Being There episode one: Ghosts – by Ed Chappell and Sam Morgan

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Devon actors Sam Morgan and David Rees reunite for Ghosts.

Following the amusingly sinister short film Clive, Morgan and Rees continue their enjoyably off-kilter on-screen chemistry in this first episode in a proposed series called Being There.

Although the central gimmick of having the actors play themselves amounts to little more than the performers referring to each other by their actual names, the script (written by Morgan) shows a genuine feel for the rhetorical absurdity of everyday speech. The chemistry feels genuine and the dialogue resonates with real ebbs and flows, with the odd killer zinger (‘Shall we adjourn to the living room?’/’You’re making my house sound like a Cluedo board’).

Even so, the writing occasionally falls flat (‘I can’t be homophobic, I’m a Granddad’) and the reason for the project’s existence remains elusive at best. Actor friends getting together is fine – but it requires sharper results when depicted on-screen. Nevertheless, both performers are great, Morgan as the caustic, blunt character and Rees as the innocent, seemingly naive one prone to odd philosophizing (‘Sam, potatoes have feelings, they just hide it like you!’)

And in spite of its limitations, the project does take on ambivalent qualities when filtered through the hazy gauze of Ed Chappell’s photography. David describes Sam as his soul mate – but is one of them an actual soul, as the title suggests? This creepy ambiguity lends an atmospheric quality to a promising two-hander.

For more information on Being There, and to watch the following episodes, visit http://www.beingthere.info/