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artisanal film reviews | by maryann johanson

Ghost Ship (review)

What a cast: Gabriel Byrne, Julianna Margulies, Ron Eldard, Isaiah Washington! What a waste! What are they doing in a movie so moronic that it doesn’t even deserve to go straight to video without its supper? I know, I know: They’re paying the bills. Perhaps the better question is: Why are talented actors forced into playing worse-than-cardboard stereotypes just to make a living? They’re marine salvagers who luck into the biggest job of their lives, except of course the deserted ship is haunted. The usual idiocies of bad horror movies are the scariest things around: ghosts whose spook-abilities vary according to the needs of the plot, characters too dumb to live (and so die), and an ending that sets up the inevitable sequel. Director Steve Beck also brought us the stupendously awful Thirteen Ghosts, and writer John Pogue was responsible for the incomprehensible Rollerball. That should have scared off Byrne and Co. right from the start.


MPAA: rated R for strong violence/gore, language and sexuality

viewed at a semipublic screening with an audience of critics and ordinary moviegoers

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