Phoenix's B-movie Review: Ghost Writer
Today we have something very special a b-movie double header! Yup, that's right two actors of some note together in one bad movie. This little gem stars Alan Cumming (look him up, you'll recognize him when you see him and say 'oh yeah, *that* guy), and David Boreanaz (did I spell that right? Never mind...I'll look it up later) of 'Angel' and 'Bones' fame.
First I'd like to stress that I found this movie under the category of 'Comedy'. If by 'comedy' they meant 'will make you feel like you are clinically insane but you're the only one who knows', then, yes, it is a laugh riot. Although it is labeled as a comedy here is the description word for word: "When he discovers that his boarder, a promising young novelist who owes months of back rent has been taking advantage of his hospitality, the frustrated musician ties him up and beats him."
I defy you to tell me that's not the back drop for good times.
Movie starts out with a small town horror slasher flick feel to it, with Bach playing while the camera slowly moves around the inside of a classic old house that looks like it was decorated by Theodore Roosevelt's mother. From there we meet Alan Cumming's character, a failing music teacher. He is with his hopeless young Asian student, who is torturing a cello.
After a brief scene with the girl that is like any other student/teacher argument about how they both suck the camera changes to the inside of a swank L.A night club where David Boreanaz is on the prowl. He invites himself to a table of attractive and powerful looking young women. He introduces himself to a woman and tells her that he's a writer. She's interested because she happens to own a huge publishing company in New York.
Before Boreanaz can pitch his book and perhaps lift himself out of poverty and into a life of fame...he gets distracted by something shiny. Getting up he off offhandedly mentions that he'll be back and walks off. Crossing the room with purpose he stares a woman down to the point where she physically backs up and stumbles backwards through the bathroom door. He presses her against the wall and begins to rip her clothes off. She protests in the form of 'but I don't even know your name'. He responds by turning her around, ripping her underwear off, forcing her against the wall, and has his way with her.
The woman doesn't seem to mind the violent rape (he does look like David Boreanaz after all) and plays along. Boreanaz finishes with her and goes back to the publisher...and has sex with her as well.
Back to Cumming (not that we ever really left that topic). He is complaining to his friend that Boreanaz is running up his phone bill, and hasn't paid rent in six months. Trying to determine if Boreanaz is even a writer, as he claims, they go through his stuff. They find a ream of blank paper, some pencils, and a pair of black lace lady's underwear and matching bra. The friend suggests that he kick him out and Cumming agrees, but he goes to bed instead.
Cut to four o'clock in the morning. Boreanaz returns 'home' so drunk that he is literally crawling on the floor. There is a lightning storm outside that is flashing and lighting up the scene. He has a woman with him who is easily three times his age. She is also blind drunk. They crash around the house a bit while she exclaims that she wants to keep him as a pet and take care of him. She will pay for this by dancing in titty bars and letting dirty old men touch her.
At this point in the movie I'm losing my sense of reality.
Boreanaz suddenly realizes that he has not brought home a young attractive women when she starts talking about her grandchildren (which are probably about his age). He tries to get her to go away, but instead somehow ends up playing 'chopsticks' on the piano while she gives him a blow job (classy). She's got experience and he does manage to hit that high note for what is at least the third time that night.
Cumming hears all the noise and comes down stairs where upon he has a fit (can't really blame him) and chases the woman out of the house. Cumming and Boreanaz begin to argue and yell about their own relationship culminating in Cummings exclaiming: "You are a penny less man-whore with the IQ of a rash!"
Okay so that part was funny.
I forget who throws the first punch, but a physical fight breaks out. In what I believe is a physiological impossibility Cumming manages to knock Boreanaz unconscious by hitting him with a fireplace iron...on the shin. The last time I checked people don't tend to black out when you strike them in the leg, no matter how hard you swing.
I thought the movie had gotten as deranged and surreal as it could possibly get. I was wrong.
Boreanaz regains consciousness only to find that he has been dressed in the set of lacy lady's panties and bra, duct tapped to a chair, and for some reason wrapped in colored christmas tree lights.
My guess is that the writers came up with this idea after downing a liter of absinthe and then taking turns with autoerotic asphyxiation. Which by amazing coincidence is the exact same series of events that led Boreanaz to sign the contract agreeing to do this movie.
Boreanaz is understandably confused (probably wondering where his life as an actor, or even as a human being, went so horribly wrong). Cumming has collected all of the bills and expenses that have piled up since Boreanaz moved him. Still not believing that his guest is a writer he makes a deal, he will ask him a literary question for each bill with multiple choice answers. If he gets the question right he'll tear up the bill and call the debut clean. If he gets it wrong he'll beat him with a cello bow (this thing turns out to be a dangerous weapon capable of cutting deep into flesh, I would never had picked this as a weapon in the coming zombie apocalypse, but now it's my number three choice right after chainsaw and cricket bat).
The movie has turned into a train wreck, in as much as you know that you shouldn't be watching, but you can't turn away.
Anyway, Boreanaz manages to get some of the questions right, and fails at others. After playing this game for a while Cumming force feeds him some Ambien and then goes upstairs when his friend stops by. While he's talking to his friend Boreanaz manages to free himself. In what must be the proudest moment of both of their lives they end up in a tooth and nail fight crawling and writhing around on the floor (Boreanaz still in his lady's undies and christmas tree lights), beating each other with dead flowers that are scattered around the house for some reason.
Boreanaz suddenly disappears. Cumming hears him (or thinks he does) down in the cellar. Boreanaz has actually run off to get an axe and hide behind a door (Shinning style). He launches himself at Cumming with the axe. Cumming screams like a girl and steps aside. Drunk on Ambien and adrenaline Boreanaz missteps and falls down the cellar stairs. He lands on the axe, sinking it deep into his stomach.
Cumming stuffs Boreanaz's body into a large duffle bag and keeps it in the living room (let's not not get picky about how Cumming could get a 190 pounds of Boreanaz up the stairs, it's jut a movie after all...oh...wait that look on your face was probably more about the fact that Cumming decided to keep a rotting corpse in his living room. I have no answer for that). Cumming returns to his life, even has his Asian student over, who is having a hard time playing because of the smell.
During his captivity Boreanaz tells Cumming where he can find the draft of his book. Cumming finally reads it and decides with a little grammar clean up it could be good. So he cleans it up, and sends it into that publisher that Boreanaz nailed.
She *loves* the book. Everyone loves the book. Cumming is a star. A best selling author. This is where Boreanaz returns as a 'ghost', more of a zombie look, and starts telling Cumming that he wants to help write the next two books in the contract. Cumming wants nothing to do with this apparition and heads to a book release party.
While at the party Cumming meets another young writer who is just trying to get started. He gives him a ride home and tells him that he will take him in, give him a place to live, mentor him. In gratitude the guy goes to give him a blow job (of course, that's a normal human reaction). The man suddenly turns into Zombie Boreanaz giving him a blow job (not as much fun as it sounds). Cumming freaks out and jumps out of his limo and is promptly hit by a garbage truck (again, this part is actually pretty funny).
In the grand finale Cumming is paralyzed in his new apartment and some reporter is asking him about Boreanaz and says that the wife of the District Attorney of L.A (the grandma with the piano) says that Boreanaz is the real writer and that he's missing. Cumming kicks her out of his apartment. He goes to the window and you hear Boreanaz telling him not to worry about it...they have a book to write.
Yeah...this movie was a real laugh riot. Now if you don't mind I'm going to go roofie myself in hopes that I can forget any of this ever happened.