I recall seeing a movie when I was a young child in the early 80s about a man who fell in love with the ghost of a medieval woman.

As best as I can recollect the man was a reporter or author and was tasked with doing a report on an ancient medieval castle in Europe that was supposedly haunted by the ghost of a young, beautiful woman who has been seen by many people over the years. He visits and the ghost turns out to be real. She repeatedly appears to him and during the course of the movie the two fall in love. The problem (besides the fact that she's dead) is that her jealous husband also haunts the castle. The castle might've originally been his. He was mean and abusive and may have been involved in his wife's death and she was unhappy before and after her death. After seeing his wife and the man interacting repeatedly and seeing the affection developing between them, the husband becomes jealous and begins attacking the man. He cannot defend himself while the ghost can attack him, and the wife is afraid he'll kill the man. At one point the husband comes out of a wall and shoves the man down to the floor. The wife attempts to stop her husband from attacking the man.

A painting of the husband and wife (separately) may have been on one of the walls in the castle.

I don't remember any more than that. I only saw it once, on a cable channel. It may or may not have ever been a theatrical release. I have never been able to remember the name, and it's bugged me ever since.

  • 7
    Maybe High Spirits- was Peter O'Toole or Steve Guttenberg in it?
    – Nu'Daq
    Commented Sep 22, 2019 at 1:29
  • I saw that in the related list as I typed. I don't believe that's it. This was not a comedy at all, and I don't remember there being any other main characters other than the man, and the two ghosts. Commented Sep 22, 2019 at 1:32
  • 3
    Sounds like High Spirits to me, too -- Liam Neeson was the jealous husband, and Daryl Hannah the lady ghost. It was dark in many ways, and the humor may not have been obvious to a child.
    – K-H-W
    Commented Sep 22, 2019 at 1:59
  • @Nu'Daq You should add this as an answer, it does sound right to me.
    – mwarren
    Commented Oct 3, 2019 at 13:36
  • @mwarren- idk, if he says it wasn't a comedy I'm inclined to believe him.
    – Nu'Daq
    Commented Oct 4, 2019 at 4:15

1 Answer 1


As noted in some of the comments, this sounds like the 1988 comedy High Spirits.

Per Wikipedia:

Peter O'Toole is Peter Plunkett, the owner of a dilapidated Irish castle which has been converted to a bed and breakfast supplying the only employment for the local villagers. Owing money to an Irish-American businessman by the name of Brogan, Plunkett has the idea to turn the castle into "the most haunted castle in Europe" for the tourist trade, inspired by his mother's stories of the castle's history of ghosts. He and his wacky staff of Irish characters set about creating ghost costumes and effects for their first group of American lodgers.

At first annoyed by the inept hauntings, the American guests (including Steve Guttenberg, Beverly D'Angelo, Connie Booth, Peter Gallagher and Jennifer Tilly) soon get what they paid for as the genuine ghosts of Castle Plunkett take umbrage with being cheaply exploited and stage a full-scale paranormal event.

The ghosts of two dead people, Mary Plunkett and Martin Brogan (played by Daryl Hannah and Liam Neeson), become romantically entangled with Guttenberg and D'Angelo's characters. This romantic twist is the focus of most of the plot.

The character who is specifically present to investigate the rumored hauntings (played by Martin Ferrero) is not the one who ultimately becomes romantically involved with Mary Plunkett's ghost, however.

The film is generally not well regarded, and I can't say I disagree with the general assessment. Hannah, in particular, was nominated for a Razzie.

However, at present, the entire film is available on Youtube.

The paintings of the castle's earlier occupants (although Hannah is shown much more prominently) can be seen in the dinner scene starting at 13:12. Neeson coming out of a wall (or rather, a sealed door) occurs for the first time at 33:40.

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