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Ghost Writer

3.8 out of 5 stars 20 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

There's no such thing as going too far for John (Alan Cumming, X-Men 2, "Tin Man"), a control-freak music teacher obsessed with his handsome lodger Sebastian (David Boreanaz, "Bones"), an aspiring author. When Sebastian threatens to leave, John is driven to punish the writer - with shocking results. Then, after a literary agent (Anne Heche, "Men in Trees") comes calling, John hatches a plot to find the fame and fortune he craves. An intense and over-the-top thriller, Ghost Writer will leave you at a loss for words. Also starring Henry Thomas, Jane Lynch, Karen Black and Carrie Fisher.

Stills from Ghost Writer (Click for larger image)

Special Features

None.

Product Details

  • Actors: David Boreanaz, Alan Cumming, Anne Heche, Karen Black, Carrie Fisher
  • Format: Multiple Formats, Color, NTSC, Widescreen
  • Language: English
  • Region: Region 1 (U.S. and Canada only. Read more about DVD formats.)
  • Number of discs: 1
  • Rated:
    Unrated
    Not Rated
  • Studio: Suffering Man's Char
  • DVD Release Date: January 6, 2009
  • Run Time: 93 minutes
  • Average Customer Review: 3.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (20 customer reviews)
  • ASIN: B001H5X6QM
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #97,072 in Movies & TV (See Top 100 in Movies & TV)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Phoenix Child VINE VOICE on November 15, 2008
Format: DVD
As the blurb states, there is no such thing as over-the-top in this feature -- it IS over-the-top, and the result of Cumming's writing/directing is one of the most enjoyable, albeit quite ghoulish, arthouse films I've ever seen.

The movie centers around John Vandermark, a strange, angry and rather dislikeable man who has an admitted weakness for very handsome struggling young male artists. Enter Sebastian St. Germaine, a gorgeous author who is currently taking advantage of Vandermark's "charity" by staying in Vandermark's house, eating his meals, and ignoring his thinly veiled sexual advances.

The movie takes off from there in an explosion of fury and extremely dark comedy, blood and hysteria. David Boreanaz plays Sebastian to perfection as a dark, angry man who is also rather abusive and egotistic, and his performance as the young man (who is eventually murdered in a scene of gruesome macabre that is too memorable to go into detail here; you'd have to see it to believe it) is one of his best to date.

However, Alan Cumming's performance as John Vandermark is really the one that will stick with you. It's like watching a lunatic running through a hallway of funhouse mirrors; constantly shifting in a dizzying whirl. He cries and whines, he screams and tortures, he laughs and breaks into hysterics. His performance is pitch-perfect and his directing is, while not groundbreaking, definitely something different to see.

This movie is incredibly artistic and feeling, probing into the darkness of obsession and the explosions of passion therein with devastating effect. There aren't really any light moments throughout the film; but that only makes the overall theme of loss and obsession easier to maintain.
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Love this movie, and I LOVE ALAN CUMMING. He is a brilliant actor in this ensemble, and a tortured soul. I think it was orginally titled, "Suffering Man's Charity".

Everything he creates is incredible: Macbeth, Cabaret, Any Day Now, The Anniversary Party, Happy Tears...this shows yet another aspect of his acting ability. Alan's projects usually seem to vary considerably from one thing to another. Karen Black makes a great appearance, and the torture scene is awesome with David Boreanaz.
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Format: DVD
Alan Cumming stars in and directs the offbeat "Ghost Writer" (also strangely called "Suffering Man's Charity") and delivers a near classic in the realm of overwrought bad movie mania. I loved so many elements in this ridiculously over-the-top opus, but when it counts the most--the film settles too easily. Campy and hysterical, the film has a delightful set-up and an absolutely jaw dropping middle section--but loses momentum considerably as it struggles to its endpoint. If you are approaching "Ghost Writer" as a manic enterprise in excess, there is plenty to recommend this oddity. The picture may, in fact, benefit from a few cocktails during the viewing. If, however, this isn't your thing--you will undoubtedly be confounded by the film's flamboyance.

Cumming plays a sophisticated recluse who invites struggling young artists into his home to mentor their creative endeavors. He has other designs as well--it certainly isn't a coincidence that his projects are typically handsome men and a little rough around the edges at that. His latest is portrayed by David Boreanaz who takes advantage of Cumming mercilessly as he is supposedly working on a book. The dysfunctional duo push things too far and the film evolves into a macabre thriller. At one point, the campy confrontations took on the mania that recalled the loudest moments of the classic "Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?" When it is discovered that Boreanaz has, indeed, been writing a book--and it's based on Cumming (the title is one of the funniest punchlines), there's simply no going back. The battle is physical and it's bloody. In the aftermath, the film loses some of its fun but still reaches a satisfying conclusion.

The film boasts appearances by Anne Heche, Jane Lynch, Henry Thomas and Carrie Fisher but no one has much to do.
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Quirky, fun, and surprising, this movie directed by (also starring) Alan Cumming is an entertaining watch! Be sure to also listen to Cumming's audio commentary located in the special features afterward​.
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This movie was a bit blood thirsty but I enjoyed it as David Boreanaz was in it and played a good part. It was a bit slow at first but bear with it, it gets better
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Format: DVD
Campy, dark, over-the-top! I absolutely adore this movie. I laugh harder each time I see it. What does that say about me!?! As a matter of fact, I am watching it right now.

WONDERFUL performances from Cummings and Boreanaz, who both really shine. What a departure for Boreanaz. I have to give kudos for the risk.

WOW, that bathroom scene is something vile and nasty. I liked it! Give me the look any day Sebastian!!! I'll bring the maple syrup. Plus, you will never look at women's underwear and Christmas lights the same way again!

I will admit, this film is not for everyone, but it is good, not so clean fun, in the vein of Rocky Horror.
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