The Frighteners
The Frighteners (1996)

Frank Bannister (Michael J. Fox) is blessed, or cursed, with the ability to see ghosts easily. He has gone into business as a psychic investigator, but it hasn't gone too well. However, when Lucy and Ray Lynskey (Trini Alvarado and… More

Directed By:
Rated: R
Running Time:
Release Date: July 19, 1996
DVD Release Date: August 18, 1998
Add Your Rating
Rotten Tomatoes™
Critic Score
User Score

Also Available On

Critic Score: 62% Rotten Tomatoes™ Critic Reviews

Consensus: Boasting top-notch special effects and exuberant direction from Peter Jackson, The Frighteners is visually striking but tonally uneven.

Gene Siskel
Chicago Tribune

[Michael J.] Fox seems to be trying to get hip in the movies, and he's lost his way here.

Full review…
Janet Maslin
New York Times

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.

Charles Cassady
Common Sense Media

Violent, frenzied, foul-mouthed ghost comedy.

Full review…
Todd McCarthy

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.

Kenneth Turan
Los Angeles Times

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.

Full review…
Chuck O'Leary
Fantastica Daily

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.

Nigel Floyd
Time Out

At times the relentless special effects and tangled plotting veer towards visual and narrative overkill, but the final tonal swerve is shocking and effective.

Full review…
Roger Ebert
Chicago Sun-Times

Incredible, the amount of work that went into ``The Frighteners.'' And appalling.

Full review…
Ken Hanke
Mountain Xpress (Asheville, NC)

It actually works up till its last few minutes.

More reviews for The Frighteners

Flixster Audience Score: 71% Flixster User Reviews
John Manard
Fun and creepy!!!
Melvin White
Judge: Give it up, Frank! Death ain't no way to make a living! "Dead Yet?" The Frighteners is a bizarre, messy, but ultimately really fun,… More
Kevin M. Williams
Competent filmmaking by professionals (which is to say that the thinness of the plot is neatly covered over by CGI extravagance), despite that it wallows in… More
Phil Hubbs
Take elements from 'Beetlejuice' and 'Ghostbusters' and you have this quirky, light yet also dark, soft comedy horror from the man who gave… More
Cory Taylor
Before he began the masonry on Middle Earth, Peter Jackson was renowned for his edgy New Zealand B-movies like 'Bad Taste' and 'Dead Alive'.… More
"<b>The Frighteners</b> is a movie I have always wanted to see, but never had the chance to. It has been on T.V. a lot but I've never been… More