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A submarine resurfacing is no big deal "¦ unless it does so 40 years after disappearing. When such an event suddenly occurs to a British sub lost in World War II, the authorities track down the craft's lone survivor, a biologist named Jack (David Jason), in hopes of finding answers.

But his involvement only raises more questions, so he joins a crew to retrace the steps of the doomed sub's crew, working from journals. This causes some strange happenings "? or are they hauntings? "? onboard, which makes the aged Jack wonder what, if anything, is real.

Sub movies prey upon the audience's fear of claustrophobia, and "Ghostboat" does as well. But its novel switch is not that the tension lies outside the sub with other craft "? such as in "U-571" or "Das Boot" "? but within the sub itself.

As is common with most British miniseries, the material is presented from a more dramatic angle than we action-happy Americans would play it. (In other words, don't confuse this with the horror flick "Ghost Ship.") But its dryness does include flashes of action and an exciting finale that's a bit of a mind-twister.

"?Rod Lott


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