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City of Ghosts Reviews

Page 1 of 5
Lady D

Super Reviewer

November 21, 2006
There were some good elements to this film ? yet it didn?t quite work for me. Enjoyed Matt Dillan (and of course he Directed this film also), loved the not so typical choice of using Cambodia as the backdrop to the story and really enjoyed the music too. Pretty natural performances all around. For me the downfall lay not in the actual plot, but in the actual story of corruption ? I felt it was weak, confusing and slow moving at times, it was more of a working progress.
Jeffrey M

Super Reviewer

July 20, 2011
Matt Dillion starred in and directed this atmospheric and interesting noir piece. It has many good moments, seemingly promising more than it ultimately delivers. The biggest drawback is it's meandering nature, never quite hitting the notes it wants to. A multitude to plots are served up, but never satisfactorily seen through. Still, I really enjoyed the film's sense of place, captured through some great cinematography.
demu
April 14, 2007
I like this movie ...or maybe it's the sound track I like more...yeah another watch it to hear the music movie for me...I'd watch it again oh wait I have well I'd watch another again.
Carlo C.
September 14, 2011
Historia sobre un estafador que desarrolla una conciencia, partiendo en búsqueda de limpiarla a Camboya a buscar a su socio timador, en el camino se va a enamorar, aprenderá el valor de la amistad y emprendera un camino sin retorno hacia una nueva vida. A ratos lenta, pero en general buena. Hace mucho que no veía a James Caan hacer nada.
February 22, 2012
I like this film. It is atmospheric and it has a great sound track. The duality of life, not just Asia, but in individuals.
January 27, 2012
I saw clips of the movie looks excellent reminds me of some of the places we went to in Asia when I was in the service,
Jeffrey M

Super Reviewer

July 20, 2011
Matt Dillion starred in and directed this atmospheric and interesting noir piece. It has many good moments, seemingly promising more than it ultimately delivers. The biggest drawback is it's meandering nature, never quite hitting the notes it wants to. A multitude to plots are served up, but never satisfactorily seen through. Still, I really enjoyed the film's sense of place, captured through some great cinematography.
April 4, 2011
This movie has the most beautiful scenery that i've never seen; it has a few problems with some things but its good.
November 22, 2010
For me this one gets at least 4 stars. Plenty of tragedy, great location and a haunting sound track. Good use of Dengae Fever and others from Cambodian Rock of the 70s. Smaller roles are well cast and well played.
Other critiques?
November 8, 2010
Though it's perspective still retains the common white man's burden as seen through the eyes of the ignable taurist, the film does effectively portray the sense of death and life inherant within cambodia's dark history and spiritual atmosphere. You can't help but feel a sense of intence guilt over the moral wasteland that is it's central characters. Summed up simply enough with James Khan's Kareoke horror tragedy that obtained a strange cathartic sadness for me. I like Matt Dillon and Overall I enjoyed it and it ended with an up beat tone which echoed elements of hope.
hooplehead
September 5, 2009
Fantastic film. Talk about capturing a time and a place...wow.
seresm R.
March 24, 2009
Another film in which too many people get killed for any conceivable realism. If this number of people were killed in Cambodia it would practically be world news. Typecast laughing Russian thugs, typecast brutal Cambodians, square jawed American anti-hero making good in paint-stripped Asia. Can it get much worse?

Such a shame too, because the basic idea is good. With a director of the calibre of Peter Weir, this could have been a first class film about greed, culture, uncertainty and fear. Instead it steadily degenerates into a stunningly obvious plot with a silly ending. As Arthur Lazere says on culturevulture, this should disappear down one of the many holes in its plot.

If you wonder why I watched it, in Kuwait of an evening there is little choice...

