cranky home
Reviews since 1993:   A-E     F-N      O-Z    Posters       Who We Are and Why We Do What We Do         Search the Site

Your Donations support the Site

Top Selling DVD     Books

50 Shades of Grey
Exodus Gods and Kings
Grand Budapest Hotel
Imitation Game, The
Into the Woods

Jack Ryan: Shadow Recruit
Theory of Everything
Ride Along
We're the Millers
The Great Gatsby
The Avengers
Amazing Spider-Man
Girl w/ Dragon Tattoo
Dark Knight Trilogy
World War Z
Happy Feet 2
Iton Man 3 combo
Batman Begins
Dark Knight
Fifth Element
The Hangover
Hunger Games
James Bond 11 disc coll.
Lord of the Rings trilogy
Mission Impossible GP
Sherlock Holmes AGOS
Singing in the Rain
Snow White Huntsman
Star Trek Into Darkness combo
Star Wars Saga
21 Jump Street
Ultimate Matrix coll
X-Men First Class
X-Men Trilogy
X-Men Wolverine

 BLU-Ray for Family DVDs 
Alice in Wonderland (2010)
A Bug's Life
Chronicles of Narnia set
Harry Potter 1-8 collection
Iron Man 2 combo
Kung Fu Panda
Lord of the Rings Trilogy Pinocchio
Pirates of Caribbean trilogy
Pixar short films
Shrek the Whole Story
Sleeping Beauty
The Smurfs
Snow White & 7 Dwarfs
Star Trek motion pictures set
Star Trek TNG Season One
Star Wars Saga (1-6)
Toy Story combo
Toy Story 2 combo
Toy Story 3 combo
Wall-E SE


Search engine by FreeFind
Click to add search to YOUR web site!
click to search site

Alice in Wonderland
Beauty and the Beast
Kung Fu Panda
The Lion King
Mary Poppins 45th LE
Princess Mononoke
Shrek the Whole Story
Simpsons Movie
Spider-Man Trilogy
Spirited Away
Star Trek movies set
Star Trek TOS (TV)
ST:TNG complete tv set
Star Wars Trilogy (1-3)
Star Wars Trilogy (4-6)
Toy Story DVD combo
Toy Story 2 DVD combo
Toy Story 3 DVD combo
Wallace and Gromit
Wall-E SE

Buy Movie collectibles
TV/Movie Collectibles

movie review query engine

NY film critics online

Privacy Policy

Click for full sized poster

Ghost Ship

Starring Gabriel Byrne, Julianna Margulies, Isaiah Washington
Screenplay by Mark Hanlon and John Pogue
Based on a story by Mark Hanlon
Directed by Steve Beck

IN SHORT: Everybody sing: "The Death Boat . . . soon will be making a short lived run . . ." [Rated R for strong violence/gore, language and sexuality.]

If you plant for Ghost Ship expecting the kind of slice 'n' dice flick that has pretty much been the standard since John Carpenter's Halloween, you're not going to be happy. Actually, we used to send Troma-screenwriter Trent Haaga to these things for a more practiced (or, considering the genre, jaundiced) eye, but he's in Hollywood. We'll quote the horrorfreak who sat behind us for Ghost Ship instead:

"This movie sucks"

Now, for everyone else not seeking a slice 'n' dice flick, Ghost Ship tries to tread that fine line now defining what used to be called a suspense-thriller movie. Now mixed with several creatively gory murders to try and keep the kidlets happy, we join the crew of the salvage tug Arctic Explorer -- based in Anchorage, AK -- as it discovers the floating wreck of the Antonia Graza, an Italian luxury liner that vanished without a trace forty years ago (That's 1962, if you're reading the Cranky Archives). 600 incredibly wealthy passengers. 500 crew devoted to their every need. 1100 malevolent ghosts haunting the wreck which is floating towards some charted rocks which will surely sink it in three days time. Just enough time to get in, find as much loot as possible, and get the hell off.

Our salvage crew: Captain Sean Murphy (Gabriel Byrne), First Mate Greer, (Isaiah Washington), techs Dodge (Ron Eldard), Munder (Karl Urban), Santos (Alex Dimitriades) and fiery femme salvage team leader Maureen Eps (Julianna Margulies) are guided to the wreck by Canadian Air Force pilot Jack Ferriman (Desmond Harrington) who just happened to fly over the thing a couple of times. Strangely enough, what these intrepid scavengers actually find on the ship doesn't jibe with long held legends. There are bullet holes in the pool. There are fresh bodies in the bilge (forgive the alliteration). There is one little girl ghost (Emily Browning) watching every movement of our corpses, er, crew with wide open eyes. There is fresh, wet blood everywhere.

The fanboy behind us walked out of Ghost Ship when the movie appeared to be over. Silly boy forgot that all horror-type flicks have big surprise endings slapped on to 'em, whether they need it or not. In this particular case, it's a surprise that makes no bloody sense. Then again, the way this atrocious script tries to explain the what and why of what is happening is so flat out dumb (and badly executed on the big screen) that we were writhing in our seats. From disbelief. In short . . .

This movie sucks

It isn't just director Steve Beck's insistence on using that old film school artifice of repeating a two-three second sequence over and over again in slow motion -- usually it's to provide a second cheap thrill when a body part is impaled, here it is used to make an "emotional" story point, we think. Most of the actual impalements happen conveniently off screen. No impact. No slice 'n' dice, although you do get to see the after effects. Specifically: the first five minutes or so of the movie is all you need to sit for. It is, and we are avowed disavowers of the genre, clever and incredibly disgusting in execution and result, even if it doesn't make sense from an engineers point of view. If the rest of Ghost Ship had been up to this firs mass murder, the theater ushers would've needed ice scrapers to get the fanboys out of their seats.

On average, a first run movie ticket will run you Ten Bucks. Were Cranky able to set his own price to Ghost Ship, he would have paid . . .



amazon com link Click to buy films by Steve Beck
Click to buy films starring Gabriel Byrne
Click to buy films starring Julianna Margulies
Click Here!

The Cranky Critic website is Copyright © 1995  -  2017  by Chuck Schwartz. Articles by Paul Fischer are Copyright © 1999 - 2006 Paul Fischer. All images, unless otherwise noted, are property of,©, ®, their respective studios and are used by permission. All Rights Reserved. Not to be used or copied for any commercial purpose. Academy Award(s) and Oscar®(s) are registered trademarks and service marks of the Academy of Motion Picture Arts and Sciences.