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Phantom of Death (1988)
"Un delitto poco comune" (original title)

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Ratings: 5.4/10 from 382 users  
Reviews: 18 user | 20 critic

Police Comissioner Datti is investigating the murder of a female doctor whose murderer seems to be a thirty-fivish year old man. Soon another murder follows: Pianist Robert Dominici's ... See full summary »



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Title: Phantom of Death (1988)

Phantom of Death (1988) on IMDb 5.4/10

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Cast overview, first billed only:
Robert Dominici
Hélène Martell
Inspector Datti
Mapi Galán ...
Renato Cortesi ...
Agent Marchi
Gloria Datti
Carola Stagnaro ...
Dr. Carla Pesenti
Daniele Brado ...
Dr. Vanni
Caterina Boratto ...
Robert's Mother
Lewis E. Ciannelli ...
Chief Physician (as Lewis Eduardo Ciannelli)
Renata Dal Pozzo ...
Agent Corsi
Giovanni Lombardo Radice ...
Father Giuliano
Gianni Franco ...
Marino Masé ...
Expert on aging


Police Comissioner Datti is investigating the murder of a female doctor whose murderer seems to be a thirty-fivish year old man. Soon another murder follows: Pianist Robert Dominici's girlfriend is found killed. The killer also challenges Datti on the phone and says he can't be caught since he has a secret which makes him invulnerable. In the meantime the clues seems to point in strange directions... Written by Salvatore Santangelo <>

Plot Summary | Add Synopsis


Horror | Thriller


R | See all certifications »




Release Date:

December 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Phantom of Death  »

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Technical Specs


| (DVD edition)

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DIRECTOR CAMEO: [Ruggero Deodato] Man at train station who hops on moped. See more »

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User Reviews

unusual idea (rapidly aging killer), but executed in a fairly boring manner
6 June 2005 | by (Upstate New York) – See all my reviews

A female doctor is murdered by a sword. The film makes some pretense of mystery about the identity of the killer, but it doesn't really do a very good job (and the video box gives it away completely). The killer has a rare disease that causes him to rapidly age and also causes the deterioration of his mind. Thus, one murder is thought to have been done by someone of about thirty years of age, and the next by a fifty-year-old.

The murder scenes aren't bad, but the rest of the movie does drag. The killer talks a lot, and what he says isn't of much interest. He also likes to call the police inspector played by Donald Pleasance. The police are all very bad at their jobs, fatally screwing up sting operations, letting suspects go before putting them in a lineup, and so on. Overall the movie is perhaps more of a drama musing about aging and death than it is a horror movie.

Like Psycho IV two years later, this film also has a mentally ill character concerned about passing on his genes. In Psycho IV, that made sense, since Norman had more or less become "normal" through treatment. Here, it's a little more surprising that the man whose mind is supposed to be quite deteriorated is worried about it.

I saw the uncut version of this on video. Can't say it's worth looking for - hold out for a widescreen DVD, and then it might be slightly more worthwhile.

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