Why isn't there a film style censor somewhere to stop this stuff being made?
gb1xyl1
May 27, 2005
Storyline is OK but nothing special. Film looks good but needs to be cut by at least 20 minutes (as one reviewer said.)
Bluebottle Jr.
March 20, 2005
So now that Miramax is down for the count, all the movies they've been keeping off the shelf in the last few years are going to come out. If "Prozac Nation" is any indication of the overall quality of what they've been afraid to show, those fools deserved to go out of business.
"Prozac Nation" is a great movie. It has the best acting I've ever seen Christina Ricci do and by the way, she looks more attractive than she ever has before. It must be the reddish-blonde hair. Her performance as a college student who's perpetually falling apart is really powerful and Jessica Lange is very good as her mother, although with her blonde hair and Nordic features, she looks about as Jewish as Robert Redford. I'm flabbergasted the Weinsteins didn't have the cojones to at least give this picture a chance in theatres.

Other than that, Matt Dillon's "City Of Ghosts" was impressive. The basic story was familiar but with the exotic Cambodia-Thailand setting, all around good performances and Dillon's moody direction, it worked fine.

As for "The Big Bounce", gawd! If the title hadn't already been taken, they could have called this movie "The Big Sleep" it was so boring. And who in their right mind thinks Owen Wilson is leading man material? He looks like he grew up worshiping Sean Penn's Jeff Spicoli character from "Fast Times At Ridgemont High" and his voice is an irritating monotone mumble I can barely stand listining to. There should be a law that this goof can't be on screen for longer than five minutes at a time.
suntoritime
March 8, 2005
[color=white]Before I start this review I feel like I need to mention something that has been irritating me for well over a month now. Is it me or is this year devastatingly bad in theaters so far? I know the beginning of the years are always slower, but I can remember there being at least a couple choices out there in the years past. I went to the theater exactly ZERO times in all of February, and in January I went a few times but that was nearly all for 2004 releases that were late coming to where I'm from. The only official 2005 release that I've seen is [i]Assault on Precint 13[/i]. I've almost forgotten what a movie theater looks like, and I feel ill. [/color]


Okay, now I'm ready...

[color=white]It's always interesting to see the different kinds of actors who decide to try their hand into other aspects of film other than acting. Matt Dillon, who has been a terrific actor for about 25 years now recently took a shot at writing and directing. His film is called [i]City of Ghosts[/i], which he starred in as well. The story involves the audience right from the beginning and the atmosphere is extremely grim and suspenseful. For about 5 minutes the film is set in New York City, and then the rest of it is entirely in Cambodia. The setting Dillon decided to use as a backdrop for this mystery has the biggest impact on the overall success of the film. The communities are stripped down and bare, and as the story moves along we become more and more attentive and nervous of the uncomfortable surroundings the characters have put themselves in. The score is sometimes beautiful and sometimes haunting, and at times beautifully haunting, but it never overpowers the film itself. It just lurks quietly in the background, and every once in a while we find it surprisingly effecting our involvement in the story. [/color]

[color=white]Another reason to highly anticipate actors making a shift into directing is the casting. In most cases the actor who is directing brings in good friends who are also actors to be a part of it all. Dillon's cast shows off a diverse set of talents including James Caan, Gerard Depardieu, Natasha McElhone, and the great and underrated Stellan Skarsgaard. Everyone is given intricate characters to work with, and they're all a joy to watch. Dillon displays a good hand for direction and at the same time gives another deeply felt performance. [/color]

[color=#000000][color=white]There is no question that [i]City of Ghosts [/i]is an impressive film and a good debut for a first time director, but the film never quite reaches higher than that. It has much more than simply just a good film inside of here somewhere, but it's nver really shown. At 1 hour and 57 minutes I kind of got the feeling throughout that this could've easily been about 20 to 25 minutes shorter. The film drags at times and tries to lose our attention, but it never quite does. It is just too interesting and strangely beautiful to look at for it to fall into mediocrity. I wanted the movie to rise above and be greatness because it definitely presents great promise right from the start, but Dillon's directorial debut fails to do so, but it doesn't fail to be a well made mystery.[/color] [/color]
Virus
March 3, 2004
Dull and unimaginitive. Matt Dillon's directioral debut is a flop.

**/****
cujorocks31
November 7, 2003
City of Ghosts has good cenery and even better acting, Mat Dillon and james Caan are awesome, especialy Dillon. The movie, however doesn"t meet full expectations and surprisingly wont become a small time classic. This movie is not for everyone, but some parts of the film are simply fantastic.
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