So I know, I committed a huge faux pas five years ago when I reviewed the sequel over the original film.
It was my first Horrorfest, and I hadn’t established any “rules” but was just doing whatever I watched or any films that popped in my head.
However, since then I have realized that just because it’s not as good as the sequel, that doesn’t mean I should ignore it.
Yes, I love The Addam’s Family. I watched the TV show, I loved everything about them, and have seen The Addam’s Family Values like a million times.
I love how kind and caring and macabre they are. It is fantastic.
So if it is such a great concept, why is the second film fantastic but the first only okay? (At least in my opinion.)
Well let’s do a brief synopsis:
The Addams family is zany, fun, and awesome. They used to be a giant clan, but have lost people in interesting and deadly ways throughout the years. Now they consist of Gomez Addams, his wife Morticia, and their two kids Pugsley and Wednesday. Morticia’s mother also lives with them in their old Victorian home. Along with the family is their butler Lurch and servant hand Thing.
Gomez had an older brother Fester-but he and Gomez fought and Fester took off, never to be seen again. Through the years Gomez has tried everything to find him.
And has been heartbroken at the loss of his brother, ever hoping that one day he would return.
Meanwhile, their accountant, Tully Alford, has been trying to embezzle from their treasure room. He has no other clients and owes a ton of money to a loan shark. When the loan shark comes to collect bringing her goliath of a son, Gordon, Tully gets an idea.
If they give Gordon a few alterations, he’s a dead ringer for Uncle Fester. They decide to send to the family with a story of him having amnesia in order to have him accepted. Y the Addamses and to discover where the money is.
Gordon does, but as he pretends to be Uncle Fester he starts to enjoy the Addams’ Family way of life. Will he be able to stick to the plan, or will he instead take on the role of Uncle Fester permanently?
So why doesn’t this film work?
Well the issues are that the storyline is boring.
It is something we have seen many times before and you knew immediately how it would end.
The storyline is amazing in the sequel! You never knew what was going to happen with the kids, the adults, or Debbie.
In this film the characters are more sedate, while in the sequel they go all out. To be fair I think the director, writer, and actors weren’t sure how far they could go.
It isn’t horrible, but it just isn’t as fun. Especially in comparison to the sequel.
The only thing I really loved about this film was I thought it was cute when Margaret Alford and Cousin It get together, especially how at first she was all “I can’t stand the Addams”, but in the end becomes one.
And Raúl Juliá. He was such an amazing actor and he was Gomez Addams. I could watch hour after hour after hour of him being Gomez Addams and never get tired of it.
If they had made a third film (not The Addams Family Reunion), that was just Raúl Juliá being Gomez Addams I would have paid to watch that over and over.
Sadly he passed away at an early age. So sad as we lost a talented star.
It’s not a bad film to watch, but in my opinion the sequel is amazing.
Just what is this thing? Chaos, chaos in the flesh.
Phantoms is a 1998 film that is based on the book by Dean Koontz. The story is very creepy, and I was surprised at how well the film was done. I thought it was going to be done in a very stupid, silly way; but it was the essence of creepiness. The only thing I didn’t care for was Liev Schreiber, I felt that he didn’t portray the character very well in the beginning. I wouldn’t have chosen Rose McGowan either, but she did surprisingly well. I loved Ben Affleck as the sexy Sheriff and love interest. I love Ben Affleck though, I mean who doesn’t? They changed the film from the book, as expected, but the changes do not destroy the film, thank goodness. If you’d like to watch the film go here. So the film starts out with Dr. Jennifer Pailey bringing her trouble-making sister Lisa to live with her. They are hoping the change of scenery will help straighten her out as she was involved with gang members in Los Angelas.
I want to go back to LA
When they reach the town, it is empty. Like really empty. There is no one out and about even though they are in a ski town, in the middle of winter with great snow.
They continue on home. When Jennifer gets there she finds her housekeeper dead. All the life had been sucked out of her and she looks burned.
The girls are widely freaked and decided to head to the sheriff’s. But there is one problem, their car won’t work.
