Ghost Ship

2002

Ghost Ship

Critics Consensus

With a plot as creaky as the boat, Ghost Ship fails to deliver the scares.

15%

TOMATOMETER

Total Count: 126

37%

Audience Score

User Ratings: 376,916
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Movie Info

A salvage team think they've made the find of a lifetime, until they discover there's more on board than meets the eye in this supernatural thriller. Led by Captain Sean Murphy (Gabriel Byrne), the crew of the tugboat Arctic Warrior have discovered a sideline far more lucrative than hauling ships in and out of the harbor -- they locate missing or wrecked ships in international waters, repair them until they can be brought back to port, and then sell off the ship and its contents as salvage. Acting on a tip from Jack Ferriman (Desmond Harrington), a pilot in the Canadian Air Force, Murphy and his crew -- salvage expert Maureen Epps (Julianna Margulies), first mate Greer (Isaiah Washington), and crewmen Santos (Alex Dimitriades), Dodge (Ron Eldard), and Munder (Karl Urban) -- set out to find a large craft seen adrift off the Alaskan coastline. To their surprise, the crew of the Arctic Warrior discover what appears to be the Antonia Graza, a famous Italian ocean liner, legendary for its luxury, which vanished without a trace in 1962. While they at first anticipate the payday of a lifetime from this find, the crew soon discover a sinister force has taken control of the ship, and before long they're battling not for salvage rights, but for their lives. Ghost Ship was directed by special effects man turned filmmaker Steven Beck, who previously directed the 2001 remake of 13 Ghosts.

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Critic Reviews for Ghost Ship

All Critics (126) | Top Critics (34)

