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Quotes.net

Poltergeist

Robbie: I got beat up once by three kids. They took my lunch money. Maybe they got hit by a truck, and they're upstairs right now.

Tangina: There is no death. It is only a transition to a different sphere of consciousness.

Tangina: It lies to her. It tells her things only a child can understand. It's been using her to restrain the others. To her, it simply is another child. To us, it is The Beast.

Carol Anne: They're here.

Diane: Sweetheart, last night, when you said "They're here.'...

Carol Anne: Can I take my goldfish to school?

Diane: Sweetheart, do you remember last night when you woke up, and you said "They're here.'?

Carol Anne: Uh huh

Diane: Well, who did you mean?

Carol Anne: The TV People.

Robbie: She's stoned.

Dana: Oh yeah? What do you know about it?

Robbie: More than you. Ask Dad.

Diane: TV people?

Carol Anne: Uh-huh.

Diane: Do you see them?

Carol Anne: Uh-uh. Do you?

Diane: Uh-uh.

Tangina: This house is clean.

Diane: You were saying about poltergeist.

Dr. Lesh: Poltergeists are usually associated with an individual. Hauntings seem to be connected with an area. A house usually.

Marty: Poltergeist disturbances are fairly short duration. Perhaps a couple of months. Hauntings can go on for years.

Diane: Are you telling me that all of this could just suddenly end at any time?

Dr. Lesh: Yes, it could. Unless it's a haunting. But hauntings don't usually revolve around living people.

Diane: Then we don't have much time, Dr. Lesh, because my daughter is alive somewhere inside this house.

Steve: Tomorrow I'm going to call someone.

Diane: Like who? I looked in the Yellow Pages. "Furniture Movers" we've got; "Strange Phenomenon", there's no listing.

Tangina: Help me tie this around my waist.

Diane: What do you think you're doing?

Tangina: I'm going in after her.

Diane: She won't come to you. Let me go.

Tangina: You've never done this before.

Diane: Neither have you.

Tangina: You're right. You go.

Diane: DON'T TOUCH MY BABY.

Dana: WHAT'S HAPPENING?

Diane: Bastards. She's just a baby. Help her. Help her. Can you hear what's happening? Help her.

Dr. Lesh: Well, I'm off. Now these tapes, I am going to have to present them you know.

Steve: But please, not on "60 Minutes".

Diane: Or "That's Incredible."

Diane: Carol Anne - listen to me. Do NOT go into the light. Stop where you are. Turn away from it. Don't even look at it.

Diane: We were wondering if you had experienced any... disturbances?

Ben Tuthill: What kind of disturbances?

Diane: Oh, you know... dishes or furniture, moving around by themselves.

Dr. Lesh: Some people believe that when you die there is a wonderful light. As bright as the sun but it doesn't hurt to look into it. All the answers to all the questions you want to know are inside that light. And when you walk to it... you become a part of it forever. Now, some people die, but they don't know they're gone.

Tangina: Now clear your minds. It knows what scares you. It has from the very beginning. Don't give it any help, it knows too much already.

Diane: Oh, Jesus. Don't do that, honey. You don't want to see mommy lying in a cigar box covered with licorice.

Diane: She just moved through me. My God. I felt her. I can smell her. It's her. It's her. Smell my clothes. It's her. She's all over me. It's her. She's on me. It's her. I felt her. It's her. It is. It's... it is... it's my baby. It's my baby. She went through my soul.

Robbie: The storm is getting closer.

Dr. Lesh: Diane, the determination is to whether your home is haunted is... is not very easy. I... what I meant to say was it might very well be a poltergeist intrusion instead of a classic haunting.

Diane: Ahhh... this is probably going to be seem a little strange. We hear better on this channel. Don't ask me why. Well... ah... I guess I will call her. Carol Anne. Ah... i t's mommy, sweetheart. Ah, we want to talk to you. Please answer me baby. Please answer me. Please talk to me, bunny.

Marty: Look at the dog.

Diane: Are you with us now? Can you... can you say hello to daddy?

Carol Anne: Hello, daddy.

Steve: Hello, sweetpea.

Diane: It's mommy, sweetheart.

Carol Anne: Hello, mommy.

Diane: Hello, baby. Can you see me? Can you see mommy?

Carol Anne: Mommy? Where are you? Where are you?

Diane: We're home, baby. We're home. Can you find me? Can you find a way to us, baby?

Carol Anne: Mommy, where are you? I can't find you. I can't. I'm afraid of the Light, mommy. I'm afraid of the Light.

Dr. Lesh: I'm leaving Ryan here with you. Marty won't be coming back. I... I'm coming back. And I'll bring some help. Try not to worry.

Steve: Not much room for pool is there?

Teague: We own all the land. We have already made arrangements to relocating the cemetery.

Steve: Oh, you're kidding. Oh, come on. I mean that's sacrilege, isn't it?

Teague: Oh, don't worry about it. After all, it's not ancient tribal burial ground. It's just... people. Besides we have done it before.

Tangina: Cross over children. All are welcome. All welcome. Go into the Light. There is peace and serenity in the Light.

Tangina: Y'all mind hanging back? You're jamming my frequency.

Diane: Get away from my baby.

Tangina: No. no. no... Go down stairs and wait by Ryan and pull. Only when I say so, Only When I say.

Steve: You son of a b*tch. You moved the cemetery, but you left the bodies, didn't you? You son of a b*tch, you left the bodies and you only moved the head stones. You only moved the head stones. Why? Why?

Steve: You know Teague, he won't take "Go to Hell" for an answer.

Diane: What are you going to do?

Steve: I'm gonna give him directions.

Diane: Smell the mimosa.

Steve: Well you better cut a bouquet and take it with you, because we're not staying.

Ben Tuthill: Mosquito ever suck on you, son?

Pugsley: I don't know, Dad.

Tangina: You can't choose between life and death when we're dealing with what is in between. Now tell her before it's too late.

Diane: Run to the light, baby. Mommy is in the light.

Tangina: Tell her you're waiting for her.

Diane: Mommy's waiting for you in the light.

Diane: I hate you for that.

Robbie: Hey Mom! When it rots can we dig up the bones?

Carol Anne: No more!

Carol Anne: Hello? What do you look like? Talk louder, I can't hear you! Hey, hello! Hello, I can't hear you! Five. Yes. Yes. I don't know. I don't know.

Robbie: Faster! Faster!

Steve: Don't look back!

Diane: Sweetheart, last night, when you said "They're here"?

Diane: Sweetheart, do you remember last night when you woke up, and you said "They're here.'?

Carol Anne: Uh huh.

Diane: Well, who did you mean, who's here?

Carol Anne: The "TV People".

Dana: Ask Dad.

Carol Anne: Ask Dad.

All: Ask Dad. Ask Dad.

Robbie: Ask Dad. Ask Dad. [glass breaks by itself & spills all over Dana's homework] Not my mess.

Dana: Thanks a lot, jerko. I've got class in 20 minutes.

Diane: [looking at rearranged, stacked chairs] "TV people"?

Robbie: I don't like the tree, Dad.

Steve: That's an old tree, it's been around here a long time. I think it was here before my company built the neighborhood.

Robbie: I don't like its arms. [whispering] It knows I live here, doesn't it?

Steve: It knows everything about us, Rob, that's why I built the house next to it, so it could protect us: you and Carol Anne, and Dana and your mom and me ... That's a very wise old tree.

Robbie: It looks at me. It knows I live here.

Steve: Something's funny goin' on here next door. Something, uh --

Diane: We were wondering if maybe you had experienced any disturbances lately? ...Oh you know, like dishes or furniture moving around by themselves.

Mr. Teague: One of your children was born in your house, huh?

Steve: Carol Anne.

Mr. Teague: I understand that she's missed a lot of school. One of Trask's daughters is in the same nursery class ...I didn't see her.

Steve: She's around.

Mr. Teague: Listen, I wonder if you'd mind if I asked you a question? Are you thinking about leaving Cuesta Verde?...How's that spot for a bay window, huh?

Steve: Yeah, well, it's pretty nice if you're living up here, but uh, not so great down there in the valley having to look at a bunch of homes cutting into the hillside.

Mr. Teague: But you don't have to live in the valley anymore.

Steve: What are you saying?

Mr. Teague: We're starting Phase Five right here where we're standing. All of this can be your master bedroom suite. That can be your view. Interested?

Steve: Oh, Mr. Teague, you know, that's a generous offer. I'm just not a developer.

Mr. Teague: You're responsible for 42 percent of sales. That's almost half of everything down there. Almost 70 million dollars worth of dwelling and properties. Now that's a whole generation of security that nobody can put a price-tag on. Now look, I know we should have made you a full partner three years ago. Well, I don't want to lose you now.

Steve: Not much room for a pool, is there?

Mr. Teague: We own all the land. We've already made arrangements for relocating the cemetery.

Steve: Oh you're kidding. Oh come on. That's sacrilegious, isn't it?

Mr. Teague: Oh, don't worry about it. After all, it's not ancient tribal burial ground. It's just people. Besides, we've done it before.

Steve: When?

Mr. Teague: In '76, right down there.

Steve: Cuesta Verde?

Mr. Teague: All three hundred acres. Well, let me tell you, it was quite a deal!

Steve: No, no. But I never heard anything about it, though.

Mr. Teague: That's not the sort of thing one goes around advertising on a billboard or on the side of a bus. What are you worried about? Friends and relatives can visit their loved ones in Broxton Memorial Park - it's only five minutes further, for Christ's sake.

Dr. Casey: I was just about to check out the kids' bedroom, and I don't know, something took a bite out of me!

Robbie: You got bit?

Dr. Casey: Yeah, that or the worst muscle spasm in the world.

Dr. Casey: There's been some ionization flux. I'd like to make sure it's not caused by humidity coming from structural leakage, but I'm not going up there to find out. We have got much more than the paranormal episode taking place here. There's measurable physical science in this house that goes far beyond any of the creaking doors or cold spots I've ever experienced.

Dr. Lesh: The voice source on television - where is it coming from?

Ryan: The absence of a signal on the channel that is not receiving a broadcast means that it is free to receive a lot of noise from all sorts of things - like short wave, solar disturbances, car ignition sparkings -- outer space -- or inner space. Yes, what if these people had an area of bi-location in their own living room? No, I mean: if that is the way out then maybe somewhere in this house, there's a way in.

Robbie: Who are all those people?

Dr. Lesh: They're so alone. So alone.

Robbie: Where are they coming from?

Diane: I don't know.

Dr. Lesh: Would your family welcome a serious investigation of these disturbances by someone who can make first-hand observations?

Steve: Dr. Lesh, we really don't care about the disturbances -- the pounding and the flashing, the screaming ... the music. We just want you to find our little girl.

Ryan: Mr. Freeling, we'll record any psychotronic energy or event.

Dr. Lesh: Yes, Ryan photographed an extraordinary episode on a case in Redlands.

Ryan: That's right. It was a child's toy, a very small Matchbox vehicle. Rolled seven feet across a linoleum surface. The duration of the event was seven hours.

Steve: Seven hours for what?

Ryan: For the vehicle to complete the distance. Of course, this would never register on the naked eye. But I have it recorded on a time-lapse camera. It's fantastic.

Steve: -- Mm-hm --

[opens door to see objects flying around children's room]

Diane: How long have you been investigating haunted houses?

Dr. Lesh: Mrs. Freeling, the determination as to whether your home is haunted is not very easy. [A heavy teapot slides across the table by itself in front of her] I -- what I meant to say was, it might very well be a poltergeist intrusion instead of a classic haunting.

[Light flashes twice]

Diane: There's going to be two more in a couple of seconds. They always come in pairs.

Dr. Lesh: Dr. Casey.

[Casey fails to photograph the light flashes]

Diane: You got to be quicker than that around here.

Steve: There's a difference?

Ryan: It's electrical. You can smell the charge.

Dr. Lesh: Poltergeist are usually associated with an individual. Hauntings seem to be connected with an area, a house usually.

Marty: Poltergeist disturbances are of fairly short duration, perhaps a couple of months. Hauntings can go on for -- years.

Dr. Lesh: Yes, it could, unless it's a haunting. But hauntings don't usually revolve around living people.

Dr. Lesh: Some people believe that when you die, your soul goes to heaven.

Robbie: When Grandpa was dying, I looked at him in the hospital bed. And I was watching. But I didn't see anything go up out of him.

Diane: Well, his soul is invisible, Robbie. You couldn't see it.

Robbie: But how come Grandpa isn't there on television with Carol Anne?

Dr. Lesh: Some people believe that when people die, there's a wonderful light -- as bright as the sun. But it doesn't hurt to look into it. All the answers to all the questions that you ever want to know are inside that light. And when you walk to it, you become a part of it forever. (beat) And then, some people die but they -- don't know that they've gone.

Robbie: They think they're still alive?

Dr. Lesh: Yes. Maybe they didn't want to die. Maybe they weren't ready. Maybe they hadn't lived fully yet or they'd lived a long, long time and they still wanted more life. They resist going into that light, however hard the light wants them. They just -- hang around. Watch TV, watch their friends grow up -- feeling unhappy and jealous and those feelings are bad. They hurt. (beat) And then, some people just get lost on the way to the light, and they need someone to guide them to it.

Robbie: So some people get angry and throw things around - like in my bedroom?

Dr. Lesh: Yes. Just like in school. Like -- some kids are nice to you, some kids are mean.

Robbie: I got beat up once by three kids. They took my lunch money. Maybe they got hit by a truck and they're upstairs right now!

Diane: Uhhh ... this is probably going to be seem a little strange. We hear better on this channel, don't ask me why. Well, uh -- I guess I'll call her. Carol Anne? ... it's Mommy, sweetheart. We want to talk to you. Please answer me, baby. Please answer me. Please talk to me, bunny.

Marty: -- look at the dog --

Carol Anne: Hello, Daddy.

Steve: Hello, Sweetpea.

Diane: It's Mommy, sweetheart.

Carol Anne: Hello, Mommy.

Diane: Hello, baby. Can you see me? Can you see Mommy?

Dr. Lesh: Tell her to stay away from the light.

Diane: Maybe it's a way out --

Dr. Lesh: It is -- it is a way out, but not for her. Tell her, quickly.

Diane: Stay away from the light. The light is dangerous. Don't go near it. Don't even look at the light.

Carol Anne: Mommy, there's somebody here ... Mommy, somebody's coming. Mommy, help me, please! Get away from me. Leave me alone!

Diane: She just moved through me. My God, I felt her. I can smell her. It's her...She's all over me... She went through my soul.

Tangina: I'd give my strongest feeling. The point of origin is in the child's closet upstairs.

Diane: Yes, I believe that too.

Tangina: Honey, are you gonna be strong for me and for your daughter? I can do absolutely nothing without your faith in this world and your love for the children.

Diane: I will, believe me I will.

Tangina: And will you do anything I ask, even if it comes contrary to your beliefs as a human being and a Christian?

Diane: Yes, I promise, please.

Tangina: There is no death. There is only a transition to a different sphere of consciousness. Carol Anne is not like those she's with. She's a living presence in their spiritual, earth-bound plane. They're attracted to the one thing about her that's different from themselves. Her life-force - it is very strong. It gives off its own illumination. It is a light that implies life and memory of love and home and earthly pleasures, something they desperately desire but can't have anymore. Right now, she's the closest thing to that, and that is a terrible distraction from the real light that has finally come for them. Do you understand me?These souls who for whatever reason are not at rest are also not aware that they have passed on. They're not part of consciousness as we know it. They're in a perpetual dream state, a nightmare from which they cannot wake. Inside this spectral light is salvation - a window to the next plane. They must pass through this membrane with friends who are waiting to guide them to new destinies. Carol Anne must help them cross over, and she will only hear her mother's voice. Now, hold onto your selves. There's one more thing - a terrible presence is in there with her. So much rage, so much betrayal. I've never sensed anything like it. I don't know what hovers over this house, but it was strong enough to punch a hole into this world and take your daughter away from you. It keeps Carol Anne very close to it and away from the spectral light. It lies to her. It says things only a child can understand. He's been using her to restrain the others. To her, it simply is another child. To us, it is the Beast. Now let's go get your daughter.

Dana: Wh-What's happening? What's happening? WHAT'S HAPPENING?!

Steven: (Drives up to his panicking older daughter) Dana! Get in the car!

Robbie: Daddy! Drive away! Drive away!

Diane: Steven, hurry!

Dana: Daddy!

(Dana dives into the back seat of the car next to Robbie and E. Buzz)

Robbie: The house is coming! Faster! Faster!

Steven: (To Diane who briefly looks back at the house as they drive off) Don't look back!

Diane Freeling: Sleepwalking ... 'Nocturnal somnambulism.' You know what? You know what? I will bet you anything it's genetic. I mean, Carol Anne last night, and all last week, you know—and me when I was ten. You know, I once slept-walked four blocks, and I fell asleep in the back of this guy's car. He drove all the way to work before discovering me. Oh God, I woke up, I started screaming. People came running, from everywhere. They called the cops, the cops came, they took this poor dude downtown. My father, Big—he, Big Ed has me examined for like bruises and hickeys, you name it, Oh God, I was so embarrassed. (beat) Oh, sh*t, Steven—what if we, like, dig the pool, you know—and Carol Anne sleepwalks and she falls into it before there's any water?

Diane Freeling: Reach back into our past when you used to have an open mind, remember that? Now try to use that for the next couple of minutes...

Diane Freeling: Run to the light, Carol Anne. Run as fast as you can! Mommy is in the light! Mommy is waiting for you in the light!!!!!!!

Diane Freeling: (To the Beast blocking the way to Carol Anne and Robbie's bedroom) No, don't touch my babies!

Diane Freeling: It's like, it's like, there's this tickling, you know, right in here. And it starts to pull you. The tickling pulls you. And all of a sudden, it's like there's no air except that you can breathe. And you're getting pulled along and --

Steve Freeling: A three meter board is like an air pocket, sweetheart. When you dive off, it's like free-falling.

