Adapt or die.
Arizona ants mock the food chain on their way to a desert lab to get two scientists and a woman.
Arizona ants mock the food chain on their way to a desert lab to get two scientists and a woman.
Fase IV - Destruição, Sucesos en la cuarta fase, 페이즈 4
I was pretty curious as to the body of work the cinematographer of Phase IV is known for outside of this project, so I wanted to look him up. To show my level of maturity and let you know that you should take my opinions and observations with a grain of salt, I couldn't do anything but giggle at his name - Dick Bush. Although, wildlife photographer Ken Middleham was responsible for a majority of what we see in the film--the closeup photography of the ants. Normally I love this sort of stuff in nature documentaries, but the main difference here is that it's used in a film without a narrator giving tons of facts about the creatures we're watching.…
This is a....frankly amazing.....movie that certainly fits into my current kick of animals gone amok/environmental horror, but also aims for a level of genuine science fiction that somehow separates it from most of its kind. Like this is humans vs. ants, but on a level that obviously had some thought and care as opposed to “let’s just see what kind of shenanigans these animals can get up to”.
The performances are all solid and the effects are gruesome in a beautifully subdued manner, like ants just casually eating through someone’s hand. This movie really is just one brilliant set piece after another and I’ve no idea why it isn’t a bigger deal, but I am here to tell you TODAY that…
meme: idiocracy was a documentary
dream: eyes wide shut was a documentary
supreme: phase iv was a documentary
I'd really better not have nightmares of ants tonight.
-Man swats ants (and practically destroys a lab thrying to kill them)
-Much much more harm done to ants
People talk to the ants.
Blast the ground with yellow powder. Insert men in full-body white suits. Shoot against the bluest sky. Overload the senses with color, with broad strokes, without fine detail. It's just three blankets of hue, bold and direct and bright. Zoom in. Show fine details of insects. Watch them, timelapse them, animate them, delve into their movements, make their movements part of the plot, part of the themes, part of the atmosphere. Make the audience feel the insects all over their bodies. Make the audience squirm. Keep it sterile; keep it aloof. Keep it heavy, but not opaque. Keep it ominous. Keep it scientific. Show the violence, show the gore, but keep it clean. Almost bloodless deaths. Drain the victims, strip them bare, scour their flesh and leave their bones. Leave dust. Show the swarms. Show the insidiousness. Show the breakdown. Make the audience question. Build the tension to Phase IV. Dissolve.
October count: 38/31
"We had quite a severe ant problem at the vineyard this year. I had Art Garfunkel come by with his compressor, and we created a total vacuum outside the house, and we blew the ants out the front door. But I'm sure you high-tech NASA people could care less about our resort-town ways."
In the event of insects taking over the earth (I wouldn't put it past 2020 to make another dick move like that,) I can only hope they remember all the times I have peacefully relocated them from inside my house to my garden, whenever they got stuck. I imagine I have created enough goodwill by now for them to leave me alone/ make me their king.
why should God care if you understand His plan?
"Phase IV" ist der einzige Spielfilm von Saul Brass, der ansonsten in erster Linie für seine legendären Filmvorspänne (z. B. in Psycho, Vertigo, Eine total, total, total verrückte Welt usw.) bekannt ist.
Um was geht es?
Nach einem geheimnisvollen kosmischen Ereignis entdeckt ein Wissenschaftler, dass sich mehrere Ameisenarten zusammengeschlossen und gemeinsam ihre natürlichen Feinde vernichtet haben. Anscheinend haben sie eine intelligente Gesellschaft gebildet, deren einzelne Individuen sogar untereinander kommunizieren können bzw. hat es den Anschein, als wollen sie auch mit den Menschen in Kontakt treten. Eine Mission wird organisiert, um dieses Phänomene zu erforschen und was dieses Team entdeckt, ist alles andere als beruhigend.
Wie hat er mir gefallen?
Der Film ist zwar eindeutig ein Science-Fiction-Film, er erinnert aber in…
There have been thousands of films where nature has gone amok.
Too many to count.
We've had killer bees, killer bunnies, killer spiders, giant spiders, giant ants, killer dogs, killer llamas (NOT KIDDING), killer pigs, killer boars, killer frogs, killer birds, killer lambs, killer sharks, killer snakes, killer rats, killer cats. Every fuzzy wuzzy and crawling critter imaginable has made mince meat out of the human race in a motion picture. Roaches, ticks, giant praying mantis, fluffy rainbow coloured moths, giant spores and fungi? We've got am all! We've got em in multiple.
If there's one thing nature horror has established for certain?
Nothing likes us.
