Inside Out 2022: Our Review of ‘Phantom Project’

Posted in Festival Coverage, Inside Out 2022, Movies by - May 29, 2022
Inside Out 2022: Our Review of ‘Phantom Project’

Roberto Doveris’ Phantom Project, or Ghost Project, aims and occasionally to be a comedy about my favourite alliterated phrase – millennial malaise. Some plots points have a specificity to them, like gay protagonists like Pablo (Juan Cano) who still hangs out with his YouTuber ex Francisco (Fernando Castillo) as platonic friends. Like good for them. An out of work actor, he watches friends like Antonia (Ingrid Isensee) in films, wishing he has the same luck as she does. The ghost part of the movie comes when one of his deadbeat roommates moves out. He leaves a cardigan that was already in the apartment before they moved in. That cardigan has a ghostly presence that the movie expresses through old school animation, its body parts changing by the second. The ghost keeps making noises as ghosts do. And one night, the ghost joins him in bed, leaving bruises on his unathletic body.

Reading other people’s reviews revealed the fact that Doveris worked on it for years. Again, some points of cultural specificity almost makes this passable, especially as it shows things that make it uniquely Chilean. Despite that piece of trivia though, it still feels undercooked. It also feels too digressive, as it makes segues to minor characters like his friends instead of sticking to Pablo and the ghost. There’s a way to incorporate those subplots and make them work. Viewers have seen them in other movies but not here. Even those subplots can inform us on how this one particular ghost works. But confining the ghost to stay around Pablo for most of its running time doesn’t make things interesting. This movie makes the ghost a metaphor for a time in Pablo’s life. Thing is, it makes that time feel too insignificant for a movie.

Find out how to watch Phantom Project here.

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While Paolo Kagaoan is not taking long walks in shrubbed areas, he occasionally watch movies and write about them. His credentials are as follows: he has a double major in English and Art History. This means that, for example, he will gush at the art direction in the Amityville house and will want to live there, which is a terrible idea because that house has ghosts. Follow him @paolokagaoan on Instagram but not while you're working.
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