In the last Phantasm movie, Mike and Psychic Girl were ripped out of the backseat of a hearse even though the Tall Man was absolutely, positively, no way out of this dead. The third movie picks up with the Tall Man stepping out of a portal and walking past his corpse. What? How is that possible? Forget thinking about it reader, this is Phantasm.
The movie cuts to Mike and Psychic Girl getting ripped out of the hearse. Mike, now played by his original actor, wakes up and oops, Psychic Girl is dead and has her head chopped off. Tall Man is coming for Mike but Reggie, the world’s greatest ice cream vendor, saves him. Mike then slips into a coma. Two years pass with Mike in a coma.
Okay, bear with me because this is things get weird, even for a Phantasm movie. While in a coma, Mike is visited by the ghost of his brother Jody. Jody helps Mike snap out of his coma just in time to fight off a evil maybe-possessed nurse. Once Mike is awake, he finds out his brother’s brain was placed inside one of the killer spheres. Yes, the secret ingedient for making a cool killer sphere is human brains. Jody broke free of his control and is now helping Mike!
Right until Mike gets kidnapped. Sigh.
Now Reggie has to go save Mike, again. Along the way, he picks up a small child who is the last survivor of his town, and incidentally, a crack shot with a pistol. Reggie also picks up a kick-ass black woman who was in the Army and wields nunchucks. Tagging along with this insane group is Jody, the renegade-now-good-guy killer sphere.
If Phantasm was a dream and Phantasm II was an 80’s action movie, then Phantasm III is a tabletop role-playing group. The guy playing Reggie refuses to roll a new character, there is the guy who min-maxes so he has the best fighter but his disadvantage is that he is a child, there is the woman playing her tough woman character from a streetfight game, and finally, you have the one player who insists on breaking the theme of simple humans against dark forces and wants to play a dark force-turned-good.
And you know what? It is fucking glorious. It doesn’t matter how many players or characters there are, the Tall Man is still awesome and they just gives him more people to fuck up.
there is a big climatic battle and we find out the secret to his immortality: the fucker is just a meat puppet for the killer sphere inside his head! Creepy! You gotta kill the sphere if you want to kill the evil man.
Oh, and Mike is just a killer sphere inside a body too. What? How? Why? This changes everything, maybe? I feel like I have been Phantasmed.
So the gang kills the Tall Man and his sphere for good this time. The cool woman decides to leave the party before the Phantasm tradition of the heroes getting fucked at the end of the movie and good for her. That player has been paying attention. Mike leaves too, probably to wonder the earth, visiting town after town and solving their problems but then moving on because of his dark secret.
What about Reggie and Kid Shooter? Well, Reggie gets swarmed by like a hundred killer spheres. Turns out the Tall Man has been busy. Kid Shooter tries to save him but then the Tall Man FUCKING APPEARS EVEN THOUGH THAT BASTARD SHOULD BE DEAD FOR REAL THIS TIME. Before Kid Shooter can complain to the gamemaster, Jawas grab him from behind and pull him through a door.
Sorry Kid Shooter, you should know better than have your back against anything in a Phantasm movie.