Maurice Allington, the alcoholic, sexually promiscuous, and unappealing lead character owns a country inn called "The Green Man." He frightens and regales his guests, when he's not trying ... See full summary »
Maurice Allington, the alcoholic, sexually promiscuous, and unappealing lead character owns a country inn called "The Green Man." He frightens and regales his guests, when he's not trying to seduce them, with tales of ghosts ans spirits haunting his hotel. The fun begins when he and they realize the haunts are real and malevolent. At times sexual farce, at others, ghostly thriller, this movie is aptly called a "ghost story for adults". Written by
Teresa B. O'Donnell <firstname.lastname@example.org>
In Maurice's bathroom we see a small stack of books: the top one is "The Old Devils" by Kingsley Amis. Below it are the horror collection "Skeleton Crew" by Stephen King and the horror novel "The Fog" by James Herbert. See more »
Well-acted but ultimately dull adaptation of Kingsley Amis's novel. The film works best when it takes up Amis's amused bafflement at modernity--Nickolas Grace is particularly funny as an agnostic vicar--but all in all the film's not sure what kind of tone it's shooting for, and as a result it's not too scary, not too funny, not too anything else. One thing that might have helped is more of an attempt to create suspense about whether anything paranormal is going on. Finney's fine acting aside, we never really see Maurice as the other characters see him, and we don't for a second think that he's just having drunken hallucinations. This makes all the busywork surrounding his proving to himself that the ghosts are in fact real a bit tedious. In fact, the movie's overlong as a whole, and it's worth mentioning that the whole 'swinging' subplot doesn't really jibe with the updated period. (The book was published in 1969.) But it's got a real English-TV feel about it, which is always pleasant, and that may be enough for some. 5.5 out of 10.
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