The girls hurry on to the sheriff’s office where they find a deputy, burned and blackened. He appears to have shot his gun at something, but they don’t find any traces of it, except shells. Dr. Jennifer grabs a gun and the two run off to the bakery, as it is getting dark and they are really freaked out. They head to the baker’s, running quickly as they hear sounds as if someone is following them. When they get there the oven goes off revealing severed heads!
The girls are completely grossed out and confused when the Sheriff (who ex-FBI) finds them.
With him are his two deputies Steve Shanning (Nicky Katt) and Stuart Wargle (Liev Shreiber) have come to investigate. They decide the best thing to do is go to the sheriff’s department, and just when they do every single horn, siren, whistle, bell, etc. goes off and then suddenly stops. The only lights left on are down on the Candleglow Inn up the street.
They check it out and see that only four guests are registered. The Sheriff and Stu go upstairs, while the girls stay behind with deputy Steve.
While the sheriff is upstairs he goes into a room and starts looking through an opening in a closet. When he does he sees a vision of a young boy with a gun, which disappers. You see when the Sheriff was FBI he accidentally shot a boy, which made him quit and turn to small town life.
Aw! Look at his face. 😦
Stu goes in the other room and finds a beautiful, dead woman. He sits next to her and puts his hand up her leg…
What a perv!
Then the Sheriff walks in. He lets it go, even though he is severely grossed out as he knows what Stu was doing, but he needs every man he can get as he has no idea what the situation is.
The Sheriff has Stu watch the hall as he continues checking things out. Stu comes on to Lisa who tells him flat out no, she is not digging that.
Dr. Jennifer joins the Sheriff and they discover that a bathroom locked from the inside (that has no other windows or doors) is empty, with something written on the mirror in lipstick. The writing says “Dr. Timothy Flyte–The Ancient Enemy“.
The two have no idea who Dr. Flyte is but intend on finding out. In another empty room they find a bunch of metal objects like jewelry, buttons, watches, gold teeth, a pacemaker, etc.; concluding that this thing, whatever it is strips a person completely of everything, if it chooses.
They go back into the lobby to regroup and figure out their next step. But then they suddenly hear a woman crying out “Help me!” and Deputy Steve rushes out to save her. The Sheriff follows him, but when he gets outside all that is left of Steve is his shoes and a gun.
They head back to the Sheriff’s office and put the dead deputy in a body bag. They then call for help–military, Dr. Flyte, anybody, but the line was so bad they don’t know whether or not it went through.
Bryce and Stu go through the dept. and pull out all their ammunition getting ready for–whatever the thing is that is trying to attack them. The lights go out and the creature takes on a Alien/The Thing (1982) feel. The next thing you know, Stu is dead.
Too be honest, good riddance. He was a creep and I didn’t like him.
They also put Stu in a body bag and wait out the night.
We then switch to another part of the country- Dr. Flyte. Dr. Flyte (Peter O’Toole) is a tabloid worker in New York City. He used to a professor at Oxford, but they let him go as they felt his writings were “too silly”.
Two FBI agents ask him to go to the small, winter, town of Snowfield to help solve what the “thing” is.
Back in Snowfield the three survivors are trying to figure out what to do next. Lisa tries to take a nap while the Sheriff tells Dr. Jen about how the monster called up the incident with the young boy. The two are interrupted when Lisa asks the Sherif to walk with her to the bathroom. He checks it and finds it clear. Lisa begins to smoke when she hears a squealing noise coming out of the drain.
She checks out the bathroom stalls (much like Scream) and finds the Deputy Stu there!
In the book the “Phantom thing” was more like the Blob from The Blob (1958); although it could take on the shape of other things, or create small phantom pieces of itself. In the film, however, the “Phantom” embodies the form of Stu, which is understandable from a filmmaker point of view. It doesn’t copying The Blob at all, as I mentioned earlier copying The Thing. Just like The Thing, the “phantom” takes on the appearance of something. This wasn’t a horrible decision as I bet it was easier to film. They also did a lot of blackout or limited lighting when the creature was in its true form, which allowed it to remain creepy as your imagination creates it. The director of It(1990) should have used the same technique, it would have been a better film.
