flavio Bucci
Certificate: GP Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A newspaper reporter and a retired, blind journalist try to solve a series of killings connected to a pharmaceutical company's experimental, top-secret research projects and in so doing, both become targets of the killer.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: James Franciscus, Karl Malden, Catherine Spaak
Crime | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.8/10 X  

A musician is stalked by an unknown killer who's blackmailing him for an accidential killing of another stalker. But is everything what it appears to be?

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Michael Brandon, Mimsy Farmer, Jean-Pierre Marielle
Trauma (1993)
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6/10 X  

A young man tries to help a teenage European girl whom escaped from a clinic hospital after witnessing the murder of her parents by a serial killer and they try to find the killer before the killer finds them.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Christopher Rydell, Asia Argento, Piper Laurie
Sleepless (2001)
Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.3/10 X  

An elderly and retired police detective and a young amateur sleuth team up to find a serial killer whom has resumed a killing spree in Turin, Italy after a 17-year hiatus.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Max von Sydow, Stefano Dionisi, Chiara Caselli
Horror | Mystery | Thriller
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.1/10 X  

A young policewoman slowly goes insane while tracking down an elusive serial rapist/killer through Italy when she herself becomes a victim of the brutal man's obsession.

Director: Dario Argento
Stars: Asia Argento, Thomas Kretschmann, Marco Leonardi
Demons (1985)
    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 6.7/10 X  

A group of people are trapped in a large movie theater in West Berlin that is infected by ravenous demons who proceed to kill and posses the humans one-by-one, thereby multiplying their numbers.

Director: Lamberto Bava
Stars: Urbano Barberini, Natasha Hovey, Karl Zinny


Cast overview, first billed only:
Daria Nicolodi ...
Fiore Argento ...
Vera Brandt
Federica Mastroianni ...
Fiorenza Tessari ...
Gisela Sulzer
Dalila Di Lazzaro ...
Alberto Cracco ...
UBS Bank Teller
Kaspar Capparoni ...
Karl, Sophie's Boyfriend (as Gaspare Capparoni)
Antonio Maimone ...
EEG Doctor
Davide Marotta ...
Fulvio Mingozzi ...
Mr. Sulzer
Francesca Ottaviani ...


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 <>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


A nightmare ALIVE! See more »


X | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




Release Date:

2 August 1985 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Creepers  »

Box Office


$3,800,000 (estimated)

Company Credits

Production Co:

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs


| (re-release) | (cut)

Sound Mix:



Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See  »

Did You Know?


The shots of the swarm of insects covering the exterior of the school, and later nearly blotting out the moon were achieved through visual effects. They dumped a bunch of coffee grounds in a tank of water, filmed it, then superimposed the new footage over existing background shots. See more »


(at around 1h 00 mins) When Jennifer gets on the bus with the fly to find the bodies/killer, the bus makes a stop and the young man with the blonde hair behind her kissers the lady next to him as he gets off the bus. The next shots after that, the young man is still sitting behind Jennifer. See more »


[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 »


Referenced in Clock Tower (1996) See more »


By Goblin
Performed by Goblin
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

A bizarre horror masterpiece
22 January 2007 | by See all my reviews

Phenomena has long been one of my favourite Dario Argento films. It definitely seems to be a love-it-or-hate-it kind of film, even more so than most Argentos, and I think it's his most unjustly underrated piece of work to date.

A 14-year-old Jennifer Connelly shines in the lead role, playing a sleepwalker who has a bizarre telepathic bond with insects and uses them to help her solve a string of gory murders at a girls boarding school in the Swiss Alps. She is one of my favourite Argento heroines, a tough, brainy and eccentric little girl somewhere between Nancy Drew and Snow White. She deserves special credit for taking on some truly gruesome scenes, like when she falls into a pit of maggots, slime and rotting corpses. As for the rest of the cast, Donald Pleasance is good as the wheelchair-bound Scottish entomologist and Daria Nicolodi has fun with a small but juicy role.

Argento really let his imagination run wild making this one. Phenomena is a surreal, magical and surprisingly beautiful film, as much a dark fairytale fantasy as it is a horror film. It's visually stunning and I loved the incongruity of having all this gory mayhem happen against the picturesque backdrop of the Swiss Alps. Claudio Simonetti's electronic score is perfect, particularly the haunting main theme with its 80s synths and choral soprano vocals.

With its girls boarding school setting and unseen killer on the loose, Phenomena can be taken as a companion piece to Argento's earlier classic Suspiria (1977). But the introduction of slimy maggots, a razor-wielding pet chimp and six million buzzing insects set it apart. It all descends into glorious chaos for the Grand Guignol climax, which is perhaps the most thrilling house-of-horrors funhouse ride Argento has yet given us.

A remarkable film.

31 of 40 people found this review helpful.  Was this review helpful to you?

Message Boards

Recent Posts
Best Ending To Any Film. Period. vaughn145
maybe argento's best film? teejay6682
She is very pretty in this movie Samiria
absurd gabypanama
this movie looks, well, phenomenal! mr-murph
Argento movies on Amazon Instant Video SulfurMonkey42
Discuss Phenomena (1985) on the IMDb message boards »

Contribute to This Page

Create a character page for: