- Best Known for the Fanservice: The pottery scene is very steamy and sensual, and it's also the film's most-remembered (and most parodied) scene. Even Patrick Swayze considered it to be the most sexy scene he ever filmed. Pretty impressive for a scene that has no nudity other than Swayze being Shirtless.
- Catharsis Factor: Sure the "fight" scenes with Sam against Willy and Carl are not exactly fair, but considering what they did to him, they sure are satisfying.
- Ensemble Dark Horse: The Subway Ghost, no small part due to Vincent Schiavelli's performance, acting as Sam's mentor on how to move solid objects and his pitiful side to himself when the circumstances of how he died comes to light.
- Jerkass Woobie:
- The Subway Ghost. He's bitter, overwhelmingly protective of "his train" and largely uninterested in helping anyone else. Still, he died and is remembered under unpleasant circumstances (everyone thinks he was suicidal, and if he was, he clearly regrets it now—when it's too late), not to mention being unable to interact with anyone save other ghosts. Has to take a toll on your attitude.
- Willy and to a lesser extent, Carl in their final moments. Word of God said that the scenes where they are taken to Hell were included to effectively give their characters two deaths.
- Memetic Mutation: The pottery scene has been parodied many times over the years.
- Narm: When Carl tells Molly "you're not the one who died", she gives him an incredibly weak slap.
- Oscar Bait: Pulled it off; it earned a Best Picture nomination and took the home the Oscars for Best Supporting Actress and Best Original Screenplay, even though actual critical reception was mixed.
- Retroactive Recognition:
- In the scene where Molly goes to the police station and gets info on Oda Mae, Stephen Root appears as one of the detectives assisting her.
- Carl would go on to voice Tarzan, Oda Mae would go on to voice Shenzi, and Molly would go on to voice Esmeralda. Somewhat inverted for Sam, who went on to voice Cash.
- Rewatch Bonus: Once Carl is revealed as the mastermind behind everything, a few scenes get this:
- His concern when he notices Sam investigating the phone accounts and the way he insists that he take over.
- Willie knowing precisely where to attack Sam and Molly—Carl must have told him.
- Carl encouraging Molly to join him for a walk—to give Willie the chance to break in and steal the information.
- His incredulous reaction when Molly tells him all the things Oda Mae told her initially seems to be because he thinks she's a scam artist. We soon realize that he's terrified that Willie's been blabbing to people.
- Special Effect Failure:
- The scenes with the dark figures... the green-screen technique has not aged well. Although, one could argue that it makes the figures seem even creepier and unearthly.
- Two involving Tony Goldwyn at the end of the movie after Carl's Sanity Slippage: when he's waving a butcher knife around while threatening Molly to Ghost-Sam, the knife wobbles like crazy, indicating it's probably a rubber prop, and when Carl is impaled, Goldwyn's gigantic blood pack is pretty blatant judging by the pillowy bulge under his dress shirt.
- When Sam is scaring Willy at Oda Mae's apartment, he causes a wall painting to fall on top of Willy. For a brief moment, you can see some sort of rod popping out of the wall that caused the painting to fall.
- What an Idiot!: As fun as it is to watch Sam torment Carl with his ghost powers, writing out his name on the computer was not the brightest decision. Carl now knows who screwed him over, and would be able to go after those that are connected to Sam.
- WTH, Casting Agency?: One of the directors of Airplane! directing a gut-wrenchingly emotional romantic murder drama? Surely, you can't be serious?
YMMV / Ghost (1990)