Slasher Hunt 2021: Phantom of the Mall: Eric's Revenge (Arrow Video) Blu-ray Review

Fans have been asking for a Phantom of the Mall: Eric's Revenge physical release for decades now and Arrow Video has answered the call with three versions of the film and a host of worthwhile special features.

Studio: Arrow Video
Release Date:
December 1st, 1989 (theatrical)
                            November 23rd, 2021 (blu-ray)
Run Time: 1 hour 30 minutes 35 seconds (theatrical)
                    1 hour 28 minutes 36 seconds (TV Cut)
                    1 hour 36 minutes 18 seconds (integral fan cut)
Region Code: FREE
Picture: 1080p (1.85:1 aspect ratio)
Sound: English LPCM 2.0 (all versions)
Subtitles: English SDH
Slipcover: No (hard box)
Digital Copy: No
Starring: Derek Rydall, Jonathan Goldsmith, Rob Estes, Pauly Shore, Kimber Sissons, Gregory Scott Cummins, Tom Fridley, and Kari Whitman
Written by Scott Schneid & Tony Michelman and Robert King
Kari Whitman
Written by
Directed by Richard Friedman
Rating: R (language, violence, and nudity) (theatrical)
               Not Rated (violence) (TV edit)
               Not Rated (language, violence, and nudity) (integral cut)




What's It About?

High school sweethearts Eric Matthews and Melody Austin are so in love, but their youthful romance is cut tragically short when Eric apparently dies in a fire that engulfs his family home. One year later and Melody is trying to move on with her life, taking up a job at the newly built Midwood Mall along with her friends. But the mall, which stands on the very site of Eric’s former home, has an uninvited guest – a shadowy, scarred figure which haunts its airducts and subterranean passageways, hellbent on exacting vengeance on the mall’s crooked developers.

Film Review

PHANTOM OF THE MALL was a film that seemed like it was everywhere in 1989. Every time we went to the movie theater, I would see the poster on the wall. Around the time of the film's release, I would see advertisements in the newspaper. When the film finally came out on VHS, I would see it in the video store all the time. It was a film that I really wanted to see but never got around to seeing it. 

I regret this want. 

PHANTOM OF THE MALL is a terrible slasher film. The way the story is told is confusing and kind of deceiving. Scenes exist together but don't always feel like they belong together and the editing is terrible. There is a scene in the middle of the film where our final girl is talking to a guy. He is trying to figure out who is killing people at the mall and the scene abruptly cuts to another scene. Later on, we go back to the final girl and the guy walking out of a building. He says something like "As soon as we figure it out, we will know who the killer is" or some dumb shit like that. They then continue to walk out of the building as the shot lingers as they get further and further away from the camera with no sound. As soon as the guy goes to say something, the scene abruptly cuts again. Just piss poor editing and filmmaking.

The rest of the film is a bore to sit through with people trying to figure out who the killer is and us, the audience, just not caring. The theatrically released version of the runs an hour and a half but it feels like so much longer. The voice they used for Eric has to be a joke. His voice has a more sultry sound to it rather than the scary sound they were probably going for. It sounds especially creepy whenever he is talking to our final girl. The make-up done for Eric is also terrible. It looks so fake. I could never take it seriously.

Oh and the ending. Man is the ending just bad. Well, not specifically the ending, but the endgame I guess. Eric wants to do something at the end that is so wrong for a slasher movie villain. This is how I knew that the filmmakers had no idea what they were doing. They are clueless to the fact that none of the kills are any good and the only reason you remember any of them is due to how poorly they are executed. These filmmakers think that they made a good film and I feel bad for hating it based on that, but they made a terrible film all around. It's competently put shot, but that is about it. PHANTOM OF THE MALL: ERIC'S REVENGE is not only one of the worst slasher films I have ever seen, but it is one of the worst horror films I have ever seen.


PHANTOM OF THE MALL received a brand new 2K transfer and then they did something really interesting. The film's theatrical version looks great. Grain is fine and handled nicely and we get some good detail throughout. Colors look good and skin tones are fine. It's a good transfer for a film that hasn't seen a release in almost 30 years.

