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Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead

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Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead
Phantasm III.jpg
"It's never over." Exactly what these people are milking for.
Genre: Horror
Directed By: Don Coscarelli
Produced By: Don Coscarelli
Seth Blair
Written By: Don Coscarelli
Starring: A. Michael Baldwin
Reggie Bannister
Angus Scrimm
Bill Thornbury
Gloria Lynne Henry
Kevin Connors
Cinematography: Chris Chomyn
Distributed By: Starway International Inc.
Runtime: 91 mins
Country: USA
Language: English
Franchise: Phantasm
Prequel: Phantasm II
Sequel: Phantasm IV: Oblivion

Phantasm III: Lord of the Dead (also known as Phantasm III) is a 1994 American science fantasy horror film and the second sequel in the Phantasm series, written and directed by Don Coscarelli. The film stars Angus Scrimm as the Tall Man, Reggie Bannister, and A. Michael Baldwin. It is followed by Phantasm IV: Oblivion.


The evil alien known as the Tall Man (Angus Scrimm) has infiltrated the minds of Mike (A. Michael Baldwin) and Reggie (Reggie Bannister). The two friends embark on a journey to find and kill him, only to discover that he has destroyed town after town, leaving zombies in place of the living. Along the way, Mike and Reggie meet several characters who share their goal, including a murderous boy named Tim (Kevin Connors) and an excellent fighter.

Bad Qualities

  1. The biggest problem with this movie is how it lacks the dream like quality that the original Phantasm movie was known for as it shifts to horror comedy action. And this sequel only lives to its name thus milking the success of the first film. Which takes a different direction when Phantasm II was cashing in the success of Aliens and The Thing. It droughts what the movie wants you to guess to and the metaphor of Phantasm.
  2. The movie can't even decide if it's gonna be a horror or a standard quintessentially 80s action movies or what.
  3. This movie is clearly a rehashed version of Phantasm II. From the gags and thence the opening flashback that used the stock footage from the previous films which was unnecessary or as if the audience already forgotten about it (a la Resident Evil).
    • Even the director Don Coscarelli admitted that he's actually running of idea and even went to joke that the future sequel Oblivion was made to just make money.
  4. Tons of continuity mistakes like how does the shotgun was coincidentally lying around on the ground with Mike when in Phantasm II Reggie discarded it at the ending.
  5. The Golden Sphere are absent in this movie.
  6. Reggie is a questionable hero or how is the embodiment of what could been a character from a Samurai Cop movie, his constant running gag as he seduces and tries to laid down with women but fails, he seems to forgot something that dragged him to this movie or how he doesn't have any emotions towards his goal (despite having the first glimpse of his family in a photo) in the first place... "That he aims to kill the Tall Man for murdering his family".
    • Also, Reggie can be a creep at times.
    • His one liner are so incredibly dumb.
  7. They placed some comic relief characters and doesn't have any purpose in the film than to add the carnage or be The Tall Man's minions.
  8. Despite being infamous for reusing the main theme that made the household name of the Phantasm franchise, we rarely to ever hear an original track as they recycled the Phantasm theme over and over again because of the lack of budget.
    • Speaking with the budget, it seems that Universal didn't even care about this movie and allowed the director to handle everything. And by standard of financing, this is by far the second highest budgeted Phantasm film and as the sequel goes on, it declines.
  9. The ending is still a worn out and tiresome gimmick to end it, as an unknown assailant grabs the main character pulls from the mirror, exactly with Phantasm I and II. It tries to be as iconic as the first movie even though that Angus Scrimm pulls out his iconic one liners, which saves the anti-climatic ending.
  10. That particular scene where Reggie infamously said the line "Do you want some vanilla?"
  11. The Tall Man's death is kind feeble unlike the previous one. And thus adding the absence of the music which lacks the satisfying end to The Tall Man.
  12. For a 1994 film, with movies like Terminator 2, the CG didn't aged well.
  13. The running gags that where in the previous sequel that were repetitive can be obnoxious at times.
  14. The action scenes are way too average and it is simply just a pastiche of the previous film again, most notably the car chase scene.
  15. Pointless sex scene.

Good Qualities

  1. The return of the original characters from the first film, Mike, Jody, and Reggie and of course, The Tall Man.
  2. Tim and Rocky are the few entertaining and badass character.
  3. Angus Scrimm is still an awesome villain.
  4. The Phantasm theme, despite slower, is still as memorable.
  5. Michael Baldwin is back as Mike after being forcedly replaced who continued his role to Oblivion and Ravenger.
  6. Like the first and later sequel, this movie is still as enjoyable if you ignore that this is a Phantasm movie. Which the fourth installment Oblivion brought back the film's formula.
  7. Some worth to laugh insult jokes.


Phantasm III received a positive review from 40% of ten surveyed critics on Rotten Tomatoes, and the average rating was 4.57/10. Scott Weinberg of Fearnet wrote that while the sequels lack the punch of the original, they're still fun. Steve Barton of DreadCentral rated the film 3.5/5 stars and described the film's humor as hit-or-miss.

The film won Fangoria's Chainsaw Award for best limited-release film.


  • The character of Tim was a tribute to the younger Mike in the original Phantasm movie.
  • This movie serves as a reunion of the four recurring actors after 16 years.
  • This is the first movie ever to named the unnamed minions, Gravers, Sentinels and the Lurkers
  • During the end credit, the final words says that: Unauthorized duplication, distribution, or exhibition may result in civil liability, criminal prosecutions, and THE WRATH OF THE TALL MAN.


External Links


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