What I like is how it remarks on its own genre. It plays the song we know, and the song it's playing. It's self-aware. It settles when we expect it to accelerate, or slams on the pedal when we settle. It wants to provoke us; really our participation is incidental like it's playing to the grand audience. Christmas time gives this universality of the ghost of theater. Of course: "The Ghost Who Walks". I see a lot of this in UK film, the bursts of humor, violence, the black humor. But the US brings that city underbelly, that noir and irresistible soul. The film is in love with film and filmmaking, which is contagious, but why it's special, and distinct from the genre is it's in love with the underdog. It is more interested in the strange, not the beautiful. You feel among this eclectic cast. Frank Mosley's performance as Stitches is 'that guy', you know him in a lot of these films, but here is like channeling a great wildness and discipline simultaneously. He turns it inside out. He calibrates Stitches to come undone in the way like it's crossing two traditions, the indie film + blockbuster. It's why I kept thinking of this as a millennial feat, there's a bit of Beetlejuice in there, Bobcat, Dustin Hoffman, but he plays the song while playing his own. Like he's slipping a dose in our drink, of the indie medicine. The best compliment is it's a performance backed by great experience. Looking it up, the director was a DP first and it reads, they shoot and shoot and it's infectious for us. I couldn't not think of The Matrix either with this foreboding impending feeling across it, and though it's not sci-fi at all, it's as if it shares some DNA with the cyberpunk, they all share in that Kafka-esque, the sci-fi labyrinth we oft receive as a proxy for the theater of the mind. Best for last, 'the stretch' from the brothel to the car, feels straight out of GTA, a full VR that comes completely unexpected mining new areas for immersion. The indies are getting better. They're taking all the lessons and going farther with it.
The Ghost Who Walks
The Ghost Who Walks
An imprisoned criminal rats out his former boss for one last chance to reunite his family and become the father he never was.
December 26, 2019