The PhantomHD Closed Captioning
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The first superhero ever, created by Lee Falk in 1936, gets another shot at movie stardom 60 years after achieving fame in comics and serials. Billy Zane stars as Kit Walker, who discovers that he's the 21st in a line of purple-clad African superheroes known as "The Phantom" or, to superstitious Bengalla Island natives, "the Ghost Who Walks." When he's not fighting the evil Singh Brotherhood with his faithful wolf Devil and white horse Hero, the Phantom lives in the hidden Skull Cave. Kit discovers that Xander Drax (Treat Williams), a slimy industrialist, is plotting to take over the world by uniting the three long lost magical Skulls of Touganda. So he travels to New York, where he finds allies in crusading newspaper publisher Dave (Bill Smitrovich) and his niece, Diana (Kristy Swanson), who's also Kit's ex-girlfriend. Kit and Diana tackle Drax's forces, including the conflicted Sala (Catherine Zeta-Jones), in a quest for the Skulls that brings both sides back to Bengalla for a showdown. The Phantom's mixture of elaborate stunts with liberal doses of tongue-in-cheek humor was characteristic of screenwriter Jeffrey Boam, whose previous films included Innerspace (1987) and Indiana Jones and the Last Crusade (1989).
Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews
- Reviews Counted: 42
- Fresh: 18
- Rotten: 24
- Average Rating: 5.2/10
Top Critics' Reviews
Rotten: The pleasures are familiar, but not the least bit inspired.
Rotten: As the Phantom, Billy Zane, buff to the max, has a likable insouciance, but there's not much he can do to flesh out this relic.
Fresh: While it hardly stands to vanquish the celluloid incarnations of Superman and Batman, this version of an older cartoon crusader's exploits does have a pleasingly astute sense of its place in the great scheme of things pulp.
Fresh: It's nice to see some things done the old way.
A classic high adventure serial in this day and age? Awesome!
The Phantom first saw life as a daily newspaper comic in the 1930s, where he arguably started the "muscular man in skintight outfight" genre of superheroes (despite not actually being a superhero at all!) Perhaps surprising to most is the fact that Phantom is STILL being drawn and published today, more than 70 years later in newspapers and comic books around the world! The 30s were a great time in entertainment, because this was where were found the High Adventure serials released every week, and, like Indiana Jones and The Mummy, The Phantom brings it all back in high style. If you liked the Indiana Jones movies, if you liked the Mummy series, if you like all of those High Adventure style movies, with a dashing, daring hero taking on over-the-top bad guys and surviving thanks to quick thinking and good old-fashioned fisticuffs, this movie will not disappoint.
I agree, this movie is totally entertaining. I also think it should be rentable along with quite a few other movies I'd love to see but not more than once. Itunes, hope your listening....
This movie is a great action adventure with plenty of laughs. Faithful adaptation of the comics. Fun for all ages. LOVED IT!!