Ghost Town
PG-13
Entertainment: +2
Acceptability: -4

Ricky Gervais, Tea Leoni, Greg Kinnear. Comedy/fantasy. Written by David Koepp & John Kamps. Directed by David Koepp.

FILM SYNOPSIS: In the comedy Ghost Town, Bertram Pincus (Ricky Gervais) 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 (Greg Kinnear), who pesters him into breaking up the impending marriage of his widow Gwen (Tea Leoni). That puts Pincus squarely in the middle of a triangle, with spirited results.

PREVIEW REVIEW: Are you folks noticing that nearly everyone in the movies swears? To relieve frustration, out comes the s- or f-words. To reveal a disdain for the Christian faith, out comes the profane use of Gods name. And Jesus, the one sinless man, the one who showed so much regard for humanity that he allowed himself to be separated from the Father while he was tortured to death, his name is used as the new darn it by members of the acting, directing and writing professions. For far too many in the media, Jesus name is nothing more than an expletive.

I pick on the film industry for this offense not merely for its disregard for God and Christ and members of the audience who still object to the transgression, but also because obscenity shows a lack of communication skills. And thats supposed to be their art form.Though there isnt much objectionable language in Ghost Town, theres enough to ruin the mood for what could have been an insightful, yet breezy comedy. (Compare Ghost Town with The Ghost and Mrs. Muir. I dare ya.)

If this can be called a critique, it was written over a week since I saw the film. Thats a practice I try to avoid. Without taking notes during the screening, the only thing I would have remembered was Greg Kinnears use of Gods name followed by a curse during his first monologue.

Mr. Kinnear is in the soon-to-be-released Flash of Genius. Along with Kinnears award-worthy performance, the productions breathless visual and dramatic flow, and the writers lifelike portrayal of a family, that films theme concerns ethics and tests us concerning how far wed go to do the right thing. In other words, its about something. Ghost Town has its positive themes as well, reminding us that we are at our best and able to find contentment when we begin to care for others. Alas, though occasionally amusing, Ghost Town is quickly forgettable.

Keep an eye out for my film alternative suggestion Fireproof, a Christian drama concerned with the renewing of marriage and the message that one finds contentment when others are placed first.

Preview Reviewer: Phil Boatwright
Distributor: DreamWorks/Paramount

Summary
Crude Language: A couple of crude sexual remarks.
Obscene Language: Six or so obscenities.
Profanity: Two profane uses of Gods name, two of Christs.
Violence: In two separate scenes men are hit by a bus. Computer effects are used to make these jolting sequences look real.
Sexual Intercourse: No graphic sexual situations, but there is some humor dealing with the subject of sex; the husband had been having an affair.
Nudity: None
Homosexual Conduct: None
Sexually Suggestive Action/Dialog: None
Drug Abuse: Some social drinking; drug references
Other: None
Running Time: 102 minutes
Intended Audience: Older Teens and Above

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