Phenomena (1985)

Rating: C-

Dir: Dario Argento
Star: Jennifer Connelly, Donald Pleasence, Daria Nicolodi, Fiore Argento

Phenomena sees Argento return to neo-supernatural goings-on in the girls’ school setting. Connelly (yum!) is the student with an affinity for insects who teams up with entomologist Pleasence (and his dodgy Scottish accent) to find the killer who is treating the school as an all-you-can-kill buffet. “It’s perfectly normal for insects to be slightly telepathic,” says Pleasence; yeah, whatever… Especially in a climax which redefines “incredible”, the mix of pseudo-science, psychology and supernatural doesn’t really work, though everyone strives to take it seriously. The signs of Argento’s subsequent downward, and apparently inexorable, spiral into total bollocks (plotwise, in particular) are readily apparent.