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On the surface, "Casper" is a high-gloss update of the story of the "friendly ghost" who starred in 55 Paramount cartoons in the late '40's and 1950's. However, saysTIME film critic Richard Corliss, director Brad Silberling's hit movie mines a very dark soil. Although the plot is familiar -- Casper searches for and finds a young friend -- the subtext is new: A fascination with death and raising the dead that lingers throughout the film. "In its haunted heart," says Corliss, "Casper is another invitation to kids to flirt with the idea of being dead."