I didn’t know much about Ghost World other than Steve Buscemi was in it and it was based on a graphic novel. A few years ago, while researching mise en scène I came across Ghost World being analyzed and, after seeing it on Amazon Prime, I decided it was time to watch it. The film reminded me of a childhood favorite cartoon, Daria, and I mainly enjoyed it. I give Ghost World the rating Not Quite Golden, Ponyboy.
Ghost World is a cynical masterpiece.
Enid (Thora Birch) and Rebecca (Scarlett Johansson) just finished high school and are ready to move into an apartment together and start their life away from the awful people of the world, but Enid has to take art in summer school in order to get her diploma.. Then, as a joke, they respond to a newspaper ad of a man looking for a missed connect, and Enid becomes fascinated with Seymour (Steve Buscemi) and none of her plans are quite the same.
Seeing Scarlett Johansson so young was unusually as I’ve mainly only seen her films after Iron Man 2. She was talented back in 2001 though and really played the sidekick role well. Thora Birch, who I don’t seem to know much of her work, really channeled the Daria like character very well. The relationship Enid develops with Seymour is organic and somehow manages not to feel as creepy as it should.
The cinematography and production of the film is quite amazing. Even the opening sequence where the camera is following the power lines and then shows the rooms of several apartment buildings while cutting back and forth to a music performance. The final room is Enid’s where she is dancing away to the music video the audience has been seeing. It’s an interesting moment and a great way to meet the quirky Enid.
If you like cynicism, like I do, then the film is one to check out. The colors and costumes are quite beautiful and vibrant. It’s a quirky film with some comedic moments and great performances.