7.3/10
141,081
408 user 255 critic

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
188 ( 20)
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:

The first real ghost story. See more »

Genres:

Horror | Thriller

Certificate:

PG | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

The crawling steak was done by using a real steak which was laid over a slot cut between the tiles in the counter top. Two wires were fastened to the bottom of the steak and a special effects operator, hidden under the counter, simply moved the wires to make the steak crawl like a caterpillar. A similar operation was done when Diane presents to Steven the chairs that move across the room by themselves. A wire was fastened to one of the chair's legs under the set. An operator first wobbled the chair with the wire, then dragged the chair across to its destination. See more »

Goofs

(at around 52 mins) Dr. Lesh asks "Where was Carol Ann playing when she disappeared?" to which Diane responds (incorrectly) "her bedroom closet." The last time Diane - or anyone - was in the room with Carol Anne before she disappeared, she was sitting in her bed, pulling her covers up. 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 The Munsters Today: Munstergeist (1990) See more »

Soundtracks

Carol Anne's Theme
(uncredited)
Choir Arranged and Conducted by Paul Salamunovich
Orchestra by The London Symphony Orchestra
Choir by The Children's Educational Choir and Elin Carlson
Written, Music and Performed by Jerry Goldsmith
[The music plays over during the ending credits]
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User Reviews

They're Here.
15 March 2002 | by tfrizzellSee all my reviews

Truly spooky and disturbing horror film from the early-1980s that will make you jump from your seat. Craig T. Nelson and JoBeth Williams seem to lead a normal life. He is a successful real estate agent and she is a loving housewife. They have three beautiful children, but one night all that slowly changes. The youngest child (Heather O'Rourke) starts talking to unseen spirits through a scrambled television station. The parents don't think much of it, until furniture starts to move on its own. However, the real terror does not start until O'Rourke is taken to another dimension by "the TV people". Now paranormalists led by Beatrice Straight must come in and try to get O'Rourke back to her family. Tobe Hooper, who is best known for the highly over-rated "Texas Chainsaw Massacre", does an admirable job here with the film's direction. However, it is rumored that Steven Spielberg came in during his "E.T" days and did the bulk of the work. This makes more sense as the film is really frightening and disturbing. The special effects are also impressive and "Poltergeist" ends up being one of those films that just sticks with you for a long time after you first see it. 4 stars out of 5.


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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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