Saturday, July 03, 2010

Ghost Writer

Ghost Writer is a dark story directed by Roman Polanski concerning the former prime minister of England (Pierce Brosnan) who wants his memoirs ghost written. Unfortunately, the first ghost writer died mysteriously. Ewan MacGregor's character is hired to pick up the pieces, but perhaps risks his life in the process.

Ghost Writer has gotten a lot of press, praising Polanski for another The Pianist, another brooding story that brings up more questions than it answers. Let's get right to my point: I'm not a fan.

This movie is a dreary mess. It really doesn't go anywhere, in the beginning, middle or end. There are some scenes that just meander all over the place, especially when our hero is on a bicycle. Literally, meandering all over the place. For no reason whatsoever. And, unfortunately, there are many scenes like that.

An intriguing piece of the storyline was to show a ghost writer with no name. We're never told who he is. But we do get some shards of his past in a throwaway line or two. And MacGregor is splendid in the role even though he has little to work with.

The whole point of seeing this movie would be to see the cast, each of whom is sharp: MacGregor, Brosnan (whose roles just keep getting more diverse), Tom Wilkinson, Timothy Hutton, Kim Cattrall, and the astonishing Olivia Williams, whom we discovered in Dollhouse. However, a brilliant cast list does not necessarily make a brilliant movie, much to our chagrin. And the denouement does not justify the buildup. Pass on this.

Thumb's down.


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