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

Director:

Tobe Hooper

Writers:

Steven Spielberg (screenplay by), Michael Grais (screenplay by) | 2 more credits »
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Popularity
934 ( 159)
Nominated for 3 Oscars. Another 4 wins & 4 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Craig T. Nelson ... Steve Freeling
JoBeth Williams ... Diane Freeling (as Jobeth Williams)
Beatrice Straight ... Dr. Lesh
Dominique Dunne ... Dana Freeling
Oliver Robins ... Robbie Freeling
Heather O'Rourke ... Carol Anne Freeling
Michael McManus ... Ben Tuthill
Virginia Kiser ... Mrs. Tuthill
Martin Casella ... Marty
Richard Lawson ... Ryan
Zelda Rubinstein ... Tangina
James Karen ... Mr. Teague
Lou Perryman Lou Perryman ... Pugsley (as Lou Perry)
Clair E. Leucart Clair E. Leucart ... Bulldozer Driver (as Clair Leucart)
Dirk Blocker ... 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:

Its form is revealed, Its focus is clear and the games are over. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In Robbie and Carol Anne's room, there's a poster of the film Alien. See more »

Goofs

(at around 23 mins) During the storm, the parents and two kids are in the parents' bed, and you see two white pillows in the background, one standing upright and the other leaning on it. You can see the leaning pillow go from leaning to straight up and back and forth several times. See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
Carol Anne Freeling: 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.
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Crazy Credits

The initial end credits has the closing shot of the Holiday Inn as a backdrop. See more »

Alternate Versions

The 1997, 1999 MGM, and 2000 Warner DVDs of "Poltergeist" feature an entirely different end credits sequence. The credits begin roughly 15 seconds earlier, over the tracking shot of the Holiday Inn, and the sequence in which they appear is different entirely, including some re-arranging on the cast list, and Martin Casella's name being changed to "Marty Casella." The 25th Anniversary DVD and Blu-ray Disc restore the original theatrical credits sequence, henceforth making it a more accurate representation of the film's theatrical exhibition than previous DVD releases. See more »

Connections

Referenced in Danny Phantom: Livin' Large (2007) See more »

Soundtracks

It Knows What Scares You
(uncredited)
Written, Music and Performed by Jerry Goldsmith
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User Reviews

 
"They're heeeere!"
21 January 2017 | by PredragReviewsSee all my reviews

Sometimes to judge a film fairly you really need to consider the time at which it was made and what film-making technology existed at that time. This was the first big budget film to really tackle the subject of paranormal investigation, and at the time it was made it was seamless and sleek. It would be easy for people today to put it down for some of the early 1980's effects, but let's flip this perspective around and consider that no CGI what-so-ever was used. But at the same time, "Poltergeist" has a strangely family-friendly vibe. It was directed by Tobe Hooper, but it has the unmistakable fingerprints of producer/writer Steven Spielberg all over it. It focuses on an ordinary, harmless suburban family living their usual lives (their biggest problem is the death of a pet bird), which is suddenly thrown into chaos by outside forces. And unlike most horror movies, there isn't even a lot of violence... well, except for one grotesque hallucination.

Don't expect the usual gore and typical shocks you see in all modern horror films these days, Poltergeist is not about that. With all of the elements of visual effects, sound, acting, directing (Tobe Hooper) and writers (Steven Spielberg) this is one film that achieves everything you want to see in a motion picture. Anyway, Jo Beth Williams and Craig T. Nelson are great in this film. They have real chemistry. You believe they love each other and are a team. The kids are pretty great, too. It's actually quite a thoughtful movie and even has an odd warmth to it. Though there are a few scary moments. The final fifteen minutes are played out to such effect, that one could call it pure horror.

Overall rating: 7 out of 10.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

USA

Language:

English

Release Date:

4 June 1982 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

Poltergeist See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$10,700,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$6,896,612, 6 June 1982

Gross USA:

$77,142,388

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$77,142,388
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

| (original cut)

Sound Mix:

Dolby Stereo (35 mm prints)| 70 mm 6-Track (70 mm prints)

Color:

Color (Metrocolor)

Aspect Ratio:

2.39 : 1
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