Ghost Town

 (1,669)
6.71 h 42 min2008X-RayPG-13
A spirited romantic comedy, Ghost Town is the story of Bertram Pincus, a cranky Manhattan dentist who develops the unwelcome ability to see dead people.
Directors
David Koepp
Starring
Tea LeoniBill CampbellGreg Kinnear
Genres
Comedy
Subtitles
English [CC]
Audio languages
EnglishEnglish [Audio Description]
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More details

Supporting actors
Dana IveyAasif MandviKristen WiigRicky GervaisJordan Carlos
Producers
Gavin PoloneRoger BirnbaumGary BarberEzra Swerdlow
Studio
Paramount Pictures
Rating
PG-13 (Parents Strongly Cautioned)
Purchase rights
Stream instantly Details
Format
Prime Video (streaming online video)
Devices
Available to watch on supported devices

Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars

1669 global ratings

  1. 77% of reviews have 5 stars
  2. 14% of reviews have 4 stars
  3. 5% of reviews have 3 stars
  4. 1% of reviews have 2 stars
  5. 2% of reviews have 1 stars
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Top reviews from the United States

MaryReviewed in the United States on August 28, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
I'm tough to please and I loved this movie
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It's not that this was a timeless story or a movie of epic proportions. It didn't have to be those things to be COMPLETELY enjoyable. It had me belly laughing out loud many times. The dialog was so witty, with many comedic surprises. I'm an older lady who watches a lot of movies so it's sort of hard to surprise me. The comedy was just SMART and so perfectly timed...the acting is really good. Even with a simple, little story it will have you completely entertained and the movie will fly by.
43 people found this helpful
JmesReviewed in the United States on March 3, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
I laughed so much
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One of the funniest movies I've seen in quite some time. I absolutely adore Ricky Gervais in this, and he and Tea Leoni seem to have great chemistry together, especially during a dinner scene. I almost wonder if Tea wasn't genuinely laughing at Ricky's witty comments. I laughed so much and cried towards the end. Romantic comedy with so much more kick than the generic Rom-coms. It really is a special movie, one I'll enjoy re-watching again. British humor for the win.
35 people found this helpful
William David ChelonisReviewed in the United States on November 15, 2017
5.0 out of 5 stars
Charlie?
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Ricky Gervais is almost, not quite, but VERY nearly there, almost a modern day Charlie Chaplin for sure. Gets you to really laugh and cry in the same film. So totally brilliant. I love that and though Charlie was way outside my generation I saw his films enough to really, truly appreciate that to know that this was at least somewhat in that style but in Ricky's own unique special style instead. It's a true genius of writing here for sure. Now some may not know that in real life he's admitted to being an atheist and doesn't believe in ghosts so this is even a more incredible work after knowing all that about him as a person. I mean, really, wow. To set aside your beliefs for even just a little while to make a beautiful film like this is spectacularly amazing. You just have to think about it. In real life he discards the belief in ghosts completely and the afterlife and to make something like this ANYWAY?? Just beautiful. Just absolutely beautiful. I highly recommend it. Now you look at his final "Office" scene and you'll know that for sure. So SAD. Tear jerking scene after all so much comedy. I feel in my heart he was trying as best he could to follow Charlie Chaplin. To get a laugh AND a cry out of you in the same flick.
20 people found this helpful
Original Toe KneeReviewed in the United States on March 5, 2020
5.0 out of 5 stars
Wow... what a movie
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It's early in the morning, 6 am... this movie kept me company while I slugged it out building shelving in my storage area... between work sessions, I would take breaks and watch this film gradually finishing it just now. What a pleasing experience! Very enjoyable, finishes on an up note, but doesn't define itself at the end let's you dream your own nex phase for the characters created by this experience...this is why I watch movies, by the way, to get a sense of being brought back to life just a little bit through an experience... Tea Leone is incredible as usual, Ricky Gervais, Greg Kinear, also... a fine cinematographer, director and great writing... but most of all, a film that reveals eventually the goodness in human to human comfort...an awesome reminder for this time in my life... obviously I recommend this one. No spoiler alert.... I am glad the description didn't blow the surprises. neither will I... enjoy.
8 people found this helpful
Gabrielle LichtermanReviewed in the United States on December 26, 2018
5.0 out of 5 stars
Worth a repeat viewing
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It had been years since I watched this move, but I needed something to occupy my time on the treadmill and it was included in my Prime Video membership, so I was like, "Why not?" And I'm so glad I did. I forgot how witty the writing is! And the acting is really sharp. Together with a tight storyline, this really made my workout so much easier. I highly recommend it if you need a laugh. After all the tedious dreck being churned out of Hollywood lately, it was refreshing to turn to an older film and rediscover talented writing, directing and acting in a hilarious comedy that even has a heartwarming message.
12 people found this helpful
DGGReviewed in the United States on January 5, 2020
4.0 out of 5 stars
A very funny movie!
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I generally don't like Ricky Gervais' style of British comedy. But I have to admit that I liked him in this one!

As an angry fed up dentist, he showed the perfect amount of disgust at all the inferior people he had to tolerate in his life. He didn't realize it was his attitude that made his life dismal, not the people. That part alone was hilarious as he quipped constantly in irritating tones about what he was having to endure. Some of the best movie lines he had was when he was being sarcastic to someone else.

But after he dies for a short time in an operation, he gets the power to see ghosts. He learns there are tons of them all around us in our everyday lives. People who are stuck here till they fulfill their final tasks. But no human sees them.

