Maybe it’s the fact that I spent the two hour plus running time of this film in the cinema’s first row and can now only permanently look up that’s affecting my mood, but I just can’t have the same oily critical wank that everyone seems to be enjoying over this film.
O, it has its good points. There’s a good and timely plot, thanks largely to the original novel Ghost by Robert Harris. Most of the film is well paced, particularly in the beginning, with a slow Hitchcockian attempt at playing with the audience. And there’s an excellent spark of humour and wit throughout, admirably delivered by Obi Wan KeGregor.
Unfortunately, this tale of an unnamed ghost writer taking over the autobiography of ex Brit Prime Minister Adam “Tony Blair” Lang from his mysteriously dead predecessor at the very moment the PM is accused of war crimes falls short of true entertainment. This is largely due to information being kept from us too long. In superior thrillers No Country For Old Men and The Constant Gardner, there are countless plot points, each more dazzling and thrilling and twisting as the screen time progresses. The Ghost Writer has about four, and each takes about half an hour to get to. Add to this a conclusion that can be predicted early in the film and it makes for a rather unthrilling thriller sprinkled with moments of enjoyment.