Poltergeist (1982) Trailer

Poltergeist (1982)

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

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. The film was ranked as #80 on Bravo's 100 Scariest Movie Moments and the Chicago Film Critics Association named it the 20th scariest film ever made.

The film also appeared on American Film Institute's 100 Years... 100 Thrills, a list of America's most heart-pounding movies.

Steve and Diane Freeling, and their children Dana, Robbie, and Carol Anne, live a quiet life in the suburbs of California, when a group of seemingly benign ghosts begin communicating with five-year-old Carol Anne through the static on the family's television sets.

A number of other bizarre occurrences are also subsequently observed, including an earthquake that only the Freelings feel, glasses and utensils that spontaneously break or bend, and the ominous announcement by Carol Anne that the ghosts are there with them.

Diane begins to realize the presence of beings in her home, which fascinates her; but when she brings these things to Steven's attention, he is disturbed and worried.

One night, during a rainstorm, a 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, Carol Anne is sucked through a portal in her closet.

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. Lesh, Ryan and Marty, come to the Freeling house to investigate. They determine that the Freelings are experiencing a poltergeist.

They explain that the spirits have not moved on to "the light", but are stuck between dimensions, and have taken Carol Anne because, being an innocent 5-year-old, her "life force" is as bright to them as the light, and they believe she is their salvation.

After a series of frightening paranormal episodes, Robbie and Dana are sent away for their safety.

The parapsychologists leave with the data they collected, but Dr. Lesh and Ryan return with a spiritual medium, Tangina Barrons, who informs Diane that Carol Anne is alive and in the house.

She also explains that there is a single malevolent spirit, whom she calls the "Beast", that is very powerful, evil, and is using Carol Anne to keep the spirits away from the light.

The assembled group realizes that, whereas the entrance to the other dimension is through the children's bedroom closet, the exit is through the living room ceiling.

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 Making of Poltergeist 1982

Diane enters the closet, with a rope tied around her that is anchored to Steven.

As Tangina coaxes the agonized spirits away from Carol Anne, Diane retrieves her daughter and emerges through the living room ceiling, falling to the floor. Tangina announces that the spirits are gone.

However, while the spirits have moved on, the Beast has not. On their final night prior to moving out, the Beast attacks Diane and the children.

Diane runs to her neighbors for help, and in the process, slips and falls into the swimming pool, from which coffins and rotting corpses emerge.

Her neighbors, terrified by the ghostly energy blazing from the house, refuse to help. Diane pulls out Robbie and Carol Anne from the house, and Dana returns from a date, as coffins and dead bodies begin exploding out of the ground all throughout the neighborhood.

As Steven returns home and witnesses this, he realizes that when the subdivision was first built, Frank Teague, the real estate developer for whom he worked, chose to save money on relocating an existing cemetery on the site by moving only the tombstones. An enraged Steven confronts Teague with the knowledge that by leaving the bodies in unmarked graves and building houses on top of them, Teague desecrated their burial grounds.

As the Freelings flee down the street in their car, their entire house implodes into another dimension, as everyone looks on. The family checks into a Holiday Inn for the night, and taking no chances, Steven puts the television outside.