Ghost poster
Directed by Jerry Zucker
Produced by Lisa Weinstein
Written by Bruce Joel Rubin

Patrick Swayze
Demi Moore
Whoopi Goldberg
Tony Goldwyn
Rick Aviles
Vincent Schiavelli
Gail Boggs
Armelia McQueen

Music by Maurice Jarre
Cinematography Adam Greenberg, ASC
Editing by Walter Murch
Distributed by Paramount Pictures
Release July 13, 1990
Running time 126 minutes
Country United States
Language English
Budget $22 million
Gross revenue $505,702,588

Ghost is a 1990 American romantic fantasy-thriller film starring Patrick Swayze, Demi Moore, Tony Goldwyn, and Whoopi Goldberg. It was written by Bruce Joel Rubin and directed by Jerry Zucker. The plot centers on a young woman in jeopardy (Moore) and the ghost of her murdered lover (Swayze), who tries to save her with the help of a reluctant psychic (Goldberg).

The film was an outstanding commercial success, grossing over $505.7 million at the box office on a budget of $22 million. It was the highest-grossing film of 1990. Adjusted for inflation, Ghost is currently the 91st-highest-grossing film of all time.

The film was nominated for five Academy Awards, including Best Picture, Best Score and Best Film Editing. It won the awards for Best Supporting Actress for Goldberg and Best Original Screenplay. Swayze and Moore both received Golden Globe Award nominations for their performances, while Goldberg won the BAFTA, Golden Globe, and Saturn Awards in addition to the Oscar.


Sam Wheat (Patrick Swayze), a banker, and Molly Jensen (Demi Moore), a potter, are a loving couple who move into a New York City apartment. At work, Sam discovers a major discrepancy in multiple bank accounts and confides in his good friend and colleague Carl Bruner (Tony Goldwyn). Carl offers to investigate the matter, but Sam decides to investigate himself. Later that night, Sam and Molly are attacked by armed thug Willie Lopez (Rick Aviles) and Sam is killed by a gunshot during a struggle with Willie. Sam's ghost arises from his dead body, which lies next to the distraught Molly. He gradually realizes that he is a ghost whose presence cannot be seen or heard.

One day, Sam is alone at the apartment (testing his ability to walk through doors) when Willie comes in, looking for something. Sam is unable to stop the killer but spooks Molly's cat, Floyd, causing Willie to get scratched and flee. Sam follows the killer to his place in Brooklyn and hears that he will return to Molly's house. Sam wanders into the parlor of Oda Mae Brown (Whoopi Goldberg), a charlatan medium who discovers to her shock that she has actual psychic powers when she meets Sam, her first real ghost. Sam persuades Oda Mae to warn Molly about Willie, but Molly does not believe her, especially after she learns of Oda Mae's extensive criminal record as a forger and con artist.

Sam discovers that Carl was involved in a money laundering scheme at the bank and that the attack was an attempt by Carl to acquire Sam's security codes so that he could transfer the money from the many accounts to one at another bank. Sam learns how to interact with solid matter by willpower from an aggressive poltergeist (Vincent Schiavelli) he meets in the New York City subway who was apparently murdered when somebody pushed him onto the subway tracks. Afterward, Sam persuades Oda Mae to thwart Carl's money laundering scheme. Following Sam's instructions, Oda Mae impersonates the owner of Carl's fake bank account, closes the account, and reluctantly gives its $4 million contents to a church related homeless shelter.

Carl, due to transfer the money to a correspondent bank overseas, becomes desperate when he finds the account closed and empty. Sam taunts him in the deserted office by moving objects and making accusations appear on his computer screen, repeatedly typing "MURDERER" and "SAM". Carl visits Molly and declares to Sam that he will kill Molly unless the money is returned that evening. He and Willie then go to Oda Mae's apartment to find her. Sam manages to get there first and warns Oda Mae and her two sisters, who quickly escape and take refuge in a neighbor's apartment. Sam uses his powers to separate and distract Carl and Willie, who are ransacking Oda Mae's apartment in search of the money. Horrified by the experience, Willie flees and is run over by a car. Willie rises as a ghost and is dragged into the darkness by a gang of shadowy demons, presumably to Hell.

Afterwards, Sam and Oda Mae return to Molly's apartment to warn her about Carl, but she refuses to let her in and breaks down in grief. Sam finally convinces her that Oda Mae is genuine and he is truly present as a ghost by having her push a penny underneath the front door and Sam levitating it in front of Molly. Astonished, Molly lets Ode Mae inside and while waiting for the police, Sam uses Oda Mae's body to share a final dance with Molly.

Carl arrives, prepared to murder Molly and Oda Mae, but they flee. Sam is left momentarily weakened, as possession of a human body is extremely taxing to a ghost. In the storage room, Carl manages to get a hold of Oda Mae and threatens to kill her, but Molly comes to her aid and holds Carl off long enough for Oda Mae to escape his grasp. Carl grabs Molly and holds her at gunpoint, but Sam recovers and disarms him. Carl tries to escape by swinging a giant metal hook at Sam and climbing through a window. However, the hook hits the window and causes the plate glass to break into several jagged shards, one of which pierces Carl's stomach and kills him. His ghost is then carried away by the same shadowy demons that took Willie earlier.

As Sam goes to Oda Mae and Molly and asks if they are all right, Molly suddenly realizes that she can hear him. A heavenly light fills the room and Sam becomes fully visible to both Molly and Oda Mae. Sam looks behind him and sees hundreds of people, presumably angels, in a gateway to Heaven. His task is completed and he can move on. Sam says an emotional farewell to Molly, thanks Oda Mae for her help, turns and walks into the light.



Patrick Swayze films

Ghost (1990)  ·

Whoopi Goldberg films

Ghost (1990)  · Sister Act (1992)  · Sister Act 2: Back in the Habit (1993)  · Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (2014)  ·

Demi Moore films

Ghost (1990)  ·

Tony Goldwyn films

Ghost (1990)  ·

Rick Aviles films

Ghost (1990)  ·

Vincent Schiavelli films

Ghost (1990)  · Tomorrow Never Dies (1997)  ·

Ad blocker interference detected!

Wikia is a free-to-use site that makes money from advertising. We have a modified experience for viewers using ad blockers

Wikia is not accessible if you’ve made further modifications. Remove the custom ad blocker rule(s) and the page will load as expected.