Ghost Story Ghost Story question


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Is this not one of the best horror novels and one of the worst movies, ever?
John Kussner John Jun 06, 2013 10:00PM
I absolutely loved this book and can still remember the delicious chills it gave me. I think its one of the best-written and most-literate horror novels, I have EVER read. Unfortunately, the movie-version was a complete disaster and captured none of the books frissons. In a word - it sucked! Great book, lousy film.



I came to the book late. I had seen the movie first back in the 70's when it came out and loved the movie. I agree with Rachel that Alice Krige was perfectly cast. I thought all the gentlemen were perfectly cast as well. When I read the book a year ago finally, I loved the story even more. The book is wonderful and in my top 10 favs.


I thought this book was the scariest book I ever read. Movie was just okay.


The movie is decent for what it is (a late 70's/early 80's supernatural flick done when Hollywood still knew how to make these kinds of films properly) and the casting of Alice Krige was perfect.What the movie is NOT is a proper representation of Straub's book which is....so much more.


The book was the best horror read Ive had. Beats Stephen King novels and others as well. The movie was a disappointment. Maybe they will try again. Im going to put this on my re-read list!


The movie is not terrible. The climactic scenes were quite scary and ALICE KRIGE was amazing, as always. The book is one of the scariest I have ever read, along with THE OTHER.


I enjoyed the movie -- for jumping scares, and such, but the novel held so much and was simply terrifying~


I loved the book...classic ghost story. I didn't think the movie was so bad. I agree that it could be a good re-make if the right person did it. Anyone remember The Talisman that Straub and Stephen King wrote together? Pretty cool. I think Stephen King's Bag of Bones was a great spook story along the lines of Ghost Story.


GHOST STORY is probably my favorite horror novel of all time. I've never seen the movie.


I read the book for a contempory novel class back in college - everyone in the class who read it before bed had unsettling nightmares it was probably one of the scariest books I ever read. The movie - well I like books much better!!


John wrote: "I absolutely loved this book and can still remember the delicious chills it gave me. I think its one of the best-written and most-literate horror novels, I have EVER read. Unfortunately, the movie-..."

Yes and yes. In fact, it's the scariest book I've ever read. I would sit there reading it, totally immersed, and jump five feet in the air every time the floorboards squeaked. This happened multiple times.


Yes, this was a "creepy" book, but the movie did not have the thrill. I still own it and may have to read it again.


You've made me want to read it again, after some 25 years. One of my top scariest books. For me it ranks up there with King's "The Shining".


I saw the movie years ago and I just finished the book. The only good thing about the movie was the cast. John Houseman as the stodgy Sears and Fred Astaire as the dapper Ricky were very apropos.


deleted member Sep 06, 2013 12:31AM   0 votes
One of the best horror novels, sublime... and so creepy. As for the film- crap. A TV series could do the book justice perhaps.


I also felt it was the scariest book I ever read. It's still one of my favorite books of all time.


Absolutely right - the book is a stormer. The film is a squib.


Agreed - I think this is a case where a remake is needed.


I always thought the film was mediocre, but having very recently read the book, I actually think the film was better. I really didn't like the book.


I thought the book was absolutely the scariest book I've read. I know I saw the movie, but I cannot remember anything about it.


Nope, did not do a thing for me...movie was even worse.


Glad I haven't seen the film. Like you, I thought the horror was astonishingly good. I'm really not a fan of horror stories, but, recommended by a friend, Peter Straub drew me in and I empathised with the characters immediately. The overwhelming feeling of evil was chilling and the plot engrossing. I remember thinking at the time that it would probably be turned into a horrible cliche of a film. Looks as though I was right!


As most horror adaptations from great books are, the movie was very weak. The casting was suspect as well...Fred Astaire? Very few early 80's horror movies had much value as I recall and this is certainly no exception. I have all but given up on horror book->screenplays because for me they detract from the memory and discussion of the book. There are a few exceptions but they are rare.


deleted member Jun 19, 2013 02:33PM   0 votes
Yes and Yes.


Enjoyed the book, wonderful prose, (though sometimes it did drag a little) but as for the film, dry, mind numbing and just not up to scratch. It could have been a brilliant film, equal to the book, if only the right people had made it.


Holly (last edited Jun 07, 2013 10:00AM ) Jun 07, 2013 09:59AM   0 votes
The movie was a total waste! Huge disappointment. I must admit that most horror movies these days don't scare me and are way too predictable. Ghost Story is on my top 10 list of horror novels......very good stuff.


I'm just the opposite. :)
Tried to read the book and got bored by Straub's meanderings and the seemingly pointless back and forth between chapters.

I feel that the movie did lend the story a much needed consistency.

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Benjamin Stahl I completely agree. The book was sometimes just incoherent, where as the film at least made more sense out of Eva Galli's story and purpose. ...more
Nov 13, 2013 03:53AM
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Rachel I agree too. I was so looking forward to the book because of all the great reviews, but when I finished it I was just confused and upset that I didn't ...more
May 06, 2014 10:08AM

The book was a winner, the movie was a waste of time.
I guess it is time for me to re-read this novel to experience the thrill once again. It has been a good while since I read it.


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