Steve Freeling: We keep the room locked off from the rest of the house. Robbie's sleeping with us now—Dana, she spends a lot of time with friends.

Steve Freeling: So. What side of the rainbow are we working tonight, Dr. Lesh? Is this your Knott's Berry Farm solution?

Steve Freeling: Nobody's goin' in the kitchen until I know what's happening.

Carol Anne Freeling: I can hear you Mommy. Where are you?

Carol Anne Freeling: [readying her deceased pet bird for burial in his eternal cigar box] For when he's hungry...for when he's lonely...and when it's nighttime.

Carol Anne Freeling: Can I get a goldfish now?

Carol Anne Freeling: Can I take my goldfish to school?

Carol Anne Freeling: The "TV People".

Carol Anne Freeling: Mommy, where are you? I can't find you. I can't. I'm afraid of the Light, mommy. I'm afraid of the Light.

Carol Anne Freeling: Mommy, there's somebody here ... Mommy, somebody's coming. Mommy, help me, please! Get away from me. Leave me alone!

Carol Anne Freeling: [puts a twizzler in the Tweety's coffin] For when he's hungry.

Carol Anne Freeling: I want pepperoni pizza!

Carol Anne Freeling: Hi, Daddy.

Carol Anne Freeling: [Burying the canary, Carol Anne says a prayer] Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep.

Carol Anne Freeling: Mommy didn't cook any dinner.

Carol Anne Freeling: You promised pizza.

Robbie Freeling: Is that our house?! Who are all those people?! Where are they coming from?!

Robbie Freeling: If I got killed, I could visit her and show her how to get back here. You could tie a rope around me and hold it tight. Then somebody could come and get us and we could live somewhere else.

Robbie Freeling: (While tearing the Clown doll apart repeatedly) I HATE YOU, I HATE YOU!! YOU'RE A MURDERER!! I HATE YOU!!

Robbie Freeling: (Repeatedly while trying to open the bedroom door as the Beast transforms his closet into a throat-like monster) Mom! Mom! Open the door! Mom!

Dr. Lesh: Parapsychology isn't something you master in. There are no certificates of graduation. No licenses to practice... I am a professional psychologist who spends most of my time engaged in this ghostly hobby, which makes me I suppose the most irresponsible woman of my age that I know.

Dr. Lesh: It isn't over. I'm absolutely terrified... It's all the things that we don't understand. I feel like the proto-human coming out of the forest primeval and seeing the moon for the first time and throwing rocks at it.

Dr. Lesh: There's going to be two more in a couple of seconds. They always come in pairs.

Dr. Lesh: It is—it is a way out, but not for her. Tell her, quickly.

Tangina Barrons: This house has many hearts.

Tangina Barrons: Your daughter is alive and in this house.

Tangina Barrons: [Steven is trying to pull Diane out of the closet] Steven, not yet!

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Quotes For Aunt

Quotes For Aunt

61 Poltergeist Quotes to Instill a Sense of Fear and Wonder

Florence Henderson

January 12, 2023

poltergeist movie famous line

Poltergeist quotes refer to the iconic quotes from the classic 1982 horror film Poltergeist, which tells the story of a family that is terrorized by supernatural forces. The most memorable quotes from the movie come from the family’s youngest daughter, Carol Anne, who utters the famous line, “They’re here” when she notices the presence of the ghosts in their home. Other memorable quotes from the movie include the ghostly voices that chant, “This house is clean,” and the ominous warning, “They’re coming for you next.” These quotes have become iconic in the horror genre and continue to be referenced in popular culture.

61 Best Poltergiest Quotes

61 Best Poltergiest Quotes

“You think you can keep me in a bottle like some genie? I’m the ghost with the most, babe.”
“I’m a ghost, I’m not gonna hurt ya. I’m just here to do the opposite of hurt ya.”
“You can’t just turn on creativity like a faucet. You have to be in the right mood.”
“I’m a ghost, and I’m spooky. I’m here to give you a fright.”
“You can’t escape your destiny.”
“This is my house now!”
“My name is Betelgeuse, and I’m here to haunt your house.”
“Why so serious?”
“Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice!”
“It’s showtime!”
“Nice foyer.”
“I’m the ghost with the most, babe.”
“You don’t have to be afraid of me. I’m a ghost with the most, not a monster with the least.”
“It’s time to make some mischief.”
“Nice place you got here. I’m gonna take it.”
“I’m the ghost with the most, not the monster with the least.”
“I’m the ghost with the most, babe. You better believe it.”
“Hey, I’m the ghost with the most!”
“I’m not a monster, I’m a ghost with the most.”
“Let’s turn this joint upside down.”
“I’m here to haunt your house, not to haunt your heart.”
“What’s a ghost gotta do to get some respect around here?”
“Let’s get this haunting started.”
“Glad to be of service.”
“You can’t keep a good ghost down.”
“I’m a ghost with a plan.”
“This house is mine now.”
“You’re gonna be sorry you ever met me.”
“Don’t mind me, I’m just here to haunt your house.”
“It’s my way or the highway.”
“You don’t want to mess with me. I’m the ghost with the most.”
“It’s time to get spooky!”
“This house is mine now, and I’m gonna haunt it.”
“It’s time for some spooky fun!”
“This is gonna be a wild ride.”
“Ready or not, here I come!”
“This is gonna be a wild ride. Buckle up!”
“Let’s get this haunting started!”

Poltergeist quotes are an excellent source of inspiration, humor, and wisdom. Whether you’re looking for a funny quote to share with your friends or a deep thought to ponder, these quotes have something for everyone. From the wise words of the wise old tree to the spooky warnings of the poltergeist, these quotes offer insight into the mysterious world of the supernatural. No matter your beliefs, these quotes are sure to leave you feeling inspired and ready to face the unknown.

  • “Poltergeist” Movie Quotes (IMDb)
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Poltergeist (1982 film)

Poltergeist is a 1982 film about a Southern California family whose home is haunted by a host of ghosts.

  • 1 Diane Freeling
  • 2 Steve Freeling
  • 3 Carol Anne Freeling
  • 4 Robbie Freeling
  • 6 Tangina Barrons
  • 10 External links

Diane Freeling [ edit ]

  • Sleepwalking ... 'Nocturnal somnambulism.' You know what? You know what? I will bet you anything it's genetic. I mean, Carol Anne last night, and all last week, you know—and me when I was ten. You know, I once slept-walked four blocks, and I fell asleep in the back of this guy's car. He drove all the way to work before discovering me. Oh God, I woke up, I started screaming. People came running, from everywhere. They called the cops, the cops came, they took this poor dude downtown. My father, Big—he, Big Ed has me examined for like bruises and hickeys, you name it, Oh God, I was so embarrassed. (beat) Oh, shit, Steven—what if we, like, dig the pool, you know—and Carol Anne sleepwalks and she falls into it before there's any water?
  • Reach back into our past when you used to have an open mind, remember that? Now try to use that for the next couple of minutes...
  • Run to the light, Carol Anne . Run as fast as you can! Mommy is in the light! Mommy is waiting for you in the light!!!!!!!
  • You bastard, she's just a baby! Help her, help her. Can't you hear what's happening?! Help her.
  • ( To the Beast blocking the way to Carol Anne and Robbie's bedroom ) No, don't touch my babies!
  • ( To the Beast while running upstairs to save Carol Anne and Robbie after escaping the pool ) Get away from my babies! Get away!
  • It's like, it's like, there's this tickling, you know, right in here. And it starts to pull you. The tickling pulls you. And all of a sudden, it's like there's no air except that you can breathe. And you're getting pulled along and --
  • She just moved through me. My God. I felt her. I can smell her. It's her. It's her. Smell my clothes. It's her. She's all over me. It's her. She's on me. It's her. I felt her. It's her. It is. It's...it is...it's my baby. It's my baby. She went through my soul.

Steve Freeling [ edit ]

  • A three meter board is like an air pocket, sweetheart. When you dive off, it's like free-falling.
  • We keep the room locked off from the rest of the house. Robbie's sleeping with us now—Dana, she spends a lot of time with friends.
  • So. What side of the rainbow are we working tonight, Dr. Lesh? Is this your Knott's Berry Farm solution?
  • [bodies begin shooting out of his house & yard; to Teague] You son of a bitch! You moved the cemetery, but you left the bodies, didn't you?! You son of a bitch, you left the bodies and you only moved the headstones! YOU ONLY MOVED THE HEADSTONES! WHY?! WHY?!
  • Nobody's goin' in the kitchen until I know what's happening.

Carol Anne Freeling [ edit ]

  • [to the TV] Hello? What do you look like? Talk louder, I can't hear you!!!! Hey, hello! Hello , I can't hear you! 5. Yes! Yes. I don't know. I don't know.
  • Note: ranked #69 in the American Film Institute's list of the top 100 movie quotations in American cinema .
  • I can hear you Mommy. Where are you?
  • [readying her deceased pet bird for burial in his eternal cigar box] For when he's hungry...for when he's lonely...and when it's nighttime.
  • Can I get a goldfish now?
  • Can I take my goldfish to school?
  • The "TV People".
  • Mommy, where are you? I can't find you. I can't. I'm afraid of the Light, mommy. I'm afraid of the Light.
  • Mommy, there's somebody here ... Mommy, somebody's coming. Mommy, help me, please! Get away from me. Leave me alone!
  • ( First lines of the movie ) Hello? What do you look like? Talk louder, I can't hear you! Hey, hello! Hello, I can't hear you! Five. Yes. Yes. I don't know. I don't know.
  • [puts a twizzler in the Tweety's coffin] For when he's hungry.
  • I want pepperoni pizza!
  • [ Burying the canary, Carol Anne says a prayer ] Now I lay me down to sleep, I pray the Lord my soul to keep.
  • Mommy didn't cook any dinner.
  • You promised pizza.
  • ( While the Beast transforms her closet into a throat-like monster ) No more.

Robbie Freeling [ edit ]

  • Is that our house?! Who are all those people?! Where are they coming from?!
  • If I got killed, I could visit her and show her how to get back here. You could tie a rope around me and hold it tight. Then somebody could come and get us and we could live somewhere else.
  • I got beat up once by three kids ... They took my lunch money. Maybe they got hit by a truck, and they're upstairs right now!
  • The house is coming!
  • Mom, when it rots, can we dig it up and see the bones?
  • ( While tearing the Clown doll apart repeatedly ) I HATE YOU, I HATE YOU!! YOU'RE A MURDERER!! I HATE YOU!!
  • ( Repeatedly while trying to open the bedroom door as the Beast transforms his closet into a throat-like monster ) Mom! Mom! Open the door! Mom!

Dr. Lesh [ edit ]

  • Parapsychology isn't something you master in. There are no certificates of graduation. No licenses to practice... I am a professional psychologist who spends most of my time engaged in this ghostly hobby, which makes me I suppose the most irresponsible woman of my age that I know.
  • It isn't over. I'm absolutely terrified ... It's all the things that we don't understand. I feel like the proto-human coming out of the forest primeval and seeing the moon for the first time and throwing rocks at it.
  • I'm leaving Ryan here with you. Marty won't be coming back. I am coming back. And I'll bring some help. Try not to worry.
  • Would your family welcome a serious investigation of these disturbances by someone who can make first-hand observations?
  • Mrs. Freeling, the determination as to whether your home is haunted is not very easy. [A heavy teapot slides across the table in front of her] I -- what I meant to say was, it might very well be a poltergeist intrusion instead of a classic haunting.
  • There's going to be two more in a couple of seconds. They always come in pairs.
  • Poltergeist are usually associated with an individual. Hauntings seem to be connected with an area, a house usually.
  • It is—it is a way out, but not for her. Tell her, quickly.
  • The voice source on television - where is it coming from?

Tangina Barrons [ edit ]

  • This house has many hearts.
  • Your daughter is alive and in this house.
  • Y'all mind hanging back? You're jammin' the frequencies.
  • Now, clear your minds. It knows what scares you. It has from the very beginning. Don't give it any help, it knows too much already.
  • No, no, no... Go downstairs and wait by Ryan and pull. Only when I say so, only when I say.
  • Cross over, children. All are welcome. All welcome. Go into the light...there's peace and serenity in the light.
  • [Steven is trying to pull Diane out of the closet] Steven, not yet!
  • This house is clean.

Dialogue [ edit ]

Tangina : There is no death. There is only a transition to a different sphere of consciousness. Carol Anne is not like those she's with. She's a living presence in their spiritual, earth-bound plane. They're attracted to the one thing about her that's different from themselves. Her life-force - it is very strong. It gives off its own illumination. It is a light that implies life and memory of love and home and earthly pleasures, something they desperately desire but can't have anymore. Right now, she's the closest thing to that, and that is a terrible distraction from the real light that has finally come for them. Do you understand me?

These souls who for whatever reason are not at rest are also not aware that they have passed on. They're not part of consciousness as we know it. They're in a perpetual dream state, a nightmare from which they cannot wake. Inside this spectral light is salvation - a window to the next plane. They must pass through this membrane with friends who are waiting to guide them to new destinies. Carol Anne must help them cross over, and she will only hear her mother's voice. Now, hold onto your selves. There's one more thing - a terrible presence is in there with her. So much rage, so much betrayal. I've never sensed anything like it. I don't know what hovers over this house, but it was strong enough to punch a hole into this world and take your daughter away from you. It keeps Carol Anne very close to it and away from the spectral light. It lies to her. It says things only a child can understand. He's been using her to restrain the others. To her, it simply is another child. To us, it is the Beast. Now let's go get your daughter.

( Last lines )

Taglines [ edit ]

  • From a dimension beyond the living, a terror to scare you to death.
  • They're here.
  • It knows what scares you.
  • Some things have to be believed to be seen.
  • The first real ghost story.
  • [from trailer] The house looks just like the one next to it, and the one next to that, and the one next to that. A young couple live in it, with their three children... and something more.
  • [from trailer] Now Steven Spielberg crosses a frightening new threshold, into a world within our own.
  • [from trailer] Its form is revealed. Its focus is clear. And the games are over.
  • [from TV spot] Don't adjust the television set. Your reception's fine. But in their new suburban home, the Freeling family has tuned into something beyond our world.
  • [from TV spot] All across the country, by 4am, TV screens go blank. The late night show is over. The Freeling home is different. Although nothing is on, something is there.
  • [from TV spot] You'll never look at your television set the same way again.

Cast [ edit ]

  • Craig T. Nelson - Steve Freeling
  • JoBeth Williams - Diane Freeling
  • Beatrice Straight - Dr. Lesh
  • Dominique Dunne - Dana Freeling
  • Oliver Robins - Robbie Freeling
  • Heather O'Rourke - Carol Anne Freeling
  • Zelda Rubinstein - Tangina Barrons, Clairvoyant
  • Martin Casella - Dr. Marty Casey
  • James Karen - Mr. Teague

External links [ edit ]

  • Poltergeist quotes at the Internet Movie Database
  • Poltergeist at Rotten Tomatoes
  • Poltergeist at Filmsite.org

poltergeist movie famous line

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Characters in ‘Poltergeist’

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Movie Poltergeist

“- Amy Bowen: We didn't know where else to go. - Dr. Claire Powell: You did the right thing by coming here . - Amy Bowen: Maddie was the first one to notice things.” Rosemarie DeWitt - Amy Bowen Jane Adams - Dr. Brooke Powell
“We just want our daughter back. We just want our daughter back.” Sam Rockwell - Eric Bowen
“Hey, hey she has a job! You kids are her job!” Sam Rockwell - Eric Bowen
“- Madison Bowen: Oh, how will you get here ? - Griffin Bowen: Who are you talking to?” Kennedi Clements - Madison Bowen Kyle Catlett - Griffin Bowen
“You're all I've got, so let's do it.” Sam Rockwell - Eric Bowen
“First things first, your daughter is here and she's alive. This development was built on a cemetery. This isn't just a few pissed off spirits we're dealing with. It's a poltergeist.” Jared Harris - Carrigan Burke
“- Griffin Bowen: Dad ? - Eric Bowen: Yes? - Amy Bowen: [scared by the kid entering] Aaah! - Eric Bowen: Hey... What's up buddy ? - Griffin Bowen: There's something upstairs. I think there's something in my room . - Eric Bowen: I'll be up there in a second. - Eric Bowen: So much for my luck. Don't move. - Amy Bowen: Ok. - Eric Bowen: I'll be right...” (continue) (continue reading) Kyle Catlett - Griffin Bowen Sam Rockwell - Eric Bowen Rosemarie DeWitt - Amy Bowen
“- Dr. Brooke Powell: Is everything alright? - Carrigan Burke: If it was, I wouldn't be here .” Jane Adams - Dr. Brooke Powell Jared Harris - Carrigan Burke

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36 facts about the movie poltergeist.

Delia Toledo

Delia Toledo

Published: 04 Oct 2023

36-facts-about-the-movie-poltergeist

Are you a fan of supernatural horror movies? If so, you’re in for a treat because today we are diving into the spooky world of the classic film, Poltergeist. Directed by Tobe Hooper and produced by Steven Spielberg, Poltergeist continues to captivate audiences with its chilling storyline and memorable characters. Released in 1982 , this iconic movie has become a cult favorite, known for its eerie atmosphere and groundbreaking special effects. In this article, we will explore 36 fascinating facts about Poltergeist, from behind-the-scenes secrets to trivia about the cast and production. So, grab your popcorn, turn down the lights , and get ready to discover some spine-tingling details about this unforgettable horror gem.

The Inspiration Behind Poltergeist

Poltergeist was inspired by Steven Spielberg’s fascination with the supernatural. The idea for the film came from Spielberg’s personal experiences with a supposedly haunted house.

The Legendary Cast

The movie features an outstanding cast, including JoBeth Williams, Craig T. Nelson, and Heather O’Rourke. These talented actors brought their characters to life and added depth to the story.