Audience Reviews for Ghost Ship

  • Jan 16, 2019
    This is one of those days where I wish I could just crank this review out in five minutes and be done with it because, again, I'm really short for time and I need to cook dinner before tonight's movie. Fuck my life. In all seriousness though, this movie is a bit of a conundrum for me. I know, for a fact, that I saw the first bit of this movie on some cable TV network when I was younger. But I cannot, for the life of me, remember if I had actually seen this in theaters when it first came out with my mom or aunt or both of them. I spent my entire time watching this movie trying to remember as to whether or not I had actually seen this. And, in all honesty, I still can't remember if I did see it in theaters. I'm not saying that my memory is perfect, but I've got a pretty good memory when it comes to movies I've seen in theaters. And this is just one that I'm completely blanking on. I can usually tell if it's one or the other, but I can't do that for this movie. Also, why the fuck am I wasting my time trying to remember whether I could remember such an unmemorable slog of a movie like this one??? Spoiler alert, I didn't really like this movie. It's not like the concept of a ghost ship is a new concept in the medium that is horror, but has it ever been executed as ineffectively as it was in this movie. It's one of those flicks where you just pay attention because you decided to watch it, but you don't REALLY pay attention to. Like you're just watching mindlessly, consuming what this film has to offer without really thinking anything. Talk about engaging, eh??? This tugboat crew is hired to, well, tug this ocean liner that mysteriously disappeared over forty years ago, at the point of this film's release at least, closer to sixty now. When the crew gets to the ocean liner, they find large quantities of gold and, of course, they think they've got it made. The thing is that there's quite a bit to the movie before we actually get to this point and, you know what, I don't really care to recap it because it's fucking boring and uninteresting. After they recover the gold and take it back to their boat, which explodes as the result of some spirit/demonic presence attempting to prevent them from leaving. This starts off a series of increasingly strange events that leads to the death of the entire crew, with the exception of Epps. I suppose the idea is that you're gonna be so intrigued by the mystery of what happened on this ship, where the gold came from and what was the motivating factor for the constant betrayals that went on aboard as everyone tried to get a piece of the pie. I mean $200 million worth in gold is enough motivation but, of course, there was a manipulator here. Anyway, the point is that I didn't really care about any of the mystery behind this ship. So, if you're like me, and you don't care about the mystery behind the disappearance of this ship, where the gold came from and who's the demonic spirit manipulating this, then what's the fucking point of it all? There is no point. The horror is terrible, the characters aren't particularly likable and the scripting is all of the place in that it doesn't know what it wants to be. What am I, or anyone else for that matter, even watching this movie for? I mean, the film fails to provide any reasonable amount of entertainment, so what was this meant to do??? I think I'd like this movie more if it was made to promote Mudvayne's second album. Mudvayne's song 'Not Falling' is featured heavily in this film. Why would I like this movie more for that? I don't really know and I can't actually answer that question, but there's something absurd of spending millions of dollars in producing and marketing this movie only for it to serve as promotional material for a shitty heavy metal band's second album. And I say this as someone who grew up as a metalhead, it's just that I never liked Mudvayne. Regardless, I suppose that's neither here nor there. It comes to be revealed, in the third act, that the person who took the crew to the ocean liner is the demonic spirit that's manipulating everything. It's a job for him, you see, he salvages souls for a living(?) as punishment for a lifetime of sin. I mean, I guess that makes sense, but who doles out the punishment?? Is this Satan himself??? Cause isn't eternal hellfire and damnation punishment enough??? The fact that this guy gets to avoid hell, by salvaging human souls on this ocean liner, honestly, isn't really that bad of a punishment. I mean it was a twist for the sake of a twist. And, even then, it wasn't a twist. The reason I say it wasn't a twist was because you kind of knew that Ferriman was involved somehow. And the reason I say it's a twist for the sake of it is because it, REALLY, doesn't stand up to scrutiny. I imagine they thought they were being cute by having Ferriman/the demonic spirit be a salvager, like the crew of the tugboat are, but when you actually think about it and you analyze it, it doesn't really stand up to any sort of actual scrutiny. You're just supposed to take things at face value and leave it at that, you're not meant to ask questions. And, while it's not as bad as some of Shyamalan's worst twists, it's really bad. It's not that it's that outlandish or preposterous, it's just the fact that it raises more questions than it answers and none of those questions are satisfyingly answered in this movie. I don't really know what else you want me to say about this movie. I feel like I've gone over everything that I need to have gone over in order for this review to be complete. There's nothing of value or importance in this movie. I'm sure this is someone's favorite horror movie and, honestly, I ask myself how and why that is possible. There's so many great horror movies out there and THIS is someone's favorite horror movie??? I'm just going by the law of probability, there's seven billion on this planet, one of them is bound to love this movie. Life just isn't fair sometimes and the fact that there's someone that loves this movie is proof of that. Hey, whatever floats their boats I guess (pardon the pun). Regardless, I felt that this movie sucked. From the horror to the writing to the unlikable characters to the twist, this movie offers very little of value. The film's cast is decent. at best, but, let's just say, they were swimming upstream.
    Jesse O Super Reviewer
  • Dec 06, 2017
    Ghost Ship is an exciting supernatural thriller that delivers some frightening chills. The story follows the crew of a salvage vessel that discovers a derelict passenger liner that went missing in 1962, however it turns out not to be as deserted as they thought when they start seeing the ghosts of dead passengers. Starring Julianna Margulies, Gabriel Byrne, Desmond Harrington, and Emily Browning, the film features a strong cast. And, the set designs and special effects are pretty good; creating a haunting and foreboding tone. The music too is used quite well, particularly during the action beats and the dramatic climax. Still, the plot can be rather formulaic and even a bit confusing at times. Yet despite its problems, Ghost Ship is a captivating horror film that's full of mystery and intrigue.
    Dann M Super Reviewer
  • Apr 26, 2012
    [img]http://images.rottentomatoes.com/images/user/icons/icon13.gif[/img] Once the protaganists got on the titiluar ship there was one massive jump that spooked me, and I was convincing myself that maybe the film wasn't as bad as everyone was saying but to my displeasure it sank my expectations completely shortly afterwards. On the positive side, the acting isn't awful and the set pieces are excellent and sometimes quite creepy. However the plot is derivative and sadly it's never as scary as it should be.
    Directors C Super Reviewer
  • Dec 22, 2011
    A very confusing film, there seems to be no plot whatsoever, the flashbacks are dreadful, not to mention the special effect, spare me please
    Sylvester K Super Reviewer

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