Who you gonna call?

The Irish Times - Friday - The Ticket - - Film Reviews -

WITTY, EN­GAG­ING and wildly in­ven­tive, Skele­tons trum­pets the ar­rival of a no­table new tal­ent. Writer-di­rec­tor Nick Whit­field rightly took home the Michael Pow­ell Award from this year’s Ed­in­burgh Film Fes­ti­val for this splen­did su­per­nat­u­ral com­edy; at­tend­ing crit­ics soon piled on such plau­dits as “The New Char­lie Kauf­man”.

Our he­roes, Davis and Ben­nett, (Ed Gaughan and An­drew Buck­ley) are trav­el­ling spir­i­tual hy­gien­ists. When re­gres­sion ther­apy and theta heal­ing fail, these gentle­men are avail­able to (lit­er­ally) ex­or­cise the skele­tons from your closet.

Trudg­ing across the sub­lime if some­what pur­ga­to­rial Der­byshire coun­try­side be­tween jobs, surly Davis and bum­bling Ben­nett prat­tle end­lessly about co-work­ers and such ran­dom topics as Rasputin. Their low-level grum­bling es­ca­lates into proper trou­ble when their in­tim­i­dat­ing over­seer (played with rel­ish by Ja­son Isaacs) sends them off to an iso­lated cot­tage.

Here, a des­per­ate woman (Pa­prika Steen) is, af­ter eight years, still dig­ging holes in the gar­den in the hope of dis­cov­er­ing her missing hus­band. Her daugh­ter (Tup­pence Mid­dle­ton), a sulky elec­tive mute, is lit­tle help, and the fel­lows’ an­ti­quated equip­ment is sud­denly on the fritz. It doesn’t help that Davis has been glow chas­ing, his pro­fes­sion’s an­swer to a dope dealer swip­ing from his own stash.

Can our he­roes get it to­gether and solve this un­nerv­ing cri­sis? We do hope so, but we’re even more anx­ious that this tremen­dous film de­but finds the au­di­ence it so richly de­serves.

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