Directing debut by Craig Viveiros is well served by a strong cast that's better than the material merits.

The latest in a rash of British prison dramas (following “The Escapist,” “Bronson” and “Screwed”), “Ghosted” explores the potential for redemption for two jailbirds consumed by regret. Directing debut by camera operator Craig Viveiros is well served by a strong cast that’s better than the material merits. Pic will briefly haunt U.K. cinemas following its Edinburgh fest bow before beginning a more enduring afterlife on ancillary, where its natural audience might more plausibly be discovered.

Having lost his own son while incarcerated, Jack (John Lynch) receives another blow when his wife tells him she is divorcing him. Evidently one of Falkhill prison’s more civilized inmates, Jack takes a paternal interest in newly transferred young arsonist Paul (Martin Compston), who, we discover, never knew his own father and has been in foster care since the age of 10. Paul also catches the notice of the wing’s soft-spoken, borderline-psychotic kingpin Clay (Craig Parkinson, impressive), who sees the lad as easy prey. Violent climax hinges on a revelation that, while it certainly beefs up the plot, suggests a carelessness (or mischievousness) by the prison authorities that stretches credulity.

Ghosted

U.K.

Production

A Revolver Entertainment release of a Motion Picture House and London Film & Media presentation in association with Art Malik. (International sales: Motion Picture House, London.) Produced by Rupert Bryan, James Friend, Craig Viveiros. Executive producers, Malik, John Joakim, Martin Bang, Lucien Bartram. Co-producer, Mark Downes. Directed, written by Craig Viveiros.

Crew

Camera (color, widescreen), James Friend; editors, Sam White, Kelvin Hutchins; music, Amory Leader, Simon Williams, Simon Richardson; production designer, Danny Rogers; art director, Celina Norris; costume designer, Susan Gurley. Reviewed on DVD, London, June 17, 2011. (In Edinburgh Film Festival.) Running time: 98 MIN.

With

John Lynch, Martin Compston, Craig Parkinson, Art Malik, Hugh Quarshie, David Schofield, Amanda Abbington, Neil Maskell.
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