Phantom Review – A Cold War Cat and Mouse Thriller

AddThis Social Bookmark Button

“Phantom,” from Trilogy Entertainment and Anchor Bay Entertainment, brings the 1960’s Cold War back into mainstream with a high stakes, cat and mouse, mind manipulation, circumventing chase that is engrossing from the beginning.

Directed and written by Todd Robinson “Phantom” stars Ed Harris and David Duchovny along with a familiar group of faces including William Fichtner, Lance Henriksen, Jonathon Schaech and Jason Beghe. “Phantom” also stars Jordan Bridges, Jason Gray-Stanford, Matt Bushell and Kip Pardue.

Phantom” is loosely based on a soviet incident in 1968 during which the submarine missed several ordered location reports. The Soviets, as in all cold war engagements, toned down the potential disaster and labeled the vessel missing.

Academy award nominee, Ed Harris portrays Demi, the son of a decorated, well known and well respected, Soviet Naval officer. Following in his father’s footsteps, he also a highly decorated officer, with this his last mission he is ready for retirement. Unknown to the crew and all but a few trusted individuals, he suffers from epileptic seizures resulting from a catastrophic at sea accident.   

Ordered to gather his crew, which are all on three week leave, some of which are getting married, others reacquainted with life, love and spouses, he gathers those available and is provided with enough to complete a full crew. Within eighteen hours of notice all are aboard an outdated, ready for dry dock, submarine.

Demi and his first mate, Alex, portrayed by William Fichtner, a dedicated officer waiting promotion and orders of his own, are informed, at dock, two passengers, Bruni, played by David Duchovny and Garin, played by Derek Magyar are to be permitted on board.  Demi, as is protocol, has been given final orders which are not opened until the vessel is at sea.

At this point, “Phantom” becomes the creation of the screenwriter, which is nothing more than masterful. He expertly weaves mind games and manipulations into the script allowing all characters to deliver exciting, interesting and gripping performances.  

The cat and mouse chase becomes a race against time and potential destruction as the ship is taken over by a radical KGB branch, those who believe in a pure KGB, zealousness, a fanaticism for the things of Stalin and the principals of Communism.  

Bruni/Duchovny and Garin/Magyar take the captain hostage and over throw the sub. What follows is the difference between radicalism and loyalty.  

The crew and captain are separated. The attempts to escape, those loyal to the identified leadership act appropriately, work for a single purpose and are not hiding. Even separated the goal is common and known. Both groups understand and work to complete that which is obvious and yet not spoken.

The orders are open and shockingly hold the keys to a nuclear showdown. The radical KGB works by circumventing the acknowledged authority with what appears a better way. The “Phantom” showdown becomes a blueprint for contemporary radicalism, by controlling the thoughts, first, through undermining the ability of the current authority, then through flattery, planting the seed of doubt that should foster a disgruntled attitude, this should be yours, you’re more talented, better, more intelligent, more qualified.  Finally, communicating through the standard, accepted, means usually reserved for the captain, indicating control has been taken and approved.

The party loyalist has control not by undermining and circumventing but through solid, proven, recognized leadership even though setbacks.

Filmed almost entirely in extremely close quarters, with the appearance of a submarine, the shots are close and a claustrophobic feeling with no escape is the undercurrent to the surface action. The dark muted tones add to the feelings of the deep, no escape, and no way out.

“Phantom” has a surprising ending. I’ve never seen an ending like this before. It was moving, unusual, unbelievable and like the tag, “you never see it coming.” The film intrigued me from the beginning. Obviously, the talent is a draw, and it was more than the sum of the award winning skills. The cat and mouse chase, the mind games and manipulations, all played so well. It is a winner for the Home Entertainment market.

Phantom” is navigating the waters of the home entertainment market and has already hit the street. “Phantom” is available on DVD/VOD. See it.

Haute Tease

  • Business/Finance: CNBC Exclusive: CNBC’s David Faber Speaks with Quibi CEO Meg Whitman (Transcripts)

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    CNBC’s “Squawk on the Street” and CNBC’s “Squawk Alley” are Live from the 2019 Milken Institute Global Conference in Los Angeles, CA. The following are the unofficial transcripts of CNBC Exclusive interviews conducted by CNBC’s David Faber.

