21 May 2024
Phobia (1980)
90 min.
Directed by John Huston.
With Paul Michael Glaser, Susan Hogan, John Colicos, Lisa Langlois, Alexandra Stewart, David Eisner, Robert O'Ree.
Unmotivated horror never quite gels the way it should.

Experimental behaviorist Dr. Peter Ross (Glaser) works with a ragtag group of 'phobics': patients besieged by a variety of intensive life-threatening phobias.

But suddenly, his subjects begin meeting an untimely end one by one...could Ross' unorthodox treatments somehow be to blame or is there a murderer in their midst?

Rather flatly made by director John Huston (1951's classic The African Queen) and beset by a languid dreariness that does little to spur the action, Phobia never gets off the ground.

Despite its solid cast and a mildly intriguing storyline, none of the murder sequences provide any thrill and the revelation of the killer's identity is largely hohum.

Unfortunately, Langlois' drowning in the tub is about as good as it gets here.

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