6.8/10
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Phenomena (1985)

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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.

Director:

Dario Argento

Writers:

Dario Argento (story), Franco Ferrini (story) | 2 more credits »
1 nomination. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Jennifer Connelly ... Jennifer Corvino
Daria Nicolodi ... Frau Brückner
Fiore Argento ... Vera Brandt
Federica Mastroianni Federica Mastroianni ... Sophie
Fiorenza Tessari ... Gisela Sulzer
Dalila Di Lazzaro ... Headmistress
Patrick Bauchau ... Inspector Rudolf Geiger
Donald Pleasence ... Professor John McGregor
Alberto Cracco ... UBS Bank Teller
Kaspar Capparoni Kaspar Capparoni ... Karl, Sophie's Boyfriend (as Gaspare Capparoni)
Mario Donatone ... Morris Shapiro
Antonio Maimone Antonio Maimone ... EEG Doctor
Davide Marotta Davide Marotta ... Brückner Son
Fulvio Mingozzi Fulvio Mingozzi ... Mr. Sulzer
Francesca Ottaviani Francesca Ottaviani ... Nurse
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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:

It Will Make Your Skin Crawl. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Mystery

Certificate:

R | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Details

Country:

Italy | Switzerland

Language:

Italian | Swiss German | Danish

Release Date:

2 August 1985 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Creepers See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$3,800,000 (estimated)
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

DACFILM Rome See more »
Show more on IMDbPro »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (international) | (Creepers cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby | 4-Track Stereo (Cranky Sound System) (Japan theatrical release)

Color:

Color (Technicolor)

Aspect Ratio:

1.66 : 1
See full technical specs »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The film was inspired to Dario Argento after he learned that insects are sometimes used during murder investigations. See more »

Goofs

(at around 45 mins) The professor's comments about the hyperactive behavior of his insects are accompanied by close-ups of different bugs moving around in their cages very quickly. However, in close-ups of Jennifer listening to him, many of the same bugs can be seen in their cages behind her, and they are completely still. 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 »

Alternate Versions

Original version, released in Italy and other parts of Europe, includes a number of scenes left out of the American version, mostly of key dialogue including:
  • Jennifer tells her roommate how her mother left with her lover on Christmas when she was eight;
  • Jennifer eats baby food and explains that she is a vegetarian;
  • John McGregor shows his book on communicating with insects and explains how insects can be used to help solve crimes;
  • Andi Sexgang is shown on Sophie's television performing "The Quick and the Dead";
  • Motorhead's "Locomotive" continues to play in the background during the scene where Inspector Geiger visits the asylum;
  • Iron Maiden's "Flash of the Blade" continues to play as Diezla Sulzer is pursued by the killer in a suspense sequence cut from the U.S. version;
  • Morris Shapiro's unavalability is played like a horror cliche in the U.S. version; here Jennifer is told he is with his family for Passover.
  • Jennifer is given an electroencephalogram after her first sleepwalking attack.
See more »

Connections

Referenced in 976-EVIL (1988) See more »

Soundtracks

The Insects
(uncredited)
Performed by Fabio Pignatelli
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more »

User Reviews

 
Outstanding Italian horror from Dario Argento. ***Spoilers***
3 October 2001 | by HumanoidOfFleshSee all my reviews

My review is based on uncut Italian print,which runs 110 minutes.A young Jennifer Connelly can communicate telepathically with insects.The area she arrives in is being terrorized by a psychotic killer,who has been murdering coeds and making off with their decapitated bodies.Desperate for clues,a police inspector visits an entomologist Donald Pleasance("Halloween","Death Line")and eventually Pleasance and Connelly team up to find the killer.It all has something to do with Daria Nicolodi and the deformed creature she keeps chained in the basement.Wonderful atmosphere,gorgeous cinematography and plenty of gruesome gore make this one a must-see.Argento goes totally over the top in "Phenomena" with a swimming pool full of maggots and rotting corpses,a mad dwarf,a razor wielding monkey and grisly decapitations.Great heavy metal songs by Iron Maiden and Motorhead plus a nice musical score by Goblin.10 out of 10.


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