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DVD Review

DVD cover

Ghost Town


Starring: Ricky Gervais, Téa Leoni and Greg Kinnear
Paramount Home Entertainment
RRP: £19.99
Certificate: 12
Available 02 March 2009

Bertram Pincus is a man whose people skills leave much to be desired. When Pincus dies unexpectedly, but is miraculously revived after seven minutes, he wakes up to discover that he now has the annoying ability to see ghosts. Even worse, they all want something from him, particularly Frank Herlihy, who pesters him into breaking up the impending marriage of his widow Gwen...

Starring Britain’s favourite comedian, Ricky Gervais, Ghost Town comes alive with deadpan hilarity and quirky charm. Emmy award winner and seven times Bafta winner Gervais proves worthy of Hollywood in this feel good love story about a man, a woman and a ghost.

Pincus (Gervais) is a New York City dentist with the social skills of a rhino. When a routine surgery goes wrong, Pincus is pronounced dead, but seven minutes later is miraculously revived. The grumpy, wise cracking loner, suffers a lasting after-effect; the ability to see and speak with the dead. Word soon gets out in the spirit community and Pincus is irritated to discover he’s the go-to-guy for every phantom with unfinished business in the city.

The leader of the ghostly mob is recently deceased Frank Herlihy (Greg Kinnear, Little Miss Sunshine), who is determined to stop the marriage of his widow, Gwen (Tea Leoni).

If you love Gervais you will undoubtedly love this film. It is full of his dry whit and sarcasm. Never have I laughed out loud so much through a movie than I did with Ghost Town. The underlying story of ‘living to help others’ is an added bonus and gives you a nice warm feeling inside. 

Gervais’ character is, well, just like any other of his characters; grumpy, wise cracking and not much of a people person. I did wonder if he would be able to carry off this character in a feature length film or if after 30 minutes I would be crawling the walls. I am happy to say he pulled it off. His performance was remarkable and I loved every minute of the film.

Special features on the DVD include the commentary by David Koepp and Ricky Gervais, Making of Ghost Town, Ghostly Effects and Some People Can Do It.

This is the first time I have ever really listened to and enjoyed a commentary on a DVD, it is funny and actually interesting, this is down to the humour of Gervais. He keeps it interesting and very humorous.

The Making of Ghost Town feature is a run-of-the-mill, how the film was made, featurette. It's quite interesting but nothing to shout home about.

The Some People Can Do It feature is a collection of out takes from the film. As with the majority of out takes in movies, I always think it is funnier for the people involved in the movie rather than the audience itself - it’s a case of  “you had to be there” syndrome.

As for the Ghostly Effects feature, I really don’t see the point of this feature. There is no commentary, just visuals for the effects that took place in the film. Not too good for actually explaining how the effects worked.

This film is all about Gervais. If it were another actor playing his part it just wouldn’t be as funny. We have all grown to love and hate Gervais’ characters and he certainly makes this film what it is… fantastically funny and enjoyable.

Even though the special features were not fantastic, the film more than makes up for it. This is a must have DVD for all Gervais fans.


Helena Rea

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