Written by: Michael Den Boer on October 25th, 2017
BluRay released: September 4th, 2017 (UK), September 12th, 2017 (USA)
Approximate running times: 85 minutes
Aspect Ratio: 2.35:1 Widescreen / 1080 Progressive / MPEG-4 AVC
Rating: 15 (UK), NR (USA)
Sound: DTS-HD 5.1 English
Subtitles: English SDH
BluRay Release: Arrow Video USA
Region Coding: Region A,B
Retail Price: $29.95 (USA) / £19.99 (UK)
“Chris is a homicide detective called to London to investigate a strange double murder. Both victims appear to have continued moving towards their assailant despite multiple gunshots to the face and chest. On a hunch, and with the help of an old colleague – and former girlfriend – Chris decides to go undercover as a patient to investigate the suspect’s psychotherapist, the mysterious Alexander Morland, who has a taste for the occult…” – Synopsis provided by the Distributor
Though this film’s title The Ghoul, is normally associated with the horror genre. Anyone expecting that this is going to be a horror film. They are going to be greatly disappointed.
Content wise, this film is best described as a psychological thriller. And without giving away too much of the events that unfold. This film features a narrative that some viewers may find difficult to digest and multiple viewings of this film are recommended.
The most surprising aspect of this film are the performances, especially Tom Meeten in the role of an undercover homicide detective who loses his grip on reality. Everything that occurs in this film is from his point of view. And he performance perfectly captures his characters fractured state of mind.
From a technical stand point there is not an area where this film does not deliver and then some. And nowhere is this more evident, then in regards to its remarkable score that does a superb job reinforcing the mood. Not to be overlooked, are this film’s atmospheric visuals and how they impact the story at hand.
The Ghoul comes on a 25 GB single layer BluRay. The film is presented in a 1080 progressive widescreen. This film was shot on a digital format and the transfer for this release was supplied by the filmmakers Gareth Tunley. Details generally look crisp, black levels fare well and there are no issues with compression.
This release comes with one audio option, a DTS-HD 5.1 mix in English and included with this release are removable English SDH subtitles. Dialog comes through clearly, everything sounds balanced and range wise this audio mix does a superb job with the more ambient aspects of the soundtrack.
Extras for this release include, a trailer for the film (1 minute 33 seconds), a short film also directed by Gareth Tunley titled The Baron (9 minutes 27 seconds), a featurette titled In the Loop (36 minutes 16 seconds) and an audio commentary with screenwriter / director Gareth Tunley, actor Tom Meeten and producer Jack Guttmann.
The extra titled In the Loop includes comments from Gareth Tunley, Tom Meeten, Alice Lowe, Geoff McGivern, Niamh Cusack, Rufus Jones, Dan Skinner, Ben Pritchard, Jack Guttmann, Waen Shepherd, Dhiraj Mahey and Ben Wheatley.
Topics discussed in the extra titled In the Loop and audio commentary include, background information about the cast & crew, the origins of the film, budgetary restrictions, locations, other production related topics, audience / critic reaction to the film and their thoughts about the film.
Rounding out the extras is a reversible cover art and a twenty-eight-page booklet with cast & crew information, an essay titled The Straight Line and The Circle written by Adam Scowell and information about the transfer. Overall The Ghoul gets a solid release from Arrow Video.
Note: This film is also being released by Arrow Video on DVD.