Poltergeist (1982)

“They’re here.”

Living in suburbia is HELL in and of itself. There, I said it. It doesn’t help matters at all to learn that your house - no matter how American it may seem - is built on top of a cemetery in which only the headstones were removed.

"is a game changer when it comes to spooky stories to tell in the dark and share"

No wonder then that the center of ghostly activity is at 4267 Roxbury Street in Simi Valley where a young family - Steve (Craig T. Nelson), Diane (JoBeth Williams) and their three children: sixteen-year-old Dana (Dominique Dunne), eight-year-old Robbie (Oliver Robins), and five-year-old Carol Anne (Heather O’Rourke) - are visited on the regular by all sorts of not-so-friendly ghosts.

Welcome back to the haunted territory of Producer Steven Spielberg and Director Tobe Hooper’s Poltergeist, which is celebrating its 40th Anniversary this year, and, thanks to Warner Brothers, the ghost party finally arrives on 4K Ultra HD with stunning results. Poltergeist has a sort of haunted history with plenty of urban legends bubbling up from the dark waters surrounding its making. None of that detracts from just how SPECIAL this film is.

For many of us, Poltergeist is THE FILM which gave us our first cinematic fright as chairs slide by themselves from one side of the kitsch to others, a spooky clown doll unravels its arms on its own, a tree’s skeleton-like hands grab a boy, and one little girl is forever changed by the spectral events happening in the home.

And the spectral activity begins with little Carol Anne’s conversation with the family’s television set while displaying static at the conclusion of broadcast. Remember those times, Horror Hounds? That’s when you knew the late, late movie was truly over and it was time to go to bed \. . . else the Boogeyman might grab you. Well, Carol Anne doesn’t get the message and a whole host of Boogeymen come for her, beginning with some crazy poltergeist activity throughout the home.poltergeist lg2

But things quickly amp up and soon enough Carol Anne goes missing IN THE HOME, kidnapped by some sick portal in her closet while the family is rescuing Robbie from the tree that has grabbed him. Weird, I know, but Hooper’s camera pulls it all off with the steady eye of Spielberg overseeing everything.

Enter Parapsychologist Dr. Martha Lesh (Beatrice Straight) and her team, which includes Tangina Barrons, a spiritual medium (Zelda Rubinstein) who goes straight to work trying to calm the spirits and find Carol Anne by demanding that the restless souls “cross over. All are welcome. All welcome. Go into the Light. There is peace and serenity in the Light.”

Poltergeist is a game changer when it comes to spooky stories to tell in the dark and share. It’s full of great lines (“Let’s go get your daughter!” and “You only moved the headstones!”), solid practical effects (Are those real skeletons or not?!), and some cool special effects, too. While it spawned two sequels and a worthless remake in 2015, the film is its own legacy with plenty of thrills and chills as one family comes face to face with (life after) Death itself. This release is pure magic.

5/5 stars

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4k details divider

4K Ultra HD + Blu-ray + Digital HD

Home Video Distributor: Warner Bros.
Available on Blu-ray
- September 20, 2022
Screen Formats: 2.39:1
: English SDH, French, German, Italian, Spanish, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Norwegian, Swedish
English: DTS-HD Master Audio 5.1; English: DTS-HD Master Audio 2.0; French: Dolby Digital 2.0; German: Dolby Digital 2.0; Italian: Dolby Digital 2.0; Spanish: Dolby Digital 2.0; Spanish: Dolby Digital 2.0
Discs: 4K Ultra HD; Blu-ray Disc; Two-disc set
Region Encoding: 4K region-free; blu-ray locked to Region A

"They're here." At first, the ghosts haunting the Freelings' new home seem playful, rearranging furniture and interfering with their TV reception. Then, little Carol Anne (Heather O'Rourke) is abducted into their netherworld, and her parents (Craig T. Nelson, JoBeth Williams) fear they may have lost their child to specters with more malevolent intentions. Produced by Steven Spielberg and directed by Tobe Hooper; Zelda Rubenstein, Beatrice Straight co-star.


The 2160pHEVC encoded video is spot-on. There’s really no word on whether or not the scan has been cleaned up for the 4K treatment, but the images are better than we’ve seen before on home video. The 4K scan of the interpositive is supremely rich in details and colors. While some of the effects show their age, there really is nothing to complain about. Black levels are solid and shadows are thick. Lines are strong. And the colors – while they don’t pop – are cleaner and stronger than I’ve ever seen them appear.


The new 5.1 DTS-HD Master Audio track that is provided delivers the goods when it comes to upgraded dialogue, good atmospheres, and nice sound throughout the running time.



  • None

Special Features:

Something for everybody is included here.

  • Disc 1: Poltergeist Ultra HD Blu-ray
  • Disc 2: Poltergeist Blu-ray
  • Legacy Bonus Features
  • Digital Code

4k rating divider

  Movie 5/5 stars
  Video  5/5 stars
  Audio 5/5 stars
  Extras blustar4

Composite Blu-ray Grade

5/5 stars

Film Details

Misery (1990)

MPAA Rating: PG.
114 mins
: Tobe Hooper
Steven Spielberg; Michael Grais; Mark Victor
JoBeth Williams; Heather O'Rourke; Craig T. Nelson
: Horror
From a dimension beyond the living, a terror to scare you to death.
Memorable Movie Quote: "They're here."
Theatrical Distributor:
MGM/UA Entertainment Company
Official Site:
Release Date:
June 4, 1982
DVD/Blu-ray Release Date:
September 20, 2022.
Synopsis: A typical family in a quiet suburb of a normal California faces a frightening ordeal when its home is invaded by a Poltergeist. Late one night, 10-year-old Carol Anne Freeling (Heather O'Rourke) hears a voice coming from inside the television set ... At first, the spirits that invade the Freeling's home seem like playful children. But then they turn angry. And when Carol Anne is pulled from this world into another, Steve and Diane Freeling (Craig T. Nelson and JoBeth Williams--In the Land of Women) turn to an exorcist (Zelda Rubinstein) in this horror classic from director Tobe Hooper (Texas Chainsaw Massacre films) and producer and screenwriter Steven Spielberg.


Misery (1990)