PHANTASM V: RAVAGER (2016) – Balladeer’s Blog’s month-long celebration of Halloween continues with a review of what is supposedly the final installment of the Phantasm horror film series and what is DEFINITELY the final appearance of Angus Scrimm as the Tall Man. Scrimm passed away early this year, so that’s why I wrote “definitely” and given the obsession with reboots that’s why the “supposedly.”
This 5th Phantasm film answers the musical question “Ya mean there was a Phantasm FOUR?!” Yes, there was. It was released directly to video and was called Phantasm IV: Oblivion with the “iv” in Oblivion forming the Roman Numeral 4 in the title. Similarly the “v” in Ravager forms the Roman Numeral 5 in the title.
From 1979 to this calendar year the movies in this under-appreciated horror franchise forever changed the way we look at funeral homes. And funeral home directors. And Roman Numerals for that matter. For better or worse writer/director Don Coscarelli never sold out, never let the sinister Tall Man become an outer-space joke like Jason Voorhees or a Borscht-Belt Charles Manson like Freddy Krueger. (And it’s hard to believe the first Phantasm was rated X for violence in 1979.) Continue reading