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Title: The Ghost Writer

Country: France/Germany/United Kingdom

Year: 2010

Box Office: $51,233,371

Director: Roman Polanski

Producer: Roman Polanski, Robert Benmussa, Alain Sarde, Patrick Wachsberger

Writer: Roman Polanski, Robert Harris, Robert Harris (novel)

Starring: Ewan McGregor, Pierce Brosnan, Kim Cattrall, Olivia Williams

Genre: Drama/Mystery/Thriller


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A good thriller, but a forgettable affair...

It is a rarity nowadays to see a complete film that uses its characters to create suspense and thrilling moments, rather than relying on technological advancement. Polanski is an old school type of director and like The Pianist; the journey is all about our lead character. Ewan McGregor is one of the most underrated actors in Hollywood and it is him not Pierce Brosnan that drives the Ghost Writer, like a thriller. The good news is that this film captures your attention from start to finish. There is no doubting of the fact that the film constantly alludes to a certain Prime Minister known as Tony Blair and even to a smaller extent of the Bush Administration. War on Terror is probably political, but departing from those sided political views, The Ghost Writer is an efficient and credible thriller that manages to provide enough suspense and interesting moments to engage the audience for the entire duration.

Ewan McGregor plays a ghost writer for the former prime minister of England (played with charisma by Pierce Brosnan). McGregor is an excellent character actor; you can tell that he is immersed into the role so deeply that you feel for him. It is the kind of film where you follow the character, whatever he is doing, you think along with him. While the film is by no means the class of The Pianist, the film is still thrilling enough to engage. In a way, Pierce Brosnan adds screen presence and has the looks of a political leader, but it seems as though that his apparent lack of range actually made the Ghost Writer, a lesser film. A scene stealing cameo from Tom Wilkinson is most definitely criminally underused. Perhaps, a younger Wilkinson would make a brilliant former Prime Minister. In many ways, I was actually disappointed with Olivia Williams’s portrayal as former First Lady as she fails to convince.

All in all, The Ghost Writer is a good thriller, but there are plenty flaws along the way. The problem with the film is not so much that it really didn’t say much, but rather it is the type of film that catches your attention during the duration, but loses from your memory as the credit starts to roll. Not a bad effort by the acclaimed Polanski, but really it could have been much better...(Neo 2010)

I rate it 6.5/10

>> Comment on this movie at the HK Neo Reviews Forum

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