7.2/10
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The Ghost Writer (2010)

Trailer
2:10 | Trailer
A ghost writer, hired to complete the memoirs of a former British Prime Minister, uncovers secrets that put his own life in jeopardy.

Director:

Roman Polanski

Writers:

Robert Harris (screenplay), Roman Polanski (screenplay) | 1 more credit »
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Popularity
4,133 ( 765)
33 wins & 55 nominations. See more awards »

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Cast

Cast overview, first billed only:
Ewan McGregor ... The Ghost
Jon Bernthal ... Rick Ricardelli
Tim Preece Tim Preece ... Roy
Jim Belushi ... John Maddox (as James Belushi)
Timothy Hutton ... Sidney Kroll
Anna Botting ... SKY TV Newsreader
Yvonne Tomlinson Yvonne Tomlinson ... Stewardess
Milton Welsh ... Taxi Driver
Alister Mazzotti Alister Mazzotti ... Protection Officer #1
Tim Faraday ... Barry
Kim Cattrall ... Amelia Bly
Kate Copeland Kate Copeland ... Alice
Soogi Kang Soogi Kang ... Dep
Lee Hong Thay Lee Hong Thay ... Duc
Olivia Williams ... Ruth Lang
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Storyline

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. Written by Eduardo Casais <casaise@acm.org>

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis

Taglines:

Read between the lies.


Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for language, brief nudity/sexuality, some violence and a drug reference | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:

View content advisory »
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Did You Know?

Trivia

Ewan McGregor has said that the script never named his character, so in his head, his character name was Gordon McFarquor. The credits simply list him as The Ghost (the character is never named in the original novel). See more »

Goofs

Though the movie is set in Massachusetts, when the ticket agent at the ferry asks The Ghost for his choice of ticket type, she uses the British words "single" and "return" instead of the United States expressions "one-way" and "round-trip". See more »

Quotes

[first lines]
The Ghost: You realize I know nothing about politics.
Rick Ricardelli: You voted for him, didn't you?
The Ghost: Adam Lang? Of course I did, everyone voted for him. He wasn't a politician, he was a craze.
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Crazy Credits

The title appears as highlighted words on pages of the scattered manuscript. See more »

Alternate Versions

US version was cut for language to secure a PG-13 rating (the usage of the words "fuck" and "shit" was severely toned down). See more »

Connections

Featured in My Second Vote: Me-O-Mentary II (2016) See more »

Soundtracks

Marcia Funebre
Allegro Assai from Beethoven's Symphony No. 3
Written by Ludwig van Beethoven
Performed by Symphony Nova Scotia
Conducted by Georg Tintner
Courtesy of Naxos of America, Inc.
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User Reviews

 
Surprisingly good political thriller
2 July 2013 | by GTeixeiraSee all my reviews

Thrillers are supposed to be... well, thrilling. Not always they have the best logic, and many times they end up sacrificing it in order to keep the film thrilling. Many have had relative success with it, but only one is considered the master of the genre: Alfred Hitchcock.

Yet, Roman Polanski is one of the closest to reaching Hitchcock.

On the other hand, the political/investigative thriller has always been a complete bore. I had never seen one create true tension, and the pacing is pretty much always terrible. 'All The President's Men', if not the first at least the most influential of them, is an extremely boring movie that somehow got so successful that inspired other stinkers to follow its formula (ie.: 'Zodiac').

So I was surprised to see 'The Ghost Writer' be one of those, even if its director should be enough indication. Polanski manages to make a controlled thriller that never fails to uphold its logic. There is a genuine suspense, the twists are good, and the characters are very well made and develop nicely through the story.

The cast works very well. Pierce Brosnan plays a somewhat air-headed former prime minister better than he did James Bond (truthfully, that is not saying much), but Ewan McGregor and Olivia Williams (a very underrated actress) are the real stars in here. Also worth noticing is the small role by a very good Eli Wallach.

I hope this brings a change to this boring genre. 'The Ghost Writer' was a very good watch, but that is something one can expect from Polanski.


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Frequently Asked Questions

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Details

Country:

France | Germany | UK

Language:

English

Release Date:

19 March 2010 (USA) See more »

Also Known As:

The Ghost Writer See more »

Filming Locations:

Berlin, Germany See more »

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Box Office

Budget:

$45,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$183,009, 21 February 2010

Gross USA:

$15,541,549

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$60,331,447
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Company Credits

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Technical Specs

Runtime:

Sound Mix:

DTS | Dolby Digital | SDDS

Color:

Color

Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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