Phantom Boy

Phantom Boy

Alain Gagnol (2016)

PG Certificate


Our Score
An 11-year-old New Yorker finds his mystery illness has an unexpected side-effect in this retro-styled animated feature from French duo Jean-Loup Felicioli and Alain Gagnol, Oscar-nominated for their previous effort A Cat in Paris. Here again the emphasis is on hand-drawn characters, in this case taking inspiration from vintage comics. Plucky protagonist Leo discovers he can secretly fly wraith-like across the city while his actual body lies dormant, in the process becoming a junior sleuth assisting a disgraced cop and a brave female journalist on the trail of a fiendish crook holding the Big Apple to ransom. The pace and plotting are certainly nowhere near as slick as contemporary Pixar or DreamWorks productions, but for those willing to make allowances, there's a definite artisanal personality to the visual style, and an undertow of emotion as the boy's unknowing family fear they'll lose him forever. Released in the UK is the dubbed English version which makes more sense of the New York setting than the French original, though Serge Besset's spooky, ethereal score is captivating in any language.

Cast & Crew

Leo Marcus D'Angelo
Lt Alex Tanner Jared Padalecki
The Little Guy Fred Armisen
The Face Vincent D'Onofrio
Mole Dana Snyder
Mary Melissa Disney
The Big Guy Joey Camen
Father Brian T Delaney
Captain Simon Bill Lobley
The Mayor / Hammer Phil McGlaston
Lily Rachel Salvatierra
Mother Eileen Stevens
Director Alain Gagnol
Director Jean-Loup Felicioli
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Other Information

Language: EnglishColourTheatrical distributor: Soda PicturesAvailable on: DVDReleased on: 21 Oct 2016