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Poltergeist (1982)

PG | | Horror, Thriller | 4 June 1982 (USA)
Trailer
2:25 | Trailer
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 »
Reviews
Popularity
1,895 ( 5)
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:

Mommy, Daddy, where are you? See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

In addition to the two times that the Beast appeared in the movie (the face that appeared in the closet and the creature that guarded the kid's door), the script had it appearing during the scene where the family and investigators are looking at the tape of the manifestation. The giant ghost that they saw visually slowly resolved itself into the image of a face of a cruel old man known in the sequels as "Reverend Henry Kane." See more »

Goofs

(at around 29 mins) In the chair stacking scene, just as Diane bends down to get items out of a cupboard, the chrome toaster on the kitchen counter reflects the crew switching the chair arrangement. 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 Star Spangled Banner, playing on the Freeling's TV set is heard over the initial opening credits. See more »

Alternate Versions

For ABC's 1985 network television premiere, Marty's hallucination is altered so instead of him ripping his own face off, he sees his face rapidly deteriorate briefly. See more »

Connections

Referenced in DuckTales: Attack of the Metal Mites (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

The Star-Spangled Banner
(1814) (uncredited)
Music based on "The Anacreontic Song" by John Stafford Smith
Arranged by Arturo Toscanini
[Played as TV sign-off music several times]
See more »

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
See full technical specs »

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