Ghost 'Rite Here Rite Now' review: Clergy's message is clear

Now all concert films are created equal, but Ghost's 'Rite Here Rite Now' is more equal than others.
Tobias Forge of Ghost
Tobias Forge of Ghost / Jordi Vidal/GettyImages

Concert films are not new, of course. The caveman to first pick up an electric guitar probably thought, "I should film this so my fan can enjoy it forever!" But there is a huge difference between those concert films worth viewing on repeat and those not have little to do with the performances themselves. Every concert, whether filmed or not, is only as good as the strength of the musical artist's songs.

When Ghost was still in their - or his (every Ghost fan knows that the band is just vocalist/lyricist/guitarist/bassist/Cardinal/Papa Tobias Forge) - early years, the band had the same idea for the stage, but not enough volume of tracks to carry through a full concert. The band seemed more gimmicky, though many tracks were still strong.

That was back when Ghost still played smaller venues. Now, it's almost all arena, and thank goodness for it. One of the best bits about the band's concert film, Rite Here Rite Now, is the era in which the band is captured. The concert was filmed at the Kia Forum in Los Angeles over two nights, but nearly any venue in any city where the group had a gig would have worked the same, except for one important part.

Ghost's Rite Here Rite Now is what you need

For those who might eventually stream the movie (or heck, buy the DVD) and know Ghost well, you should be golden. For wannabe acolytes, here is a tip. Go to YouTube and watch the short videos that Forge has made since 2018. These are called Chapters and watching them will enhance your viewing experience of the film.

This is because while the full concert is there for the watching, the film is at times intercut with interactions between Papa IV, Sister Imperator, and Papa Nihil (if you know, you know), but instead of being a distraction, this builds an underlying story that could pay off at the very end and after the credits are done. If you are a devotee of Ghost, you must not turn the movie off once the concert is finished.

Still, while the at-times comical story makes the film a bit different than other concert films, the reason the movie is so great is because of how well the stage is shot - even the Nameless Ghouls get their chance to shine - and the absolute strength of every song. Ghost is no longer the band knowing what their stage presence will be but the show goes a bit stale after five songs. Forge is, beneath all the camp, an excellent songwriter who knows how a track should feel.

There are zero bad songs - pointing out one that is excellent only does a disservice to the other 16. Or, perhaps a better way of saying, every tune is a melodious triumph, at times quiet metal and at other times bombastic. The songs are so well crafted and thought out that Ghost is not just a band to see live, the albums should also be on high rotation for you.

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Forge also has a clear message for fans and, well...humanity in general: Just be nice to each other and take care of one another. Sure, there are schtick and glam metal elements to Ghost, but the caring for other people is genuine. When Forge speaks of this in the concert, it adds an element of reality to a world of pretend. The humanity of Forge transcends what on the surface could look like fluff.

Is Rite Here Rite Now worth your time? Absolutely. For those unfamiliar with Ghost but wanting to check out the group, the concert film should be enjoyable both visually and musically. For those who have been fans since the beginning, the film is every bit as good as you could hope, only better.

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