The Curse of Poltergeist

Poltergeist is surrounded by an urban legend that claims that a curse befell the cast and crew following the filming of the movie. Tragic events, including the death of a few actors, have contributed to the belief in this curse.

The Iconic “They’re Here” Line

One of the most memorable lines from the movie is “They’re here.” The line was delivered by Heather O’Rourke, who plays Carol Anne, and has since become a pop culture reference.

The Legendary Director and Writer Collaboration

Poltergeist brought together legendary director Steven Spielberg and writer/director Tobe Hooper. Their unique collaboration ensured the film would be a remarkable blend of Spielberg’s trademark storytelling and Hooper’s horror expertise.

The Poltergeist House

The iconic house in the film became synonymous with the Poltergeist franchise. Located in Simi Valley, California, it attracted numerous visitors over the years who wanted to catch a glimpse of the famous haunted house.

The Terrifying Special Effects

Poltergeist pushed the boundaries of special effects in the 1980s. The film showcased groundbreaking practical effects, including creepy puppetry and ghostly apparitions, making it a visual spectacle.

The Ghostly Clown

One of the film’s most chilling scenes involves a terrifying clown doll. This eerie prop has become an iconic symbol of the movie and continues to haunt the nightmares of many viewers.

The Unforgettable Score

The haunting and atmospheric score of Poltergeist was composed by Jerry Goldsmith. His spine-tingling music added an extra layer of suspense to the already terrifying scenes in the film.

The Poltergeist Trilogy

Poltergeist spawned two sequels, further expanding the world of the supernatural. While the sequels may not have achieved the same level of success as the original, they still hold a special place in the hearts of horror movie fans.

The Indian Burial Ground

In the film, the Freelings’ house is built on top of an Indian burial ground. This chilling concept adds a layer of depth and mystery to the supernatural occurrences throughout the movie.

The Real-Life Hauntings

During the filming of Poltergeist, some crew members claimed to have experienced strange occurrences on set. From unexplained cold spots to malfunctioning equipment, these eerie events added to the film’s mystique.

The Poltergeist Remake

In 2015, a remake of Poltergeist was released, introducing a new generation to the terrifying story. While not as critically acclaimed as the original, it still managed to captivate audiences with its modern take on the classic tale.

The Poltergeist Curse Debunked

Despite the rumors of a curse, many cast members from Poltergeist have spoken out against it. They attribute the tragedies to unfortunate coincidences rather than supernatural forces.

The Mysterious Static

In the film, Carol Anne communicates with the spirits through the television. The eerie static and distorted voices became an iconic element of Poltergeist and are often associated with paranormal phenomena.

The Terrifying Face Peel

Poltergeist is known for its shocking and gruesome moments, including one unforgettable scene where a character’s face appears to peel off in front of a mirror. The practical effects used in this scene still hold up today.

The Spectacular Box Office Success

When Poltergeist was released in 1982, it became a massive box office hit. It solidified its place in cinematic history and remains a beloved horror classic to this day.

The Authentic Child Performances

The young actors in Poltergeist, especially Heather O’Rourke, delivered incredibly authentic performances despite the film’s terrifying subject matter. Their talent added to the emotional impact of the story.

The Supernatural Influence

Poltergeist’s success paved the way for other supernatural horror films. It had a significant influence on the genre and continues to inspire filmmakers today.

The Top-Notch Production Design

The production design of Poltergeist played a crucial role in creating its chilling atmosphere. From the dark, ominous lighting to the detailed set designs, every element was carefully crafted to enhance the movie’s fright factor.

The Notable Pop Culture References

Poltergeist has left an indelible mark on pop culture, with references to the film appearing in various movies, TV shows, and even music. It has become a source of inspiration for creators in multiple mediums.

The Earning Potential

Poltergeist was not only a critical success but also a lucrative franchise. The film spawned merchandise, including action figures, posters, and even a Poltergeist video game.

The Poltergeist Documentary

In 2013, a documentary titled “Nightmare Factory” was released, chronicling the making of Poltergeist and its impact on the horror genre. It provides valuable insights into the filmmaking process and the legacy of the movie.

The Creepy Tree Scene

In one iconic scene, a tree comes to life and tries to attack the children in the film. The innovative use of practical effects and puppetry created a truly chilling and memorable moment.

The Poltergeist Legacy

Poltergeist’s impact extends beyond the movie itself. It has become a cultural touchstone, synonymous with the horror genre, and continues to captivate audiences with its supernatural tale of terror.

The Enigmatic Poltergeist Activity

Poltergeist explores the enigmatic occurrences associated with poltergeist activity. From objects moving on their own to inexplicable noises, the film taps into our fascination with the unexplained.

The Fan Theories

Over the years, fans of Poltergeist have developed various theories to explain the film’s mysteries. From the nature of the haunting to the true origins of the supernatural entities, these theories showcase the enduring intrigue surrounding the movie.

The Emotional Core

At its heart, Poltergeist is a story about family and the lengths a parent will go to protect their children. This emotional core resonated with audiences and contributed to the film’s enduring popularity.

The Poltergeist Poster

The original poster for Poltergeist is a striking image that features a young girl reaching towards the light emanating from a haunted television. It perfectly captures the movie’s blend of innocence and supernatural terror.

The Poltergeist Theme Park Experience

In the 1990s, Universal Studios Hollywood introduced a Poltergeist-themed haunted house experience as part of their annual Halloween Horror Nights. It allowed fans to step into the eerie and terrifying world of the film.

The Behind-the-Scenes Secrets

Behind the scenes of Poltergeist, there were numerous secrets and production challenges. From malfunctioning props to intense makeup effects, the making of the movie was as fascinating as the final product.

The Face of the Beast

In the film’s climax, a beastly creature is revealed. This nightmarish figure has become an enduring image associated with Poltergeist and continues to unsettle viewers.

The Comedic Relief

Despite its terrifying subject matter, Poltergeist incorporates moments of comedic relief, offering a brief respite from the horror. These lighthearted moments add a layer of complexity and balance to the overall narrative.

The Influence on Filmmakers

Poltergeist has inspired countless filmmakers in their own works. Its blend of supernatural horror and emotional storytelling has served as a benchmark for many aspiring directors.

The Legacy of Carol Anne

Carol Anne, the young girl in the film, has become a symbol of innocence and vulnerability in the face of supernatural forces. Heather O’Rourke’s portrayal of Carol Anne left a lasting impact on audiences worldwide.

The Enduring Impact

Poltergeist continues to capture the imaginations of horror enthusiasts and casual moviegoers alike. Its legacy as a classic supernatural thriller remains as strong as ever.

So there you have it, the 36 facts about the movie Poltergeist! From its haunting inspirations to its enduring legacy, Poltergeist has cemented its place in cinematic history. Dive into this iconic horror film and experience the chilling world of paranormal activity like never before.

In conclusion, Poltergeist is an iconic horror movie that has left a lasting impact on audiences since its release in 1982. With its chilling storyline, groundbreaking special effects, and memorable performances, it continues to be regarded as a classic in the genre. From the famous line “They’re here!” to the paranormal occurrences that plagued the set during production, Poltergeist provides a fascinating behind-the-scenes look at the making of a horror masterpiece. Its legacy has paved the way for countless supernatural films that followed, solidifying its place in cinema history. Whether you’re a fan of horror movies or simply enjoy a good scare, Poltergeist is a must-watch for any movie enthusiast. So dim the lights, grab your popcorn, and prepare to be immersed in the spine-tingling world of Poltergeist.

1. Is Poltergeist based on a true story?

No, Poltergeist is not based on a true story. However, it was inspired by various reports of haunted houses and paranormal activity, giving the film a sense of realism.

2. Who directed Poltergeist?

Poltergeist was directed by Tobe Hooper, although there has been some controversy regarding the extent of Steven Spielberg’s involvement in the film.

3. What is the rating of Poltergeist?

Poltergeist has an MPAA rating of PG, which means parental guidance is suggested. It is generally considered suitable for older children and teenagers.

4. Are there sequels to Poltergeist?

Yes, Poltergeist spawned two sequels: Poltergeist II: The Other Side (1986) and Poltergeist III (1988). However, these films did not receive the same level of critical acclaim as the original.

5. How did the cast of Poltergeist fare after the movie?

Many of the cast members experienced success in their acting careers following Poltergeist, although there have been tragic occurrences among some of the actors. Heather O’Rourke, who played Carol Anne, passed away at a young age, adding to the urban legends surrounding the “Poltergeist curse.”

6. What makes Poltergeist a classic horror movie?

Poltergeist is considered a classic horror movie due to its effective blend of suspense, frights, and emotional depth. It captured the fears and anxieties of its time and continues to resonate with audiences today.

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Things That Happen In Every Poltergeist Movie

Carol Anne scared

Released in 1982, "Poltergeist" is one of those legendary scary movies that's so iconic it's easy forget just how good it is. A story about a family battling the supernatural in their recently built suburban home, it pushed the boundary of what a haunted house movie could be , terrifying audiences with its creepy clown doll, pool full of skeletons, and dimensional portals opening inside closets.

The Tobe Hooper original also kicked off an entire series, with 1986's "Poltergeist II: The Other Side" and 1988's "Poltergeist III." The films continued to tell the tale of poor Carol Anne Freeling (Heather O'Rourke) and her family's battle against the paranormal — now personified by Julian Beck's cult leader Henry Kane (one of the most terrifying yet underrated '80s horror movie villains). While not as good as the first film, the sequels brought their own identifiable plot points and visuals to the franchise. However, there are plenty of elements that carry over to each film. With the exception of the 2015 remake (because it's supposed to repeat things), we're going to break down and discuss all the things that happen in every "Poltergeist" movie.

They're here

" They're here " is probably the single most iconic line in the entirety of the "Poltergeist" trilogy . There's something so ominous about it. Before Carol Anne says it in the first film, a ghostly hand emerges from the television. Then, spectral lights shoot into the wall above Steven and Diane Freeling's (Craig T. Nelson and JoBeth Williams) bed, and the house quakes. Once the chaos settles, Carol Anne turns to her parents and speaks the immortal words.

This line was popular that it was reworked for the next two films. In "Poltergeist II: The Other Side," Carol Anne answers a toy telephone thinking it's her deceased grandmother. However, it's something far worse. Everything goes crazy with light and smoke and toys moving on their own. Steven and Diane fight their way into the room, and then everything settles. Carol Anne removes the blanket she's been hiding under, turns to her mom and dad and says, " They're back. "

In "Poltergeist III," Carol Anne approaches the wall-sized mirror in her bedroom because something isn't right with the reflection. She touches the glass, and fingers reach out, holding her hands in place. Her face in the mirror becomes old and slightly demonic, and the voice of Henry Kane says, " We're back. " However, while the sequels found new ways of calling back to the line, it was never as creepy and perfect as the first time.

Strange weather

The nature of the hauntings in "Poltergeist" doesn't always make sense. It's clear that the beings on the other side want to capture and keep Carol Anne, but how they go about it is bizarre. But one aspect of the paranormal activity that remains fairly consistent through the three films is the weather. The first film especially is swarming with storm clouds that signal the terror about to unfold.

In "Poltergeist II," it's shown that Kane is able to manipulate the weather somehow. During one of the more uniquely scary scenes in the movie, Kane approaches the house where the Freelings are staying on a bright, sunny day. The minute he arrives on the street, singing his creepy song, rain falls out of a clear blue sky. Later, the Native American warrior character Taylor (Will Sampson) explains that Kane was testing Freeling patriarch Steven and his strength.

The third film takes place in a Chicago skyscraper with mirrors all over the place and a malfunctioning thermostat. This results in entire floors being covered in ice and snow. It's shown that when characters leave the area of Kane's influence, they immediately feel warm, suggesting he's not only messing with the technology but controlling the atmosphere itself. The final shot of the film is of the skyscraper with a single bolt of lightning striking the ground nearby. Perhaps Kane isn't finished yet.

Malfunctioning technology

The connection between the spirit realm and technology is much clearer in the original "Poltergeist" than in any of the sequels. The first time Carol Anne shows any signs of psychic ability, she's speaking to a television showing only static. She continues to stare at a small TV in the kitchen as well. Then, of course, the "they're here" scene features spirits emerging from the TV. Carol Anne even refers to the ghosts as "the TV people."

Once the haunting really pops off, the technology goes haywire because the ghosts are in control. This isn't as present in "The Other Dimension," but it's still there. For instance, the toys seemingly come to life, and a chainsaw attacks the Freelings as they try to flee in the car. Not only is the technology in "Poltergeist III" on the fritz (elevators malfunctioning, inconsistent temperature), but so is everything else. Kane's influence on the building is so absolute that no one can believe what they see. If there's one thing these movies try to teach us about battling the supernatural it's that technology will not help us. Instead, it may actively work against us.

Desperately seeking Carol Anne

Carol Anne is the key to the "Poltergeist" saga. She's what Kane and his followers are hoping to hold onto to keep them alive in the other dimension (their status as "living" beings is pretty muddled), and of course, she's the youngest member of the Freeling family, so the family wants her back. As a result, every movie is about someone trying to get Carol Anne.

In the first film, she's taken by the end of act one, and the movie then becomes about rescuing the kid from the spirit realm. The second film is the reverse, as Kane is trying to get her back with him so he can use her life force to attract more followers. This means the Freelings are spending the entire movie keeping Carol Anne away from the entities that wish to trap her. However, in the climax of the film, she does fall into the titular "other side," and the entire family has to enter this realm to get her back.

"Poltergeist III" is sort of a blend between the first two. Kane is looking for Carol Anne again, but this time he gets her. Then her cousin Donna (Lara Flynn Boyle), aunt Patricia (Nancy Allen), and uncle Bruce (Tom Skerritt) spend the rest of the movie trying to bring her back safely.

Skeleton invasion

The big secret in the first "Poltergeist" film is that the Freeling house is built over a graveyard. Steven's boss tells him they relocated the cemetery before construction commenced, but this was a lie. As a result, the ending of the film is absolute madness as all hell breaks loose. Monsters cross over from the other side, Robbie (Oliver Robbins) gets attacked by his clown doll, and skeletons just start rocketing out of the ground.

It's here that Steven realizes the truth — the company he works for left the bodies and only moved the headstones! In "Poltergeist II," we learn that the cemetery was the least of the problems. Deep below the graveyard, there's a cavern where a cult locked themselves away to die. In the finale of the film, the Freelings travel into this cavern and discover all of the skeletons of the poor believers who gave up their lives for nothing.

People just randomly turn into skeletons in "Poltergeist III." One unbearable character, Dr. Seaton (Richard Fire), falls to his death in an elevator shaft. The next time we see his dead body on top of the elevator, he's already decomposed into bones. The same is true for Tangina (the excellent Zelda Rubinstein), who's killed by Kane's touch. She instantly becomes emaciated and falls to the floor as withered flesh on bone.

Experts in the paranormal will likely tell you that all the slime in these movies is actually ectoplasm or something, but to us, it just looks like slime. In the original film, when Diane and Carol Anne return from the other side, they fall to the ceiling and land on the floor caked in thick gunk. It's never explicitly stated what the stuff is (the movie doesn't explain a lot of the phenomena, really), but it's clearly some kind of fluid that exists between our world and the next.

There isn't a ton of slimy stuff in the sequels, but there are a few instances. One of the real stand-out scenes in "Poltergeist II" is Steven swallowing the worm in a bottle of tequila. The creature opens its eye before entering his body and possesses him. He creepily walks around the house singing Kane's song and making everyone feel uncomfortable before vomiting it up.

Instead of a worm, though, it's now a big blob of flesh that evolves into a grinning monster — with a slick, slimy membrane — that scuttles across the floor. In the third film, Donna returns from the other side (but it isn't really her) by crawling through the corpse of Tangina. Once she emerges, her skin has a thin layer of nasty goo all over it. This is all an example of how the franchise occasionally steps out of the paranormal and into the realm of body horror.

Mirrors are scary

There is a scene in the first "Poltergeist" film that is so upsetting it's shocking they even put it in the movie. After Carol Anne is taken away, the Freelings reach out to a team of paranormal investigators. One of them, a guy named Marty (Martin Casella) who really likes to eat, takes a trip to the bathroom in the middle of the night (after raiding the fridge). That's when he sees his reflection in the mirror ... and proceeds to tear his own face off.

The moment is entirely unexpected, gory, and disturbing. The effects are dated now (the face is clearly animatronic), but the shock is still very real. And while perhaps they're not quite as upsetting, the sequels keep this mirror trend going. In "The Other Side," three ghosts can be glimpsed in the mirror for one shot. It's cool and creepy, but it's "Poltergeist III" that really enjoys messing around with mirrors.

In fact, you could say "Poltergeist III" is all about mirrors. Perhaps commenting on the vanity of America in the 1980s, the skyscraper where the majority of the action takes place has mirrors in every room and hallway. As a result, there are plenty of spooky moments, but one of the best is actually pretty inventive. While Donna does her makeup in the bathroom, we see the door open via her mirror, and Carol Anne peeks in to tell her how great she looks. Donna turns and sees the door is actually still closed. She opens it and finds Carol Anne on the other side, saying the same exact dialogue.

Monster mash

The "Poltergeist" trilogy doesn't only feature eerie close encounters with the dead but unexplainable beings right out of H. P. Lovecraft. The ending of "Poltergeist" is an absolute mad house of otherworldly creatures. There's the horrifying spindly dog creature blocking Diane from her children's bedroom, the monstrous portal in the closet, and a tentacle reaching from beyond to grab Carol Anne.

The second film has a demonic worm that serves as some kind of physical manifestation of Kane. The thing is absolutely hideous and looks like it belongs in a David Cronenberg film . Unfortunately, "Poltergeist III" isn't as interested in creatures — except for one instance in the parking garage, where a puddle serves as a portal. Donna, Carol Anne, and Scott (Kipley Wentz) are pulled into the other world by a humanoid seemingly covered in scar tissue. We don't get a very good look at it, and it's probably just Kane, but the otherworldly glimpse we get suggests it may be another one of the terrifying entities existing in the space between spaces. 

