The Ghost Writer
March 21, 2010
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Roman Polanski is a god when it comes to making slow building thrillers. Rosemary’s Baby is one of the few horror movies to ever get Oscar’s attention. Unfortunately, most people today know Polanski for the indiscretions of years ago. I’ve always been one who focuses on the craft and not the artist. Downey Jr, Gibson, Cruise, Michael Jackson; all names of actors who people wrote off, but I stand by. Polanski falls into that group. Even the most troubled person can make brilliance and no one is beyond redemption. But enough on that…
The Ghost Writer is almost many things, but what it is definitely a well crafted thriller. Part espionage, part political, part murder mystery, all good. Ewan McGregor plays a ghost writer brought in to polish up and finish the political memoirs of a recently retired prime minister played by Pierce Brosnan. The film early on leads us to believe that the film will be a battle of wills between Brosnan and McGregor, but this is not the case. It’s McGregor’s cross to bear as our focal point in the movie.
In today’s world of Michael Bay movies and Avatar, the hopes of seeing a well crafted thriller geared towards adult minds is becoming exceedingly rare. Edge of Darkness was another such film, though I don’t think either will find much ground when the B.O. receipts come in for Writer. It’s a slowly but deliberate build that may turn off some viewers looking for a quick and slick flick. It’s climax and realization is shot and told in a way that almost appears cheap but ends up avoiding it (fortunately). If you like intelligent and classic examples of a good thriller, this is a movie for you. 3.5 out of 5 stars