The Ghost Writer opens, appropriately enough given the film’s generally menacing tone, with the death of a ferry passenger. The man’s absence is discovered through the presence of an empty BMW on deck after all the passengers disembark. His body, bloated with liquor and decay, washes up on the beach. Did the poor bastard simply get soused and totter off a slippery deck? In a Roman Polanski movie? Not bloody likely.
Not sure why it took me so long to get around to this, given my long-standing admiration for Polanski’s wonderfully lurid Rosemary’s Baby. Based on Repulsion‘s reputation as a dark psychological thriller, I wasn’t expecting it to work so efficiently as a straight-up horror movie — perhaps that classification is another case of conventional wisdom classing up an especially well-respected film by lifting it out of the genre ghetto.