The Screening Room
THE STUDIO GATE
I wasn't expecting much out of "Ghost Town" and came out of it
"Ghost Town" is now available on DVD.
This is one of those movies that is far from perfect, yet it does get you in
the end. It's not original, for many films have used the ghost left-on-earth
premise to bring closure to his or her own life. The movie isn't overly
funny, but it's sincere in what the characters bring to the table. None of
the cast members is considered a blockbuster star, but they're effective in
making the movie believable.
Ricky Gervais plays an unlikable dentist who detests people. He's rude to
them and they seem to annoy him. His only sense of peace and quiet is by
cleaning their teeth. During a routine exam on him, he dies momentarily and
awakens to see dead people. One of them is the recently deceased Frank (Greg
Kinnear). Gervais finds himself becoming a bit more human by falling for Tea
Leoni, the on-screen widow of Kinnear's character.
The movie borrows plot points from other movies like "Ghost," and "Always."
The entire film has a lightweight charm that reminds viewers of classic
1940s romantic films. Once you get past the first half hour, the movie
begins to grow on you like those classics of lore. You might not remember
"Ghost Town" after watching it, but it's not a movie that you leave
disappointed in. I was surprised, despite the obvious plot, that I was moved
toward the end.
Gervais is not your typical Brad Pitt leading man by any means. He's average
and somewhat unusual looking for a leading man. He does pull off being a
jerk very well. But he does end up winning you over by his quirky charms.
The movie was apparently made on a small budget by major studio standards.
The production stays only in a few New York City locations that we've seen a
million times on film. It's nicely shot, but it's not overwhelmingly rich in
appearence. The visual effects are surprisingly dull by using simple old
fashioned ghost tricks. I suppose I've gotten so used to almost any studio
film to have some spectacular effect, that the effects in "Ghost Town" look
cheap in comparison.
Visual effects aside, the film is about romance, odd people behavior and
relationships. It's a nice enough film for a rainy day if you don't go into
expecting miracles to happen.
Special thanks to Click Communications
Photos: © DreamWorks. All
DVD Quick Glimpse
Once you get past the first half hour, the
movie grows on you
Director: David Koepp
Cast: Ricky Gervais, Greg Kinnear, Tea Leoni
Commentary, Making of, and more
The visual effects of ghosts are as simple
as they get
Aspect Ratio (1.85:1)
Dolby Digital 5.1
DVD RELEASE DATE
December 27, 2008