I didn’t really care for Liev Schreiber, and thought he could have been much creepier. Instead he just comes off as a pervert. This film has actually ruined him for me in all other films. When I watch Kate & Leopold, Scream, Scream 2, Scream 3, Lee Daniel’s the Butler, or X-Men Origins: Wolverine; I keep expecting him to do something perverted to all the women.
Yes I am
Anyways, back to the story. So the Sheriff goes into the bathroom and can’t find anything. They go down to check the body bags, but both are empty.
Meanwhile Dr. Flyte is on route to Snowfield with military General Leland Copperfield, some mobile labs, an armored strike van, etc–all ready to take on whatever the “thing” is. They ask Dr. Flyte about “the Ancient Enemy”. Dr. Flyte explains that there were creatures, he calls “Ancient Enemy” who are amoeboidshapeshifters. This Ancient Enemy rarely feeds, but when it does, the effects are devastating and it was theorized that the Enemy either caused or aided in the extinction of the dinosaurs, the destruction of the Mayan civilization, Roanoke disappearance, the missing army of Nanking, China in 1939, etc. And the town appears to have been built on the home of one of these “Ancient Enemies”.
The group arrives to Snowfield and the three survivors come to meet the army. The next thing you know, “the thing” has taken out almost the whole team using its shape-shifting qualities and the pipes/sewers. Now these scenes are pretty intense. I was watching them and screaming and my roommates were all, are you ok? I highly recommend watching this film.
General Copperfield is last of the military to be killed; as a pair of oily black tentacles seeps up through the pavement, penetrates his hazmat suit, and smothers him.
[Note: From The Mist]
This leaves Dr. Flyte, Sheriff Bryce, Jenny, and Lisa as the remaining survivors..
He’s dead but the “Phantom” uses his body as a mouthpiece and begins speaking to the crowd.
“My Flesh. Study it. Write the gospel. But do not try to leave. Witnesses to the Miracle.”
The body then falls to the ground and an oily black substance comes out along with a gecko, of which the group is supposed to get a sample of. Dr. Flyte begins to analyze the sample, coming to the conclusion it has lived in the depths of the earth for eons, growing to immense size, and absorbing knowledge from its prey. It can separate off parts of Itself to send as drones, warriors, phantoms, etc.–having them assume the shapes of anything or anyone It has absorbed; even of people or monsters from memories and dreams.With these, It has manipulated Bryce, Jenny, and Lisa into bringing Dr. Flyte here, to be Its prophet, and to write Its gospel. For It has begun to think of Itself as God–or the Devil. Indestructible. All-Powerful. Immortal. Unstoppable.
This is bad. Very bad.
Dr. Flyte’s analysis reveals that It is similar to oil and if they are able to make the same kind of bacteria that eats away at oil spills, they may just have a chance at stopping it. They create cultures and prepare for the final battle.
Dr. Flyte goes out and calls to the creature.
He tells It that he needs to see all of it in order to write Its “gospel”. He says that the others are creating a weapon against It, that they don’t believe in It like he does. It appears first as a single person, but then becomes all 400 residents of the town, merging and melding into one swirling mass, which resolves Itself into an immense, hideous, upright millipede.
The Sheriff, Jenny and Lisa run and fire the guns loaded with the bacteria culture into It. This causes It to scream. Jenny and Lisa run for shelter into the nearby deputy’s office, to reload their guns but are pursued by a drone of Deputy Stu.
Deputy Wargle: Oh, you’ve got some guns, ladies, you wouldn’t shoot an unarmed man, would you? [both women cock shotguns and point them at him] That’s a dumb question.
They empty their shotguns into him, knocking him down, and blowing away huge chunks of his legs and arms. Tentacles shoot out of his arm and leg stumps. The girls run away and and he follows, but is killed by Dr. Jen as she shoots him with the last of the culture.
