Entertainment

We Need to Talk About… Casper (1995)

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How many times have you been sat on your sofa at home, watching a movie or playing a video game with your other half, happily plodding your way through life and then BLAM you spot a glaring error or what the f**k moment that totally removes you from your experience? It happens all the time for us, and we’re sick of it.

In a new on-going series, we take a look at some of the worst offenders in the history of television, video games and film and hold to account the supposed ‘great minds’ behind them for some of their questionable decisions.

We are Two Beard Gaming, and this is We Need to Talk About… Casper (1995).

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Casper is a 1995 fantasy comedy film directed by Brad Silberling. It is based on the long-running Harvey Comics strip Casper the Friendly Ghost by Seymour Reit and Joe Oriolo. The movie stars Bill Pullman as Dr. James Harvey, a supposed agony uncle to the recently deceased, who finds himself hired by a couple of money-hungry crooks (Carrigan and Dibs) to try and exorcise the ghosts haunting Whipstaff Manor. In tow is Pullman’s awkward, outcast daughter Kat, played in typical haunting fashion by Christina “I definitely wasn’t typecast in the 1990s” Ricci.

With Steven Spielberg and Amblin Entertainment pulling the strings, Casper was an entertaining family movie, with just enough pseudo scares to keep the little ones quiet, and enough irreverence to placate the teenagers in the house.

Casper grossed an impressive $287.9 million worldwide against a budget of just $55 million, yet it never spawned the string of sequels everyone expected. We can’t say for sure this is because of the many bizarre WTF moments in the movie, but we’re sure they probably didn’t help. Below is just a few of the more questionable moments that we spotted after rewatching the film for the first time in over a decade.

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WHO YOU GUNNA CALL?

Casper 1995 Ghostbusters

We briefly see Dr. Ray Stantz running out of Whipstaff Manor, telling the owners to call “Someone else” instead of him to rid the house of its horrible hosts. Are you trying to tell us that the bulb headed Casper is too scary for the guy who defeated the Stay Puft Marshmallow Man? C’mon, we’re not buying it.

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WHAT HAPPENS TO DR. HARVEY’S BODY?

Casper 1995 - Dr Harvey

So, Dr. Harvey dies while out on the town with Stinky, Fatso, and Stretch. When he dies he returns to Whipstaff Manor as a cardigan-wearing ghost where he fails to recognise Kat as his own daughter. After a few minutes, the Doc’s memory is jogged and he enters the Lazarus Machine which brings him back to life. Yay!

But if Dr. Harvey is alive again – complete with a living, breathing vessel – then WHAT THE HELL HAPPENED TO HIS ORIGINAL BODY?! We know Harvey fell down a hole, so is he still down there rotting away while his soul swans around wearing a replica skin suit? Aw man, it just doesn’t bear thinking about.

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WHAT’S THE DEAL WITH CLOTHES WHEN YOU’RE DEAD?

Casper 1995 - Carrigan Ghost

By our reckoning, Casper, Stretch Stinky, and Fatso are all nude. This is presumably because no one needs clothes in the afterlife. So why then, when Dr.Harvey and Carrigan die do they both come back wearing outfits that defined them in their human form? We’ve already touched upon Dr. Harvey’s grungy cardigan, but Carrigan wears the same business suit she had on when she croaked. Did Bill Pillman have a no-nudity clause in his contract? Did the filmmakers want to protect the dignity of its female ghosts? None of this makes sense unless Casper and co. are actually a bunch of necro-nudists.

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DID AMELIA HARVEY ACTUALLY GO TO HELL?

Casper 1995 - Amelia Red Dress

And another thing. Why doesn’t Kat’s mom look anything like any of the other ghosts? In fact, she looks more like Sigourney Weaver as Zuul in the original Ghostbusters movie, complete with a sultry red dress.

There must be some significance to the colour choice for her frock and her appearance and we can only surmise that Amelia Harvey, mother of Kat and wife to … er, Dr. H, actually went to Hell when she died. There is simply no other explanation for it.

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IS KAT A NECROPHILIAC? …

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We’re serious here. Kat kisses Casper. Casper is (spoiler warning) a ghost. Ergo, Kat essentially kisses a corpse. I don’t care what state you live in, by anyone’s standards that is necrophilia.

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… AND IF SO, WHAT HAPPENS IF SHE FALLS IN LOVE WITH CASPER?

Casper (1995) Christina Ricci

OK, so we’ve seen Casper and Kat kiss, so we know that they have the hots for each other. But what happens if Kat still likes Casper after he is forced to return to his fluffy, white form after the dance? Kat will get older and older, and Casper will stay 11 forever. Is she going to have an 11-year-old ghost boyfriend forever? Because that’s a whole new level of nasty.

Eww. Maybe that’s why they never made a direct sequel?

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What other bizarro moment did you spot in Casper? Do you have any suggestions for movies we need to talk about next? Sound off in the comments section below and we’ll take a look at the best suggestions.

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