Pop Culture

'Ghost' turns 25: 5 reasons why the movie still gets to us

It's hard to believe it's been 25 years since Demi Moore and Patrick Swayze made movie magic (and pottery!) together in "Ghost." But it's true.

On July 13, 1990, the romantic drama made up of equal parts thriller and ghost story hit theaters and drew audiences into the tragic love story of Sam and Molly.

Everett Collection
GHOST, Demi Moore, Patrick Swayze, 1990, (c) Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection

It also launched a cinematic love for viewers that still survives today. And it's easy to understand why!

1. The chemistry

Bringing a big-screen romance to life when the leading man dies early in the story seems like a nearly impossible task, and maybe it would have been with any other stars in the main roles. But Moore and Swayze made it work.

They established their chemistry from the first playful scenes of Sam and Molly setting up home in their SoHo loft, and they maintained it all the way to their final good-bye.

Of course, in between those moments, they also managed to deliver one of the most memorable love scenes in modern movies.

2. The music

When you think back on the film, there's one thing that stands out every bit as much as that glowy movie poster or the pottery wheel scene — it's the music.

Listening to the Righteous Brothers' version of "Unchained Melody" immediately puts any "Ghost" fan right back into the world of Sam and Molly.

3. The story

Sure, "Ghost" managed to mesh crime, action, death and afterlife with love, but that's not all the drama delivered.

One of the key elements that made all of those disparate angles work was comedy. In between swoons and tears, there were plenty of laughs, most of which came courtesy of co-star Whoopi Goldberg.

Everett Collection
GHOST, Whoopi Goldberg, Demi Moore, 1990, (c) Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection

4. The lines

Goldberg didn't just bring her comedic timing along to the role of psychic Oda Mae Brown, she brought all the best lines.

From her rant after handing over $4 million to a couple of nuns:

"I don't want to go to heaven, I want to go to the bank and cash a goddamn check!"

... to the most quoted line from the whole film:

"Molly, you in danger, girl!"

Goldberg said it all — well, almost all.

Moore and Swayze got a couple of good "dittos" in, too.

5. The talent

The stars are what made the film great in 1990, and they're what make it great 25 years later.

Watching it now, Moore's portrayal of grief is still painful to witness. And Swayze's seemingly effortless charm in the film makes us feel the grief right along with her.

Everett Collection
GHOST, Patrick Swayze, 1990, (c) Paramount/courtesy Everett Collection

Of course, since the actor's death six years ago, there's an added aspect to that grief, as well as an added poignancy to the film's final scenes.

"The love inside, you take it with you!"

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