Paranormal expert Dr James Harvey (Pullman) and his daughter Kat (Ricci) move in to Whipstaff Manor, determined to exorcise the ghosts living there. But while boy ghost Casper is delighted to see them, his mischevious uncles are less welcoming.
The tale of a widower (Bill Pullman) who turns ghost therapist after his wife's death, Casper is strangely charming viewing. When Dr. James Harvey moves to a haunted house with daughter Kat (Christina Ricci) on an exorcism mission, he is surprised to meet the four spooks-in-residence. One of these is Casper, quite the cutest ghoul to ever grace the screen, but the other three are his badly-behaved uncles, who are determined to drive away the house's new residents. Meanwhile, Casper befriends the lonely Kat.
The ghost effects are well done, with Casper managing to retain his cartoonish good looks but also to convince as a phantasm, and the themes of grief and loss are delicately dealt with. While the Pinocchio-like subplot is a little mawkish, and the antics of Casper's badly-behaved uncles tend to grate slightly, it's hard not to like this film.
It's aimed squarely at the tinies, but there is charm enough here to make it bearable for adults too.