I was excited when I learned they were making this into a movie, as 'Phantoms' by Dean Koontz is a terrific and very scary book which I've loved since I was a teenager.
Unfortunately, it received a miniscule budget and suffers for it. Based on the original book, this could have been one of the greatest horror movies in recent memory. The capacity was here for mind-bending special effects, creatures, and just general scary-as-hell-ness.
It really suffers alot from poor casting. They chose to go the 'Scream' route, casting a bunch of hot, young, minimally talented actors (Peter O'toole notwithstanding) which I simply could not take seriously. The running time is way too short, as they rush the original story's building and deliberate pacing, cutting out lots of important plot details as they go.
These negatives stated, the first two acts are actually pretty darn creepy. Great sound editing is a big plus. It nails the empty, hungry vibe of the novel and it is able to get under your skin very effectively. Once the final act begins, it loses a great deal of steam due to the insistence to explain everything to the point of being inefficient. While some of the mystery of the story is in play, it is surprisingly good.
The special effects are quite good for a movie of this budget, but has its cheesy moments. As it stands, its a fun horror movie that delivers a good atmosphere, some good scares and moments, but regardless of the fact that it is fairly good, it could have been far better based on the original story.