We Have a Ghost Plot Synopsis
We Have a Ghost is currently streaming on Netflix and is worth a look if you’re wanting to watch a kid-friendly haunted house movie with the family.
The movie tells the tale of the Presley family who encounter a ghost in the attic after moving into a rickety old house. The ghost’s name appears to be Ernest – the name is printed on his bowling shirt – but we later discover his true identity.
As the movie progresses, Ernest begins to remember his former self and the life that he lived before his demise. After getting the answers he has been looking for, he is ready to cross over to the spirit realm.
But does Ernest cross over to the other side? Or does he continue to stay in the home he has been haunting? Let’s take a closer look at the movie:
How does the movie begin?
At the start of We Have a Ghost, we see a family fleeing from their home in terror. Why? Well, their home is haunted and we can assume the ghost inside has done something to terrify them.
The movie then jumps forward in time to the moment when the Presley family move into the house. The head of the family is Frank, a down-on-his-luck dad who has suffered a period of financial misfortune. Joining him are his wife Melanie and his two teenage children, Kevin and Fulton.
It’s Kevin who first meets the ghost. After hearing something in the attic, he decides to take a look. Shortly after, Ernest appears, waving his hands around in an attempt to scare the young teen away.
Kevin isn’t scared at all. He actually finds the ghost amusing and as is typical of teens today, he whips his phone out and records a video of the frustrated spirit standing in front of him.
Does anybody else see Ernest?
Yes – thousands of people!
Fulton is the second person to see Ernest after he watches the video Kevin took the night before. Frank also sees the video and with dollar signs in his eyes, he decides to upload the video online in the hope that it will become viral and make him his fortune.
The video does go viral and Ernest becomes a YouTube and TikTok sensation. Some people on TikTok take part in an Ernest-inspired challenge – ‘walk through the wall like Ernest’ – and others flock to the Presley home to get a glimpse of their latest online obsession.
Unfortunately, the video also catches the eye of the CIA via Dr. Leslie Monroe, a former agent who was previously a part of the agency’s paranormal division. It has been her lifelong goal to confirm the existence of ghosts and after hearing about Ernest, she excitedly returns to the CIA to alert them to the video. They are sceptical at first but when word of Ernest’s existence continues to spread, they decide to investigate this strange phenomenon.
Who is Ernest?
This is where it gets a little bit confusing as Ernest isn’t really called Ernest at all. Kevin assumed that was his name because of the moniker on his bowling shirt but we later learn his name is Randy.
After befriending the ghost, Kevin teams up with Joy, his next-door neighbour, to learn more about the spirit’s identity. As Joy is a talented hacker, she is able to find out more details about ‘Ernest’ on the internet. They find evidence that the ghost’s full name was Ernest Scheller but strangely, they aren’t able to find his death certificate.
To find out the truth about Ernest, the two teens and the ghost himself, embark on a road trip to get the answers they need. After learning more about Ernest at a bar and narrowly escaping a run-in with the police who have been tasked with finding them, our intrepid trio find themselves at the home of the real Ernest.
The man lives with his wife, who is paralyzed. He tells them that the ghost’s real name is Randy (the name we will now use when referring to the ghost) and that he was his brother-in-law. Ernest then tells the story of Randy and the possible reason for his passing.
We learn that Randy had to raise his child alone when his wife died giving birth. According to Ernest, Randy became an alcoholic after his wife’s passing and unable to cope, he left Judy, his daughter, with Ernest and his sister. He then took Ernest’s bowling shirt – Ernest says he did this to hide his identity – and then disappeared.
Ernest tells the kids that Randy probably killed himself or drank himself to death, but we later learn this isn’t the case at all. In fact, Ernest has been lying all along.
We don’t get to learn the truth until later in the movie because CIA agents interrupt the meeting between the teens and Ernest and capture Randy.
What happens to Randy?
Randy is taken to a government facility and put in a special cage that can seemingly contain ghosts. Dr. Monroe pays Randy a visit and after seeing a ghost for the first time in her life, she becomes emotional and starts to cry. After noticing her tears, Randy reaches out and tenderly wipes them away. At this point, Monroe realizes ghosts are capable of human emotion.
When she realizes her boss intends to experiment on Randy, she decides to set the ghost free. She attacks the security guard and lets Randy escape. In the process, the eagle symbol on the guard’s shirt falls to the floor and this causes Randy to have a flashback about his past and untimely passing.
How did Randy die?
Randy was murdered by Ernest! Why? Because Ernest and his wife couldn’t have children, so when Randy dropped his daughter off at their home, Ernest hit him over the head with his eagle trophy and killed him. He did this because he wanted to take custody of June.
After getting blood on his bowling shirt, Ernest took it off and put it on Randy’s dead body. He then buried him in the backyard of his house – the house that the Presley family later moved into.
We learn this information when Ernest breaks into the Presley’s house armed with a gun. Afraid that Randy may have told Kevin the truth about his passing, Ernest decided the best thing to do was to commit another murder. But before Ernest gets the opportunity to dispose of Kevin, the boy’s father intervenes and pushes Ernest out of the window.
Does Randy cross over to the other side?
The CIA later question Kevin about Randy. Kevin tells them that Randy has crossed over to the other side because his killer had finally been brought to justice.
This isn’t the case at all as Randy hasn’t yet made his final journey. The trigger for him crossing over to the great beyond is actually his daughter. Kevin and Frank are able to find June and they reunite her with her ghostly dad.
After spending a little time with June, Randy is able to leave the world behind. After a last few moments with Kevin, the boy who helped him find peace, he moves on to whatever is waiting for him in the spirit realm.
The movie ends with the Presley family moving out of the house. Kevin takes one last look in the attic before he leaves and wonders whether Randy is still watching over him. This would appear to be the case as just after Kevin leaves the attic with Joy, a lightbulb flickers, which is an indication that Randy is still able to connect to the real world.
Read More: We Have a Ghost Movie Review