The guy who directed ''High Spirits'' is better known for other movies(Neil Jordan, [[HeAlsoDid better known]] for literal Oscar winners like ''Film/TheCryingGame'' and ''Film/InterviewWithTheVampire'') and so are the cast. Peter O'Toole is almost DrivenToSuicide when he's unable to pay the bills on his family castle, which he's turned into a hotel/theatre because of said bills. Until his seemingly {{Cloudcuckoolander}} mother informs him that she's been having conversations with his father -- who's been dead for years.

O'Toole gets the idea to attract American tourists by advertising the hotel as haunted and gets the castle's thespians and employees to pretend to be ghosts. The SpecialEffectFailure by the actors tips off the Americans that the hauntings are fake, if it wasn't already obvious by the time they were heading towards the castle, and O'Toole plans to return to his suicide attempts until the ''real'' ghosts of his ancestors show up.

The EnsembleCast has a variety of little storylines, but the main storyline, other than the one involving O'Toole and his ancestors' ghosts, focuses on a married couple, Jack and Sharon, played by [[PoliceAcademy Steve Guttenberg]] and [[Film/NationalLampoonsVacation Beverly D'Angelo]], who are having problems, and are only there because Sharon's father is trying to get the deed to the castle, and having the castle's hauntings revealed as fake would benefit this greatly. Things don't go as planned, though, because Jack and Sharon begin individual romances with a pair of ghosts, Mary Plunkett and Martin Brogan (Creator/DarylHannah and Creator/LiamNeeson), who are stuck in a GroundhogDayLoop with Mary repeatedly being murdered by Martin, because he believes her to be unfaithful because she doesn't sleep with him on their wedding night.
!!This movie provides examples of:
* TheAllegedCar: The hotel's bus.
* BetaCouple: Martin and Sharon.
* BrainyBrunette: Completely averted with Miranda.
* BrattyHalfPint: The parapsychologist's children.
* CloudCuckoolander: Mrs. Plunkett. Good grief. Miranda also qualifies.
* DaddysGirl: Sharon.
* DrivenToSuicide: Martin, when he regretted killing Mary in a fit of rage.
* TheDitz: Miranda.
* EightiesHair: Well, it ''was'' made in 1988.
* FieryRedhead: Martin is something of a male example. He sure as hell has a HairTriggerTemper for most of the movie, though it's PlayedForLaughs.
* HairOfGoldHeartOfGold: Mary.
* HenpeckedHusband: Jack.
* HollywoodHomely: Mary describes Martin as disgusting, with smelly feet. Martin is played by a thirty-six year old '' Creator/LiamNeeson. '' Who gets at least two shirtless scenes.
* HotForPreacher: Miranda, for Brother Tony.
* HugeGuyTinyGirl: Martin and Sharon. Happens when your actor is 6'4" and your actress is 5'2".
* LoveAtFirstPunch: Martin ''really'' starts to fall for Sharon when she kicks him "in the ba-hoogies" and punches him in the nose.
* MistakenForCheating: Martin with Mary. She wasn't sleeping with anyone else; she just didn't want to sleep with ''him.''
* NotEvenBotheringWithTheAccent: Peter Seamus O'Toole is the most English-sounding Irishman ''ever'', despite being born in County Galway. (He grew up in Leeds.) Liz Smith likewise doesn't bother trying for an Irish accent as Mrs. Plunkett.
* OohMeAccentsSlipping: Daryl Hannah's Irish accent is pretty terrible. It's all the more jarring because the other Irish characters are played by actual Irish actors.
* PairTheSpares: Martin and Sharon, who are much more suited for each other than their respective partners.
* RichBitch: ''Sharon''.
* ShirtlessScene: Creator/LiamNeeson gets a couple.
* SpecialEffectsFailure: In-Universe example. The hotel staff's attempts at pretending the hotel is haunted are cringe worthy.
* StalkerWithACrush: Martin for Sharon, albeit briefly.
* ThereIsAGod: The lord of a castle fails to make it a tourist attraction. He's so depressed he's thinking of hanging himself (again) but a storm means the guests have to stay, so he says this.
* TitleDrop: Of sorts. Jack is handed a book titled "The Book of High Spirits".
* WellDoneSonGuy: All Peter ever wanted was some encouragement from his Daddy. He finally gets some, even if Daddy's a ghost.
* YouHaveToBelieveMe: Jack is very, very insistent that he's seen ghosts. Sharon is understandably skeptical, until she meets one herself.
* YourCheatingHeart: Jack ''and'' Sharon. Unusually for the trope, it ends positively for both of them. (Well, apart from [[spoiler: Sharon ''dying,'' but since that means she can be with Martin she doesn't seem too bothered by it.]] )