Gareth Tunley (director)
04 August 2017 (released)
04 August 2017
It probably doesn’t need stating but this Ghoul has nothing to do with 1975 horror of the same title starring Peter Cushing that is tied up with rights issues. There’s horror in this Ghoul but more along the Lynchian twisted psychological mindway, than a strange bald cannibal.
Chris (Tom Meeten) is a murder detective who is called to an old double murder scene in London. The murdered couple appear to have kept moving even after having been shot. He decides to investigate further with an old colleague (and ex) Kathleen (Alice Lowe).
Then there is Michael Coulson (Rufus Jones) the landlord who disappears leaving clippings of the crime that appear incriminating. Going undercover to investigate, he becomes a patient of Coulson’s psychiatrist Helen Fisher (Niamh Cusack). A dangerous move as he’s already himself a patient of Alexander Morland (Geoff McGivern). As the revelations come to the fore, Chris starts to destabilise.
Chris’s reality starts to blur as he is consumed by his thoughts spinning around and around in his head. His confusion is palpable as he appears to obsess over Kathleen. He does have a chance to get things together with Maria (Rachel Stubbings) but comes to nothing.
Ostensibly it’s about the murders and the investigation, albeit an unusual one. However, with the looping storyline and the dual perspectives it becomes clear, whether intended or not, that we are seeing someone in the process of depression and mental illness.
The performances are uniformly very good with Meeton’s portrayal of a man in the process of a breakdown, chilling.
Debut writer and director Gareth Tunley (who was in producer Ben Wheatley’s Kill List and Down Terrace) has got a lot from what is clearly a very small budget. It does appear a little confused at times however Turnley skilfully covers the bases and the clues are there for the viewer to pick up. What the viewer then does with them, and concludes is another matter. It’s film that’s worth a repeat viewing.