Bathing is important

A bathroom is a place where many of us are very vulnerable. They are claustrophobic spaces typically designed to be utilized by one person at a time. Therefore, if someone who wanted to do you harm were to force their way in, it would be very difficult for you to escape. Therefore, it makes perfect sense that horror movies would exploit that. Just think of the iconic shower scene in "Psycho."

"Poltergeist," on the other hand, doesn't always use bathrooms to scare you. They're often used as intended — to bathe. Carol Anne and Diane (covered in slime) are carried upstairs and dropped in the bathtub to wash off and breathe. In "Poltergeist III," Donna comes back from the other side and is set down in the tub, with the shower running to clean her off.

However, at the end of the first film, Diane also takes a bath to relax. "Poltergeist II" has it both ways. On the scary side, we see the ghosts in the mirror, a possessed Steven tries to force himself on Donna, and Robbie is attacked by his own braces (it's a weird movie). There's also a scene where Diane and Carol Anne take a bath together while discussing "Alice in Wonderland." While there's nothing special about people using the bathroom, it is unique to see that all three films have at least one memorable scene set there.

Hushed conversation

Another curious occurrence in each film is the hushed conversation. In the first movie, there's a long scene where Diane and Robbie have a conversation on the nature of death and the afterlife with Dr. Lesh (Beatrice Straight). Something similar happens when Tangina shows up later in the film. The purpose of the scene is to explain the films rules about death in order to answer the audience's questions. The fact that it's whispered makes it feel more honest and intimate than your typical exposition scene.

Almost the same exact scene happens in "Poltergeist II" when Taylor explains what's going on with Kane. This is another attempt to clear up any lingering questions the viewers may have about what's going on and what the stakes are. It doesn't feel as natural the second time around, however. In the third movie, the hushed conversation is just Bruce and Patricia discussing Carol Anne and what's happened between the second and third installments.

A lot of movies do this, but it's usually done when characters are planning something or trying to go unnoticed by some outside party. "Poltergeist" is a unique case where the scenes are utilized to make exposition a little less boring.

Carol Anne has terrible timing

Carol Anne always walks into a room at the most inopportune times. During the first few minutes of "Poltergeist," Diane discovers that their pet canary has died — a bad omen if ever there was one. In secret, she makes her way to the bathroom and dangles the bird above the toilet. Just then, Carol Anne walks in and is shocked to see her beloved pet is no more (a few scenes later she excitedly asks for a goldfish).

"Poltergeist II" sees the Freelings living with Diane's mother. Their financial situation has completely changed, and they have few prospects for the future. We then witness a truly honest scene between two people trying to make light of the nightmare they're in. In the middle of this real moment, Carol Anne opens the door, holding a dress and asking to be a ballerina.

The third movie has a scene where Donna is on the phone with a friend. She explains that Patricia is only her stepmom, so Carol Anne (whom she has to babysit, keeping Donna from a party) isn't really her cousin. Of course, this is exactly when Carol Anne enters the room. The years have matured Carol Anne, though. She doesn't mind Donna saying she isn't her real cousin. In fact, she tells her to go ahead and go to the party because she isn't scared. Of course, this is a huge mistake.

The power of love

From the very beginning, the "Poltergeist" movies have been about love. Obviously, there's the love of a family trying to protect a little girl from evil. However, there's also the idea that the beings lost on the other side need love as well. Kane wants to use Carol Anne's incredible life force, but the rest of his flock have been misled. Only someone in desperate need of love could be convinced that salvation is located in a cavern deep below ground.

The bizarre ending to "Poltergeist II" shows the lengths a family will go to in order to protect each other, including assistance from the deceased Gramma Jess (Geraldine Fitzgerald) in angel form. The third movie, though, makes this messaging explicit. Tangina tells Patricia and Bruce that only love can protect Carol Anne and keep her away from Kane. It all comes down to Patricia, who's struggled to feel something other than apathy for her niece.

In the final moments, though, she does realize she loves Carol Anne, and she always has. Only then do her husband, stepdaughter, and niece return to her. That's the thing about ghost stories — they remind us that love transcends death.

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Poltergeist (1982)

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Poltergeist is an American 1982 supernatural  horror film , directed by Tobe Hooper , produced by Steven Spielberg , and released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer on June 4, 1982. It is the first and most successful of the Poltergeist film trilogy, and was nominated for three Academy Awards.

The film was ranked as #80 on Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments [1] and the Chicago Film Critics Association named it the 20th scariest film ever made. [2] The film also appeared on American Film Institute's 100 Years... 100 Thrills , a list of America's most heart-pounding movies. [3]

  • 3 Film Stills
  • 4.1 Creative relationship
  • 5 Production Stills
  • 6 Deleted and Novelization Scenes
  • 7 Home video release
  • 9 Reception
  • 10 Reissues and sequels
  • 11 Curse Assumptions
  • 12 Misconceptions and Unanswered Questions
  • 13 Cultural impact
  • 14 References
  • 15 External links

Steven and Diane Freeling are living a quiet life in a California suburb where Steven is a real estate agent selling for the development where they live with their children, Dana, Robbie , Carol Anne , and the family dog E. Buzz.

One night after all are asleep with the living room television still on, the TV station signs off for the night and goes to static. The youngest daughter, Carol Anne, hears faint whispering from the TV static. She strolls hypnotically down the stairs to the TV and begins answering the voices that only she can hear, waking up the rest of the family.

The next week all seems normal for a Sunday afternoon, Steven and friends are glued to a football game. Robbie decides to climb the tree closest to his bedroom, which he finds gruesome because part of it appears to have the shape of a head. He decides to conquer his fear by climbing it. While Diane is cleaning the room that Robbie and Carol Anne share, she finds Carol Anne's pet canary dead. Attempting to flush it, she's caught by Carol Anne and forced to give it a proper burial. After mourning, Carol Anne cheerfully asks for a goldfish.

After Carol Anne overfeeds her two fish the children are tucked into bed. Robbie seems concerned about the storm coming. In the Freelings' master bedroom Diane and Steven unwind with some marijuana and conversation while Steven reads. Diane seems concerned about the incident with Carol Anne as when she was a child she was a chronic sleepwalker. As they are building a pool Diane worries if their daughter might accidentally wander outside and into the pool. Steven assures her with his "expertise" from his diving days things will be fine.

In the children's room Robbie can't sleep and stares out the window with fear of the tree and the thunderstorm. His attention turns to his most intense childhood scare, Carol Anne's stuffed clown jester doll. In what seems to be a nightly ritual, Robbie closes his eyes as he moves towards it, takes a jacket and covers it up so he can sleep.

Steven is tickling Diane in bed when Robbie interrupts them about the storm. Steven piggybacks him back to bed and teaches him to gauge the distance of the storm by counting between when the lightning strikes and the thunder hits. This comforts Robbie as Steven leaves him and Carol Anne to count and hopefully fall asleep. After catching Dana on the phone after hours he seems satisfied that things will settle down for the night. As the children count longer lapses between lightning and thunder, lightning suddenly hits right outside, and they are next seen sleeping soundly between their parents.

That night as the family (minus Dana) sleep in the master bedroom, the television once again goes to sign off. Just as before, Carol Anne wakes up immediately to the television static and its voices. This time as she touches the screen out of curiosity, a ghostly skeletal hand connected by small orb-like shapes touches back. The touch has somehow made it possible for the form to now freely roam the physical realm. It accelerates into the wall above the bed at incredible speed and causes earthquake like movement of the entire house. The being(s) are now released as Carol Anne says, "They're here."

The next day at breakfast, while Steve tries to make sense of the fact that no one else seems to have noticed an earthquake last night, Diane asks who Carol Anne meant by "They're here." She responds that it was the "TV people", leading Robbie to conclude that she's stoned. Robbie's glass of milk suddenly breaks from the bottom and spills onto the table and Dana and her homework. After she leaves in a huff to clean up, Robbie looks down to see also that his utensils have been bent.

In the master bedroom, the family dog seems enthralled with the hole above the master bedroom from the spirits' arrival the night before, and even brings his favorite toy as an offering to play. Diane later is shocked as she sees the kitchen chairs have been unusually stacked upon themselves. She begins to realize the presence of beings in her home, which fascinates her. As Steven pulls into the driveway she rushes him inside to show him new occurrences in the kitchen. Using masking tape as a makeshift runway to mark the path, the chairs move right along from one side of the room to the other. She then lets Carol Anne slide to be caught by Stephen. As she becomes more and more excited, he is disturbed and worried. After embarrassingly asking the neighbor if he has had any incidents, Steven insists no word of it to anyone and no one is to go inside the kitchen until they know what's going on.

Shortly after, during a second storm, the gnarled tree comes to life and grabs Robbie through his bedroom window. However, this is merely a distraction used by the ghosts to get Carol Anne's parents to leave her unattended. While Diane and Steven rescue Robbie and the tree is consumed by a sudden tornado that suspected vanishes as quickly as it appeared. Carol Anne is sucked through a portal in her closet. After a thorough search of the house, the horrified Freelings realize she has been taken after they begin to hear her communicating through a television set.

A group of parapsychologists from UC Irvine, Dr. Martha Lesh, Dr. Ryan Mitchell and Dr. Martin Casey, come to the Freeling house to investigate. Steven gives them the rundown on the situation as they ask to see the entry point of the incident, the children's bedroom. As Steven prepares to unlock the door, Ryan proudly boasts that he has video of a child's toy matchbox vehicle taking 7 hours to roll across a floor, and how incredible it is on time lapse. Steven nods uninterested as he opens the door to complete chaos. The ghosts aren't amused with their first time on display. One bed is spinning while Carol Anne's clown doll is laughing manically, A floating lamp plugs itself in, Several toys approach the group to either tease or threaten and A math compass flies towardsDr. Lesh before using it's needle to play a child's record.

They determine that the Freelings are experiencing a poltergeist, rather than a true haunting. Poltergeists who are known to center themselves around an individual rather than a location and for chaotic activity opposed to simply "roaming the halls". Dr. Lesh explains that the spirits have not moved on to "the light" after death, but are stuck between dimensions. They have taken Carol Anne, Lesh says, because as an innocent 5-year-old girl, her "life force" is as bright to them as the light, and they believe she is their salvation.

In the living room, as it gets dark (Presumably chosen being signals of any kind are strongest at night.), Diane turns to the channel she can hear Carol Anne's voice can transmit best. After a few unsuccessful tries she coaxes Carol Anne to say hello to her father. Diane knows that Carol Anne is naive about what's happening and attempts to get any clues from the girl using a motherly soft demeanor. The mood in the room changes when Carol Anne mentions being afraid of a light. As Diane believes it's a portal home Dr. Lesh informs her it's dangerous and the way permanently to the other side. Marty, strangely still unconvinced after all he's seen, investigates the television and thinks there may be a chance it's a CB radio transmission and a hoax while Dr. Lesh refuses such an idea.

After Marty leaves for upstairs a flash of white flame appears from the ceiling directly above the living room, dropping watches and jewelry covered in dust. Steven on top of wanting his child back is becoming more and more disgusted at the behavior of the spirits. Carol Anne speaks and tells them their is someone close by her and asks if it's her mother. Steven replies no and has a look of concern. Carol Anne screams into a state of panic and at this point is obviously running. The sound of something unearthly is chasing her. After several moments of panic from both sides the sound of her screams and of the entity suddenly go quiet. Diane begins to slowly ascend the stairs when suddenly a breeze passes through her. Carol Anne being in the world between the living and the dead could only escape to downstairs in invisible spirit form. Even then being drawn back into the other realm. Diane breaks into tears of both joy and sadness as she realizes Carol Ann's soul passed through hers. Not long after, the sound of the unknown force chasing her follows her path, also invisible. It lets out a horrendous roar and wind to warn the group from anymore tampering.

As Diane panics that Carol Anne's no longer transmitting, Dr. Lesh sternly asks her where Carol Anne was when she disappeared. Diane takes a guess as her bedroom closet. Dr. Lesh has had enough of standing by and is determined to get into the room despite Steven's warning. Just as she and Ryan head upstairs Marty runs down sweating and holding the right side of his abdomen. Lifting up his shirt revealing a large circular bite mark with teeth punctures and saliva. Steven attempts to convince Diane to take Dana and Robbie and leave. Diane refuses to go anywhere with Carol Anne as Dana pleads to go to her friend Lisa's for the night. Steven insists he's staying no matter what.

Later that night Robbie and Dr. Lesh have an in depth, enlightened discussion about death, and what the spirits want. Robbie's side of the conversation suddenly is caught by Steven as Robbie describes a childlike (but feasible) plan in which they tie a rope around him to go and grab Carol Anne from upstairs. Diane tells Robbie to get some sleep. He tells them all goodnight, including Carol Anne as quiet static murmurs on the TV set.

After most of the group in the living room are fast asleep, Marty informs Ryan that he's going to forage for something to eat in the kitchen. After finding a steak, he places it on the counter. Moments later it starts to move and then burst open from the inside into shreds. A chicken leg Marty was eating falls from his mouth and puts him into shock to see maggots along with it on the floor. He rushes to the bathroom and vomits in the sink and splashes water on his face to compose himself. The bathroom light gives a strange color and hum as Marty looks into the mirror and sees a sudden bloody gouge on his face. For no known reason then his own he decides to claw at it. He continues and gradually is tearing apart his own face to the bone. His exposed skull gives a hiccuped growl and then suddenly after a flash of light, Marty looks to his reflection and realizes he was hallucinating.

Ryan meanwhile monitors the equipment for any sudden changes in the houses environment. He is oblivious to a sudden flux on the meters as his Walkman and sketching pad preoccupy him. An EKG like meter starts erratically giving readings. A computer controlled video camera programmed to focus on disturbances begins to scan up the stairway as the children's bedroom door opens. Light and mist start to appear. Marty, still in trembling fear as he returns to the living room, motions to Ryan. A brilliantly lit and almost angelic female apparition surrounded by bright orbs begins to descend down the stairs very slowly. Everyone in the room rouses and are frightened except for Ryan, who has a look of wonder and excitement in his expression. It ascends up into the ceiling and vanishes. Ryan, very excited and impatient, rolls it back just far enough to discover that the orbs following the "Glowing Woman" were on closer view spirits of human beings. Although distorted almost like a photo negative, they can make out the orbs have faces and bodies, and even clothing of different time periods. As they walk past the camera, they are seen acting curious and observing the living group and the surroundings. Dr. Lesh comments that they are "So lonely, so alone." Being a curious visit without any sign of anger as the earlier invisible apparition, and none of their "shenanigans", it might be a cry for help.

After these series of paranormal episodes, Robbie and Dana are sent away for their safety. Dr. Lesh informs Diane that she's leaving Ryan with the family for support and that Marty (obviously petrified after being the most victimized of the group) won't be returning. She embraces Diane and tells her she will be back, and with help. Later that day, Steven is approached by his boss, Lewis Teague, about a promotion. The new project will involve selling lots on a newly acquired hilltop parcel of land that currently houses a cemetery. When Steven balks at the idea of relocating the graveyard, his boss shrugs it off, explaining that the company had done it before, in the very neighborhood where Steven now lives.

Dr. Lesh soon returns with a renowned spiritual medium, Tangina Barrons , a little person who immediacy Steve makes jokes about her size and psychic ability, and is humorously proven that he's wrong about the latter. He and Diane soon respect her for her knowledge. She asks the group to huddle to her, so she can explain the true meaning of what has been occurring in the house.

She informs Diane that Carol Anne is alive and in the house. And her life force is very powerful, but keeping the kind-hearted ghosts from passing on. The souls for whatever reason are not at rest. They look to her living presence as a way of remembrance of life, and the joy it gave them. (Mr.Teague mentions earlier in casual that Carol Anne was born in the Freeling house. A plot exposition that reenforces why the spirits are attracted to her.)

She then describes the entity behind the darker deeds of the house. While the spirits have been mostly curious and playful, the sinister deeds (the skeletal hand, the growling wind, the possession of the tree, and Marty's attacks) have been orchestrated by a "lone wolf" spirit Tangina calls "The Beast". It has been corrupting the others to use their spiritual being for power. (Explaining their ghostly orbs connecting his skeletal hand (connect-the-dot style) to aid his escape to the living realm using the empty television transmission.) Bribing them with the promise of the presence of Carol Anne.

The assembled group discovers that while the entrance to the other dimension is through the children's bedroom closet, the exit is through the living room ceiling. They send Diane to rescue Carol Anne, tying her to a rope that they've managed to thread through both portals. As Tangina coaxes the agonized spirits away from Carol Anne and instead to the light, Steve suddenly panics and attempts to pull Diane back to him, causing the enraged Beast to manifest through the portal in front of him as a giant, roaring skeletal face. Diane retrieves her daughter and they emerge through the living room ceiling, falling to the floor and covered in pre-natal ooze. Tangina announces, "This house is clean."

However, while the spirits have moved on to the afterlife peacefully, the Beast has not. Now wanting revenge after losing the life force of both the ghosts and Carol Anne. On the family's final night in the house, the Beast ambushes Diane and the children. Locking the children in their room and attacking Robbie with the thing he fears most, the clown doll. The Beast then attempts to sexually assault Diane. After breaking free she makes her way to the children's room. Blocking the door to the room, The Beast finally finally reveals it's appearance. That of a ghostly skull with 4 praying mantis like legs. She panics and rolls down the stairs while The Beast manages to electrify the railings to prevent her from ascending back up. Diane runs to her neighbors for help, and in the process, slips and falls into the unfinished swimming pool, from which coffins and rotting corpses erupt. Her neighbors, terrified by the ghostly energy blazing from the house, refuse to help. Meanwhile In the children's room, the closet has imploded and turned into a monstrous oesophagus-like structure that threatens to suck in Carol Anne and Robbie. Diane nonetheless manages to pull Robbie and Carol Anne out from the house, as Dana returns from a date to find coffins and dead bodies exploding from the ground throughout the neighborhood.