The bigger entity is falling apart and the Sheriff follows the last of It down into the sewer, finding him face to face with the boy that he killed. He hesitates, and while he does so, a tentacle shoots out of the boy’s mouth, and knocks him down. His gun with the culture is stolen by It. It pulls the vials out and starts taunting the Sheriff. In response to It’s mockings the Sheriff pulls out his gun and shoots the vials, causing the bacteria to spread all over.
With one final ear-shattering scream It is gone, and Bryce makes his way back to the others. As a helicopter arrives to rescue them, Dr. Flyte announces to the others that the Entity has won after all: It wanted him to tell the world, and that’s just what he’s going to do. Everything seems to end well, or well enough. Dr. Flyte has his story and will win back his prestige; Sheriff Bryce is no longer traumatized about killing the boy; Dr. Jen and Sheriff Bryce have found each other; and Lisa and Dr. Jen have bonded. Sounds as perfect an ending you can get for a horror film.
Uh, uh uh. Not quite yet!
We switch to a scene in a bar where Dr. Flyte is in TV talking about It and how it may still be out there waiting. One of the guys in the bar turns to his companion and says its a lot of hooey. A strange laugh is heard and at the end of the bar is Deputy Stu Wrangle, showing that It is still alive.
So it really was a good film, and I’m telling you the scenes with the creature are super creepy!!! You’ll love them if you love scary movies!
So unlike the other facebook cover pages I have made (and you should have guessed by now that practically every post has one) I made two for this one as the first one wasn’t working out right. Here’s the second one for those of you interested.
You’ll meet someone. Someone very special. Someone who won’t press charges.
I love this movie soooooo, soooo, soooooo, sooooooooooooooooooooooooooo much!!!!
I have to watch it every October (and really any other time of the year). I have loved this movie since I was a kid as it is so hilarious and the dialogue is truly amazing.
I really don’t know where to start with this post as I love every part of this film. To be honest, you just need to watch it! It is that good. This is one of the few times where the sequel far surpasses the original.
I just love Morticia and Gomez, they are an amazing couple.
The story is that Morticia and Gomez have had a new baby; which Wednesday and Pugsly hate and are trying to destroy. Morticia and Gomez attempt to hire a nanny because Morticia would like some time to herself; and as said before the other children cannot be trusted with the new addition.
“Morticia: [to Gomez] I’m just like any modern woman trying to have it all. Loving husband, a family. It’s just, I wish I had more time to seek out the dark forces and join their hellish crusade.”
After going through a slew of prospects, they finally hire Debbie Jellinsky, played by the amazing Joan Cusack. Debbie seems really nice at first, but we find out that she is trying to get close to Uncle Fester, marry him, kill him, and steal all his money. In fact we find out that Debbie is no ordinary gold-digger, but a full on serial killer.
Wednesday and Pugsly discover her true intentions, so Debbie has them sent off to a summer camp which is hilarious. This has some of the best scenes in the film as the kids wreak true Addams’ family havoc.
Debbie tries to complete her plot, but it takes a lot to kill an Addamses! Just watch the film! You’ll love it!
**** Contains Spoilers ****
So one of my favorite parts, is the play that they put on at the summer camp. In the film the camp counselors have broken Wednesday and Pugsly’s spirits, forcing them to watch happy films which causes them to become perky. They and the other “losers” of the camp
are playing the Native Americans in a Thanksgiving play that one of the counselors wrote. But nothing ever goes as planned when an Addams is involved!
Wednesday is AWESOME! I love her. Christina Ricci did an amazing job at being her. I couldn’t imagine a better person.
My other most absolute favorite part is when we get to hear Debbie’s backstory, and why she turned to a life of murder and thievery.
I LOVE this part so much! I have the whole thing memorized and love to recite it!
That’s today’s terrifying post! More to come! 8 Days ‘Till Halloween!
Here’s a cover page/poster I made for my facebook page as part of my countdown to Halloween last year.