The Ghost Writer
(M) Sony DVD/BD
Based on a bestseller very loosely based on Tony Blair’s tenure as Britain’s prime minister, controversial director Roman Polanski’s The Ghost Writer is a sleek, shape-shifting mystery about an unnamed hack (Ewan McGregor) who finds himself in Conspiracy Town after agreeing to pen the memoirs of a former PM (Pierce Brosnan).
Secrets and lies unreel as McGregor’s inquisitive mercenary becomes deeply embroiled in political puppetry that, before he can back out, turns life threatening.
Polanski has made plenty of memorable movies (Chinatown, The Pianist) and, memorably, he finished making this movie while under house arrest in Switzerland, on long-standing charges of having sex with a minor in the late 1970s.
The Ghost Writer is an entertaining adult whodunit that unintentionally spotlights Polanski’s own evasion of justice (he fled from the US in 1977, after pleading guilty upon initial arrest). While Brosnan’s character confronts accusations of war crimes, Polanski still has not faced the music.