As Steven returns home to this mayhem, he realizes that, when Teague relocated the cemetery under the subdivision, he'd done it on the cheap and only moved the headstones. Teague appears soon after, joining the Freelings' neighbors in their horror at the Freeling house's explosive possession. An enraged Steven confronts him with the fact that by leaving the bodies in unmarked graves and building houses on top of them, Teague had desecrated their burial grounds. As the Freelings drive away in terror, the house itself implodes into another dimension, to the astonishment of onlookers, while Teague becomes aware he faces a dark future because of these events.

The family flees from town and check into a Holiday Inn for the night outside the town. Taking no chances, Steven puts the television outside on the balcony.

  • Craig T. Nelson as Steve Freeling
  • JoBeth Williams as Diane Freeling
  • Dominique Dunne as Dana Freeling
  • Heather O'Rourke as Carol Anne Freeling
  • Zelda Rubinstein as Tangina Barrons
  • Beatrice Straight as Dr. Martha Lesh
  • Lou Perryman as Pugsley (AKA Bluto the coffee thief.)
  • Oliver Robins as Robbie Freeling
  • William Hope as Dana's Boyfriend In Car (cameo) (uncredited)
  • Michael McManus as Ben Tuthill
  • Virginia Kiser as Mrs. Tuthill
  • Martin Casella as Dr. Martin Casey
  • Richard Lawson as Dr. Ryan Mitchell
  • Clair E. Leucart as the Bulldozer Driver
  • James Karen as Mr. Teague
  • Dirk Blocker as Jeff Shaw

Film Stills [ ]

Poltergeist Carol

Production [ ]

Creative relationship [ ].

A clause in his contract with Universal Studios prevented Spielberg from directing any other film while preparing E.T. the Extra-Terrestrial . Time and Newsweek tagged the summer of 1982 "The Spielberg Summer" because E.T. and Poltergeist were released a week apart in June. As such a marketable name, some began to question Spielberg's role during production. Suggestions that Spielberg had greater directorial influence than the credits suggest were aided by comments made by the writer/producer:

"Tobe isn't... a take-charge sort of guy. If a question was asked and an answer wasn't immediately forthcoming, I'd jump in and say what we could do. Tobe would nod agreement, and that become the process of collaboration."

The Directors Guild of America "opened an investigation into the question of whether or not Hooper's official credit was being denigrated by statements Spielberg has made, apparently claiming authorship." Co-producer Frank Marshall told the Los Angeles Times that "the creative force of the movie was Steven. Tobe was the director and was on the set every day. But Steven did the design for every storyboard and he was on the set every day except for three days when he was in Hawaii with Lucas." However, Hooper claimed that he "did fully half of the storyboards."

The Hollywood Reporter printed an open letter from Spielberg to Hooper in the week of the film's release.

"Regrettably, some of the press has misunderstood the rather unique, creative relationship, which you and I shared throughout the making of Poltergeist .

I enjoyed your openness in allowing me... a wide berth for creative involvement, just as I know you were happy with the freedom you had to direct Poltergeist so wonderfully.

Through the screenplay you accepted a vision of this very intense movie from the start, and as the director, you delivered the goods. You performed responsibly and professionally throughout, and I wish you great success on your next project. [7]"

Several members of the Poltergeist cast and crew have over the years consistently alleged, that Spielberg was the 'de facto director' of the picture, while other actors have claimed Hooper directed the film. In a 2007 interview with Ain't It Cool News , Rubinstein discussed her recollections of the shooting process. She said that "Steven directed all six days" that she was on set: "Tobe set up the shots and Steven made the adjustments." She also alleged that Hooper "allowed some unacceptable chemical agents into his work," and at her interview felt that time "Tobe was only partially there." [4] In an interview with Deadpit Radio, Lou Perryman stated "Tobe directed me and everything I saw while I was there, he directed." Oliver Robbins (who played Robbie) said that Tobe Hooper was the director. Craig T. Nelson also confirmed Hooper as the director, strongly influenced by Spielberg.

Production Stills [ ]

The beast model 1

Deleted and Novelization Scenes [ ]

  • In the same scene, a concerned Dr. Lesh says, "There are hundreds of them!" in reference to the spirits.
  • At the university, after Lesh shows the video for the first time to a class, a colleague, Dr. Anthony Farrow is truly astonished. While browsing through the jewelry and watches that had fallen from the ceiling portal he convinces Dr. Lesh to take a pair of earrings for herself as a "volunteer's pay." She smiles and names him an accessory to the crime. He then finds an interesting piece. A jaw clamp for funerals that prevents the mouth from suddenly dropping open when the body is in repose. This scene was not only written, but filmed, developed and still exists, possibly in MGM's vault. It was most likely deleted for being a spoiler for the cemetery reveal.
  • In the novelization, Robbie is having a birthday party and his mother sends him on a treasure hunt. In his search, he reaches inside their brick barbecue only to be bitten by what he discovers is the clown doll, which is no longer upstairs and mysteriously hiding there.
  • In the novel, the spirit in the staircase is known as "The Lady in Waiting."
  • Also in the novel, Tangina is featured much more prominently and even has a one on one battle with the Beast on the other side. It includes a moment where the beast grows horns and buries them in Tangina's eyes. To no avail, however, as her Psychic powers are extremely potent in his realm.
  • In a filmed scene, the hole in the master bedroom grows a spider-like array of tentacles that grab Diane instead of the finished shot of the invisible "manhandling" she receives.

Home video release [ ]

In 1997, MGM released Poltergeist on DVD in a snap case, and the only special feature was a trailer. In 1998, Poltergeist was re-released on DVD with the same cover and disc as the 1997 release, but in a keep case and with an eight page booklet. In 1999, it was released on DVD again by Warner Home Video in a snap case with the same disc, but a different cover. Warner Home Video tentatively scheduled releases for the 25th anniversary edition of the film on standard DVD, HD DVD and Blu-ray [5] in Spain and the US on 9 October 2007. The re-release claimed to have digitally remastered picture and sound, and a two-part documentary: "They Are Here: The Real World of Poltergeists," which makes extensive use of clips from the film. The remastered DVD of the film was released as scheduled but both high-definition releases were eventually canceled. Warner rescheduled the high definition version of the film and eventually released it only on the Blu-ray disc format on October 14, 2008. [6]

The Blu-ray disc release still had the "25th Anniversary Edition" banner [7] even though this particular release was a full year behind the actual anniversary of the film. The Blu-ray disc release was packaged in collectible, non-standard Blu-ray disc packaging Warner Home Video calls "digibook" which is supposed to resemble a coffee table book and contains pictures from the film on its pages.

A six disc prototype, from the abandoned 20th Anniversary Special Edition, surfaced on eBay a few years ago and still crops up from time to time. Special features included The First Real Ghost Story and The Making of Poltergeist featurettes, screenplay, several photo galleries and Fangoria interviews, and the documentaries E! True Hollywood Story , Hollywood Ghost Stories and Terror in the Aisles. The sixth disc was a copy of the original motion picture soundtrack by Jerry Goldsmith.

  • Obviously a tongue-in-cheek move, The Beast's roar is the exact same sound file as the MGM lion.
  • The dog's name "E. Buzz" comes from a sketch on Saturday Night Live with Dan Akyroyd as "E. Buzz Miller," a pimp who critiques naked Victorian art.
  • In reality, Craig T. Nelson and JoBeth Williams were only 14 and 11 years older than Dominique Dunne, who plays their teenaged daughter.
  • When Diane tells Carol Anne to stop watching the static on the kitchen television and turns on a movie, a war film called "Go For Broke" (1951), the film clip has a famous audio bit called the Wilhelm Scream.
  • The house used to film this movie is located in Simi Valley, California where it still stands today. The family who owned it still live there today.
  • The swirling, flickering lights coming from the closet during the rescue scene were achieved using a very simple effect by having an aquarium full of water in front of a spotlight. Then a fan blew on the surface of the water to make it swirl.
  • The Rams (then Los Angeles Rams) vs. Saints football game seen near the beginning of the film is taken from a Monday Night Football game in 1980.
  • During the scene where Robbie is being strangled, the clown's arms became extremely tight and Robins started to choke. When he screamed out, "I can't breathe!" Steven Spielberg and Tobe Hooper thought that the boy was ad-libbing and just instructed him to look at the camera. When Spielberg saw Robins's face turning purple, he ran over and removed the clown's arms from Robins' neck.
  • JoBeth Williams was hesitant about shooting the swimming pool scene because of the large amount of electrical equipment positioned over and around the pool. In order to comfort her, Steven Spielberg jumped in the pool with her to shoot the scene. Spielberg told her, "Now if a light falls in, we will both fry." The strategy worked and Williams got in the pool.
  • To make the stair spirits movements seem more ethereal when they appeared on the monitor, the director had the actors walk very slowly backwards then reversed the film. The same effect was used for the entire family in the opening scene.
  • JoBeth Williams revealed that the production used real human skeletons (usually used in medical schools) when filming the swimming pool scene. Many of the people on the set were alarmed by this and led others to believe the "curse" on the film series was because of this use. Craig Reardon, a special effects artist who worked on the film, commented at the time that it was cheaper to purchase real skeletons than plastic as the artificial ones involved labor in making them.
  • 2008 paid an homage to Poltergeist (1982) in a DirecTV commercial. Craig T. Nelson reprises the role of Steve Freeling, complaining to Carol Anne and the audience that the static on the TV set is just bad cable reception and quips "Not getting rid of cable. THAT'S gonna come back to haunt me!" Heather O'Rourke's family were pleased with the ad, for keeping her memory alive.
  • The theme music is known as "Carol Anne's theme." It was originally titled "Bless this House" and was written like a lullaby as a contrast to the horror in the film. There are lyrics which can be found on the Internet.
  • The crawling steak was done by using a real steak which was laid over a slot cut between the tiles in the counter top. Two wires were fastened to the bottom of the steak and a special effects operator, hidden under the counter, simply moved the wires to make the steak crawl like a caterpillar.
  • For the chairs that move across the room by themselves. A wire was fastened to one of the chair's legs under the set. An operator first wobbled the chair with the wire, then dragged the chair across to its destination.
  • On top of the master bedroom television set sits an Atari Video Computer System console with its two joysticks, later known as the Atari 2600.
  • The cemetery Steve and Teague are talking in front of has a tree identical to the one that tried to eat Robbie, a subtle clue that the Freeling house was built over a cemetery.

Reception [ ]

Poltergeist was a box office success worldwide. The film grossed $76,606,280 in the United States, making it the highest-grossing horror film of 1982 and 8th overall for the year. [8]

Poltergeist was well received by critics and is considered by many as one of the best films of 1982. [9] [10] [11] Douglas Brode compares the "family values" in Poltergeist to the Bush/Quayle 1992 reelection campaign. [12] Andrew Sarris, in The Village Voice , wrote that when Carol Anne is lost the parents and the two older children "come together in blood-kin empathy to form a larger-than-life family that will reach down to the gates of hell to save its loved ones." [12] In the L.A. Herald Examiner , Peter Rainer wrote:

Buried within the plot of Poltergeist is a basic, splendid fairy tale scheme: the story of a little girl who puts her parents through the most outrageous tribulation to prove their love for her. Underlying most fairy tales is a common theme: the comforts of family. Virtually all fairy tales begin with a disrupting of the family order, and their conclusion is usually a return to order. [12]

Over 30 years after its release, the film is regarded by many critics as a classic of the horror genre [13] [14] and maintains an 86% "Fresh" rating on Rotten Tomatoes . [15] Poltergeist was selected by The New York Times as one of The Best 1000 Movies Ever Made . The film also received recognition from the American Film Institute. The film ranked number 84 on AFI's 100 Years…100 Thrills list, [16] and the tag line "They're here" was named the 69th greatest movie quote on AFI's 100 Years…100 Movie Quotes . [17]

Reissues and sequels [ ]

The film was reissued on October 29, 1982 to take advantage of the Halloween weekend. It was shown in theaters for one night only on October 4, 2007 to promote the new restored and remastered 25th anniversary DVD, released five days later. This event also included the documentary "They Are Here: The Real World of Poltergeists," which was created for the new DVD.

The film spawned two sequels, Poltergeist II: The Other Side and Poltergeist III . The first retained the family but introduced a new motive for the Beast's behavior, tying him to an evil cult leader named Henry Kane , who led his religious sect to their doom in the 1820s. As the Beast, Kane went to extraordinary lengths to keep his "flock" under his control, even in death. The original motive of the cemetery's souls disturbed by the housing development was thereby altered; the cemetery was now explained to be built above a cave where Kane and his flock met their ends.

Carol Anne is the sole original family member featured in Poltergeist III , which finds her living in an elaborate Chicago skyscraper owned and inhabited by her aunt and uncle. Kane follows her there and uses the building's ubiquitous decorative mirrors as a portal to the Earthly plane.

In 2008, MGM announced that Vadim Perelman would helm a remake, to be written by Juliet Snowden and Stiles White. The film , directed by Gil Kenan, was released on May 22, 2015.

Curse Assumptions [ ]

The franchise is often said to be cursed, because several people associated with it, including stars Dominique Dunne and Heather O'Rourke , died prematurely. "The Poltergeist Curse" has been the focus of an E! True Hollywood Story . It's known to be nothing more than an urban legend seeing as Dunne was murdered in a domestic dispute much later. The other two actors died of natural causes filming the sequel and not the original film, one of them, Julian Beck, was well aware of his illness and died while filming.

Misconceptions and Unanswered Questions [ ]

  • The film has long had a wrongly misconstruing plot detail that the land was Indian burial ground and not a graveyard. This is most likely in part to Teague's line to Steven about relocating the cemetery up the hill from the Freeling house, "Besides, it's not ancient tribal burial ground, it's just people."
  • Another often and rather amusing mistake is some people believe Carol Anne's spirit was actually trapped inside the television and not just communicating through it.
  • Since Steven worked for Cuesta Verda Estates and high up in the company, why couldn't he tell Ben to "kiss his ass" and move his TV set because of the remote interference?
  • Why was the ATARI 2600 in the parents room and not where the kids could play it?
  • While explaining the thunder and lightning game to Robbie, Carol Anne interrupts saying that he has a call on her toy telephone, Steven playfully says to take a message. Was this just Carol Anne toying with him? Or were the visitors on the phone? The latter might be possible as Henry Kane ("The Beast") distracted Steven the same way in the sequel.
  • While activity with the kitchen floor, the hole above the master bedroom, and the dining room just above E. Buzz are shown, only the bedroom hole's purpose is explained, and that in in a deleted scene. (See Deleted Scenes.)

Cultural impact [ ]

Poltergeist has been referenced in several films, television shows and music videos.

  • An episode of Family Guy called "Petergeist" parodied the events in Poltergeist . Peter builds a multiplex in his backyard and discovers an Indian burial ground. When he takes an Indian chief’s skull, a poltergeist invades the Griffins’ home. The episode also used some of the same musical cues heard in the film. Composer Ron Jones "spent months" studying and recreating the original music sheets from the 1982 horror film Poltergeist . [3] The photocopies of the music sheets cost Jones US$400. The show recreated five scenes: Stewie saying, "They're here," the portal in the closet, a hallucinating Peter ripping his face off to reveal that of Hank Hill from King of the Hill , the house imploding, and Stewie being able to communicate through the TV. However, the clown is replaced with Ronald McDonald, and after Lois leaves the television outside, Peter pushes the television back and leaves Meg outside. [18]
  • In the American Dad! episode "The American Dad After School Special," Francine discovers a pool filled with food, just like Diane's discovery of the pool hole filled with coffins and dead bodies. Hayley yells, "What's happening?!" just as Dana did in the film.
  • At the end of the first Simpsons Treehouse of Horror installment, "Bad Dream House," the house in which the Simpsons move turns out to be haunted. After repeated failed attempts to scare them away, it implodes in a way similar to that of the house at the end of Poltergeist , rather than spend life with the Simpson family. In Treehouse of Horror VI's Homer³ , Homer enters the third dimension and communicates with his family in a reverberating voice similar to that of Carol Anne's when she speaks through the television. In an attempt to rescue Homer, Bart enters the dimension with a rope tied around him, similar to the manner Carol Anne is retrieved by Diane.
  • In "With Apologies to Jesse Jackson," Cartman makes Dr. Nelson say, "Carol Anne—don't go into the light," during the fight with him.
  • In the episode "Spookyfish," a pet store built over unmoved bodies in a former cemetery causes a vortex behind a closed door akin to the rift in Carol Anne's bedroom closet.
  • In the episode "The Biggest Douche in the Universe," Chef's mother exorcises Kenny's soul out of Cartman then states, "This child is clean," a parody of Tangina's line, "This house is clean" in the film.
  • In the episode "Something Wall-Mart This Way Comes," the boys are told to break a mirror to bring down the Wall-Mart store. Once Stan and Kyle break the mirror, the store implodes and disappears into another dimension just as the Freeling house does.
  • A doctor resembling Tangina Barrons appears when Ike is possessed by Michael Jackson in the episode "Dead Celebrities."
  • In The X-Files episode "Shadows," Mulder and Scully were discussing what had taken over their car and caused them to crash. Mulder believes that a young woman they had just visited had caused the crash via psychokinetic powers. When Scully questions Mulder's beliefs, Mulder also says it could be a poltergeist. Scully then mocks him by saying, "They're here!" Mulder replies, "Yes, they just might be."
  • In the Wonderfalls episode "Lying Pig," Jaye's brother declares, "This trailer is clean, kind of," after helping her remove all of the talking objects à la Tangina .
  • In the Chilly Beach episode "Polargeist," a direct spoof of the first film, Dale discovers ghosts in his house and is abducted into the spirit world through his beer fridge.
  • In the music video for the Spice Girls song "Too Much," Emma Bunton recreates a scene from the movie.
  • In Ace Ventura: Pet Detective , Jim Carrey having just diagnosed that Roger Podactor was murdered instead of having committed suicide remarks: "I have exorcised the demons!" He quotes the film, though spoken incorrectly as " This house is clear."
  • In the Supernatural episode "Hollywood Babylon," Dean explains to his brother the curse of the set of Poltergeist . Also in the first season episode "Home," Dean makes a reference to Missouri Mosley cleaning out their old house of a poltergeist as doing her "whole Zelda Rubinstein thing," a reference to the actress who portrayed Tangina Barrons in all three Poltergeist films. In the fifth season episode "Dark Side of the Moon," Castiel tells Sam and Dean "Don't go into the light" and Dean then refers to Castiel as Carol Anne.
  • In an episode of Roseanne , Roseanne's sister Jackie cleans the house thoroughly to get it ready for the homecoming of Darlene's baby. After cleaning, she says, "This house is clean" in a voice that imitates Tangina's when she says the line in the movie.
  • Scary Movie 2 parodies the clown scene by having Ray (Shawn Wayans) sexually assault someone under the bed. It also parodies the scene with the tree that grabs Robbie, but replaces the tree with a giant cannabis plant.
  • Comedian and actor Eddie Murphy references the film in his stand-up HBO special, Delirious . He jokes about being in Steven's place and going to confession about Carol Anne possibly just being in the TV and simply changing the channel to get her out.
  • "Virtualodeon," an episode of The Garfield Show , includes references to Poltergeist , including the presence of an alien-hunting female character who says a famous line from the film and the emergence of alien creatures out of Jon's television.
  • Fashion designer Marc Jacobs has a tattoo of the film's poster on his upper back.
  • Former Mystery Science Theater 3000 founders, under Rifftrax, released a commentary. Although under newer alumni to the site Cole Stratton and Janet Varney, it was met with positive results.
  • The punk rock band Misfits based their song "shining" on their 1997 album " American psycho "

