From today’s perspective, it’s amazing to see how much this horror classic influenced the genre for the next four decades. It is quite obvious that relatively recent horror series such as “Insidious” or “Conjuring” found the model and motivation in “Poltergeist”. Although the direction of the horror that had three Oscar nominations (visual effects, sound, original music) is signed by Tobe Hooper, the author of one of the best and most important horror films of all time, “The Texas Chainsaw Massacre”, Steven Spielberg is most responsible for the creation of this horror classic. The most commercially successful filmmaker of all time wrote the screenplay and produced “Poltergeist” himself, but left the direction to Hooper because he was filming “E T.”.
And yet, from today’s perspective, “Poltergeist” seems more like a product of Spielberg, and not Hooper, which is not surprising, since the entire filming took place under his creative control. Even today, this film is placed on practically all lists of the most influential, best and scariest horror films of all time, although from today’s perspective, “Poltergeist” does not seem so scary. The story is set in a typical horror quiet American town, this time in a planned town in the interior of California where father Steven (Craig T. Nelson) works as a real estate agent while his wife Diane (JoBeth Williams) is a housewife and takes care of three children. , 16-year-old Dana, 8-year-old Robbie and 5-year-old Carol Anne.
One night, Carol Anne will begin to communicate with a voice from the television that will appear after the program breaks, when what we used to call “snow” appears. The girl will continue to communicate with the same mysterious property the next night, and then there will be an earthquake that seems to hit only their house, followed by other bizarre incidents. Seemingly benign incidents will become more frequent, and everything will escalate when Carol Anne sucks in the portal that has been created in the space in her room. It will become clear to this family that they are dealing with some supernatural properties when Diane begins to communicate with her mother via television and explains to her in fear that she is still in the house, but she cannot leave the room where some strange creatures are. Steven and Diane will then call experts in parapsychological phenomena for help, and they will explain to them that the house is haunted by spirits. And not just any ghosts, but poltergeists or house spirits that cause similar problems.
And instantly, “Poltergeist” became a big hit in cinemas, becoming the most watched horror film and the eighth most watched American film in 1982. Spielberg has once again confirmed that he has a great sense of hitting the audience’s taste, and it is especially fascinating how he “spoofed” an almost classic fairy tale into a modern horror story. Thus, the fate of the girl who ended up in a parallel universe depends on her parents’ love and their ability to prove it. The success of “Poltergeist” rests largely on this, because regardless of the good special effects at the time, the key is the emotional and psychological moment, i.e. the fact that the whole story is set from the perspective of a parent who lost a child in such a bizarre and supernatural way. .