The TV cut is interesting as Arrow down rezzed all of the footage to match the footage that is exclusive to the TV cut. At first, I thought that there was no way that they used the restored footage when I first starting watching the TV cut of the film, only to realize that the TV version has a different opening than the theatrical version. Once you get to the 2K restored footage, it looks better. With this being the TV cut of the film, Arrow wisely kept the 1.33:1 aspect ratio, just how you would have seen it on TV back then. 

Then, on top of them down rezzing the footage for the TV Cut, Arrow decided to have the Intergal Fan Cut to have the film's original widescreen aspect ratio. This means that all of the TV footage has been uprezzed to match the 2K restored footage from the theatrical version. I love that they did this as this will shut all the people who want to complain about the aspect ratio used for the TV version of the film. Now, they can have it both ways. This is how you do multiple versions of a film AND how a TV cut should be handled. 

There is only the one LPCM track and it sounds great.


Disc one is where all of the features are where all of the special features are housed. We get three commentaries. Director Richard Friedman tells good stories about the making of the film and the one with the composer and the producer is actually two interviews edited together. The real winner is the commentary track with Ewan Cant and Amanda Reyes. I love Miss Reyes' commentary tracks as I find her very interesting to listen to. She is so likable and easy to listen to. She has her own podcast called Made for TV Mayhem and she has also appeared on the slasher movie podcast, The Hysteria Continues. She knows her stuff and she never comes off as "stuffy" like some other commentary tracks done by writers. Ewan Cant is also on this track and he is a great partner for Miss Reyes. They were wonderful on their commentary track for THE PREY and they are equally wonderful here. 

Next up is a making of which covers all the bases docs like this cover. The writers talk about what was added and taken from their script, the make-up guy talks about his work on the Eric make-up, and the actors talk about Pauley Shore. It's fine. The guy from the punk group The Vandals talks for almost thirteen minutes about a song that no one remembers. He was part of a punk band in the 80's and now he wears a green alligator shirt. 

Some deleted scenes that are found in the TV Cut on disc 2, 2 trailers, and a photo gallery finish up Disc 1.
Again, no special features are found on Disc 2.

Disc 1

Audio Commentaries:
    -Richard Friedman
    -Ewan Cant and Amanda Reyes
    -Composer Stacy Widelitz and associate producer Robert J. Koster
Shop Til' You Drop!: The Making of Phantom of the Mall (42m 22s, HD, 1.78:1) Making of documentary with director Richard Friedman, screenwriters Scott Schneid and Tony Michelman, actors Derek Rydall and Gregory Scott Cummins, filmmaker Tony Kayden and special make-up effects creator Matthew Mungle
The Vandals Go to the Mall (12m 56s, HD, 1.78:1) An interview with Joe Escalante of the punk band The Vandals on the creation of the Phantom of the Mall theme song
Alternate and Deleted Scenes with a Play All option
    -Alternate Intro (3m 21s, SD, 1.33:1)
    -Party Time (1m 18s, SD, 1.33:1)
    -Lock Picking (39s, SD, 1.33:1)
    -Air Duct (48s, SD, 1.33:1)
    -Alternate Ending (1m 11s, SD, 1.33:1)
    -Domestic Trailer (1m 41s, HD, 1.85:1)
    -International Trailer (1m 59s, SD, 1.85:1)
Image Gallery (57 images)
I was sent a check disc for review and was not sent any packaging. Therefore I can not review the packaging, but I can tell you that it is a Limited Edition, so the packaging is going to be really nice with commissioned artwork and a booklet filled with essays about the film.


PHANTOM OF THE MALL: ERIC'S REVENGE is a terrible film. It is not a scary horror film at all and the kills are some of the worst I have seen. Nothing in the film works and I can not figure out why people hold this in such high regard. The blu-ray, from Arrow Video, is a real winner. The picture and sound quality are top notch and the special features are nice. I just can't recommend this release to anyone but the die hard fans. It's a great release. Too bad it's for a terrible film.




Theatrical Version

TV Cut

Integral Version

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