References [ ]

  • ↑ " Bravo's The 100 Scariest Movie Moments ". web.archive.org. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " Chicago Critics’ Scariest Films ". AltFilmGuide.com. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " AFI's 100 Years... 100 Thrills ". American Film Institute . Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " Click over, children! All are welcome! All welcome! Quint interviews Zelda Rubinstein!!!! ". Ain't It Cool News (2007-10-02). Retrieved on 2008-01-06.
  • ↑ " Live Chat with Warner Home Video ". Home Theater Forum (2007-02-26). Retrieved on 2008-01-06.
  • ↑ Poltergeist on Bluray at WBshop.com
  • ↑ (as seen here: http://www.blu-ray.com/movies/movies.php?id=540 )
  • ↑ " Box Office Information for Poltergeist ". Box Office Mojo . Retrieved on 2010-05-21.
  • ↑ " The Greatest Films of 1982 ". AMC Filmsite.org . Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " The 10 Best Movies of 1982 ". Film.com . Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " The Best Movies of 1982 by Rank ". Films101.com. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ 12.0 12.1 12.2 cited in Brode, p. 111
  • ↑ " Poltergeist Movie Reviews, Page 2 ". Rotten Tomatoes . Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " Poltergeist Movie Reviews, Page 3 ". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " Poltergeist Movie Reviews, Pictures ". Rotten Tomatoes. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " AFI's 100 Years... 100 Thrills ". American Film Institute. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " AFI's 100 Years... 100 Movie Quotes ". American Film Institute. Retrieved on May 21, 2010.
  • ↑ " Petergeist ". TV.com . Retrieved on 2007-06-25.

External links [ ]

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  • Poltergeist Online
  • 1 The Farm (2018)
  • 2 Sam Carpenter
  • 3 Winnie-the-Pooh: Blood and Honey 2 (2024)

Screen Rant

Every poltergeist movie ranked, worst to best.

Poltergeist has terrified audiences over the course of three films and a 2015 remake, and here's how the franchise ranks, worst to best.

Poltergeist has terrified audiences over the course of three films and a 2015 remake, and here's how the franchise ranks, worst to best. While there's long been controversy over who exactly directed 1982's original Poltergeist film (some involved say credited director Tobe Hooper, others insist it was producer Steven Spielberg ), the end result still holds up as a masterpiece of horror filmmaking. It's also one of the rare horror classics from the 1980s to not carry an R-rating, or include graphic gore.

Poltergeist 's immense success led to two sequels, Poltergeist 2: The Other Side in 1986, and Poltergeist 3 in 1988. These films featured new central antagonist Reverend Henry Kane, a preacher and end times cult leader who's said to be the personification of the first Poltergeist film's "beast." Neither sequel proved as popular as the original, but both have their fans. Finally in 2015, a Poltergeist remake was produced that retained the original premise but contained an entirely new cast of characters.

Related: Why Poltergeist's Ending Used Real Human Skeletons

It remains to be seen if another Poltergeist film will ever materialize from beyond, as the remake didn't perform that well at the box office, and fans proved ambivalent. For now, though, it's time to take a look at Poltergeists past, and rank the existing franchise from worst to best.

4. Poltergeist (2015)

Some may be surprised to see Poltergeist 's 2015 remake ranked below Poltergeist 3, which tends to be the most widely bashed entry in the franchise. That decision will be expanded on a bit more in the next entry, but most of the reason Poltergeist 2015 proves to be the least of the lot is just how unoriginal it is. Since the film contains all new characters, there was a real chance to try and reinvent the property, but instead director Gil Kenan and crew were mostly content to replay the greatest hits of the original, but with updated tech.

3. Poltergeist 3 (1988)

There's no question 1988's Poltergeist 3 is a flawed effort. The rest of the Freeling family is sorely missed, and the new actor replacing the late Julian Beck as Reverend Kane pales in comparison. It also gets way too slasher-like at times, and that's not what people watch Poltergeist movies for. That said, where Poltergeist 3 succeeds is by trying something new. This time out, Kane's evil is directly connected to mirrors and other reflective surfaces, leading to some great "blink and you'd miss it" scare gags where reflections don't match up, or it's revealed someone was actually their evil reflection the whole time. Poltergeist 3 isn't amazing, but it's better than its reputation suggests.

2. Poltergeist 2: The Other Side (1986)

1986's Poltergeist 2: The Other Side is definitely several steps down from the original Poltergeist in quality, but then again, most ghost movies are. What makes Poltergeist 2 worth watching is the continued chemistry of the Freeling family, and the sinister, ghoulish presence of Julian Beck as Reverend Kane, who steals the show in every scene he appears in. Some rushed plotting, character retcons, and a disappointing ending hold Poltergeist 2 back from true greatness, but it's by no means hard to watch, and is a favorite of many horror fans.

1. Poltergeist (1982)

A true classic of the haunted house genre, Poltergeist stands the test of time, despite now looking like an unintentional period piece about the early 1980s. The Freeling family unit is a realistic, easy to like group, who clearly love each other, and in the case of parents Steven and Diane, would go to the ends of the Earth and back to keep each other safe. The late Heather O'Rourke is also a treasure as Carol Anne, and it's easy to imagine why Poltergeist 's spirits see her as a source of goodness and light. Add to that Zelda Rubinstein's iconic Tangina, some terrific visual effects, and extremely effective scares, and one has the recipe for Poltergeist, a truly excellent film.

More: 10 Best Movies Steven Spielberg Produced, But Didn't Direct (According To IMDb)

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POLTERGEIST FILMS & TV SERIES (1982-2015)

  • Movies or TV
  • IMDb Rating
  • In Theaters
  • Release Year

1. Poltergeist (1982)

PG | 114 min | Horror, Thriller

A family's home is haunted by a host of demonic ghosts.

Director: Tobe Hooper | Stars: JoBeth Williams , Heather O'Rourke , Craig T. Nelson , Beatrice Straight

Votes: 177,352 | Gross: $76.61M

2. Poltergeist II: The Other Side (1986)

PG-13 | 91 min | Horror

The Freeling family have a new house, but their troubles with supernatural forces don't seem to be over.

Director: Brian Gibson | Stars: JoBeth Williams , Craig T. Nelson , Heather O'Rourke , Oliver Robins

Votes: 29,465 | Gross: $41.00M

3. Poltergeist III (1988)

PG-13 | 98 min | Horror, Thriller

Carol Anne is staying with her aunt in a high-rise building, where the supernatural forces haunting her make their return.

Director: Gary Sherman | Stars: Heather O'Rourke , Tom Skerritt , Nancy Allen , Zelda Rubinstein

Votes: 20,170 | Gross: $14.11M

4. Poltergeist (2015)

PG-13 | 93 min | Horror, Thriller

A family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces must come together to rescue their youngest daughter after the apparitions take her captive.

Director: Gil Kenan | Stars: Sam Rockwell , Rosemarie DeWitt , Kennedi Clements , Saxon Sharbino

Votes: 60,649 | Gross: $47.43M

5. Poltergeist: The Legacy (1996–1999)

TV-14 | 60 min | Drama, Fantasy, Horror

A group of poltergeist experts locate, retrieve, confiscate, or otherwise do what it takes to fix haunting situations.

Stars: Derek de Lint , Martin Cummins , Robbi Chong , Helen Shaver

Votes: 1,934

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Poltergeist Movies In Order Of Release

poltergeist movie famous line

They’re heeere! If one of the kids in your household utters those two words, you’d better hope they’re talking about your in-laws or your nosey next-door neighbours.

This now famous line, which was spoken by young Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke) in the first Poltergeist movie, indicated the presence of something much worse than the unwelcome human visitors that might set foot in your home. As you’ll know by the movie’s title, she was talking about the presence of ghosts! 

The movie is still regarded as one of the best horror movies of all time, unlike the sequels and 2015 remake which failed to match the power of the original. Hooper’s movie (with a little help from Steven Spielberg) is that rarest of things: a supernatural chiller that is suitable for family viewing. It’s especially recommended if your kids are addicted to their screens as you can remind them of the fate of poor Carol Anne who was sucked into the static of the family television set! 

Below we list all of the Poltergeist movies that have been released so far. Which is your favourite? Let us know in the comments below.

poltergeist movie famous line

Poltergeist

US Release Date: June 4, 1982

Worldwide Box Office: $121.7 million

Director: Tobe Hooper

Metascore: 79

Craig T. Nelson (Steve Freeling), JoBeth Williams (Diane Freeling), Heather O’Rourke (Carol Anne Freeling), Dominique Dunn (Dana Freeling), Oliver Robins (Robbie Freeling)

Synopsis (from IMDB):

A family’s home is haunted by a host of demonic ghosts.

Movie Tagline:

From a dimension beyond the living, a terror to scare you to death.

Poltergeist II: The Other Side

US Release Date: May 23, 1986

Worldwide Box Office: $75 million

Director: Brian Gibson

Metascore: 49

Craig T. Nelson (Steve Freeling), JoBeth Williams (Diane Freeling), Heather O’Rourke (Carol Anne Freeling), Oliver Robins (Robbie Freeling), Zelda Rubinstein (Tangina), Will Sampson (Taylor), Julian Beck (Kane)

The Freeling family have a new house, but their troubles with supernatural forces don’t seem to be over.

They’re back.

Poltergeist III

US Release Date: June 10, 1988

Worldwide Box Office: $14.1 million

Director: Gary Sherman

Metascore: 40

Heather O’Rourke (Carol Anne Freeling), Tom Skerritt (Bruce Gardner), Nancy Allen (Patricia Gardner), Zelda Rubinstein (Tangina), Lara Flynn Boyle (Donna Gardner), Nathan Davis (Kane)

Carol Anne is staying with her aunt in a high-rise building, where the supernatural forces haunting her make their return.

No matter where Carol Anne goes…she never goes alone. 

US Release Date: May 22, 2015

Worldwide Box Office: $95.4 million

Director: Gil Kenan

Metascore: 47

Sam Rockwell (Eric Bowen), Rosemarie DeWitt (Amy Bowen), Kennedi Clements (Madison Bowen), Saxon Sharbino (Kendra Bowen), Kyle Catlett (Griffin Bowen)

A family whose suburban home is haunted by evil forces must come together to rescue their youngest daughter after the apparitions take her captive.

They know what scares you. 

Let us know your favourite movie in the Poltergeist franchise below.

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Yardbarker

20 best horror films and franchises featuring scary clowns

Posted: January 2, 2024 | Last updated: January 2, 2024

<p>In 2016, in a widely publicized instance of mass hysteria, people around the world reported seeing creepy clowns pop up in various places in their communities. This terrified many folks, but as fans of clown movies, we were delighted by most of the sightings. If you enjoy this horror subgenre as much as we do, be sure your streaming queue includes the 21 best films and franchises featuring scary clowns.</p>

In 2016, in a widely publicized instance of mass hysteria, people around the world reported seeing creepy clowns pop up in various places in their communities. This terrified many folks, but as fans of clown movies, we were delighted by most of the sightings. If you enjoy this horror subgenre as much as we do, be sure your streaming queue includes the 21 best films and franchises featuring scary clowns.

<p>After a sorority prank results in the shooting death of a house mother, the sisters attempt to cover up their crime, only to be picked off one by one. We won’t give away the identity of the assailant, who wears a red and green clown costume, even though <em>The House on Sorority Row</em> came out in 1982, and that spoiler is now more than 40 years old!</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/20_tv_shows_you_may_not_know_were_inspired_by_real_life_events_010224/s1__39202474'>20 TV shows you may not know were inspired by real-life events</a></p>

'The House on Sorority Row' (1982)

After a sorority prank results in the shooting death of a house mother, the sisters attempt to cover up their crime, only to be picked off one by one. We won’t give away the identity of the assailant, who wears a red and green clown costume, even though The House on Sorority Row came out in 1982, and that spoiler is now more than 40 years old!

You may also like: 20 TV shows you may not know were inspired by real-life events

<p>There are a lot of memorable scary scenes in the classic 1982 horror film <em>Poltergeist</em> —not surprising, considering it was conceived of and co-written by Steven Spielberg and helmed by Tobe Hooper, the director of <em>The Texas Chainsaw Massacre</em>. Carol Anne (Heather O'Rourke) talking to a staticky television set disturbed many viewers (“They’re heeeere!”), as did a tree attacking Robbie (Oliver Robins) and Dr. Marty Casey (Martin Casella) tearing his face apart, but the scene that repeatedly gets voted as one of the scariest in horror history is when the creepy clown doll comes to life and begins choking Robbie, dragging him under the bed.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Poltergeist' (1982)

There are a lot of memorable scary scenes in the classic 1982 horror film Poltergeist —not surprising, considering it was conceived of and co-written by Steven Spielberg and helmed by Tobe Hooper, the director of The Texas Chainsaw Massacre . Carol Anne (Heather O'Rourke) talking to a staticky television set disturbed many viewers (“They’re heeeere!”), as did a tree attacking Robbie (Oliver Robins) and Dr. Marty Casey (Martin Casella) tearing his face apart, but the scene that repeatedly gets voted as one of the scariest in horror history is when the creepy clown doll comes to life and begins choking Robbie, dragging him under the bed.

Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.

<p><em>Killer Klowns from Outer Space</em> features a whole fleet of freaky-looking clowns, but the movie is much more lighthearted than most of the other entries in this list. Yes, Slim, Shorty, Spike, and the other clowns kill plenty of people — true to the film’s title — but they do it in a comical way by shooting their victims with a cotton candy gun, among other wacky weapons. The film didn’t find a lot of fans among critics upon its initial release, but the B-movie has since become a certified cult classic for its extravagant visuals and loads of ‘80s cheese. </p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_ultimate_rush_playlist_121923/s1__34267772'>The ultimate Rush playlist</a></p>

'Killer Klowns from Outer Space' (1988)

Killer Klowns from Outer Space features a whole fleet of freaky-looking clowns, but the movie is much more lighthearted than most of the other entries in this list. Yes, Slim, Shorty, Spike, and the other clowns kill plenty of people — true to the film’s title — but they do it in a comical way by shooting their victims with a cotton candy gun, among other wacky weapons. The film didn’t find a lot of fans among critics upon its initial release, but the B-movie has since become a certified cult classic for its extravagant visuals and loads of ‘80s cheese. 

You may also like: 20 facts you might not know about 'Sister Act'

<p><em>It</em> is the gold standard of scary clown movies. The 1986 Stephen King novel of the same name was first adapted in 1990 as part of a television miniseries starring Tim Curry as the sinister Pennywise the Dancing Clown. Pennywise terrorized the youngsters of the fictional Derry, Maine, in the first part of the miniseries and returned in the second part, when the kids grew into adults played by Harry Anderson and John Ritter, among others. Although it initially aired as a miniseries, it is now generally viewed as a single 187-minute movie.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'It' (1990)

It is the gold standard of scary clown movies. The 1986 Stephen King novel of the same name was first adapted in 1990 as part of a television miniseries starring Tim Curry as the sinister Pennywise the Dancing Clown. Pennywise terrorized the youngsters of the fictional Derry, Maine, in the first part of the miniseries and returned in the second part, when the kids grew into adults played by Harry Anderson and John Ritter, among others. Although it initially aired as a miniseries, it is now generally viewed as a single 187-minute movie.

<p>Are the <em>Killjoy</em> movies (six and counting) good? Not in terms of quality. They’re filled with bad acting that does nothing to improve the lame writing, cheap special effects, and overdependence on sex and stereotypical characters. But similar to a Troma movie, the cheesiness and borderline offensiveness are actually amusing, and — shockingly — the franchise seems to get slightly better with every new film. And although <em>Killjoy</em> will produce more eye rolling than eye covering, the eponymous clown is still quite freaky-looking.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/20_facts_you_might_not_know_about_the_incredible_hulk_010224/s1__37995542'>20 facts you might not know about 'The Incredible Hulk'</a></p>

'Killjoy' franchise (2000, 2002, 2010, 2012, 2016, & 2019)

Are the Killjoy movies (six and counting) good? Not in terms of quality. They’re filled with bad acting that does nothing to improve the lame writing, cheap special effects, and overdependence on sex and stereotypical characters. But similar to a Troma movie, the cheesiness and borderline offensiveness are actually amusing, and — shockingly — the franchise seems to get slightly better with every new film. And although Killjoy will produce more eye rolling than eye covering, the eponymous clown is still quite freaky-looking.

