Plot: Stacey (Laura Harring) and Mark (John Hannah) are loving the newly married life and live on a sizable piece of farmland, where the two engage in all kinds of amorous activities. But the romantic bliss is shattered when Mark is killed in a car accident, leaving Stacey widowed and devastated. As she mourns her love, she learns that she is pregnant with his child and while she is still crushed, the thought of having a piece of her late husband is wonderful news. The pregnancy is not a smooth one, but she gives birth to a son and couldn’t be happier, though some odd things start to happen once the newborn is brought home. These strange events could be dismissed as emotional stress, from both the new mother status and the still fresh grieving process, both of which have taken a toll on Stacey. Is she just experiencing the mental pressure from stress, or is there a darker force at work?
Entertainment Value: No, this is sadly not a sequel to Bill Cosby’s Ghost Dad, but Ghost Son is an overly serious, sometimes ridiculous movie from Lamberto Bava, that centers on a possessed newborn. The narrative is rather predictable and doesn’t mine new elements, but it also injects enough off the wall moments to keep things interesting, at least most of the time. I do feel like the pace is on the slow side, with some quite tedious stretches at times, but the random wackiness helps, as the so serious, you can’t help but laugh tone. John Hannah leads the cast and he doesn’t go wild, but he does run with some craziness in select scenes and he even provides the voice of the possessed baby, which can be hilarious. The infant is the source of most of the entertainment, whether that involves violent breastfeeding or an outlandish sequence that involves voluminous vomit. I just wish some of the other threads were scaled back and the possession wasn’t overlooked for some stretches, as that is where the fun is here and whenever the movie strays from that, it grinds to a crawl. So Ghost Son winds up as an inconsistent ride and it never finds an effective rhythm, but there’s enough weirdness and entertainment to give it a passable recommendation.
The cast tends to fall in line with the overly serious tone involved, but as I mentioned, John Hannah dials up his performance to add some fun. Hannah has some awkward nudity, ramped up drama, and once he becomes the ghost/voice of the possessed, he’s even more humorous. His voice being channeled through the possessed baby is so ridiculous and I wish the movie ran with that more. The possession elements are easily the most fun sequences Ghost Son has, so I think more focus there would have worked wonders. At least Hannah makes the most of the times he is involved in the possession scenes, which adds a lot to the picture. Laura Harring is beyond serious and sells it all in a sincere effort, even when the movie derails into the more offbeat realm, she stays in that dead serious mode. I think the overly serious performances at least add some spice and b movie vibes, so there’s that. The cast also includes Pete Postlethwaite, Coralina Cataldi-Tassoni, and Mosa Kaiser.
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