A Ghost Story

A Ghost Story ★★★★★

It is rare to find a film as polarizing as writer/director David Lowery’s “A Ghost Story”.  The last film I recall having this cerebral impact is “Dancer In The Dark”.  This quiet, dream like meditation on mortality and existence beyond our life span is overwhelming in its ability to crawl into your very soul.  It tackles and confronts our very own conception of time, value and purpose.  Casey Affleck gives an incredible performance under a white sheet no less, as “C”.  He is married to Rooney Mara who is known to the audience as “M”.  When he passes from his present life existence to the next he is a reluctant specter.  His life force clinging to his prior existence. There are long stretches of zero dialogue.  We are left to imagine what our own lives mean not only to ourselves but to those who are left behind.  Inside this thought, this alternate consciousness that we are witness to, it struck me that “C” was the one most haunted.  Haunted by his past life, his inability to transition from what was to what comes next.  Lowery leaves us where he finds us.  There are no definitive answers just personal rationalizations.  I was also taken by his use of framing.  The film is in 1.33:1 for most of the run time.  The rounded corners giving the viewer the illusion of watching someone else’s home movies on Super 8.  Like death is something that only happens to other people.  This film will leave you haunted.  We are all ghosts ultimately.  Further Enthusiasm:  there is a profound reason why this is titled “A Ghost Story” as opposed to “A Ghosts’ Story”.  Days or hours after seeing it you will know why.

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