- Elf 2017
Jack Healy Guttmann, Tom Meeten, Gareth Tunley, Dhiraj Mahey (executive), Ben Wheatley (executive)
directed by Gareth Tunley
starring Tom Meeten, Alice Lowe, Rufus Jones, Geoffrey McGivern, Niamh Cusack, Dan Renton Skinner, Rachel Stubbings, Paul Kaye, Waen Shepherd, James Eyres
written by Gareth Tunley, music by Waen Shepherd
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Chris (Tom Meeten) is a homicide detective who's called to London to
investigate a double murder together with Kathleen (Alice Lowe) whom he
knows from back in the day. Problem is, too many aspects of the double
murder refuse to make sense. One clue leads to a psychotherapist though,
Dr Fisher (Niamh Cusack), and thus, Chris goes undercover, posing as one
of her patients - and he soon gets a lead on a certain Michael Coulson
(Rufus Jones). Thing is, none of this might be true, Chris might just be
someone suffering from depressions, and out of a job, he might just live
in a parallel world where he's a homicide detective. Likewise, the double
murder has never really happened. And Kathleen? She's a woman he's
secretly been in love with since uni, but she's together with his mate Jim
(Dan Renton Skinner), and she's not a policewoman but a teacher. But Chris
keeps close in case she needs a shoulder to cry on.
He's also real, and really one of Doc Fisher's patients, and when Chris is
shadowing him, Coulson catches him off-guard - and the two become good
friends. Then they both are transferred to another psychotherapist, Dr
Morland (Geoffrey McGivern), who has rather eccentric, esoteric ideas
about everything, especially psychotherapy. Coulson soon thinks he has
some ulterior motives, too, wanting to use his patients to his own
advantage on a supernatural level - and even though Chris at first thinks
Coulson's just batshit crazy, he eventually feels there might be something
about his ramblings ...
Now one thing's for sure, The Ghoul
certainly is not your run-of-the-mill thriller, it's more of a mindfuck of
a movie that twists and turns at any stop and pushes its story into weird
directions, and creepily so. But thanks to a cleverly written screenplay
that even manages to make its absurd underlying theories somewhat
palpable, the viewer manages to follow the story, which never just gets
lost in itself. And add to that a subtle enough directorial effort and a
very solid cast, and you've got yourself ... one hell of a weird film, but
a good one just the same!