This is quite an unusual movie as it manages to play out over a number of styles all the while managing to keep each unique style intact and not suffering on either one.
There’s a lot of comedy, undoubtedly, but there is equally as much darkness and the real feeling of death, personified in the ghostly Death like apparition. Also, apart from the stock love interest story there’s real humanity with Michael J. Fox‘s character whose wife has died and his whole world has collapsed around him leaving him as a pretty despicable character.
With all these threads going on, mixing the humour and the blackness together you would think that something wouldn’t work out. However the strands compliment each other and manage not to make the movie too much of the other and providing a very entertaining dark film.
Fox is excellent, and it is this very despicableness that makes him work in the role, I don’t remember ever feeling this way about him, and it’s only at the end of the movie that the Fox persona fits the character in the stereotypical way. His trauma over his wife and the beaten character, best identified in the broken and unfinished house, takes you away from the comfortable realms of the traditional Fox role and lets you see a better side to his acting. His character will lie, cheat and even then just get by at it to extortion money out of people, he even uses the Ghosts that aide him as nothing, not even the dead, matter to him at the beginning of the movie.
The character played by Jeffrey Combs who is not only devilishly funny, but also so disturbed and off balance that he makes you laugh and then shiver with disgust straight after.
This combined with the interweaving of comedy to darkness makes this movie an excellent film to watch, and pulls you in to the movie taking you from laugh to uneasy dread to just plain freaked out throughout. It carries just the right level of each, inter-playing them when the audience needs pulled back before they are taken too far. An excellent movie to watch, with wonderful skills of storytelling combining thriller, horror and comedy with a most enjoyable cast.