Tony Ward (Anthony Mark Streeter) is a former London gangster who, on the morning of his release from prison, discovers that his wife would rather hide in her flat than talk to him, that his son, Conor (Nathan Hamilton), is going to head down the same path as his father if he doesn’t learn to control his temper, and that his former partner in crime (Russell Barnett) has no interest in helping Tony go straight.
Bearing no resemblance to the Patrick Swayze/Demi Moore/Whoopi Goldberg Oscar nominee of the same name, Ghost is a British film that was shot, on location in London, with an iPhone. Ghost is a deceptively simple film. Until the final few minutes, there’s not even much violence. Ghost, though, really isn’t about crime and gangsters. It’s about a man who is trying to move on from his past and who can only watch as his son makes some of the same mistakes that he made. Ghost is about whether or not anyone can ever start their lives over again. It started out as a short film but director Anthony Z. James was so impressed with Streeter’s performance that he expanded the film to feature length. As a result, there are a lot of scenes in Ghost that feel like they’re there to pad out the running time. At the same time, James is proven correct in that Streeter gives a very strong performance as the haunted Tony. Throughout the film, Tony is constantly struggling to not give into his old ways and Streeter does such a good job of communicating that conflict that even scenes of him nervously walking around London feel compelling.
Considering it was shot on an iPhone, Ghost looks great. Anthony Z. James has a good visual eye and the movie was filmed in some of the most haunting areas of London. Usually, I visit London two or three times a year. In 2020, due to the COVID-19 outbreak, I have only been able to visit once and I don’t know when I’ll be able to visit again. Watching Ghost made me homesick in the best way.