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Poltergeist (1982)

A family's home is haunted by a host of ghosts.

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(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
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Diane Freeling (as Jobeth Williams)
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...
...
...
Virginia Kiser ...
Martin Casella ...
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Lou Perryman ...
Pugsley (as Lou Perry)
Clair E. Leucart ...
Bulldozer Driver (as Clair Leucart)
...
Jeff Shaw
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Storyline

A young family are visited by ghosts in their home. At first the ghosts appear friendly, moving objects around the house to the amusement of everyone, then they turn nasty and start to terrorise the family before they "kidnap" the youngest daughter. Written by Rob Hartill

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Mommy, Daddy, where are you? See more »


Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

 »
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Details

Country:

Language:

Release Date:

4 June 1982 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Juegos diabólicos  »

Box Office

Budget:

$10,700,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend:

$6,896,612 (USA) (4 June 1982)

Gross:

$76,600,000 (USA)
 »

Company Credits

Show detailed on  »

Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original cut)

Sound Mix:

(35 mm prints) (as Dolby Stereo)| (70 mm prints)

Color:

(Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Drew Barrymore was considered for the role of Carol Anne, but Steven Spielberg wanted someone more angelic. It was Barrymore's audition for this role, however, that landed her a part in E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial (1982). See more »

Goofs

When Tangina is talking to Diane and the others about Carol Anne she tells them that she can only hear her mother's voice, but in the next scene she tells Steven to threaten to spank her if she doesn't answer them. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Carol Anne: Hello? What do you look like? Talk louder, I can't hear you! Hey, hello! Hello, I can't hear you! Five. Yes. Yes. I don't know. I don't know.
See more »

Crazy Credits

The Star Spangled Banner, playing on the Freeling's TV set is heard over the initial opening credits. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Face Off: Scared Silly (2014) See more »

Soundtracks

Twisted Abduction
(uncredited)
Strings and Percussion Arranged by Chris Boardman
Written, Music and Performed by Jerry Goldsmith
See more »

Frequently Asked Questions

See more (Spoiler Alert!) »

User Reviews

 
My favorite film experience
20 March 2007 | by (Philadelphia) – See all my reviews

I noticed that IMDb lists the release dates for films, and laughed here because I could never forget Friday, June 4, 1982, my last day in tenth grade, and about my tenth date with the exceptionally pretty and wonderful young lady I dated throughout most of high school. The weather was perfect, and I took my ladyfriend out for a nice lunch and a walk down Broadway in search of a movie. ET had been the hyped Spielberg film of that summer, but this one was already out, and the thought of a horrified hottie clinging to me for dear life (or vice versa) was irresistible. Poltergeist it was.

Like all Spielberg films, one will not find many weaknesses. The plot will be engaging, the visuals stunning, the acting excellent, and the overall experience first-class. This film did not disappoint.

The restrospectively amusing casting of Craig T. Nelson in the lead. Notable supporting cast include the late Dominique Dunne and the late Healther O'Rourke, both of whom would die tragically in 1988 and 1982, respectively, the earlier by domestic violence and the latter by illness. The loss to Hollywood is still felt to this day as each would likely have Oscars by now. The cast of competent, moderately known talents provided a strong yet muted substance to the special-effects stylings for which Spielberg became so famous.

As I settled in with my date to watch the film, I was equally enthralled both by her touch and the screen. From the moment O'Rourke uttered the to-this-day-chilling "They're here!!," through the amusing plot twist that explains the hauntings (a certain home developer forgot to do something with the gravesite that had previously existed on the land and apparently ticked off some spirits), though the death, destruction, and absolute terror experienced by the hapless protagonist family.

I will never again be fifteen, never again experience the deep cuts to the heart that come with teenage desire, never again wonder if maybe those horror movies could happen in real life, never again will experience the thrill of not having school or any other responsibilities for the next three months, and will never again be as vital or physically capable as I was so effortlessly back then, but to have had that even once, all at the same time, in the greatest city in the world, was absolutely awesome.

Whatever might have been wrong with my life at that age simply did not exist in that theater, during that film, with that date. Anything less than a perfect film would have spoiled what was literally a perfect day. It didn't.


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