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Phantasm II (1988)

R  |   |  Action, Fantasy, Horror  |  8 July 1988 (USA)
6.5
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Ratings: 6.5/10 from 8,800 users  
Reviews: 99 user | 77 critic

Mike, now released from a psychiatric hospital, continues his journey to stop the evil Tall Man from his grim work.

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Title: Phantasm II (1988)

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Mike (as James LeGros)
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Liz
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Ruth C. Engel ...
Mark Anthony Major ...
Rubin Kushner ...
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Young Mike (as Michael Baldwin)
Amanda Gray ...
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Elizabeth Quezada ...
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Lauren Gray ...
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Storyline

Mike is released from psychiatry, when he agrees with the doctors that the terrible happenings in his past were just in his imagination. But once he's free, he contacts Redge and they team up to hunt down and eliminate the "Tall Man", who plunders the graveyards and abducts the sleeping with help of his terrible gnomes. A beautiful strange girl starts to appear in Mike's dreams. He assumes she's in danger and needs their help - will they find her before the Tall Man can do her any harm? Written by Tom Zoerner <Tom.Zoerner@informatik.uni-erlangen.de>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

For ten years the secret of Perigord Cemetery has remained a mystery. Now the ultimate evil is about to be revealed. See more »


Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

8 July 1988 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Fantasma II  »

Box Office

Budget:

$3,000,000 (estimated)

Gross:

$7,282,851 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

Color:

Aspect Ratio:

1.85 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Don Coscarelli has revealed that some elements of this movie were influenced by Stephen King, specially a few aspects of his novel 'Salem's Lot'. A small part of it at the end, when the characters go out on the road chasing down vampires, gave him the "road movie" idea of Mike and Reggie chasing The Tall Man. See more »

Goofs

When the large sphere attacks the assistant in the morgue (in his back), he flails a lot against the wall in the corner, but no blood is left there even though there are gaping wounds. See more »

Quotes

[Reggie revs up his chainsaw, about to take on one of the Tall Man's henchmen]
Reggie: Come on, you mutha!
See more »

Crazy Credits

With the exception of the title Phantasm II, there are no opening credits. See more »

Connections

Follows Phantasm (1979) See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
A fine example of how a good sequel should be
4 January 2008 | by (La Línea, Cádiz, Spain) – See all my reviews

After watching the Phantasm movies again and again for years, I've always thought that this second installment is the best.

First of all, it starts the saga as it is. Don Coscarelli has stated many times that he never intended part I to be followed by a sequel, so if you check out the continuity between the two, it's incredibly perfect and accurate in this one. (In my opinion, it's got the best prologue of the saga). Phantasm II picks up the best things of Part I and takes the plot onto a whole new direction (a path that will be followed by the other sequels). Guys, if there's a Phantasm Saga it's because of Part 2.

Apart from this, all ingredients and characters are very well balanced and developed (horror, sci-fi, action, humor, Alchemy, the priest). If, for example, you compare P2 next to P3, you'll realize that sense of humor goes over the top in the latter. Also, P3 seems to forget that the real main hero of the story is Mike. OK, Reggie is my favorite character, but I've always thought that he works better as a sidekick (P2) rather than as the leading guy.

Another important reason is that, to me, this is the darkest and most adult entry in the series: it's got the goriest moments and the creepiest atmosphere, and takes the plot very seriously. Special effects are great too (although being a low budget B-movie, and the cheapest film produced by Universal in 1988, it looks like a super-production).

And what can we say about the girls? Liz is the best partner Mike will ever have, and Chemy the most dangerous and sexiest chick Reggie will ever meet. Next to these characters, the other girls in the series look terribly under-developed (Lady in Lavender in Part I, Jennifer in part IV) or too far out (Rocky and Edna in Part III).

Some people complaint that this sequel, unlike its predecessor, spells everything out for you. No doubt P2 is the most linear installment in the series, but that doesn't necessary mean that spells everything out for you. OK, more dream sequences wouldn't have been bad, but I prefer a standard plot well developed and executed rather than a twisted story full of holes, forced elements and unsatisfying explanations (P3 and P4).

P2 is separated from P1 almost 10 years in time. Universal Pictures planned that the target audience for P2 should include people who never saw the original. They didn't want to take too many risks with the sequel of a movie that wasn't a huge success at the time and was released a decade before. That's the main reason why Universal executives forced Coscarelli to cast somebody else for Mike's part and write a more linear plot without mixing dreams and reality. Because of this, P2 is the only installment in the series that you can watch and understand without having seen P1.

Now, James LeGros is THE BEST Mike EVER. He portrays a strong, tough, grown up Mike. But he can also look sensitive and fragile. Michael Baldwin was great in Part I, but sometimes, when an actor grows up, he doesn't fit in the same role as good as in the past. In P3 and P4, Baldwin looks weak and lost, and his lack of charisma and sex appeal is what makes Reggie take the leading part. James LeGros is a better actor, and a better choice for Mike.


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