Day #127: Thir13en Ghosts (2001)

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Thir13en Ghosts (2001) IMDB

Synopsis:

[From IMDB;] When Cyrus Kriticos, a very rich collector of unique things dies, he leaves it all to his nephew and his family. All including his house, his fortune, and his malicious collection of ghosts!

My take:

I refuse to type ‘Thir13en’ again. It hurts my brain, and I don’t like it.

Now that I’ve got that out of my system…

I can’t help but feel like Thirteen Ghosts (which is a remake, apparently!? Huh.) is basically the Jurassic Park of ghost movies; with a rich dude with too much money and not enough sense trying to control something he’s too arrogant to ever really understand. Even the opening scenes have a similar feel to them, with the containment of a creature going horribly wrong – although Thirteen Ghosts ups the resulting death count just a tad (read: a lot).

I could probably belabour (or break) the comparison a bit more, but the only other thing that I’d really like you to take away from it is that, in the same vein as Jurassic Park, Thirteen Ghosts also drives home the point that it’s dangerous to mess with things you don’t understand.

What it lacks in class (which is a lot), Thirteen Ghosts mostly makes up for in the opulence of its beautifully complex set design, and the way that it happily embraces its ghostly cast. And while the ghosts might look a little corny at times, at least they’re out there and in your face, driving the considerable amount of action to be found throughout the film.

I’m not sure it could ever be said that Thirteen Ghosts is scary, but it is fun in a way that the similarly schlocky-yet-high(-production-)quality The Haunting couldn’t claim to be. In large part I think this is because it doesn’t try to take itself as seriously as The Haunting does; and the cast – particularly Matthew Lillard, who has no problem with really getting into the physicality of his role – seems to be having fun with the material as a result.

All of this is a really long way of saying that if you’re going to watch Thirteen Ghosts, I recommend that you grab some popcorn and enjoy the mindless-but-pretty ride.

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