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  • NOW SHOWING: Phantom

    "Phantom" is a submarine movie starring Ed Harris and David Duchovny. It is set in Cold War 1968. The plot has Capt. Demi (Harris) going on one last cruise using an old Soviet diesel sub. The sub is carrying a new device and two KGB agents including Duchovny. It turns out the device will allow the KGB agents to start WWIII and blame it on the Red Chinese.

    The film is entertaining in a Saturday matinee sort of way. The plot is "inspired by actual events", but it is pretty far-fetched. In case you don't know, "inspired' is looser than "based". It has some of the usual sub cliches, but is not ridiculous. Implausible would be a better description. There is some action to keep you awake, but the conflict between the Captain and the KGB never reaches suspenseful. This ain't "Crimson Tide". The acting is average, although Harris is his usual solid self. Duchovny slums, however. The movie dispenses with subtitles or Russian accents.

    The movie is technically average. Mood clarifying, but unobtrusive soundtrack. Cinematography that will not be sampled in film classes. Special effects that are low rent, but the darkness of the sea makes it hard to cringe. The sub interiors are authentic looking and adequately claustrophobic.

    If you are looking for accurate Cold War sub "cat and mouse" tactics, look elsewhere. I'm pretty sure the screenwriter did not know what a "decoy torpedo" is.

    It's not the worst or best sub movie. Somewhere in the middle. Since we don't get many war movies these days, just be thankful that after "K-19" someone was stupid enough to make another Soviet sub movie. Also be thankful you did not invest in it. It will not be a blockbuster.

    for my full review go to:

  • #2
    Sorry to hear it. Harris is a fine actor, and Duchovny used to be.

    The last decent submarine film I can recall was Crimson Tide, and that one was dubious at times.
    Quis Custodiet Ipsos Custodes? Who is watching the watchers?


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