Ghost Dog is like a contemporary Spaghetti Western/Samurai flick set in the suburbs. It has the slow, mellow, easy pacing interrupted by moments of intense violence, the intriguing but elusive characters who follow their own mysterious moral code even to their death if necessary. It is funny, and even hilarious at times; it is political insofar as it plays with and criticizes racial and ethnic stereotyping; it has one of the best soundtracks of any films (done by the RZA of Wu Tang Clan fame); scenes are joined together by intertitles containing intriguing passages from the Hagakure: the Book of the Samurai, read smoothly by the Ghost Dog himself; it raises existential questions of how to live appropriately in the face of death and the collapse of the forms that give meaning to our lives; and, best of all, it stars Forrest Whittaker in the role he was born to play! That alone makes this a dvd worth owning at almost any price; and at this price I can't see how anyone who loves film does not own a copy.
On a personal note: when I took one of my classes (on American Independent Film) to the Sundance film festival a few years ago, someone asked me whether I hoped to see any stars. I hadn't really thought about it because I'm not that starstruck, I just like movies. But then it came to me: the whole trip would be worth it if I could meet Forrest Whittaker. And I did! He's a very big man, just as impressive in life as he is on film. We were at a party for one of the smaller satellite festivals and I talked to him for a while, and finally said: "hey, I really loved what you did in Ghost Dog." He just nodded a few times, and said, "yeah, that was a cool movie." Enough said.