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The Ghost Writer (2010)

The Ghost Writer (2010)

Ewan McGregorPierce BrosnanOlivia WilliamsJon Bernthal
Roman Polanski


The Ghost Writer (2010) is a English movie. Roman Polanski has directed this movie. Ewan McGregor,Pierce Brosnan,Olivia Williams,Jon Bernthal are the starring of this movie. It was released in 2010. The Ghost Writer (2010) is considered one of the best Crime,Drama,Mystery,Thriller movie in India and around the world.

An unremarkable ghost-writer has landed a lucrative contract to redact the memoirs of Adam Lang, the former UK Prime Minister. After dominating British politics for years, Lang is campaigning for his foundation with his wife in the USA. He lives on an island, in luxurious, isolated premises complete with a security detail and a secretarial staff. Soon, Adam Lang gets embroiled in a major scandal with international ramifications that reveals how far he was ready to go in order to nurture UK's "special relationship" with the USA. But before this controversy has started, before even he has closed the deal with the publisher, the ghost-writer gets unmistakable signs that the turgid draft he is tasked to put into shape inexplicably constitutes highly sensitive material.


The Ghost Writer (2010) Reviews

  • Controlled enigma


    Roman Polanski's 'The Ghost Writer' bears the most in common with his recent 'The Ninth Gate'. The comparison starts this review as many others will inevitably find some comparison to be made with the director's work, especially since his personality looms so large. The plot has been described countless times and will be spared here. What instead fascinates is the depiction of Ewan McGregor as the nameless protagonist. He has no family, no real attachments so to speak, and no real drive. Like Johnny Depp's "book detective" in 'The Ninth Gate' his reason for existence seems to be to serve those higher in society. McGregor plays the party well, never completely convincing in one state or the other. Even when under duress his physical movements speak much more about his mental state than his mannerisms. This could be interpreted as Polanski's examination of apathy within larger society. What I mean by that is to say that it is through the Ghost's lack of interest that one can observe the world. Shot by Pawel Edelman, who has collaborated with Polanski in the past as well as with other heavyweight Polish filmmaker Andrzej Wajda, the images of 'The Ghost Writer' suggest a cool bleakness. Accompanied by a poetic score by the always reliable Alexandre Desplat the film suggests a constant looming menace, embodied by the rain of the New England island. The camera often remains static, sometimes zeroing in for reactions, but always showing a complete action through a singular movement or lack of movement. Often times the characters seem resigned to their fates. The roles each person plays in the story are very clearly defined. Former-PM Adam Lang (Pierce Brosnan), surrounded by his lackeys, anti-war protesters, etc. all seem just pieces of grander scale. Polanski's world view is so thoroughly and crisply represented through this visual style it is as if the individual events are not as important as the atmosphere in general. This is precisely why the film works, because of a director so in command of his craft. The film runs over 2 hours but every decision feels completely blocked and planned out. Every image carefully composed, every moment of information tightly plotted. 'The Ghost Writer' works terrifically by raising your blood level in this manner. Some will inevitably complain it makes the film seem merely serviceable when such expected plot twists occur. Yet I can think of few filmmakers so readily able to create such a vivid world and sustain it greatly. There are some pacing issues and the music can be overbearing. These are not unlike the problems facing Martin Scorsese's 'Shutter Island'. The talent of all involved makes the film exceed a workmanlike thriller even though the atmosphere on set was so mathematical. A very enjoyable, meticulous film that demands and rewards patience. Worth seeing.

