Film Review: The haunting reality of ‘A Ghost Story’ is a gut-punch of emotion

There comes a moment in David Lowery’s A Ghost Story where a sheet covered-hand knocks a stack of books off of a shelf, and we can see clearly a couple of the books lying on the floor. Scenes like this are typically easter-eggs for attentive viewers, where directors can insert their own personal influences into a film and pay small homage to them without overwhelming the story, and Lowery’s up to something similar. On one hand, we have Gabriel Garcia Marquez’s Love in the Time of Cholera , which uses ghosts as bits and pieces in the composition of its magical realist setting, and it’s easy to see the pastoral influences of Marquez’s work in Lowery’s other films. Yet lying open on the floor, for us to catch a glimpse of, is a collection of Virginia Woolf’s short stories, to a page from “A Haunted House” and, indeed, a quote from that story is also used as the film’s epigraph. That melancholy story, of empty spaces robbed of meaning, of the bizarre stretch and squish of time itself, ultimately winds up being the greatest inspiration for this film, and it’s hard not to say that Lowery himself has pulled […]

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