As they find out that he is a human that can now see them, they all want him to help them finish their task so they can move on. They bother him night and day. But he's not having it. As much as he hated his fellow living humans he disdains the ghosts even more. But he sort of makes a truce with one of them to try to solve his issues of leaving his marriage undone so to speak.

As he starts to fulfill the ghost's task of meeting and helping his wife, our dentist falls in love with her himself. And of course now things are even more fouled up. The rest of the movie deals with not only the relationship he makes with the ghost's wife (Tea Leoni) and how he helps them but also how he learns to accept living humans more too.

This is a very funny movie that I would recommend. It did get pretty slow with all the relationship stuff near the middle and I deducted one star for that.
4 people found this helpful
William PorterReviewed in the United States on June 2, 2014
4.0 out of 5 stars
Gentle, touching and hilarious
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There are a lot of ghosts in this movie, and I am not just talking about the characters. I'm thinking of the ghost of Shrek, or the Jack Nicholson character in As Good as it Gets, or perhaps even Ebenezer Scrooge -- especially Bill Murray's turbo-charged portrayal of the old humbug in the movie Scrooged. Like these characters in stories from the past, the main character of Ghost Town, played by Ricky Gervais, is an antisocial misanthrope. In the course of the movie, his heart opens up and he is saved -- by love. All pretty standard, in general terms.

But the specifics are somewhat novel. Gervais' character, Dr Pincus, dies temporarily during a colonoscopy that goes off the rails, and when he is released from the hospital, he discovers that he can see and hear ghosts -- a fact that horrifies him but excites the ghosts, because they have "unresolved issues" that they need somebody who's living to help them with.

The key thing is that this gentle story is told really well. The plot has some delightful symmetries. At first it seems as if the main character has been made a dentist simply so we can see him stuffing things into his patients' mouths to shut them up. But no, the plot turns on his occupation: He is able to make a dental diagnosis after looking at the teeth of an Egyptian mummy that makes it possible for him to get close to the lovely Tea Leoni. We learn the touching back stories of several of the ghosts.

But in the end, this is a comedy and a very good one. My wife and I laughed along with our nineteen-year old daughter from one scene to another. The scene in the hospital where Gervais learns from the doctor and the hospital's lawyer that he was technically dead for seven minutes ("less than seven minutes," the lawyer corrects) is a side-splitting classic, but there are plenty of great scenes. It's not quite a five-star comedy like, oh, several of Bill Murray's greatest hits: What About Bob? or Scrooged, or Groundhog Day, or Rushmore. But it's a totally solid four-star effort.

Two small notes -- one positive, one negative.

The positive has to do with the character of Tea Leoni's new boyfriend/fiancé. We are introduced to him through the eyes of Greg Kinnear, Leoni's recently-dead husband, who is, of course, jealous of his replacement. So we think at first that the new boyfriend is a fraud or a gold-digger or something worse. But he's not. He is instead exactly what he appears to be: a humorless guy, maybe even a bit pompous, but in the end, a good and decent man.

The negative has to do with a single word. We watched Ghost Town again recently after seeing another wonderful indie film, Today's Special, which stars Aasif Mandvi (Ghost Town, Today's Special, The Proposal, The Dictator, Spiderman 2). Mandvi plays a small but important part in Ghost Town as the other dentist that Ricky Gervais shares an office with. Mandvi's gentle humanitarian Hindu dentist is a perfect foil to the people-hating Gervais. And so it's appropriate that it is Mandvi who finally gives Gervais the diagnosis that he desperately needs to hear: that he's a jerk. Unfortunately, the writers nodded here, because the line that Mandvi, if he were real, would have uttered ("You're a jerk") is badly marred by the addition of an f-bomb ("You're an f-ing jerk"). Utterly inappropriate to Mandvi's character and jarring. It's a pathetic commentary on our society that Hollywood writers feel the need to avoid that dreaded PG rating.

But now you've been warned about that -- and it's just about the only false-step in an otherwise very sure-footed story. I recommend it.
25 people found this helpful
TeriReviewed in the United States on August 10, 2021
5.0 out of 5 stars
GHOST TOWN (2008)
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Dr Bertram Pincus (Ricky Gervais) is a dentist who can see and talk with ghosts. Gwen (Téa Leoni), is a professional Egyptomologist and is Frank's beautiful young widow. Frank (Greg Kinnear) is Gwen's recently deceased husband, who keeps appearing to Pincus to help him break the engagement because he suspects Richard (Bill Campbell), a human rights lawyer, is marrying Gwen only for her money. Pncus is anti-social. He hates people and annoys the dead people he sees. He was invited to a dinner with Gwen and Richard, where he finds Richard is not bad after all. Pincus starts to know Gwen. They became friends. He starts to fall in love with her. He starts to change also. He starts to help the ghosts solve their respective problems. Gwen accepts a job offer in Egypt, so she broke the engagement with Richard to avoid complications in their relationship. With this knowledge, Frank is happy but surprised he is still around. Pincus deduces that Frank cannot leave because Gwen has not let him go yet. Then Pincus got hit by a bus. Pincus, now a ghost himself, watches with Frank on the street, saw Gwen sobbing intensely over him. Frank realizes Gwen loves Pincus, so he gives him a useful advise in case he is resuscitated. After saying this, Frank finally leaves earth. Pincus recovers. Gwen visits him in his clinic. He tells Gwen of Frank's real nightmare—that of losing his way home, and it's the truth. She believes him. NICE STORY. PEARLS OF WISDOM: ONLY A LIFE LIVED FOR OTHERS IS WORTH LIVING (ENSTEIN).
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