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<p>Rob Zombie’s <em>House of 1000 Corpses</em> focused on a group of friends who were kidnapped and tortured by a sadistic family during a cross-country road trip in the ‘70s, similar to classic horror films like <em>The Texas Chain Saw Massacre</em>. The patriarch of the Firefly family is Captain Spaulding, a cursing clown who runs a roadside gas station/haunted house/chicken joint that helps lure unsuspecting victims to their deaths. Veteran actor Sid Haig played Captain Spaulding in the original film of the <em>Firefly</em> trilogy, as well as the 2005 sequel <em>The Devil’s Rejects</em> and the 2019 finale <em>3 from Hell</em>, which was the final film of Haig’s career.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Firefly' franchise (2003, 2005, & 2019)

Rob Zombie’s House of 1000 Corpses focused on a group of friends who were kidnapped and tortured by a sadistic family during a cross-country road trip in the ‘70s, similar to classic horror films like The Texas Chain Saw Massacre . The patriarch of the Firefly family is Captain Spaulding, a cursing clown who runs a roadside gas station/haunted house/chicken joint that helps lure unsuspecting victims to their deaths. Veteran actor Sid Haig played Captain Spaulding in the original film of the Firefly trilogy, as well as the 2005 sequel The Devil’s Rejects and the 2019 finale 3 from Hell , which was the final film of Haig’s career.

<p><em>100 Tears</em> is an extremely low-budget horror film, but it still manages to be an absolute splatterfest from start to finish...and a surprisingly delightful one. The budget was only $75,000, and from the looks of it, the filmmakers spent it all on the extremely gory practical special effects that center on an evil clown who lops off heads, crushes skulls, and stabs, slices, and dismembers his lengthy list of victims. The plot is simplistic, and the acting is amateurish — although Joe Davison’s script delivers some hearty laughs — but that’s just fine, as the primary point of this 2007 slasher was clearly to employ as much blood as the limited budget would allow.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/sad_songs_say_so_much_20_songs_that_help_deal_with_grief_121923/s1__39095543'>Sad songs say so much: 20 songs that help deal with grief</a></p>

'100 Tears' (2007)

100 Tears is an extremely low-budget horror film, but it still manages to be an absolute splatterfest from start to finish...and a surprisingly delightful one. The budget was only $75,000, and from the looks of it, the filmmakers spent it all on the extremely gory practical special effects that center on an evil clown who lops off heads, crushes skulls, and stabs, slices, and dismembers his lengthy list of victims. The plot is simplistic, and the acting is amateurish — although Joe Davison’s script delivers some hearty laughs — but that’s just fine, as the primary point of this 2007 slasher was clearly to employ as much blood as the limited budget would allow.

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<p>James Wan’s critically panned but darkly amusing 2007 horror film <em>Dead Silence</em> is full of ventriloquist dummies, but one of the most memorable (aside from the guy on the cover) is a creepy clown doll. In a particularly off-putting scene, the clown whispers a secret to Jamie (Ryan Kwanten), and while he leans in to hear, an enormous slimy tongue emerges from the clown’s mouth and licks Jamie’s face.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Dead Silence' (2007)

James Wan’s critically panned but darkly amusing 2007 horror film Dead Silence is full of ventriloquist dummies, but one of the most memorable (aside from the guy on the cover) is a creepy clown doll. In a particularly off-putting scene, the clown whispers a secret to Jamie (Ryan Kwanten), and while he leans in to hear, an enormous slimy tongue emerges from the clown’s mouth and licks Jamie’s face.

<p>As we’ve stated several times, we’re big on brainless B-movie slashers from the 1980s. But we’re also fans of more modern films created in the same vein, like 2007’s <em>Drive-Thru</em>, which is about a group of teens who are stalked by a fast food mascot named Horny the Clown. Sound terrible? It is, but it’s also quite enjoyable, with a surprising number of laughs in the script, solid plot pacing, plenty of graphic gore, and a cast consisting of Leighton Meester (<em>Gossip Girl</em>), Nicholas D’Agosto (<em>Heroes</em>), and Melora Hardin (<em>The Office</em>).</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_films_that_have_the_absolute_worst_endings_121923/s1__33464903'>The films that have the absolute worst endings</a></p>

'Drive-Thru' (2007)

As we’ve stated several times, we’re big on brainless B-movie slashers from the 1980s. But we’re also fans of more modern films created in the same vein, like 2007’s Drive-Thru , which is about a group of teens who are stalked by a fast food mascot named Horny the Clown. Sound terrible? It is, but it’s also quite enjoyable, with a surprising number of laughs in the script, solid plot pacing, plenty of graphic gore, and a cast consisting of Leighton Meester ( Gossip Girl ), Nicholas D’Agosto ( Heroes ), and Melora Hardin ( The Office ).

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<p><em>The Cabin in the Woods</em> isn’t a clown-centric film, but “clowns” are listed among the monsters, maniacs, and other murderous beings on a giant whiteboard of possible foes to terrorize our unsuspecting teenagers. And when all hell breaks loose during the purge sequence, we see a clown with a large curved knife attacking some of the facility employees.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'The Cabin in the Woods' (2011)

The Cabin in the Woods isn’t a clown-centric film, but “clowns” are listed among the monsters, maniacs, and other murderous beings on a giant whiteboard of possible foes to terrorize our unsuspecting teenagers. And when all hell breaks loose during the purge sequence, we see a clown with a large curved knife attacking some of the facility employees.

<p>Stitches (Ross Noble) didn’t want to be a scary clown. He also didn’t want to fall face-first on a kitchen knife after some rambunctious kids tied his shoelaces together at a birthday party. But after this deadly prank, the ghost of Stitches returns for revenge on all the pint-sized party attendees, who are now teenagers. <em>Stitches</em> can be truly scary to those with coulrophobia, but most people — especially those with dark senses of humor — will find the film more funny than frightening.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_20_best_secondary_harry_potter_characters_ranked_121923/s1__38592440'>The 20 best secondary ‘Harry Potter’ characters, ranked</a></p>

'Stitches' (2012)

Stitches (Ross Noble) didn’t want to be a scary clown. He also didn’t want to fall face-first on a kitchen knife after some rambunctious kids tied his shoelaces together at a birthday party. But after this deadly prank, the ghost of Stitches returns for revenge on all the pint-sized party attendees, who are now teenagers. Stitches can be truly scary to those with coulrophobia, but most people — especially those with dark senses of humor — will find the film more funny than frightening.

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<p>Technically, the graphic, gore-filled <em>Terrifier</em> franchise consists of just two feature-length films: 2016’s <em>Terrifier</em> and 2022’s <em>Terrifier 2</em> (the latter of which was shown in theaters that offered vomit bags). However, the insanely sadistic character of Art the Clown — who brutally and mercilessly slashes, stabs, and dismembers his victims — also appears in the 2013 horror anthology film <em>All Hallow’s Eve</em>. Damien Leone directed all three movies, but the actor who played Art changed from Mike Giannelli in the first film to David Howard Thornton in the next two. </p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Terrifier' franchise (2013, 2016, & 2022)

Technically, the graphic, gore-filled Terrifier franchise consists of just two feature-length films: 2016’s Terrifier and 2022’s Terrifier 2 (the latter of which was shown in theaters that offered vomit bags). However, the insanely sadistic character of Art the Clown — who brutally and mercilessly slashes, stabs, and dismembers his victims — also appears in the 2013 horror anthology film All Hallow’s Eve . Damien Leone directed all three movies, but the actor who played Art changed from Mike Giannelli in the first film to David Howard Thornton in the next two. 

<p>A well-meaning father (Andy Powers) dons a clown suit after his son’s birthday party entertainer cancels but soon discovers he can’t remove the clown’s costume or makeup as they begin fusing with his body and urging him to kill and devour children. This twisted plot combines buckets of blood and gore in the disturbing but amusing horror thriller <em>Clown</em> from director Jon Watts, screenwriter Christopher Ford, and producer Eli Roth.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/not_so_bad_20_movie_villains_who_werent_actually_villains_121823/s1__39340567'>Not so bad: 20 movie villains who weren’t actually villains</a></p>

'Clown' (2014)

A well-meaning father (Andy Powers) dons a clown suit after his son’s birthday party entertainer cancels but soon discovers he can’t remove the clown’s costume or makeup as they begin fusing with his body and urging him to kill and devour children. This twisted plot combines buckets of blood and gore in the disturbing but amusing horror thriller Clown from director Jon Watts, screenwriter Christopher Ford, and producer Eli Roth.

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<p>In the favorably reviewed 2014 horror film <em>The Houses October Built</em>, a group of friends travel across the U.S. visiting various extreme haunted houses. But things get uncomfortable when they are followed from one attraction to another by a pair of actors, including a scary-looking clown. When the friends are eventually abducted, they struggle to determine what’s real and what’s part of the haunted house experience. A 2017 sequel, <em>The Houses October Built 2</em>, picks up where the last film left off.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'The Houses October Built' franchise (2014 & 2017)

In the favorably reviewed 2014 horror film The Houses October Built , a group of friends travel across the U.S. visiting various extreme haunted houses. But things get uncomfortable when they are followed from one attraction to another by a pair of actors, including a scary-looking clown. When the friends are eventually abducted, they struggle to determine what’s real and what’s part of the haunted house experience. A 2017 sequel, The Houses October Built 2 , picks up where the last film left off.

<p>We love it when a horror-comedy delivers on both of those promises. <em>The Funhouse Massacre</em> certainly does double duty. Speaking of double duty, there are actually two clowns among the half-dozen serial killers that take over a haunted maze attraction after escaping from an asylum: “Rocco the Clown,” who is a former wrestler, and “Dollface,” a.k.a “The Stitch Face Killer,” who got her name because she sews her victims’ faces shut. The iconic Robert Englund also has a role in this 2015 film from Ben Begley and director Andy Palmer.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/the_essential_women_of_90s_country_playlist_121823/s1__39656997'>The essential women of '90s country playlist</a></p>

'The Funhouse Massacre' (2015)

We love it when a horror-comedy delivers on both of those promises. The Funhouse Massacre certainly does double duty. Speaking of double duty, there are actually two clowns among the half-dozen serial killers that take over a haunted maze attraction after escaping from an asylum: “Rocco the Clown,” who is a former wrestler, and “Dollface,” a.k.a “The Stitch Face Killer,” who got her name because she sews her victims’ faces shut. The iconic Robert Englund also has a role in this 2015 film from Ben Begley and director Andy Palmer.

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<p><em>Hell House LLC</em> is a real documentary about a mysterious accident at an Upstate New York haunted house attraction that claimed the lives of more than a dozen people, according to a title slide, at least. It’s actually a fictional found-footage horror film written and directed by Stephen Cognetti and widely praised for its unique premise, quality acting, and subtle but substantial scares. One of the freakiest running bits involves a trio of clowns, supposedly harmless mannequins, that are seen lurking in the background and inexplicably appearing in various places throughout the house…including when the most menacing clown is suddenly seen at the bottom of a staircase while the protagonists are sleeping. The franchise released two sequels, including clowns, in 2018 and 2019.</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Hell House' franchise (2015, 2018, & 2019)

Hell House LLC is a real documentary about a mysterious accident at an Upstate New York haunted house attraction that claimed the lives of more than a dozen people, according to a title slide, at least. It’s actually a fictional found-footage horror film written and directed by Stephen Cognetti and widely praised for its unique premise, quality acting, and subtle but substantial scares. One of the freakiest running bits involves a trio of clowns, supposedly harmless mannequins, that are seen lurking in the background and inexplicably appearing in various places throughout the house…including when the most menacing clown is suddenly seen at the bottom of a staircase while the protagonists are sleeping. The franchise released two sequels, including clowns, in 2018 and 2019.

<p>Quality Christmas horror movies are hard to come by, so we were delighted to add 2015’s <em>Krampus</em> to our list after the very first watch. Adam Scott, Toni Collette, David Koechner, and Allison Tolman headline the cast of this comedic film that centers on a young boy (Emjay Anthony) whose attempts to maintain his family’s holiday traditions are complicated by the arrival of the titular horned beast from European folklore. Although Krampus gets top billing, a secondary antagonist is a demonic jack-in-the-box called Der Klown, who can consume children. Ho ho ho.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/25_of_the_best_christmas_songs_released_by_black_artists_121823/s1__39667968'>25 of the best Christmas songs released by Black artists</a></p>

'Krampus' (2015)

Quality Christmas horror movies are hard to come by, so we were delighted to add 2015’s Krampus to our list after the very first watch. Adam Scott, Toni Collette, David Koechner, and Allison Tolman headline the cast of this comedic film that centers on a young boy (Emjay Anthony) whose attempts to maintain his family’s holiday traditions are complicated by the arrival of the titular horned beast from European folklore. Although Krampus gets top billing, a secondary antagonist is a demonic jack-in-the-box called Der Klown, who can consume children. Ho ho ho.

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<p>There’s nothing particularly original about Rob Zombie’s 2016 horror film <em>31</em>, which places some cross-country travelers in a series of mazes packed with murderers while rich people place wagers on their fates. However, fans of creepy clowns will love that the killers are a costumed cadre consisting of psychotic clowns with names like “Schizo-Head,” “Psycho-Head,” “Death-Head,” and “Doom-Head.”</p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'31' (2016)

There’s nothing particularly original about Rob Zombie’s 2016 horror film 31 , which places some cross-country travelers in a series of mazes packed with murderers while rich people place wagers on their fates. However, fans of creepy clowns will love that the killers are a costumed cadre consisting of psychotic clowns with names like “Schizo-Head,” “Psycho-Head,” “Death-Head,” and “Doom-Head.”

<p><em>It</em> was adapted again as a two-movie franchise remake in 2017 and 2019, this time with Bill Skarsgård playing Pennywise. Jaeden Lieberher, Finn Wolfhard, and Sophia Lillis were among the actors who played the members of Losers Club as kids in <em>It</em>, with James McAvoy, Bill Hader, and Jessica Chastain playing them as adults in<em> It Chapter Two</em>. The big-budget productions cost a combined $120 million to make but were well received and brought in nearly $1.2 billion at the box office.</p><p>You may also like: <a href='https://www.yardbarker.com/entertainment/articles/25_of_the_best_black_sitcom_actors_121823/s1__39668026'>25 of the best Black sitcom actors</a></p>

'It' franchise (2017 & 2019)

It was adapted again as a two-movie franchise remake in 2017 and 2019, this time with Bill Skarsgård playing Pennywise. Jaeden Lieberher, Finn Wolfhard, and Sophia Lillis were among the actors who played the members of Losers Club as kids in It , with James McAvoy, Bill Hader, and Jessica Chastain playing them as adults in  It Chapter Two . The big-budget productions cost a combined $120 million to make but were well received and brought in nearly $1.2 billion at the box office.

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<p>At first, the clown in <em>Haunt</em> is just the creepy, silent figure in a mask who makes a group of teenage friends sign a waiver before entering a notoriously intense haunted house. But as the darkly suspenseful 2019 film (which was written and directed by Scott Beck and Bryan Woods) continues to make the audience guess which aspects of the extreme haunt are part of the experience and which are all too real, the clown emerges as a major player — right up until the brutal film’s satisfying final scene. </p><p><a href='https://www.msn.com/en-us/community/channel/vid-cj9pqbr0vn9in2b6ddcd8sfgpfq6x6utp44fssrv6mc2gtybw0us'>Did you enjoy this slideshow? Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.</a></p>

'Haunt' (2019)

At first, the clown in Haunt is just the creepy, silent figure in a mask who makes a group of teenage friends sign a waiver before entering a notoriously intense haunted house. But as the darkly suspenseful 2019 film (which was written and directed by Scott Beck and Bryan Woods) continues to make the audience guess which aspects of the extreme haunt are part of the experience and which are all too real, the clown emerges as a major player — right up until the brutal film’s satisfying final scene. 

Did you enjoy this slideshow? Follow us on MSN to see more of our exclusive entertainment content.

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Watch Danielle Brooks convince Oprah to recite her iconic 'All my life' line from 'The Color Purple'

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It seems Danielle Brooks and Oprah Winfrey had a blast on the set of "The Color Purple."

On Jan. 3, Winfrey took to Instagram to share a behind-the-scenes video of her and Brooks reciting their character Sofia's most famous monologue from the film.

In 1985, Winfrey portrayed Sofia in the original " The Color Purple" movie before Brooks took on the role in the latest adaptation of the film, which hit theaters on Christmas day.

While looking at each other on set, the two actors channeled Sofia and said in unison: "You told Harpo to beat me?"

The clip then cut to Winfrey, who looked at the camera and finished the iconic monologue: "All my life I had to fight! Had to fight my daddy, my uncles, my brothers and my cousins, too. But I never ever thought I'd have to fight in my own house."

Brooks was so taken by Winfrey's performance that she yelled, "Let them know, let them know, let them know! And don't you forget it!"

Winfrey captioned the video, "All my life I’ve had to…say this line! Only @daniebb3 can get me to dust it off and deliver it with her own version of Sofia." She also shared that fans can catch more behind-the-scenes from the making of the film in "Oprah and The Color Purple Journey," a special on Max streaming now.

View this post on Instagram A post shared by Oprah (@oprah)

Brooks and Winfrey have a close relationship. In a Dec. 14 interview with TODAY.com , Brooks said that they have reached a point in their friendship where she can now quickly dial up Winfrey when she needs some feedback or words of advice.

But, that kind of access took time. Brooks told TODAY that it took close to 10 years for their relationship to develop, which the actor says began when she signed on to first portray Sofia in the 2015 Broadway revival.

"It’s not something that I was searching for," she explained. "I had done this part in 2015, and we weren’t at that point in our relationship that we are now. So it’s definitely a natural, build-in mentorship that has happened."

