Friday, November 17, 2017

Movie Review: A Ghost Story (2017)

A Ghost Story (2017) - Written and Directed by David Lowery; Starring Casey Affleck, Rooney Mara, Will Oldham.

By Kenny Howell

David Lowery digs himself in a hole, but somehow finds his way out in enchanting ways in this bizarre ghost story.

Lowery (Ain't Them Bodies Saints) tells the story of a man who is deceased and hangs out as a ghost around his wife's house after he is gone. Lowery could have just had Best Actor winner Casey Affleck just be Casey Affleck (Manchester by the Sea), but instead he puts him in the oldest, most general ghost type imaginable, a sheet with the eye holes cut out.

How he gets the sheet over him is sort of explained. In the hospital, with the sheet over his head after identification, he stands up and leaves the hospital, pausing only once to consider walking into a square light, seemingly the after life, that opened for him in the wall.


After that, the man, who is just known as C, watches over his wife, who is just known as M (Rooney Mara), as she lives out her life. He doesn't handle some of it well, especially her moving on from him and things get worse as long periods of time pass. A new family moves in, the property goes through some major changes, then the ghost seemingly gets lost in time.

It's a lot to consider and Lowery, instead of diving head first into it, sits outside of it and quietly observes, which can be a strength, but also a fault. There are numerous times when this could have been incredibly silly because of the ghost costume, but Lowery somehow makes it work. It gets a bit too ponderous at times, but what he is able to pull off while handicapping himself a bit is quite impressive.

Rating: ***

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