Ricky Gervais, who gained fame in the U.K. as the star of the original The Office, makes his starring film debut in Ghost Town . While U.S. TV executives concluded that it would be better to have an actor with an American accent play the lead character of the sitcom here, Gervais's British accent doesn't appear to be a drawback in this film. John Anderson in Newsday writes that his performance in the movie instantly establishes Gervais "among the funniest men in film." Kyle Smith in the New York Post calls him "lethally funny." Elizabeth Weitzman in the New York Daily News says that he is "unfailingly brilliant." A. O. Scott in the New York Times observes that Gervais brings to his role some of the same "comic tics" that he displayed on The Office "a stammering befuddlement that is simultaneously verbose and nonsensical; sickly smiles and joyless laughs in which his mirth curdles with self-doubt; a tongue-tied staccato; and his special mixture of Clueless grandiosity, insensitivity and stifled humiliation." As for the film itself, Ann Hornaday in the Washington Post concludes "There's a special place in heaven reserved for that all-too-rare cinematic occurrence the Really Good Movie. And Ghost Town , a by-turns hilarious and affecting romantic comedy starring Ricky Gervais, is headed straight for it."