Generally favorable reviews - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 30 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. 100
    This movie is the work of a man who knows how to direct a thriller. Smooth, calm, confident, it builds suspense instead of depending on shock and action.
  2. Here's another thought: This old man who can't leave the house has just made the first important film of 2010.
  3. 100
    The Ghost Writer is the kind of impeccable adult entertainment, able to alternate edge-of-your-seat episodes with bleakly comic moments, that Hitchcock used to specialize in and that Polanski himself realized so successfully in "Chinatown" and "Rosemary's Baby."
  4. Reviewed by: John Anderson
    The Ghost Writer is so rich you may feel you paid too little for your ticket when the whole thing meets its very Polanski-ish climax. Please don't tell anyone.
  5. Reviewed by: Dana Stevens
    The Ghost Writer is a triumph: elegant, accomplished, and (this is the hardest part to admit) occasionally even wise.
  6. 90
    An extraordinarily precise and well-made political thriller--the best thing Polanski has done since the seventies, when he brought out the incomparable “Chinatown” and the very fine “Tess.”
  7. 88
    All credit to a finely tuned Brosnan for packing so much intensity and wayward wit into his scenes with McGregor. Their verbal duels make for a dazzling game of cat-and-mouse.
  8. Polanski turns a conventional conspiracy thriller into a triumph of tone, ensemble playing and atmospheric menace.
  9. Satisfying, melancholy political suspense story.
  10. 83
    Ferrific fun and rousing proof that there’s still vital life in an aging master filmmaker.
  11. 83
    If he made The Ghost Writer under a pseudonym, it might be roundly hailed as the classy white-knuckler it is. But it's Polanski's name above the title, with his own ghosts haunting each frame.
  12. 83
    The Ghost Writer may not go down as one of Polanski’s masterpieces, but if it does end up being his swan song, it’s the ideal denouement to a life and career of unsettling resonance.
  13. The Ghost Writer is minor Polanski but it’s one of the rare thrillers these days that plays up to you instead of down.
User Score

Generally favorable reviews- based on 177 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 57 out of 78
  2. Negative: 16 out of 78
  1. Sep 27, 2011
    Roman Polanski uses "The Ghost Writer" to show that he's still not old, and he perfectly demonstrates his abilities to the audience. He leads the movie with smooth direction and even has the capacity to add humor in such tense situations. Man, I do like this guy... Full Review »
  2. StephenS
    Feb 27, 2010
    Clearly the reviewers and I did not see the same movie. The writing was contrived and plot-driven. The audience was laughing out loud at scenes that were supposed to be tense. There was so much implausibility here. Then when the wife of the prime minister jumps into bed with MacGregor, the audience fell out of their chair. This is a weak movie. Could someone please tell me I'm not crazy? thank you. Full Review »
  3. Jan 19, 2011
    It's not the best Polanski I've seen (the most unsettling for me is still The Tenant) but it is still a Polanski, very political - smashing over plausibility to make a point - very critical, dark and thrilling. Loved it. Full Review »