I’ve been on an unknown horror kick lately, mainly fueled by my love for Brad Anderson’s “Session 9”, which I saw some years back with a friend of mine. I’m always a fan of scary movies that nobody else has ever seen that wind up being pretty much the scariest movies ever. After reading some forums and seeing lists made by tons of people, “Ghost Story” popped up quite a lot as one of the freakiest movies they had ever seen. Sure, why not. Sadly, nope.
I would say the strangest thing about this flick is the cast. Someone in Hollywood made the weird decision to cast Fred Astaire, Melvyn Douglas, Douglas Fairbanks, Jr., and John Houseman as the four main characters. Because when I want to get the pants scared off me, I think singing, dancing Fred Astaire. I will hand it to the guy though, even at the ripe old age of 82 his acting was pretty good. It’s just too bad that the story wasn’t. After witnessing a disturbing death scene in the beginning where a man falls to his death from about 30 stories, we join The Chowder Society, a group of old men who get together and try to stop each other’s hearts with ghost stories. Unfortunately the guy who died happens to be the son of one of the old men, so he calls home his other son to stay with him for a bit while he collects himself. Once the other son arrives in nowheresville New England, his dad (the old guy) winds up falling off a bridge, leaving an opening in The Chowder Society. The now brotherless-fatherless son puts in his bid by telling a ghost story of his own, but the twist is that it’s true. Turns out that he was seeing this girl down in Miami who was borderline insane and wanted to get married after what seemed like two dates. When he broke the news to her that he wasn’t ready for finger candy yet she flips out and disappears. Then a few weeks later his then alive brother calls him and says, “Guess who I’m dating? Same girl who just left you, but it’s ok because we’re twins and all.” Current brother tries to tell dead brother to get out while he can, but dead brother doesn’t listen and look what happens. After current brother finishes his story the other members of the Metamucil Group realize that this creepy woman who is offing everyone is actually the same girl they “accidentally” killed back in their late 20’s. Whoops.
The creepy woman is played by Alice Krige and spends about 90% of the movie naked for no real reason. That’s basically why it’s rated R. The rest of the movie is spent looking into the past and how the girl wound up dead (which honestly all started due to erectile dysfunction, I wish I were kidding) and how they can get rid of this evil spirit. There are no real scary moments, just a corpse looking thing here and there that you can totally see coming. Even the music is a miss seeing how it sounds like it came from a carnival, and not even a scary one with clowns. By the time the movie was over I had almost drifted off into sleep twice and had pretty much lost all interest in what was going on. I do tend to go against the grain with movies that a lot of other people like, and seeing how this one came highly recommended by several other critics it’s very possible that I missed the mark.
DIRECTOR’S CUT: Don’t.
FLICKCHART RATING: 1282/1878