  • An Intelligent, Topical Thrill Ride


    Got to see this at a pre-release screening and wound up chewing my thumbnails down to the quick with the tension! Though I am a huge Roman Polanski fan (of his work, not necessarily the man) I haven't really been crazy about any of his films since "Death and the Maiden" ("The Pianist" was technically superb but left me cold). At last, my patience has been rewarded. "The Ghost Writer" is a stylish, edge-of-your-seat political thriller that, on the basis of suspense, twists, corruption, and an ensnared hero unable to grasp the enormity of what he's up against, can be looked on as a contemporary companion piece to Roman Polanski's "Chinatown." It's Polanski reveling in the art of skillful storytelling, and at age 76, it's clear he has not lost his touch. Collaborating with author Robert Harris from his novel "The Ghost" (film title expanded, no doubt, to avoid misleading Polanski fans who would assume a return to the supernatural) Polanski has fashioned a real nail-biter that, thanks to the solid performances and deft plotting, plays extremely well whether you like politics or know much about foreign policy. Ewan McGregor is a writer hired to ghost-write the memoirs of a former British Prime Minister (Pierce Brosnan) after the previous collaborator commits suicide (maybe). Almost immediately life begins to get, shall I say, complicated for McGregor as he is shuttled off to a spartan, fortress-like mansion on the American East Coast to work on the book and there encounters a catalog of the kind of slightly-off kilter characters that Polanski casts and directs so well. There's the unsettlingly mercurial Prime Minister, his caustic wife (Olivia Williams, who, simply put, steals the movie out from under everyone's noses), the icy assistant (Kim Cattrall, better than I thought she could ever be), and an entire corps of strange and secretive supporting players, all the better to keep you guessing just what is going on up to the absolutely socko conclusion. Can't say what readers of the novel will think of the film, but as someone who went into the film ignorant of the plot, I have to say it was a real thrill ride and held many didn't-see-that-coming surprises. So many of Polanski's trademark themes are showcased (black humor, a preoccupation with "foreignness," paranoia, the pervasiveness of evil), but best of all, it's a pleasure to see an intelligent thriller that is extremely well acted. The look of the film is as chilly as the underlying message, and the cast is populated with some startling casting choices very well used (I would have liked to have seen more of Eli Wallach, though). There is much to recommend in "The Ghost Writer," not the least of which being that Nicholas Cage (originally cast) dropped out before filming!

  • A great thriller in the tradition of Hitchcock (and Rosemary's Baby)


    This is a connoisseur's movie. It needs to be consumed slowly and deliberately to truly enjoy everything that has gone into it. Watch it carefully, there is a lot going on under the surface. Yes, it's a thriller, and as such parts of it are fast paced, but what it does so well is to misdirect your attention for a while before snapping you back to focus. There are no wasted words, nor gratuitous scenes in this movie. Just like a Hitchcock movie, the scenes are all necessary, even if they are symbolic. The acting is first rate, and I say that because much of the tension in the movie comes from the way the characters act, not special effects, not plot points hammered in over and over again. It is a very dark movie, and the darkness is nicely set off by humor and sarcasm in a few spots.

  • Has Polanski made the perfect movie?


    The key word here is suspense, the perfect blend of a director at the peak of his powers, a script that beautifully works with a source without diluting its essence or compromising its subject matter, and with a timing so perfect that no false note is hit, enrapturing its audience, never letting go, pushing its limits as the audience awaits its incredible resolution. McGregor plays a hired writer who comes in to assist Lang (Brossnan) in the publication of his memoirs. Timing couldn't get worse as an unexpected complication ensues and many people's lives and reputations are suddenly in danger. As the film reaches its conclusion, with tensions and levels of paranoia reaching unheard limits, it's got our attention, and it has earned every bit of it. The quality of the writing is impressive, with no false moves, no red herrings, no unnecessary distractions, no manipulations to sway you one way or another. What we have is a mix of intrigue, action, Shakespearean drama, and performers who might never be this good again. Polanski channels Hitchcock at his best, using Desplat's driving score (himself channeling Herrman), and just when it all could have been a tribute, it soars above its inspiration. Among so many impressive elements, one has to mention the note perfect and outstanding Olivia Williams, an actress that has moved on from being physically alluring to developing acting talents which could rank her with Streep and Close because of her impeccable and powerful turn. Here is a woman who hardly resorts to gimmicks, but takes the most normal of situations and weaves a wave of intrigue that would leave you breathless. "The Ghost Writer" is a mystery, a thriller, a tribute to the masters who inspired the genre and might even surpass all those sources of inspiration. The film mixes politics with an old fashion thrills and makes us wonder why Hollywood hasn't made movies like this more often. It's early in the year, but it's going to be hard to find anything that can even come close to this movie, a film that is as perfect as anything any director has ever put together, Hitchcock included.

  • Polanski and McGregor, a wonderful match


    Ewan McGregor gets rid of every ounce of glamour and allows his Polanskian character to emerge. I though, a few years ago, Polanski could have played him himself the way he played so beautifully in "The Tenant" Those two characters are not that far apart. Taking over an apartment or a job from someone who leaves the scene under very mysterious circumstances is practically the same thing. McGregor, however, is superb. In "The Ghost Writer" events play close to the knuckle. Who is Pierce Brosnan? Tony Blair? and Olivia Williams? Classic film-making at its best. Compelling and visually stunning. The score by Alexander Desplat reminded me of Bernard Herrman and the atmosphere is so thick that the film's 2 hours plus fly by at an amazing speed. Polanski at 77 doesn't show any signs of jadedness. He is in total control. Hurrah for that!


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