Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Classic Horror: Poltergeist (1982)

Image via Take 148
I'm sure that at one point or another, I've mentioned this movie here on the blog. I just can't imagine that I wouldn't have gotten around to discussing what was possibly one of the best scary movies of my childhood, and one that still has the power to scare the daylights out of me, even now!

I find it even more incredible that the "younger crowd," (ahem) who claim to be horror aficionados (read: they've seen everything that Rob Zombie has ever made and consider that to be the standard by which all horror should be measured), have never heard of Poltergeist!!!

It boggles the mind.
I mean, how can you  grow up a horror movie/Hallowe'en fan and not know where those iconic quotes, "They're here." and "This house is clean!" come from? Not to mention the best quote, "You moved the headstones, but you didn't move the bodies!"

I, and all of you who caught this in theaters, know what they're missing. What they're missing, is story. That, and the concept that story comes first, and visual effects are only a tool to tell it. Visual effects are not the story, itself.

Crazy talk, in this day and age, I know. But there it is.

Not to say that Poltergeist doesn't have its share of visual effects-or "special effects" as they were mostly called back then. It does have that aspect. But the effects back in that day included the nearly-lost art of Rotoscoping, which helped to insert the visual effect into the live-action shot, not computer graphics.

In any case, a super-short synopsis of the story is this: a family moves into a house in a somewhat new development, and strange things start happening, seemingly centered around the youngest daughter, Carol Anne. The "strange things" morph into some seriously bad things, and Carol Anne disappears into the spirit word. (For spoilers, etc., check out the Wikipedia "Poltergeist" page.) Hijinks ensue when the family contacts a psychic to help them get her back. And by "hijinks," I mean some seriously freaky and terrifying stuff!

If you haven't seen this-and heck, even if you have-now is a great time to give it a watch. This is a movie that should be seen with a large bowl of popcorn, a close friend or significant other, and the lights turned down low. It will give you chills and inspiration for your Hallowe'en haunt, even if it is for next year and not this year.

Get a Blu-Ray copy of Poltergeist here, or click on the highlighted text by Tangina to order the 25th Anniversary copy. You could get it just in time for Hallowe'en.

All are welcome...


  1. The bad news is: Hollywood, in their quest to remake EVERY MOVIE EVER MADE, is now doing a remake of Poltergeist!

    The good news? It looks like Sam Raimi is set to direct maybe it won't suck like a Hoover after all! It STILL won't be the classic that the orginal film is...but it could actually be watchable


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