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Ghost World Criterion Blu-ray Review

Ghost World

“Ghost World” is still a poignant coming-of-age film.

Based on the comic book “Ghost World” by Daniel Clowes, the film adaptation revolves around the life of a sarcastic, disconnected, and negative young girl named Enid. The story begins with Enid and her pal Rebecca graduating high school or so Enid thinks. It turns she has to take an art class in the summer. Rebecca, meanwhile, is trying to become an adult and wants to get an apartment with Enid, but Enid is lost and floundering.

One day while goofing off with Rebecca, Enid decides to respond to a missed connections ad posted by a lonely aging vinyl collector named Seymour. Enid, of course, is posing as the woman Seymour saw as a joke. In a strange turn of events, however, Enid and Seymour actually become friends.

The rest of the film finds Enid struggling with adulthood all while drifting from her friends. What will become of Enid and what will she do?

Despite being released way back in 2001, the Terry Zwigoff directed “Ghost World” remains a relevant story about change, finding yourself, connections, and feeling out of place. The script (written by Zwigoff and Clowes) skillfully tows the line between comedy and drama without ever become tonally confused. It has the right balance of quirkyness mixed with purposeful adult oriented drama.

As is the case with many films, the cast wonderfully brings the material to life. Thora Birch (who should have been a bigger star) gives arguably the best performance of her career as Enid. In one of her earlier roles, Scarlett Johansson makes quite the impression as Rebecca. I remember seeing this film back when it came out and thinking Johansson was going to have quite the career ahead of her. Little did I know how big that career was going to be. In what should come as no surprise whatsoever, Steve Buscemi is great as Seymour. Is there anything he can’t do? Film buffs should also keep an eye out for small but memorable roles by Bob Balaban, Pat Healy, Brad Renfro, Illeana Douglas, David Cross, and Teri Garr.


Presentation: 1.85:1 1080p. How does it look? Despite a 4k digital transfer, the picture quality is not great. Sure, it’s an upgrade from the DVD, but it’s still rather grainy and lacks the hi-def clarity one has come to expect.

Audio Track: 5.1 DTS-HD MA. How does it sound? A perfectly adequate track.

* A mini copy of “Eightball” #13.
* A thick booklet featuring an essay by author Howard Hampton and a piece on the film’s music by Terry Zwigoff.
* “Ghost World” trailer.
* 9 ½ minutes of deleted scenes.
* The full “Jaan Pehechaan Ho” number from the film “Gumnaam” with optional commentary by
* “Art As Dialogue”- A new 41 minute documentary featuring stills, interviews with cast members, and discussions about the production, Terry Zwigoff, casting, and more.
* A newly recorded commentary by Terry Zwigoff, Daniel Clowes, and Lianne Halfon. It’s a bit dry, but there are some interesting behind-the-scenes factoids.


May 18, 2017 - Posted by | Blu-Ray review | , , , , ,

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