Released 06/13/2008 Rated: R
What the hell did I just watch? No, seriously……what did I just watch?
M. Night Shyamalan has made some good movies in his career. This is not one of them. The trailer looked promising. The premise is interesting. But the execution did not come together the way it was probably meant to. There are some creepy moments, but mostly this film is laughable. I would suggest watching it with a few drinks; I’m sure it’s hysterical then.
Shyamalan is most famous for the twists in his films, and an unfortunate side effect with that when people don’t like the movie is that they spoil it, so I knew the twist going into the movie much the same way I did going into The Village. Knowing the twist didn’t ruin the movie for me, mostly because the film ruins itself constantly and from the word “go,” but it did clue me in to the glaring clues in the opening classroom scene, and when I say glaring clues, I mean they literally explain it using the exact wording from the finale. Just…wow.
The acting is atrocious from everyone with the exception of the construction worker in the beginning and the mean lady at the end. Mark Wahlberg probably lost all enthusiasm with every day they shot which is apparent in the behind the scenes footage; he’s questioning his character’s choices like it’s the stupidest thing, and it is. Zooey Deschanel just looks like a deer in headlights throughout the majority of the movie. Both of them are normally really good actors. The dialogue is awful, and I mean it’s bad. I guess Shyamalan forgot how to write good dialogue around this time as he was just getting warmed up for The Last Airbender, which was his next film. He even subtly hinted at it in the movie Easter Egg-style, which I guess is appropriate as these are both groan-inducing films. Jess has an Avatar: The Last Airbender backpack and the number of the bus she gets on is 2010.
It floors me that this movie was green-lit, y’all. It really does.