Monday, December 27, 2010

'Ghost Ship' should be set adrift at sea

Ghost Ship (2002)
Starring: Gabriel Byrne, Julianna Margulies, and Desmond Harrington
Director: Steve Beck
Rating: Four of Ten Stars

A veteran salvage-tug crew is tempted by the promise of great riches when a weather service pilot (Harrington) gives them a lead on a passenger liner adrift in international waters. Once they reach the ship, they find that it is not totally abandoned: An evil presence lurks aboard, and it wants to add the newcomers to its compliment of ghostly crew and passengers.

Take every element you typically find be in a haunted house movie, change the setting to a decaying cruise ship, bring in actors who looooove to overact, add large amounts of gore, and you have "Ghost Ship". The only additional about the movie not listed above is the lazily written script, which is a prime example of one of those stories that will grind to a complete halt if just ONE character would behave intelligently.

The most creepy and disturbing part of the film are the first few minutes. Just about everything else past that opening scene of horror and brutal mass-murder is a downhill slide, with an occasional bump.

(Interestingly, the lower-budget, direct-to-DVD haunted ship movie "Lost Voyage" is actually a little bit scarier at points and it has better acting overall. It's almost as rotten as "Ghost Ship", though, but not quite.)

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