Year of Release1996
DirectorPeter Jackon
StarringMichael J Fox, Dee Wallace Stone, Jeffrey Coombs

I’d been busily haunting the second hand shops looking for a copy of The Frighteners for a while now. I was extremely happy to finally get my greasy mitts on this one! Believe me it was with great anticipation that I threw this one into DVD player!

The Frighteners is a light hearted horror film in a similar vein to say Beetlejuice. Directed by the one and only Peter Jackson (responsible for Brain Dead, Meet the Feebles, Bad taste and Later on the little known Lord of the Rings Trilogy). Starring Michael J Fox, with a guest appearances by Jeffrey Combes (Re-animator star) playing the same creepy dude as he pretty much always does. Supporting stars Dee Wallace Stone (ET) and Lee Ermey (Full Metal Jacket) making a short appearance as the noisy drill sargeant.

Any film with this kind of star power and talent is going to have to live up to some serious expectations and this one does. Its not a gore-fest like Jackson’s later works but it is a really cool film. Perhaps this was Jackson’s first stab at mainstream success?


Michael J Fox stars as Bannister, a paranormal investigator who gets called in on a poltergeist infested house owned by a young couple Ray and Lucy. Bannister is kind of a grifter and is followed around by a couple of jive talking apparitions who help him drum up some business. Accompanying his ability hang out with the dead is his legitimate ability to fore see deaths to some degree. Ray the husband subsequently dies and Frank Bannister realizes there is a ‘grim reaper’ going around killing people. It’s up to Frank to stop them. What happens next? Well its up to you, dear reader to watch this film and find out!


Like I said before this film isn’t anything too serious. It’s a good natured horror film that anyone can watch but it is made by a master. With the acting calibre present in this film I’m surprised it wasn’t a lot bigger than it was. Michael J Fox of course puts in a brilliant performance and this movie is shot rather well too. This is a great film. There’s pretty much nothing I can really fault this movie on!

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