The Frighteners
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Charlatan Frank Bannister (Michael J. Fox) has genuine psychic powers, but he doesn't use them to help people. Rather, he generates cases for his supernatural private-eye firm by harassing a group of hapless ghosts (including a dearly departed Wild West outlaw and an undead judge played by John Astin) into staging hauntings and poltergeists in the homes of likely marks. Bannister's world turns on its head when he starts noticing real hauntings around town -- ghostly assassinations that seem to be tied to the execution 20 years earlier of a brutal serial killer. Lucy Lunskey (Trini… More

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Rotten Tomatoes Score: 64%

Critic Reviews from Rotten Tomatoes

"Story was originally conceived as an episode of "Tales From the Crypt," and that is perhaps what it should have remained, as the thinness of the conceit shows throughout, painfully so in the first half."
‑ Todd McCarthy, Variety
"Fortunately director Jackson, at home with all kinds of excess, keeps everything spinning nicely, not even losing a step when the mood turns increasingly disturbing."
‑ Kenneth Turan, Los Angeles Times
"Violent, frenzied, foul-mouthed ghost comedy."
‑ Charles Cassady, Common Sense Media
"An incredibly underrated scare-comedy from Peter Jackson that deserves a much wider audience."
‑ Blake Davis, KFOR Channel 4 News
"The talented director of "Heavenly Creatures" has pulled together a film that wants to be everything to everyone simultaneously."
‑ Brandon Judell, Entertainment Asylum
"At times the relentless special effects and tangled plotting veer towards visual and narrative overkill, but the final tonal swerve is shocking and effective."
‑ Nigel Floyd, Time Out
"Incredible, the amount of work that went into ``The Frighteners.'' And appalling."
‑ Roger Ebert, Chicago Sun-Times
"Despite being awful in almost every respect, The Frighteners does offer one small pleasure: R. Lee Ermey parodying his Full Metal Jacket drill sergeant character."
‑ Chuck O'Leary, Fantastica Daily
"Quirky Peter Jackson film that's half comedy and half horror/gore-fest. Mostly enjoyable results, although Fox a bit miscast."
‑ Brian Mckay,
""The Frighteners" does have a zesty pace and some cool effects, and those unfamiliar with Jackson's work may find something to love."
‑ Lea Russo, Boxoffice Magazine
"The actors can't keep the film's mood from verging on hysteria as the story roams all over the map. "The Frighteners" has flitted everywhere, even to heaven and hell, before it's over."
‑ Janet Maslin, New York Times
"A mess with sporadic flashes of creativity."
‑ Mike Clark, USA Today
"It actually works up till its last few minutes."
‑ Ken Hanke, Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)
"Woulda been five stars, but the cop-out ending smacks of the test-screening process."
‑ Luke Y. Thompson, New Times
"Full of special effects, but still strangely 'indie', the movie has a unique sensibility ..."
‑ Ben Falk,
More reviews for The Frighteners on Rotten Tomatoes

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