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Ghost World back to product details

The Mistakes Are All There
written by RJones3 November 14, 2007 - 1:06 PM PST
Be patient with Ghost World. At first I thought I would be sitting through a female rendition of Beavis and Butthead, and the manic dance sequence from a 1965 Indian movie, which spans the first five minutes, did not help. Once the irrelevant prelims were out the way, I settled in to watch an unusually truthful coming-of-age movie. The movie is at least as much about the culture these kids have to deal with, as seen through the eyes of the clever and sardonic Enid (Thora Birch). The culture, according to Steve Buscemi (who plays Seymour), gives the movie its title. One could quibble about the attitudes of Enid. They are, as A.O. Scott perceptively put it, "self-protective, cruel, and a little cowardly." But she is seventeen. The mistakes are all there, ready to be made. "You are my hero," she says to Seymour, who has fallen into the bottomless pit of psychotherapy, but we don't believe her for a minute. The only one she can really depend on is a demented old man always waiting for an unscheduled bus. What she really wants is to take that bus, leaving us all to wonder where she is going.

perhaps it's a refined taste...
written by alexjb March 23, 2005 - 10:47 PM PST
5 out of 8 members found this review helpful
this is a very well-made, well-acted movie with a cast that i like. and i got almost nothing out of watching it...

it's all about the misfits; young Enid and old Seymour. bookend examples of a life spent way outside the mainstream. unfortunately, they're both cynical and bitter about being outsiders. they're insensitive to others, yet deeply sensitive to insult themselves; afraid of being alone, but constantly pushing people away with rude and hurtful comments and actions.

of course, i assume that this is all from the comic, which if it's anything like Crumb, is probably dead on. so i'm willing to bet that there will be people who think this movie is brilliant. to me, despite the occasional chuckle and the inclusion of cool music, it was kinda sad, kinda painful, and really didn't go anywhere in the end.

Return of the Misfits
written by DBalogh September 18, 2004 - 9:34 PM PDT
6 out of 8 members found this review helpful
In 1995, Terry Zwigoff directed Crumb, one of the decade's best documentaries, a hypnotic look at the life of underground comic artist/writer Robert Crumb, the cult hero iconoclast who created such memorable characters as Fritz the Cat and Mr. Natural. But what was so incredibly engrossing about that documentary was not so much the title subject himself but the revealing tangential exploration into the lives of those in Crumb's milieu: his brothers Max and Charles, his wife and mother, other cartoonists and friends -- an incongruous group of social outcasts if there ever was one! But never once was Zwigoff condescending or judgmental in his treatment. On the contrary, he made us feel for those misfits more than we ever thought we could.

And so it is with Zwigoff's Ghost World (based on the underground comic by Daniel Clowes, who also co-wrote), another incredibly subtle journey into the despondent, insipid lives of a small group of pariahs, struggling unsuccessfully to fit in, finding precious solace in each other's company, though despairing in the painful ennui of their suburban world, where life goes on simply for the sake of going on, and on, and on.

The film centers on bored high school graduate Enid (a magnificent Thora Birch), who spends her time kicking around with her best friend Rebecca (Scarlett Johansson). Both free spirits (Enid, though, more than Rebecca), they initially shirk college, work, family, friends -- they are the female equivalents of the 1950s Marty and Angie, hanging out in their favorite diner biding their time. Things get a bit more interesting when Enid answers a heartfelt personal ad placed by nerdy record collector Seymour (another memorable performance by Steve Buscemi, and possibly his best) desperate to locate a woman with whom he may have "shared a moment" sometime past. What begins as a cruel practical joke brings the two oddballs together for a relationship which is one of the sweetest, most sincere and most believable in all of film.

Impatient viewers may resent the fact that the film is not driven by a strong, cohesive narrative (in fact, one may argue that "action"-wise, there's not much that happens here); admittedly the film is more a collection of vignettes, and initially some seem unrelated. But this is precisely the impact for which Zwigoff and Clowes seem to be striving, and they succeed triumphantly with a film packed with more nuanced and multidimensional characters than a dozen blockbuster Hollywood films put together. Its ending is profoundly haunting, especially if taken with a metaphoric reading that may or may not have been intended

what's all the fuss about?
written by robothelpermonkey October 29, 2002 - 11:44 PM PST
8 out of 30 members found this review helpful
This movie wasn't bad. I laughed outloud several times. But when it was over I didn't *feel* anything. Just thought 'eh'.

I don't think it was a very original story or presentation. It just wasn't interesting for me to watch young girls no matter how short their skirts do extremely immature things and then deal with them in immature and cliched ways.

So, if you're a big fan of the comic(which I know zilch about) or of Mr. Pink then watch it otherwise there are plenty of better movies.


(Average 7.17)
2241 Votes
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