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  • Writer's pictureSteve

Phenomena (1985)

What Jennifer did after Once Upon A Time In America but before Labyrinth. This could quite easily be classified as 'cult horror' these days, given its creator Dario Argento had already made quite the name for himself with the likes of Inferno and Suspiria only a couple of years before. Welcome to the Swiss Transylvania.

With Donald Pleasance's appearance, his ridiculous Scottish accent and Jennifer's unusual affinity with creepy crawlies (the film is also known as Creepers fyi), not to mention the soundtrack littered with Iron Maiden and Motorhead tracks, it is no surprise that this project still turns heads even now, even if only for its quirky, inarguable curiousness.

Over-acted like all of Argento's projects are, the script does nothing to quell the bizarre nature of the story and its telling. Looking the very time it was when it was made with hairspray, Armani and Bee Gees t-shirts, the film has not aged well and the posh Swiss finishing school for girls tortured by a lunatic serial killer is really only remarkable for its outlandish and often hammy approach to every scene. Let's not forget, the chimp bit off the end of one of Jennifer's fingers which had to be re-attached. All good fun, right?

Definitely one for the Connelly or Argento purists, but there really is little else of note here to make this worthy of your time. There are plenty of 'wtf' moments, however, where you are left wondering just what Argento was thinking.


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