Chasing Ghosts - Movie Reviews - Rotten Tomatoes

Chasing Ghosts Reviews

Page 1 of 2
October 6, 2008
Solid performances from Michael Madsen, Shannyn Sossoman, and even Meatloaf can't make up for a weak plot, poorly written dialog and unbelievably bad acting on the part of Corey Large. The casting department must've been asleep at the wheel when they cast him as a major role. Although many of his lines and scenes with him are poorly written, his horrible acting makes one feel as if they're watching a grade school play. He is not alone however, as many of the supporting roles are acted equally as bad. Couple that with low budget stunts and painfully poor special effects, and the end result is a movie most people would be better off not seeing at all. Many of the scenes are long, boring, drawn out and irrelevant to the plot. Uninteresting characters and a "plot twist" that basically does everything short of having a narrorator tell the audience exactly what is going to happen leaves the audience disconnected and ultimately uninterested in the outcome of the movie. My only consolation is that I didn't pay to see the film in theatres as it was direct to DVD, as I would have surely walked out, the first time I've ever felt the need to do so. Save your money and yout time on this one. If I had more thumbs they'd be down on "Chasing Ghosts".
½ November 15, 2006
Chasing Ghosts
Starring: Michael Madsen, Corey Large, Shannyn Sossamon, Tom Wright, and Michael Rooker
Director: Kyle Dean Jackson


A week before he is to retire, corrupt homicide detective Kevin Harrison (Madsen) finds himself in pursuit of a serial killer while trying to train his replacement (Large). It soon becomes apparent that all the murders are somehow tied to the mysterious death of Harrison's old partner (Rooker), an officer who after death was largely blamed for Harrison's crimes. Will all of Harrison's past come back to haunt him?

"Chasing Ghosts" is a low budget crime thriller that should be required viewing for anyone thinking about making their own movie. The film is so well put-together that is a more successful effort than similar films with ten times its budget. Unfortunately, it also suffers from the same problems that many films with ten times its budget have, namely a "twist" that is so obvious that any member of the audience who is paying the least bit of attention will have figured out at least half an hour before "the big revelation."

Aside from that obvious script issue, the film is pretty decent. The characters are mostly stock, but the actors portraying them do good jobs; the mystery aspect of the film is well structured, even if the plot of the "criminal mastermind in the shadows" is a bit like a Rube Goldberg Machine [as in a bit over-complicated]; and even the slightly sideways redemption story that peeks out from the innards of the film is nice and believable.

There is a slight problem with some of the lighting and camera-work, though. For reasons I don't quite get, most outdoor scenes are shot with a tinge to them--not so much that it looks like a bad attempt at passing day-for-night in the shots, but enough to make it seem like the scene is happening during the early dawn or late twilight. In the scenes where it is indeed early dawn, the coloring makes sense, but there are others where it doesn't. (This is a minor complaint, though. Overall, the camera work and lighting is very competent and serves the drama of the film well.)

