Buy Thirteen Ghosts Movie Poster
Steve Beck (Director)
Tony Shalhoub (Arthur Kriticos)
Shannon Elizabeth (Kathy Kriticos)
F. Murray Abraham (Cyrus Kriticos)
Embeth Davidtz (Kalina)
Matthew Lillard (Rafkin)
Rah Digga (Maggie)
the official Thir13en Ghosts website
"13 Ghosts" is a remake of the William Castle classic
about a family who in inherits a creepy house, only to discover
that, while inside, they are being pursued by 13 spirits.
Remakes are rarely as good as the original, and this is no
his wife dies, Arthur Kriticos (Tony Shalhoub) takes his kids and
moves into a small apartment, where they are minimally unhappy.
That is until a lawyer comes knocking on their door, telling Arthur
that his Uncle Cyrus has willed a fabulous house to the family.
Of course, the family drives down to have a look-see, only to
eventually become trapped inside with 13 pissed-off ghosts.
While at the house, the family meet Rafkin (Matthew Lillard), a
psychic who helped Uncle Cyrus capture the ghosts, only to find out
later that Cyrus's intent was to use the power of the ghosts to open
an eye to hell, where he could achieve ultimate knowledge about the
past, present, and future. Shannon Elizabeth plays the
daughter and Rah Digga plays the family's nanny. Embeth
Davidtz even pops in as someone who wants to set the ghosts free.
And, veteran F. Murray Abraham plays dear old demented Uncle Cyrus.
are so many inconsistencies in this film, it's hard to know where to
begin. First of all, why does Arthur Kriticos talk to Shannon
Elizabeth like she is a 10-year-old when she looks at least 23.
Another problem--if the family is suppose to be so poor and so
struggling, how could they afford a nanny like Rah Digga? Why
does Matthew Lillard offer himself to the ghosts, especially when he
had no reason to? These questions may never be answered,
though my best guess is--the script sucked.
Abraham has fun with his role as the demented uncle, and Matthew
Lillard does slightly better than normal as the ghost hunting
psychic, but the performances from Tony Shalhoub, Shannon Elizabeth,
and Embeth Davidtz are terrible. Director Steve Beck has
crafted a film that is almost 75% identical to "House on
Haunted Hill" and it is even produced by the same company, Dark
Castle. Alas, the acting isn't the only bad thing about this
biggest problem I had with this film is that no one dies. Now,
I know that sounds kind of morbid, but it is suppose to be a horror
movie. There are a total of 3 deaths in the film. At
first, we think the Kriticos kids might die, but then it is only
revealed that they are being help captive by the spirits.
What's up with that? More blood. More carnage.
That's what horror films are all about. Now, there is a nicely
grotesque scene where a lawyer is split in two, but that's the only
scene that remotely makes ones blood curdle. The simple fact
is--this film is more like an action flick that a horror film.
One of the ghosts, named 'The Hammer', is too funny looking to be
scary and the only scary ghost in the bunch is 'The Jackal', who
looks like a guy who got his head stuck in a microwave oven.
In many ways, this film reminded me of "Hellraiser 3:
Hell on Earth", where the creators got so desperate they used
characters like 'Typewriter Head' and 'CD the DJ'. It was
one good thing about this film is that it is a watchable
popcorn/Halloween flick. It was released at just the right
time and will probably appeal to many people. But, a good
popcorn movie is the only credit I will give this one. Why
couldn't they trap the family in a house with 1 really mean ghost
instead of 13 minimally evil ghosts? But, considering the
ghosts walk away at the end, there's always room for a sequel.
Let's hope Ray, Peter, Winston, and Egon do their jobs before that
1 1/2 out of 4 pops )
about this film with other Popkorn Junkies
( 1 1/2 out of 4 pops )
is one of my favorite genres-- I just like being scared I guess, so I
assumed I might like this movie. I knew "13 Ghosts"
didn't get great reviews, but I hoped that maybe the ghosts
would be creepy enough and there would be enough blood and guts to make
up for the total lack of plot. Oops, guess I should have read
Billy Ray's review before seeing this. This movie pretty much
stunk-- the story, the acting, the characters....they all stunk.
Some of the effects were cool, but not enough to make up for the lame
plot and the lame "scary" ghosts (why is a kid with an arrow
through his head scary?). Ugh. I also saw "From
Hell"-- if you
wanna see a decent gory flick that is actually interested see that