After a tragic car accident kills his wife, a man discovers he can communicate with the dead to con people. However, when a demonic spirit appears, he may be the only one who can stop it from killing the living and the dead.
After a car accident in which his wife, Debra, was killed and he was injured, Frank Bannister develops psychic abilities allowing him to see, hear, and communicate with ghosts. After losing his wife, he then gave up his job as an architect, letting his unfinished "dream house" sit incomplete for years, and put these skills to use by befriending a few ghosts and getting them to haunt houses in the area to drum up work for his ghostbusting business; Then Frank proceeds to "exorcise" the houses for a fee. But when he discovers that an entity resembling the Grim Reaper is killing people, marking numbers on their forehead beforehand, Frank tries to help the people whom the Reaper is after!Written by
Anthony Pereyra <email@example.com>
Peter Jackson loved Jeffrey Combs' work on the Re-Animator (1985) movies so much, that he asked Casting Director Victoria Burrows to find out whether Combs was still available and working, since he was unsure. Fortunately, Combs was available and signed up. He wore black contact lenses for his role. See more »
(at around 1h 40 mins) When Frank and Lucy are hidden behind the shelf from Patricia, a wire can be spotted on the back of her dress, as she run past the screen to the left. See more »
UK cinema, VHS and initial DVD versions were cut by the BBFC for a '15' certification. The bloody shot of Patricia's mother lying on a bed was slightly shortened, and Agent Milton getting his head blown off is spliced into two separate shots with a quick, rearranged insert of Frank falling backwards to tone down the gore-factor - in the US version, Milton's head is blown off in one bloody shot. These scenes were reinstated in the Director's Cut, which also has a '15' certification, after the BBFC finally waived the cuts. See more »
The Frighteners is a fun little movie from the mid-90s. It has an pleasing mix of stars who hit their stride in the 80s (Fox,Wallace, and Ermey) and others who count this as among their first works (Alvarado, Busey, McBride). It is an odd mix of horror and humor from Peter Jackson and had state-of-the-art special effects for the time.
The Frighteners, filmed and produced in New Zealand, was the biggest special effects movie made at that time outside the Hollywood movie base. It made extensive use of blue screens and had over 400 computer-enhanced special effects. Peter Jackson and Fran Walsh wrote the script and Jackson directed and produced the film.
The Frighteners has an overall tone of whimsy but also has some impressive horror movie moments. The Danny Elfman score fits the movie perfectly. Frank Bannister, played by Fox, is a widowed psychic investigator exploring supernatural goings on in a placid rural town. Newcomer Alvarado plays his romantic interest. Veteran actor John Astin plays a ghost called The Judge who has seen his better days. Ermey plays drill instructor (go figure), Sgt Hiles, who is in charge of the local cemetery. He has several lines and a general demeanor that pays homage or satirizes (depending on your viewpoint) his character in 1987's Full Metal Jacket. Jake Busey plays a good bad man, and McBride plays a funny role as Bannister's ghostly aide.
The Frighteners is amusing, frightening, entertaining, and a bit exhausting. It is a great Fall or Halloween movie.
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