"Chasing Ghosts" is probably worth seeing for huge fans of the "surprise revelation" genre, or if you want to see an example of what can be done by truly talented filmmakers who understand how to make the most of a limited budget. Anyone else can safely pass on it.
March 9, 2006
Generally interesting crime thriller, overlong and too muddled at times. But some interesting twists, overall good performances. It's okay, had more potential than what it achieved.
½ October 21, 2013
Sadness and depression are the tones of this movie set up especially by the score. Michael plays a worn out individual showing an acting masterpiece in his composition of his part. This overall sadness is enhanced by the slaughtered body count that keeps on building. The mystery is complex adding to the thrill of the psychological drama. Nibbles: Vindaloo.
August 16, 2009
confusing, didn't love Kyle Dean Jackson's way of direction....
I watched it till the end just because of curiousity but it wasn't that strong type of a film
October 6, 2008
Solid performances from Michael Madsen, Shannyn Sossoman, and even Meatloaf can't make up for a weak plot, poorly written dialog and unbelievably bad acting on the part of Corey Large. The casting department must've been asleep at the wheel when they cast him as a major role. Although many of his lines and scenes with him are poorly written, his horrible acting makes one feel as if they're watching a grade school play. He is not alone however, as many of the supporting roles are acted equally as bad. Couple that with low budget stunts and painfully poor special effects, and the end result is a movie most people would be better off not seeing at all. Many of the scenes are long, boring, drawn out and irrelevant to the plot. Uninteresting characters and a "plot twist" that basically does everything short of having a narrorator tell the audience exactly what is going to happen leaves the audience disconnected and ultimately uninterested in the outcome of the movie. My only consolation is that I didn't pay to see the film in theatres as it was direct to DVD, as I would have surely walked out, the first time I've ever felt the need to do so. Save your money and yout time on this one. If I had more thumbs they'd be down on "Chasing Ghosts".
September 11, 2008
cool, fan of corey large, and meatloaf, good low budget movie
May 8, 2008
I liked Chasing Ghosts because it's entertaining, with a plot that looks great in some parts and it features some good actors. Unfortunately, some parts appear just like a (failed) attempt to mix The Usual Suspects and Se7en together in a crime movie. It fails because there are some holes in the plot and even after the twist at the end, you still have some questions without answer... why did they try to copy these masterpieces?
½ April 28, 2008
Michael Madsen, well, he's the same as always...
½ December 22, 2007
I was so confused till the last minute..had to watch it again in order to understand the plot.
November 27, 2007
kind of confusing, but good movie
½ November 13, 2007
I feel retarted for not seeing the end of the movie coming! Gotta give its props though, even though its not that high action.
June 20, 2007
I would say this one is ok if you just want to be entertained a bit, but the plot was a bit too obvious.
When I first saw the trailer, I was expecting something a bit like Usual Suspects. It was nothing like that. The idea was there, but it was quickly clear why this film never made it to the cinemas here. Also very clear why it was not nominated for any script-writing awards.
One Star id for the efford and one is for Michael Madsen.
June 20, 2007
this film is really great,you must see it......
½ June 19, 2007
I predicted the ending pretty early, and you don't have to be a rocket scientist to get it. Madsen does an ok job, Busey is as crazy as ever and Meat Loaf does a terrible job as the police chief. That said, that's not the real problem for the movie. It's a decent flick, it is, but it lacks consistency. Its storyline feels random at times and I found myself getting annoyed. With a little more work on the script and the editing, this could have gone down in history as a great one. But it didn't.
½ June 13, 2007
Really good movie. You don't really see what's coming but it's not hard to follow along with it either. A must see underrated film.
½ June 7, 2007
Great story. Very hard to predict, but easy to follow. Not all of the actors were great, but Madsen and Sossamon where on target. A good, low budget movie.
April 25, 2007
I like micheal madson very dreamy.. well I think so . lol
½ April 22, 2007
mmm was a good flick
½ November 15, 2006
Chasing Ghosts
Starring: Michael Madsen, Corey Large, Shannyn Sossamon, Tom Wright, and Michael Rooker
Director: Kyle Dean Jackson


A week before he is to retire, corrupt homicide detective Kevin Harrison (Madsen) finds himself in pursuit of a serial killer while trying to train his replacement (Large). It soon becomes apparent that all the murders are somehow tied to the mysterious death of Harrison's old partner (Rooker), an officer who after death was largely blamed for Harrison's crimes. Will all of Harrison's past come back to haunt him?

"Chasing Ghosts" is a low budget crime thriller that should be required viewing for anyone thinking about making their own movie. The film is so well put-together that is a more successful effort than similar films with ten times its budget. Unfortunately, it also suffers from the same problems that many films with ten times its budget have, namely a "twist" that is so obvious that any member of the audience who is paying the least bit of attention will have figured out at least half an hour before "the big revelation."

Aside from that obvious script issue, the film is pretty decent. The characters are mostly stock, but the actors portraying them do good jobs; the mystery aspect of the film is well structured, even if the plot of the "criminal mastermind in the shadows" is a bit like a Rube Goldberg Machine [as in a bit over-complicated]; and even the slightly sideways redemption story that peeks out from the innards of the film is nice and believable.

There is a slight problem with some of the lighting and camera-work, though. For reasons I don't quite get, most outdoor scenes are shot with a tinge to them--not so much that it looks like a bad attempt at passing day-for-night in the shots, but enough to make it seem like the scene is happening during the early dawn or late twilight. In the scenes where it is indeed early dawn, the coloring makes sense, but there are others where it doesn't. (This is a minor complaint, though. Overall, the camera work and lighting is very competent and serves the drama of the film well.)

"Chasing Ghosts" is probably worth seeing for huge fans of the "surprise revelation" genre, or if you want to see an example of what can be done by truly talented filmmakers who understand how to make the most of a limited budget. Anyone else can safely pass on it.
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