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Ghost (Blu-ray) Official AVSForum Review

post #1 of 5
Thread Starter 
The Review at a Glance: (max score: 5 )

Film: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

Extras: attachment.php?attachmentid=109943&d=1210373647

Audio/Video total rating:

( Max score: 100 )


Studio and Year: Paramount - 1990
MPAA Rating: PG-13
Feature running time: 126 Minutes
Genre: Drama

Disc Format: BD-50
Encoding: AVC (MPEG-4)
Video Aspect: 1.85:1
Resolution: 1080p/24

Audio Format(s): English Dolby TrueHD 5.1, Frehcn/Spanish Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English SDH, French, Spanish, Portuguese
Starring: Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Whoopi Goldberg, Tony Goldwyn,
Directed by: Jerry Zucker
Music by: Maurice Jarre
Written by: Bruce Joel Rubin
Region Code: A

Blu-ray Disc release Date: December 30, 2008

"A love that will last forever "

Film Synopsis:

One of the most memorable romantic films ever and winner* of two Academy Awards®, Sam (Patrick Swayze), living as a ghost, discovers his death wasn’t just a random robbery gone bad. To help him reconnect with the love of his life, Molly (Demi Moore), and solve his own murder, he enlists the talents of a skeptical psychic (Oscar®-winner Whoopi Goldberg), who doesn’t even believe her own abilities. Ghost is a supernatural mystery-thriller that will cross over into your heart and never leave. Ghost will surprise you, delight you, make you believe. Patrick Swayze plays a ghost who teams up with a psychic (Whoopi Goldberg) to uncover the truth behind his murder – and to rescue his sweetheart (Demi Moore) from a similar fate.

My Take:

Ghost is one of those films that you want to watch with your significant other because at its base it is a love story. It does throw in the super natural and thriller aspects but they seem to provide the catalyst for Sam’s determination to protect Molly and ultimately avenge his murder. Whoopi Goldberg can be rather annoying however her performance in Ghost (for which she earned an Academy Award) came across as genuine and funny. I have always found Demi Moore to a strong actress and her emotional turn as the devastated Molly was solid. While I am not a big Patrick Swayze fan I do feel that his contribution to this film is some of his best work. The three of them combined are at the heart of what makes Ghost work. The portion of the story relative to the betrayal, murder and ultimately Sam’s retribution felt a little contrived but as I said that isn’t really the true essence of this film in my opinion. I am sure that there are some who find it a little too sentimentally warm and fuzzy but that’s okay. This is one of those movies that can still be appreciated regardless of the number of years that have passed since its release.

Parental Guide:

The rating is for sensuality, violence, and language.

AUDIO/VIDEO - By The Numbers:
REFERENCE = 92-100 / EXCELLENT = 83-91 / GOOD = 74-82 / AVERAGE = 65-73 / BELOW AVERAGE = under 65

**My audio/video ratings are based upon a comparative made against other high definition media/blu-ray disc.**

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

Audio: 76

  • Dynamics: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Low frequency extension: attachment.php?attachmentid=109944&d=1210373692

  • Surround Sound presentation: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Clarity/Detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

  • Dialogue Reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109947&d=1210373692

Video: 78

(Each rating is worth 4 points with a max of 5 per category)

  • Resolution/Clarity: attachment.php?attachmentid=109945&d=1210373692

  • Black level/Shadow detail: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Color reproduction: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Fleshtones: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

  • Compression: attachment.php?attachmentid=109946&d=1210373692

Ghost comes to Blu-ray Disc from Paramount featuring 1080p AVC encoded video that has an average bitrate of 30 mbps and lossless Dolby TrueHD 5.1 channel audio that has an average bitrate of 3.6 mbps.

This presentation is reminiscent of several of the Blu-ray catalog release titles I have reviewed of late. It offers high definition video that is superior to DVD but falls short of the better quality catalog titles we have seen thus far from the format. Detail in close ups can be defining at times with clearly resolvable texture and subtle nuance. Mid and long range visuals are less articulated and downright soft in some instances which gives the video a dull, less dimensional appearance. Colors aren’t overly vibrant but I wouldn’t describe them as flat either. Flesh tones were natural with lifelike quality and divergent tonality. Blacks were gradational and fairly deep which made the darker segments appear punchy and dynamic. Grain was present in visible layers that was fine at times and heavier at others. This tended to be distracting as it occasionally made backgrounds appear noisy. I didn’t see any signs of compression related artifacts. I suspect that this presentation will fare better on smaller displays than larger one but I didn’t see any glaring video related problems that would make it unwatchable. This is a dialogue driven film that doesn’t call for much in the way of surround sound. The lossless Dolby TrueHD soundtrack handled the elements present in the recording diligently. Dialogue was clearly perceptible with definable characteristics and notable soundstage prominence. Sound effects sounded a little dated but overall were reproduced fair dynamic quality and detail. The sequences that take place in the subway featuring the passing trains made use of the surround channels and subwoofer providing some spatial dimension and low frequency detail. Primarily the audio was relegated to the front channels which based upon the source material was appropriate.

