A renowned television ghost hunter Brett Wilson (Phillip Roebuck ) loses faith in what he believes and is about to retire; when he agrees to take one last case from a client Travis Garner (Joe Hansard )who claims to have an connection to his late wife Nicole Wilson (Katie Foster )and also guarantees he’ll provide the proof Brett Wilson and his paranormal investigation team Jennifer Hughes (Devon Marie Burt ) and Ritchie Lyons (Frederick Cowie ) have been searching for years, accompanied by a writer / skeptic David Sherman (Josh Davidson ) soon the group will have to fight for their sanity as they try to uncover the history of the mysterious house in the 2010 paranormal thriller “Ghosts Don’t Exist”.
At first look “Ghosts Don’t Exist” seems like your typical cookie cutter haunted house style film, but I assure you this is not the case. “Ghosts Don’t Exist” turns out to be a very strong character driven thriller that will leave you tense and dying to find out what is going on inside the home of Travis Garner. The chemistry between each of the cast members feels authentic and gives the overall feel of the story a more realistic and believable tone, the way they portray the investigation aspect of the film is also mostly accurate with only one occurrence I would disagree with in which they claim the reason most investigations occur in darkness is due to it taking less energy for a spirit to manifest in that setting, when in reality the reason most people think that is the prime method of investigating is due to television and the fact they use that tactic to create a more creepy atmosphere for the viewer at home.
The nods at how some of the less creditable paranormal shows use cheap scare methods to give almost any location a scary and haunted appearance was a nice touch in making the story seem plausible, and I really enjoyed the interaction between the skeptic and the investigation team, the spouting of typical skeptic explanations of well known signs of haunting from the writer further added to the chemistry of the cast. I really went into this film expecting very little and ended up having a really fun time watching it and found myself honestly enthralled throughout most of its running time.
The use of multiple plot twists often is a movie mechanic I simply do not enjoy due to the running risk of coming of silly or feeling like parts of a film were forced and tacked on for the sake of simply killing time. “Ghost Don’t Exist” much like another plot twist driven film “The Darkness Within” uses this mechanic beautifully to a certain extent, my only complaint is the ending itself does come off feeling a bit tacked on and rushed as if they were not sure when or how to bring the story to a comfortable close.
A lot of paranormal films go over the top with special effects and cliché scares and most times this ruins a haunting film for myself as someone who has had real life experiences with the other side. “Ghost Don’t Exist” keeps things realistic and uses very little special effects to drive into your head that what you are seeing in front of you is a haunting. The film is very heavily dependent on a strong script and believable interaction between its main characters which to me shows real talent making the choice to not use flashy eye candy to keep your viewers interested but to instead have enough faith in your story and actors to keep things interesting.
On behalf of The Liberal Dead I give “Ghost Don’t Exist” 7.5 of 10 and recommend it to any paranormal fan looking for a more realistic take on a sub genre that is quickly becoming flooded with endless less than desirable attempts.