DVD - Image B+ Sound A- Extras F
BD - Image A Sound A Extras F
starring JoBeth Williams, Craig T. Nelson, Beatrice Straight, Heather O'Rourke
screenplay by Steven Spielberg, Michael Grais & Mark Victor
directed by Tobe Hooper
by Walter Chaw Time has made it impossible to see Poltergeist as anything other than a Steven Spielberg-directed picture. The hallmarks are there, from the microscopic attention to the family dynamic to the ridiculous, set-piece bombast of the grand finale. The only moments that feel like a Tobe Hooper joint are tiny throwaways that lack the polish Spielberg's visual savant-ism demands, such as an artless shot of a killer clown doll, or a sequence where a guy rips his face off beneath an inexplicable sodium light over a likewise-inexplicable industrial wash basin. The rest of it is Spielberg clockwork: great suburbs, great special effects, great abuse of an expositive score (here Jerry Goldsmith fills in for John Williams), great overuse of the slow push-in, great hot mom, great irrelevant dad, great plucky little kids.