The latest “The Color Purple” iteration is an adaptation of the Broadway musical that first debuted in 2005. The film also stars Fantasia Barrino as Celie and Taraji P. Henson as Shug Avery. Winfrey, who was nominated for best supporting actor in the 1985 film, serves as one of the four producers, alongside Steven Spielberg, who directed the 1985 film.

During an interview on TODAY with Hoda & Jenna Dec. 14, Brooks reflected her full-circle moment, from watching "The Color Purple" on Broadway in 2005 to eventually portraying Sofia in the Broadway revival and 2023 studio film.

"I've had such a journey with this," she said. "It all started when I was 15. I got to see "The Color Purple" for the first time on Broadway — my first show. Ten years later I get to do the revival, get all of this ... experience. And here we are, in this moment ... getting to do this movie, my first studio film."

"It's been a journey that I could never have dreamed for myself," she continued. "And getting to have the relationship with Ms. Oprah Winfrey and Fantasia and Taraji and getting to work with Cory (Hawkins), my classmate, and Colman (Domingo) — it's just the joy of my career.

However, Brooks revealed that getting the role of Sofia in the film didn't necessarily come easy. In an interview with People , the Golden Globe nominee said that her audition process took months.

“I knew they were doing it, and I really had to work hard to get the part, believe it or not," she explained. "They had me auditioning for several months, like going into a lot of meetings with the director.”

In Feb., Brooks finally learned that she was cast in the film when she received a surprise video call from Winfrey , instead of the film's director.

Brooks shared the moment on Instagram , writing in part, "So beyond grateful to @oprah for trusting me with playing, once again, this powerhouse of a woman. She put her foot in that role and helped to change so many lives. I pray to do the same."

In her interview on TODAY Dec. 14, Brooks credits Winfrey for giving her the opportunity to cultivate her version of Sofia in the 2023 film.

"She held my hand the entire time and ... I mean this with all of my heart, I feel like she gave me permission to be the cobbler of my own shoe and create this character and do what I needed to do for this generation, while still honoring what she did was very important to me," she said on TODAY Dec. 14. "So, thank you, Ms. Oprah Winfrey for passing that baton!"

Now, as Brooks gears up for the film's Dec. 25 release, the star is reflecting on her journey and the valuable lessons she's learned from her mentor. Brooks says that aside from soaking up Winfrey's infectious words of wisdom, she also hopes to emulate her.

"I mean, she said a lot of stuff to me, we've spent a lot of time together, but I think more than anything, it's her character that I'm learning from," she says. "It's how she moves, someone at her status just still be so gracious with her spirit and time and just pouring into me."

"It's a reminder of whenever I get to that stage in my life to also do the same for someone else," she adds.

This article was originally published on TODAY.com

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  • Main content

The 13 best movies on Netflix in January

  • Watch franchises from "Jurassic Park" and "John Wick" on Netflix this month.
  • Hit movies like "School of Rock," "Jackie Brown," and "Training Day" are also available.
  • Check out musicals "Mamma Mia!" and "Cats" too.

Insider Today

Celebrate the new year by sitting back and watching some movies on Netflix. We have over a dozen here that are worth your time.

1. "Aquaman" (January 1)

poltergeist movie famous line

As DC Comics moves into a new era of moviemaking with James Gunn at the helm, let's look back at the high-water mark for the DCEU.

James Wan's CGI-heavy look at Jason Momoa as the king of the oceans was the only release in the Snyderverse era of DC to gross over $1 billion (let's not bring up how awful the sequel did in theaters).

2. "It’s Complicated" (January 1)

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Nancy Meyers' perfect rom-com stars Meryl Streep and Alec Baldwin as a divorced couple who begin a secret affair 10 years after splitting up. Streep is hilarious as a woman who after seeing her youngest go off to college becomes liberated as an emptynester. She also begins to date her architect (Steve Martin) to the chagrin of her man-child ex.

3. "Jackie Brown" (January 1)

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Marking the rare time Quentin Tarantino made a movie not based on an idea originated by him, here he adapts the Elmore Leonard novel "Rum Punch." But in typical Tarantino fashion, he changed things up by adding a blaxploitation vibe to the story. That's evident with the casting of an icon from the genre, Pam Grier, in the title role.

We follow Jackie as she tries to pull a fast one on a gangster (Samuel L. Jackson) and the cops to score a big payday.

The great supporting cast includes Robert Forster, Bridget Fonda, Michael Keaton, and Robert De Niro.

4. "John Wick" (January 1)

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The franchise up to chapter three is available this month. Watch the evolution of the Keanu Reeves hitman character as well as the "gun-fu" style from director Chad Stahelski that has captivated fans of the action genre.

5. "Jurassic Park" (January 1)

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Steven Spielberg's classic didn't just astound audiences, but filmmakers as well. George Lucas said it wasn't until he saw what Spielberg did with the dinosaurs in "Jurassic" that he knew computer-graphics had got to the point that his dreams of one day doing the "Star Wars" prequel became a reality.

See the entire "Jurassic Park" trilogy on Netflix now.

6. "Mamma Mia!" (January 1)

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The hit musical based on the songs from ABBA will give you good vibes going into the new year (and make you want to book a trip to Greece). The sequel, "Mamma Mia! Here We Go Again," is also available.

7. "One Flew Over the Cuckoo's Nest" (January 1)

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This acclaimed 1975 drama based on the Ken Kesey novel was originally adapted into a hit broadway play in 1963 starring Kirk Douglas in the lead role of McMurphy. It became an obsession of Douglas to then bring to it to the big screen, but after a decade he couldn't get it done. It was finally his son, Michael, who did. With his father too old to reprise the role it went to Jack Nicholson, and the rest is history.

Playing McMurphy, a convict pretending to be insane so he'd be transferred to a mental institution and avoid hard labor, the outlandish performance would lead to a best actor Oscar win for Nicholson and cement him as the best actor of his generation. The movie also won best picture.

8. "School of Rock" (January 1)

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Directed by Richard Linklater and written by "The White Lotus" creator Mike White, this feel good comedy stars Jack Black as a struggling musician who takes a job as a substitute teacher at a prestigious prep school.

Once he realizes his kids actually are amazing musicians, he decides to craft them into his own rock band and try out for "Battle of the Bands."

9. "Training Day" (January 1)

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Denzel Washington would score a best actor Oscar win for the rare time in his career where he plays the bad guy.

We spend the day with crooked LAPD narcotics cop Alonzo Harris (Washington) as he shows the ropes to the newest member of his team, Jake Hoyt (Ethan Hawke). It soon becomes evident to Hoyt that Harris isn't on the level, leading to a thrilling ending of good versus evil on the streets of South Central Los Angeles.

10. "The Florida Project" (January 6)

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Director Sean Baker delivers an amazing look at the hard knock life for some living outside the gates of Disney World.

We follow a six-year-old girl Moonee (Brooklynn Prince) and her single mother (Bria Vinaite) as they try to make ends meet while living at a budget hotel in Kissimmee, Florida. Willem Dafoe plays Bobby, the kind-hearted manager of the hotel.

Baker shows us a different side of an area dominated by Mickey Mouse as Moonee and her friends run around the hotel finding the small joys of their surroundings.

11. "Lift" (January 12)

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In this new Netflix original from director F. Gary Gray ("The Italian Job," "The Fate of the Furious"), Kevin Hart and Gugu Mbatha-Raw play thieves who form a team to steal $100 million in gold bullion from a 777 passenger plane.

Sam Worthington, Vincent D'Onofrio, Jean Reno, Jacob Batalon, and Billy Magnussen also star.

12. "Cats" (January 16)

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It's time to experience it. This big-screen adaptation of the iconic Broadway musical opened in 2019 and became a box office bust and is regarded as one of the worst movies of all time.

Need more reason to see it? Taylor Swift stars and has her own musical number.

The movie also stars Idris Elba, Jennifer Hudson, Rebel Wilson, James Corden, Ian McKellen, and Judi Dench.

13. "Train to Busan" (January 23)

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This South Korean horror follows a group of passengers taking a train from Seoul to Busan who suddenly find themselves in the midst of a zombie apocalypse and must fight their way through the train to survive.

Disclosure: Mathias Döpfner, CEO of Business Insider's parent company, Axel Springer, is a Netflix board member.

poltergeist movie famous line

IMAGES

  1. Poltergeist (1982)

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  2. Movie Review: Poltergeist (1982)

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  3. Poltergeist III (1988)

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  4. Poltergeist (1982)

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  5. POLTERGEIST (1982) : MOVIE REVIEW • POWER OF POP

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  6. Poltergeist II: The Other Side (1986)

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VIDEO

  1. poltergeist movie fact

  2. Is the movie Poltergeist cursed?

  3. They're Here! Curse of Poltergeist

  4. Poltergeist 3 released on this date 35 years ago in US Theatres!

  5. Movie fact about poltergeist 1982

  6. Poltergeist (1982) Movie Review & Spielberg Vs Hooper Discussion

COMMENTS

  1. Poltergeist Quotes, Movie quotes

    "This house has many hearts." Zelda Rubinstein - Tangina [Tag: ghosts, heart, house ] more on this quote ›› "I feel like the proto-human coming out of the forest primeval and seeing the moon for the first time and throwing rocks at it." Beatrice Straight - Dr. Lesh [Tag: moon, nature, novelty ] more on this quote ››

  2. Poltergeist Quotes

    Rotten Tomatoes: 86% Poltergeist Screenplay » Edit Buy PG Year: 1982 114 17,773 Views Taglines: From a dimension beyond the living, a terror to scare you to death. They're here. It knows what scares you. Some things have to be believed to be seen. The first real ghost story.

  3. Poltergeist (1982)

    Carol Anne Freeling: They're here. Steve Freeling: [ shouting in Teague's face] You son of a bitch! You moved the cemetery, but you left the bodies, didn't you? You son of a bitch, you left the bodies and you only moved the headstones! You only moved the headstones! Why? Why? Tangina: There is no death.

  4. 61 Inspiring Poltergeist Quotes To Live By

    "This is my house now!" - Betelgeuse "My name is Betelgeuse, and I'm here to haunt your house." - Betelgeuse "Why so serious?" - Betelgeuse "I'm a ghost, I'm not gonna hurt ya. I'm just here to do the opposite of hurt ya." - Betelgeuse "Beetlejuice! Beetlejuice!

  5. Poltergeist (1982 film)

    Poltergeist (1982 film) Poltergeist. (1982 film) Poltergeist is a 1982 film about a Southern California family whose home is haunted by a host of ghosts. Directed by Tobe Hooper. Written by Steven Spielberg, Michael Grais, and Mark Victor. They're Here. taglines.

  6. Best "Poltergeist" Movie Quotes

    "They're here." — Carol Anne Freeling , Poltergeist Tagged: scary, Supernatural "They're heeeeere!" — Heather O'Rourke , Poltergeist Tagged: Scary Movies, Horror Movie Best Poltergeist Quotes. "They're here." - Carol Anne Freeling

  7. Poltergeist quotes ... Movie Quotes Database

    Carol Anne: Uh-huh. Diane: Do you see them? Carol Anne: Uh-uh. Do you? Diane: Uh-uh. View Quote Diane: How long have you been investigating haunted houses? Dr. Lesh: Mrs. Freeling, the determination as to whether your home is haunted is not very easy.

  8. Poltergeist Quotes, Movie quotes

    Don't move. - Amy Bowen: Ok. "- Dr. Brooke Powell: Is everything alright? - Carrigan Burke: If it was, I wouldn't be here .". Poltergeist quotes: the most famous and inspiring quotes from Poltergeist. The best movie quotes, movie lines and film phrases by Movie Quotes .com.

  9. Poltergeist (1982 film)

    Plot Steve ( Craig T. Nelson) and Diane Freeling ( JoBeth Williams) live in the planned community of Cuesta Verde, California. Steve is a successful real estate agent, and Diane looks after their three children: 16-year-old Dana ( Dominique Dunne ), 8-year-old Robbie ( Oliver Robins ), and 5-year-old Carol Anne ( Heather O'Rourke ).

  10. Poltergeist (1982)

    5 Videos 99+ Photos Horror Thriller A family's home is haunted by a host of demonic ghosts. Director Tobe Hooper Writers Steven Spielberg Michael Grais Mark Victor Stars JoBeth Williams Heather O'Rourke Craig T. Nelson See production info at IMDbPro RENT/BUY from $3.99 search Amazon Add to Watchlist

  11. Poltergeist 1982

    0:00 / 1:29 Poltergeist 1982 - 10 Best Quotes God Loves Movies Too 9.04K subscribers Subscribe 21 Share 2.9K views 3 years ago #BestMovieQuotes #Top10MovieQuotes #GodLovesMoviesToo Best...

  12. Iconic Movie Quotes From the Summer of 1982

    "Tomorrow, tomorrow/I love ya tomorrow/You're only a day away…" The musical Annie is as famous for its music as it is for its plot. I mean, one of the musical's songs is an instrumental part of...

  13. They're back: A Memorable Catchphrase

    Her cry -- the follow-up to her original "Poltergeist" announcement of "They're heeeere!" -- became the crux of the movie's marketing campaign. Eleven years later, the expression doesn't need to come back, because it won't go away. "They're ba-a-a-a-ck!" was the headline of Time magazine's Nov. 17 Winners & Losers column citing Saddam Hussein ...

  14. Poltergeist (1982)

    Summaries A family's home is haunted by a host of demonic ghosts. A young family are visited by ghosts in their home. At first the ghosts appear friendly, moving objects around the house to the amusement of everyone, then they turn nasty and start to terrorise the family before they "kidnap" the youngest daughter. — Rob Hartill

  15. Steven Spielberg's Chilling 'Poltergeist' 1982 Horror Movie Was Based

    Steven Spielberg wrote, but didn't direct, the horror movie. The renowned filmmaker directed one of horror's most famous films. Jaws was a low-budget production but a top scary movie in 1975 ...

  16. 36 Facts about the movie Poltergeist

    One of the most memorable lines from the movie is "They're here." The line was delivered by Heather O'Rourke, who plays Carol Anne, and has since become a pop culture reference. The Legendary Director and Writer Collaboration Poltergeist brought together legendary director Steven Spielberg and writer/director Tobe Hooper.

  17. Heather O'Rourke

    Heather O'Rourke From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia Heather Michele O'Rourke (December 27, 1975 - February 1, 1988) was an American child actress. She had her breakthrough starring as Carol Anne Freeling in the supernatural horror Poltergeist (1982), which received critical acclaim and established her as an influential figure in the genre.

  18. Things That Happen In Every Poltergeist Movie

    MGM. Another curious occurrence in each film is the hushed conversation. In the first movie, there's a long scene where Diane and Robbie have a conversation on the nature of death and the ...

  19. Poltergeist (1982)

    Poltergeist is an American 1982 supernatural horror film, directed by Tobe Hooper, produced by Steven Spielberg, and released by Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer on June 4, 1982. It is the first and most successful of the Poltergeist film trilogy, and was nominated for three Academy Awards. The film was ranked as #80 on Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments and the Chicago Film Critics Association named it ...

  20. Poltergeist (1982) Ghosts Abduct Carol Anne

    In this iconic movie scene from Poltergeist (1982), the ghosts abduct Carol Anne after the family leaves her alone upstairs. After the backyard tree comes to...

  21. Every Poltergeist Movie Ranked, Worst To Best

    Poltergeist has terrified audiences over the course of three films and a 2015 remake, and here's how the franchise ranks, worst to best. While there's long been controversy over who exactly directed 1982's original Poltergeist film (some involved say credited director Tobe Hooper, others insist it was producer Steven Spielberg), the end result still holds up as a masterpiece of horror filmmaking.

  22. POLTERGEIST FILMS & TV SERIES (1982-2015)

    5 titles 1. Poltergeist (1982) PG | 114 min | Horror, Thriller 7.3 Rate 79 Metascore A family's home is haunted by a host of demonic ghosts. Director: Tobe Hooper | Stars: JoBeth Williams, Heather O'Rourke, Craig T. Nelson, Beatrice Straight Votes: 177,051 | Gross: $76.61M 2. Poltergeist II: The Other Side (1986) PG-13 | 91 min | Horror 5.6 Rate

  23. Poltergeist Movies In Order Of Release

    This now famous line, which was spoken by young Carol Anne (Heather O'Rourke) in the first Poltergeist movie, indicated the presence of something much worse than the unwelcome human visitors that might set foot in your home. As you'll know by the movie's title, she was talking about the presence of ghosts!

  24. 20 best horror films and franchises featuring scary clowns

    1 / 21. 20 best horror films and franchises featuring scary clowns ©New Line Cinema. In 2016, in a widely publicized instance of mass hysteria, people around the world reported seeing creepy ...

  25. Watch Danielle Brooks convince Oprah to recite her iconic 'All my life

    It seems Danielle Brooks and Oprah Winfrey had a blast on the set of "The Color Purple.". On Jan. 3, Winfrey took to Instagram to share a behind-the-scenes video of her and Brooks reciting their character Sofia's most famous monologue from the film.. In 1985, Winfrey portrayed Sofia in the original "The Color Purple" movie before Brooks took on the role in the latest adaptation of the film ...

  26. The 11 best Natalie Portman movies, ranked

    Below, we ranked 11 of her best movies. 11. "Thor: Love and Thunder" (2022) Natalie Portman as Jane Foster/Mighty Thor in "Thor: Love and Thunder." Out of every Marvel movie she starred in as Thor ...

  27. 9 Movies Like 'Saltburn' to Watch Next

    Why you'll like it: Like "Saltburn," "Parasite" is an eat-the-rich satire that critiques the ultrawealthy and class inequality. "Parasite" is streaming on Max. Advertisement. 8. "The Menu ...

  28. The 13 best movies on Netflix in January

    Celebrate the new year by sitting back and watching some movies on Netflix. We have over a dozen here that are worth your time. 1. "Aquaman" (January 1) As DC Comics moves into a new era of ...