Humans are the crotch-rot of the planet Earth and if the bugs or bunnies…
I turned on the horror oddity Phase IV at 3 in the morning having been quite exhausted and my brain already turned into mush, and that seems like the only right away to watch this weird little number. Take note in every review I write I push myself to come up with my own original material without influence, but in this case I cannot help myself. Critic Anton Bitel of Projected Figures writes, “Saul Bass’ only feature sees humans fast losing a game of chess to evolving ants.” I like that summation best. In other words to describe the plot, if I may try, some various scientists are at a research station in the desert only for ants to team…
🥶Daily Horror Hunt #19 – January Horror 2020🥶
30. Watch a movie featuring giant bugs.
52. Kynky's pick.
This was pretty tripped out for what I thought was just gonna be another killer bug movie. And sure, it's still got killer bugs, lots of 'em, but it's so much more than that. Almost otherworldly in scope, a terror from beyond the stars, the unexplained right beneath your feet. A 2001 kinda trip, but focused on the ant hivemind and the untold power they possess. Scary stuff. When Spring comes around I'm gonna be stepping on every little bugger I see!
Saul Bass, best known for his movie poster and title sequence artwork, he has an eye for the…
Still green to the world of killer bug movies, this gross-out sci-fi horror from Saul Bass was a pleasant surprise.
On the human side, Phase IV sees its two leads descend into madness in a war of wits against millions of ants while the beautiful girl they saved (from their own chemical attack) constantly lurks behind electronics racks.
On the ant side, they're here, and there's lots of them! To make ants seem intimidating without making them giant is quite a feat, and I was shocked to witness actual performances from them, to a degree.
As a bonus, there's tons of slo-mo of random things exploding and breaking, accompanied by an especially bubbly synth score. It's full of schlocky ant moments and technically sound enough for the parts in between to keep an interest.
Phase IV sequel when?
Truly incredible, unique filmmaking. Full of weird, technicolor imagery and gadgets and doo-dads; I just loved watching this. I guess this is a creature feature? Atomic age sci-fi by way of 70s psychedelia. Feels like an inspiration for PI as well.
Phase IV is like a less fulfilling Andromeda Strain, with some cool macroscopic photography. It also contains a lot of cruelty towards arthropods, and at least one rodent, and as such triggers my instant half-star rating rule. Without those scenes it would have been a 3/5. There are things to like here, but it's all a bit too wooden, and the drama isn't sold particularly well.
Derail: I wonder when the '70s trope of having a hyper-logical character butting heads with a hyper-empathetic character began. More to the point, why is there never synthesis? The logical character is always just shown as an irredeemable monster, which makes for some very predictable and bumbling plots.
Spellbinding. Weird. Scared the bejesus out of me when I saw it as a kid. Holds up as a unique cinematic experience, especially with the original ending restored.
"I'm a simple pencil and paper man. I wouldn't know the front end of a whale from a hole in the ground."
Watched at home, on Blu-ray.
I wasn’t expecting too much from this scientists vs. killer ants movie, but the opening scenes made it pretty clear that Phase IV wouldn’t line up with my creature feature assumptions. The narration gives it an almost documentary feel at times, and the deliberate pace draws out the drama of dealing with something this strange. I was starting to worry that the movie was getting a little too slow, but then the younger scientist started doing his own thing with all that retro computer equipment and I got hooked into the story again.
I liked the visual style and the way that the atmosphere ranged from clinical to dreamlike, but something about the way the lab’s new arrival was written left me a little cold.
I’d recommend this for anyone into that drama/genre mix.
Saul Bass was a great designer and I wish he had made more movies. It'd be pretty nice if humanity's end did come from hyper evolved ants.
Still thinking about that hand effect, how.
It's fine. The best parts are the ant footage (which Bass didn't shoot, IIUC), which somehow manage to be sensorially overwhelming, aesthetically pleasing, and move the plot forward visually. I don't know how they managed to shoot the sequence showing the ants dragging the poison back to the nest and becoming immune to it, and maybe I don't want to know. (This is not a movie for people who don't think animals of any stripe should be killed for art.)
Also, while the original ending is definitely trippy, with some indelible images (flipflopped mermaid!), and would have solidified it as a cult item right from the beginning if released -- I prefer the studio ending.
Being Saul Bass’ only feature film, I was very intrigued by this. It’s visually stunning. Each shot looks so carefully arranged and crisp. The ants are so well used too.
The story borders on b movie schlock but has enough clever moments to keep it elevated. The ants plotting against the human is really entertaining and result in lots of great scenes - like the air-con and when the ants heat up the base.
It’s far from perfect though: some of the acting is bad and the female character is so pointless. Also a lot of characters make stupid decisions which is kind of annoying.
I’m accepting the ‘lost’ ending as the definitive version of the film. It’s a great conclusion to the film, not just visually but thematically. The standard cut of the film feels unfinished and unsatisfactory, so this fixes it.
I cannot stress enough how impressive all of the macro shots are. I think the story itself falls flat a bit at the very end, but the rest is quite good, like Andromeda Strain but with ants.
Chris Vandenberg 998 films
Source data can be found via ryno731's original reddit post.
Rocky LaForge 18,743 films
As it reads on the tin.