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Ghost World


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Product Details

  • Actors: Steve Buscemi, Thora Birch, Scarlett Johansson, Brad Renfro, Illeana Douglas
  • Directors: Terry Zwigoff
  • Writers: Terry Zwigoff, Daniel Clowes
  • Producers: Barbara A. Hall, Janette Day, John Malkovich, Jonathan Weisgal, Lianne Halfon
  • Format: Closed-captioned, Color, Dolby, NTSC, Subtitled, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Subtitles: English, French, Spanish
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Aspect Ratio: 1.85:1
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated: R (Restricted)
  • Studio: MGM (Video & DVD)
  • DVD Release Date: February 5, 2002
  • Run Time: 111 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (394 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B00005T30L
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,823 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)
  • Learn more about "Ghost World" on IMDb

Special Features

None.

Editorial Reviews

Thora Birch (American Beauty) and Scarlett Johansson (Lost in Translation) "sneak into your heart and stay there" (Rolling Stone) in this "eerie, masterful movie" (Movieline) from the acclaimed director of Crumb. Co-starring Brad Renfro (Deuces Wild), Illeana Douglas (Stir of Echos) and Steve Buscemi (Fargo) in "the best role of his career" (Movieline), Ghost World is a "smartly strange comedy [that] stands out like the Taj Mahal" (Time)! While their classmates head for college, Enid (Birch) and Rebecca (Johansson) focus their energies on tormenting those around them - from a goofy convenience store clerk (Renfro) to an eccentric art teacher (Douglas). But when they zero in on an oddball loner (Buscemi) looking for Miss Right, their seemingly innocent meddling threatens to shatter one of their hearts not to mention their lifelong friendship.

Customer Reviews

I think that this movie is well made, but I just didn't like it.
A. M Robertson
For me, there are few films that can capture the emotional impact of the experience with as much style as `Ghost World'.
Andrew Ellington
Ghost World depicts the lives of two friends, and how their choices affect their lives in very dramatic ways.
"nanoguardpress"

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

30 of 32 people found the following review helpful By BigSPEEGS on June 1, 2002
Format: DVD
The so-called "teen movies" offered in recent years have been of a dull and empty variation. The basic formula usually includes the geek who gets the girl/guy, the nasty popular kids, the jocks, the unlikely couple and more uses of the word "like" than any normal person is able to tolerate. What a rare treat it is that in the middle of the season usually full of teen movie trash that we had "Ghost World", a film that remembers that not everybody fits into easily accessible categories (adults and teens alike).
Thora Birch is Enid, a high school grad unsure of what to do with the rest of her life. She thinks she will rent an apartment with her best friend Rebecca (Scarlett Johansson), but with no job and summer school (for flunking art), nothing is certain. In a similar spot is Seymour (Steve Buschemi), a record collector who can't see any real meaning to his actions. Enid and Rebecca play a seemingly harmless prank on him after seeing a classified ad he put in the paper. Quite to the surprise of the duo, this little stunt really hurts Seymour. Guilty, Enid feels obligated to hook him up with the girl he was looking for in the ad.
What is remarkable about "Ghost World" is not that it is more entertaining than your average teen entertainment. No, what strikes me about "Ghost World" is how astutely it remembers the feeling of displacement that plagues so many teens. Enid doesn't seem to have many friends who respect her, and as cynical as she may get, human contact is the obvious ingredient missing in her life, even though she is constantly pushing it away. Rebecca urges her to get a job, so she gets a job working at a concession stand in a multiplex. That same day, she's fired for too many wise remarks about the theater and it's customers.
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30 of 33 people found the following review helpful By RolloTomasi on April 20, 2002
Format: VHS Tape
Terry Zwigoff's "Ghost World" is that rarest of hybrids -- a human comedy, brilliantly and bizarrely funny, but suffused with a profound sense of melancholia. The experience of watching it is deliriously pleasurable, but the humor emerges from the film's unfailingly generous reservoir of empathy; by the end, you're not sure whether to respond to these characters with laughter or with love. It is quite clear that Zwigoff feels both.
And that's what critics of this fine film have overlooked -- that although 17-year-old Enid (Thora Birch) looks at the world with bitter, unremittingly sarcastic eyes, "Ghost World" couldn't be less cynical or judgmental if it tried. Of all the characters on display, most of whom Enid despises and ridicules, there isn't a single one who isn't really good at heart; even the art teacher (a ridiculously funny Illeana Douglas), who has been derided as a one-dimensional caricature, has an untouchable core of decency.
Indeed, the character for whom "Ghost World" retains the harshest criticism is Enid herself. As much as we adore her terrifying intelligence, her single-mindedly retro fashion sense, and her contempt for all things phony and pretentious, we aren't allowed to forget her self-destructive habits or her unwillingness to grow up even as the world around her charges resolutely forward. Her best friend, Rebecca (Scarlett Johansson), once her partner in crime, has taken on a normalcy and sense of perspective that Enid finds tiresome, which is partly why she takes refuge in a lonely middle-aged bachelor named Seymour (Steve Buscemi, in a shoulda-been-Oscar-nominated performance). Their bond is at once improbable and emotionally convincing, and Zwigoff harmonizes Birch's and Buscemi's own highly idiosyncratic styles into a marvelous, unforced chemistry.
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23 of 25 people found the following review helpful By Michael J. Mazza HALL OF FAME on March 17, 2002
Format: DVD
Probably the best praise I can offer for "Ghost World," directed by Terry Zwigoff, is that the film had me laughing heartily from the start nearly to the end. Yes, it's a great comedy. But it's also a surprisingly melancholy and touching character study that is graced with superb performances by an excellent cast.
"Ghost World" tells the story of Enid (played by Thora Birch) and her best friend Rebecca (Scarlett Johannson), recent high school grads who are struggling through this transitional phase in their lives. Early in the film the girls, who scorn much of "mainstream" society, play a cruel joke on an eccentric loner named Seymour (Steve Buscemi). But what begins as a joke leads into a quirky, engaging relationship between Seymour and Enid. The main story is well complemented by some equally quirky subplots, all of which blend together to form an effective larger story.
"Ghost World" is filled with witty, funny, irony-laden dialogue. And these great words are delivered with flair by the wonderful cast. Birch really shines as an offbeat leading lady; her performance has bite, but she's also appealing and vulnerable. Johannson complements her well as pal Rebecca, and Ileana Douglas is a lot of fun as Enid's politically conscious summer school art teacher. And I can't say enough good things about Steve Buscemi as Seymour. He takes what could have been a stereotypical antisocial loser and instead brings real depth and humanity to the character.
The great script and performances are well enhanced by thoughtful, inventive production details; "Ghost World" is almost as much fun to look at as it is to listen to. This is a really outstanding film that effectively deals with such universal issues as alienation, nonconformity, friendship, and the transition to young adulthood.
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