HOME |  JOIN |  CULT MOVIES | COMPETITIONS | ADVERTISE |  CONTACT US |  ABOUT US
 
 
Newest Reviews
Set It Off
No Way Out
Traffik
Pitch Perfect 3
Insidious: The Last Key
Goalie's Anxiety at the Penalty Kick, The
Dirty Carnival, A
King of Hearts
Crowhurst
And the Same to You
Racer and the Jailbird
Superman and the Mole-Men
Phantom Thread
Sweet Country
Loophole
Irma La Douce
Brigsby Bear
Wish Upon
Gringo
Finding Vivian Maier
Shape of Water, The
Lady Bird
Endless, The
Universal Soldier: The Return
Lean on Pete
Carnival in Flanders
Three Billboards Outside Ebbing, Missouri
It Came from the Desert
Lodgers, The
Eagle vs Shark
   
 
Newest Articles
And It Was the Dirtiest Harry We Have Seen in a Very Long Time: The Dirty Harry Series
Manor On Movies: The Astounding She Monster
Manor On Movies: Don't be a dolt. That's not a cult (movie)
Wes Anderson's Big Daddies: Steve Zissou and Others
Bad Taste from Outer Space: Galaxy of Terror and Xtro
A Yen for the 1990s: Iron Monkey and Satan Returns
Hey, Punk: Jubilee and Rock 'n' Roll High School
Help! with The Knack: Richard Lester in 1965
Roll Up, Get Yer Free Cinema: The Shorts on the BFI Woodfall Blu-rays
Time for Heroes: The Dam Busters and How I Won the War
Hell is a City: Midnight Cowboy and Taxi Driver
Boris Goes Bonkers, Bela Goes Bats: The Old Dark House and Mark of the Vampire
Charles Bronson's Mid-70s: Breakheart Pass and Others
Kids in America: The Breakfast Club vs Metropolitan
80s Dance-Off: Staying Alive vs Murder-Rock vs Breakin'
   
 
  Phantom Boy A ghost of a chanceBuy this film here.
Year: 2016
Director: Jean-Loup Felicioli, Alain Gagnol
Stars: Edouard Baer, Jean-Pierre Marielle, Audrey Tautou, Jackie Berroyer, Gaspard Gagnol, Noa Bernaoui-Savreux, Patrick Ridremont, Patrick Descamps, Yves Barbaut, Vincent D'Onofrio, Jared Padalecki
Genre: Thriller, Animated, Fantasy, Adventure
Rating:  7 (from 1 vote)
Review: Stricken with leukaemia a young boy named Leo (voiced by Gaspard Gagnol) checks into hospital for treatment. There he discovers he has a special power. Leo can leave his body as a phantom able to fly all over New York city and spy on what is going on. At the same time luckless police detective Lieutenant Alex Tanguay (Edouard Baer) arrives in hospital having been injured while attempting to foil a disfigured criminal mastermind known as the Man with the Broken Face (Jean-Pierre Marielle). When Alex befriends Leo and learns of his extraordinary ability the pair team up together with Mary (Amélie herself: Audrey Tautou), a plucky journalist, to stop the villain holding the city to ransom with a deadly computer virus.

Phantom Boy is the follow-up for the French animation team behind the Oscar-nominated A Cat in Paris (2010). Like its predecessor the film delivers a beguiling, inventive mix of children's fantasy and pulp thriller that evokes France's rich heritage of vintage crime fiction along with the serials of Louis Feuillade. Animators Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol also continue their distinctive asymmetrical storybook art style that evokes both the work of classical French painters and old comic books, midway between Picasso and Hergé. Along with the story's deeper poetic undertones it allows Phantom Boy to forge its own unique identity and stand out amidst a now-crowded global market for animation. For its English language release the production adds some American talent including Vincent D'Onofrio as the voice of the Man with the Broken Face and Jared Padalecki, star of cult TV show Supernatural, as Alex.

Gagnol, who wrote the screenplay, draws a parallel between Leo's crime-fighting exploits and battle with his disease implying ultimately that choosing life over phantom heroics makes him a greater hero. To its credit the film does not trivialize Leo's illness. Yet despite a melancholy, at times borderline spiritual undertone to the tale the film fails to handle Leo's battle with leukaemia as deftly as the more fantastical adventure side of its story. The plot occasionally lacks momentum and gets a little too bogged down in the comedic antics of the villain's two inept henchmen although delivers a fine punchline to a running gag with his vicious little dog. Equally amusing are the frustrated attempts of the would-be self-aggrandizing bad guy to tell the story behind his disfigured face to an increasingly incredulous Mary. Although seemingly saddled with the Lois Lane damsel-in-distress role, Audrey Tautou proves no less sprightly and beguiling a vocal performer than she is on screen. In fact, with heroic cop Alex more or less stuck in hospital, the film pleasingly has Mary develop into an increasingly feisty and forthright character with more chances to shine.

Overall Phantom Boy crafts a witty, moving, occasionally ingenious story with vivid, well-crafted characters and some very funny gags. Felicioli and Gagnol also stage solid suspense sequences so that, while not quite a match for A Cat in Paris, this remains superior animated fare handsomely mounted by people who clearly care about family entertainment.
Reviewer: Andrew Pragasam

 

This review has been viewed 401 time(s).

As a member you could Rate this film

 
Review Comments (0)


Untitled 1

Login
  Username:
 
  Password:
 
   
 
Forgotten your details? Enter email address in Username box and click Reminder. Your details will be emailed to you.
   

Latest Poll
Which film has the best theme song?
Spectre
The Ups and Downs of a Handyman
   
 
   

Recent Visitors
Graeme Clark
Enoch Sneed
Stately Wayne Manor
Darren Jones
Paul Smith
  Jamie Nichols
Andrew Pragasam
George White
   

 

Last Updated: