Directed, Written, and Starred by Matt Dillon, City of Ghosts, was a waste of my time this afternoon. I could have gotten other work done. The title has little to do with the content which is at best an iffy thing to try and follow. I don't know who wrote the music but whoever edited put it in way to loud under the actors talking and sometimes I couldn't understand what they were saying. I was unable to pick up the separate character names during the beginning and was only able to follow the characters played by actors that I already knew which were Matt Dillon (he was the lead role Jimmy) and Gerard Depardieu (Innkeeper). The other actors in the movies were James Caan, Natascha McElhone, and Stellan Scarsgard. I don't know which of them played who but the only good thing in the movie was it's acting.
The plot of the movie was very difficult to follow and therefore my summary may not be as good as the others I've done. The movie starts with the opening credits in a hurricane weather forecast being told. Apparently a hurricane, I think was named "Jessica" destroyed a lot of buildings which were protected by an insurance company. This company was able to get out of paying the disaster reliefs that the people started and apparently Jimmy (Dillon) had something to do with insurance fraud. The feds got interested in Jimmy and started asking questions and then request his passport stay with them. He doesn't give it to him and instead flies across the world in search of his master/leader. He has to go through a lot of other people before he reaches the guy and several people get shot during this process. When Jimmy gets to the inn in the city he is allowed to stay but he must give the innkeeper (Depardieu) his passport so he lays it on the counter. However someone steals it from both of them while both of their backs were turned. Jimmy meets a girl by saving her from someone who stole a statue of some sort. I'm not sure how they fell in love. It doesn't really make sense. Jimmy meets his boss finally and they talk about Jimmy moving out there and living away from the public. However, he receives a note from him the next day telling him to get out of the country so Jimmy asked the innkeeper for his passport back and the innkeeper tells him he never got it and now Jimmy is stuck in this place until he can find his passport. Then someone kidnaps his boss/friend guy and sends him a ransom note, with a foot. IT was weird. Jimmy and the girl end up having sex, oh, I think her name was Sophie, without any noticable reason. So Jimmy goes out to try and save his boss and puts ransom money in a holy tree. Now sometimes we see people that have been paid by other people and were seen by Jimmy before and some of them I thought were dead. They kill some of the people in the movie. When we get to the house where his boss is being held ransom we watch from the house the bad guys(well worse than an insurance fraud person who is the major character, the star of the show) pour gas all over him and light him on fire. Jimmy is able to kill some of the bad guys but then is held at gunpoint by the burned body of his boss except suddenly his boss is standing behind him, he's holding the gun pointed at Jimmy and it's someone else's dead body that has been burnt. But we saw him run away and get blown up by a mine in a minefield so how can they burn his body? I don't know but he is able to kill all the bad guys but his boss, gets shots trying to help him. He had just asked Jimmy to come and live with him since he was kind of like his father figure or was he actually his father? The movie doesn't explain because the guy dies after getting in the car with Jimmy's help. Jimmy leaves the money he got for the ransom with a boy who rode his bike pushing a cart thing with Jimmy in it throughout the show. Somehow Jimmy ends up with the girl at the end and that's it.
The actors themselves were the best part of the movie although that's not necessarily a good thing. I loved Gerard Depardieu as the innkeeper. Matt Dillion was good as Jimmy but the whole story didn't make sense and therefore the performance of the actors, while it was good, did not help meet my expectations for the film. The story, such as it was, goes painfully slowly and literally dissolves by the end of the film. I left the theater unsatisfied and frustrated. So many loose ends were not tied up at the end for me to enjoy it and I don't want them to make a sequel, the first one is bad enough.
Film techniques used poorly in this film were some very jumpy cuts and the music was way too loud behind the actors to be appropriate background music. It totally pulled me out of whatever event was happening because the music was so annoyingly loud and dissonant. I didn't like the music anyways. It didn't make sense to me. Scenery was bleak and boring. The random people that kill other people, whether the killers are dead or not I do not know, didn't make sense and it didn't help the title of the film at all which says City of Ghosts. I did not see a city of ghosts. Where was it? Why were some of the killers alive and some dead? How does his insurance fraud background make him end up in this asian country? Why is the girl there? She's an unnecessary and extraneous character. It would have probably made the film better, (though not by much. Like I said, the acting was good), if she was cut. Why was all this time taken to explain things when the things you should be explaining are left hanging? How did the dead body of one person become the dead body of another? Whose foot was sent to Jimmy, since we see at the end that his boss still has that appendage? Why in the world would someone want to watch this?
Don't go see this movie. Like I said it was a waste of my time. Too many loose ends not tied up. Jarringly bad music played too loudly. Extraneous characters, boring sets, confusing things not explained. Don't go see this movie. It isn't worth your time.