     
  • Gruesome Murder of Teen Shocks Prosecutors

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The gruesome murder of fourteen-year-old Grace Packer is shocking even the most seasoned prosecutors as the details emerge behind the year-long plan her adopted mother and the woman's boyfriend hatched to torture the teen to death.

     
  • Bites with Chia Review - Chosen Foods Masters the Snack Market

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Bites with Chia, a healthy alternative to the snack pack, fell into my radar by way of a gift package from Chosen Foods introducing their newest treat, Avocado Oil Mayonnaise, and so deciding to give them the taste test proceeded.

     
  • L’Ecole Serves Sunday Brunch For Charity

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    L’Ecole, the restaurant of The French Culinary Institute, recently extended an invitation to enjoy the classic French cuisine prepared under the supervision of internationally renowned master chefs.

     
  • Celebrity Interview: Luke Perry Talks On A Swedish Midsummer Sex Comedy

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    A Swedish Midsummer Sex Comedy, the light-hearted journey into an endless summer night gone seriously awry, from Coso Nova Films and Elan Entertainment has recently been released, in the United States, for the Home Entertainment Market.

     
  • The Giver Review – Oddly Intriguing and Unusually Entertaining

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    "The Giver" the sci-fi fantasy, from The Weinstein Company and Walden Entertainment, presents an oddly intriguing, unusually entertaining futuristic journey whose hopes for a better future depend on the ability to survive the revelations of the past.

     
  • World News: After an Unprecedented Three Elections Israel Finally has a Government

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    After 500-Day deadlock and three unprecedented elections in one year, the Netanyahu-Benny Gantz Unity Government begins with Netanyahu sworn in as the Prime Minster with the transfer of power to former rival Benny Gantz scheduled for 2022.

     
  • Five Dead in East River Helicopter Crash

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    All five passengers aboard a helicopter charter died Sunday after the pilot, who managed to escape the sinking vessel, radioed a Mayday message indicating engine failure moments before the chopper fell into Manhattan's East River trapping those aboard.

     
  • Celebrity Photos: Joel Edgerton, Lucy Liu, Daisy Ridley, Parker Sawyers Announce Medalists at 2016 Student Academy Awards®

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences tonight honored 17 student winners from colleges and universities around the world at the 43rd Student Academy Awards® ceremony, held at the Samuel Goldwyn Theater in Beverly Hills. 

     
  • Op/Ed: The U.S-Iran 'Maximum Pressure' Campaign: A New Proxy War in the Middle East?

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The United States has hurled its first airstrikes in nearly a decade against Iran-backed militia forces in Iraq and Syria creating the inevitable question of the ultimate goal of the maximum pressure campaign initiated by the White House.

     
  • TIME Magazine Announces German Chancellor Angela Merkel Wins Person of the Year Award

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    TIME Magazines announced today that German Chancellor Angela Merkel, the formidable backbone of the largest nation in Europe, won its Person of the Year award, edging out competitors such as Donald J. Trump and the Black Lives Matter movement.

     
  • Bijou French Bistro La Jolla Review - Epicure Tour De Force

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    "Bijou" is French for "jewel," which is a fitting moniker for this enchanting eatery nestled in the heart of La Jolla, boasting a plum position on Prospect Street. While Bijou French Bistrois relatively new on the scene, celebrating its first anniversary in June 2015, Bijou's roots extend much deeper into San Diego's renowned culinary culture.

     
  • Beltway Insider: Obama Top Ten List Reviewed; Economy/Climate; ObamaCare; Terror; Cuba/Asia; Bob Iger

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    President Obama unveiled his Top Ten list of "Reasons to be Optimistic in 2016", as he and his family and most elected officials head home for the holidays, the heart of America is still wounded and shaken.

     
  • Battleground Chi-raq: Taming Chicago’s Rising Murder Rate

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    The murder rate in Chicago passed the 500 mark on Labor Day weekend 2016 and continues. It is a city where the epidemic of violence is obvious and tragedies keep mounting with no solution on the horizon.

     
  • Diana Nyad Becomes First to Swim from Cuba to Florida

    AddThis Social Bookmark Button

    Long distance swimmer Diana Nyad, after four unsuccessful attempts, has become the first athlete in history to swim the Florida Straits from Havana, Cuba to the United States without a shark cage or fins.