Bonus Features:

  • Commentary by Director Jerry Zucker and Writer Bruce Joel Rubin

  • Ghost Stories: The making of a classic

  • Inside the paranormal

  • Alchemy of a love scene

  • Cinema‘s great romances

  • Photo gallery

  • (HD) Theatrical trailer

Final Thoughts:

Ghost is a heart warming film that has become a favorite to many. It is a movie that is nice to visit with your significant other from time to time. Its release on high definition Blu-ray Disc from Paramount offers good audio quality and video that is fair but not among the best high definition video the format has to offer. I would recommend a rental prior to purchase for those considering an upgrade over the DVD. I suspect that you will find this upgrade worthy.


Ralph Potts
AVS Forum Blu-ray Reviews

Reference Review System:

JVC DLA-RS20 1080p High Definition Front Projector
Carada Precision Brilliant White 96" Screen
Oppo 970HD universal disc DVD Player (480i HDMI)
Toshiba HD-XA2 HD DVD Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Panasonic DMP-BD55K Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Sony Playstation 3 Blu-ray disc Player (HDMI Audio/Video)
Marantz DV7001 Universal Disc Player
Denon AVR 5308CI THX Ultra 2 Preamp/Video Processor
B&K Reference 200.7 Series 2 seven Channel amplifier
Philips TSU9400 Pro Series Touch Panel Remote Control
Canton "Ergo" Series speakers
Axiom Audio QS8 Quadpolar speakers
SV Sound PB-13 Ultra (Rosenut finish)
APC AV S15BLK Power Conditioner/Surge Protector
Furman SPR-20i Stable Power Regulator
Wireworld, VizionWare, Audioquest, Best Deal Cables - Audio/Video/Speaker Cabling
Cool Components - CP-CP102 cooling package
post #2 of 5
Hi Ralph,

Thank you for putting another nice review. Did MPAA really rate this flick as PG-13 ? I thought this one contained some nudity.
post #3 of 5
Thread Starter 
Originally Posted by lgans316 View Post

Hi Ralph,

Thank you for putting another nice review. Did MPAA really rate this flick as PG-13 ? I thought this one contained some nudity.


Yes it's rated PG-13. No nudity although it comes close in an early scene between Swayze and Moore (after the pottery making sequence).

post #4 of 5
Film editing is nicely done by Walter Murch as well as his contributions on the film as re-recording mixer the sound design on this is super cool which is why I saw it 6 or 7 times projected, too bad the ABC screen 1 Westover road didn’t have Dolby SR cards for the Dolby CP 200 played I believe in Dolby A type, still sounded fantastic.

Yeah I can watch this one again or just skip to awesome sound moments in six-track Dolby stereo on DVD.

Sound Department
Bob Baron .... adr mixer
Christopher E. Bennett .... apprentice sound editor
Clayton Collins .... sound editor
Don Coufal .... boom operator
Greg Curda .... foley mixer (as Gregory Curda)
Ken Dufva .... foley artist
David Lee Fein .... foley artist
Laura Graham .... foley editor
Douglas Greenfield .... stereo sound consultant: Dolby
Lee Haxall .... dialogue editor
Gary Holland .... cable person
Michael Magill .... dialogue editor
Steve Maslow .... sound re-recording mixer
Kathy McCart .... sound recordist
Chuck Michael .... supervising foley editor
Walter Murch .... sound re-recording mixer
E. Jeane Putnam .... assistant sound editor
Gary Ritchie .... sound recordist
Jeanine Schaack .... assistant sound editor
Leslie Shatz .... sound re-recording mixer
Leslie Shatz .... supervising sound editor
Mary Ann Skweres .... assistant sound editor (as Maryann Skweres)
Renee Tondelli .... assistant sound editor
Jennifer L. Ware .... assistant sound editor (as Jennifer Ware)
Jeff Wexler .... sound mixer

Happy New Year

Originally Posted by Ralph Potts View Post


Yes it's rated PG-13. No nudity although it comes close in an early scene between Swayze and Moore (after the pottery making sequence).


LOL well. well, my, my, my we all know that scene don’t we.
post #5 of 5
Thanks Ralph
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