I love M. Night Shyamalan movies.
Now, I don't know why this is but I think it's pretty interesting that I always go into Shyamalan's films expecting to like them -- because that isn't always the case with other movies. I've watched films which have gotten great reviews but left me going, "huh?", I've seen a few that I expected to be awful -- and were -- and I've seen some which, according to reviews, were horrendous but have ended up being not so bad. You never really know.
But I can honestly say I've never met a M. Night movie I didn't like.
I seldom go to movies at the theater -- like a lot of other people, I find the prices too high and the company not very appealing -- I usually just wait for movies to come on one of the myriad movie channels we get -- I may have to wait a little longer but I end up seeing most movies in the privacy of my own home. I don't have to dress to go out, or breathe in a bunch of germs, or listen to people squawk on their cellphones. I've said it before but I'm totally addicted to TiVo.
So, because of my theatrophobia (not really but I wanted to use that word) I've just now watched The Happening -- a film about what appears to be a deadly toxin which causes people to commit suicide. Okay, that doesn't sound like a fun day in the park but, as a female who isn't enamored of so-called chick-flicks, it's right up my alley. Now, I admit that maybe Mark Wahlberg's acting was a little on the iffy side in this movie (he's done much better) but I was on the edge of my seat the whole time I was watching, wondering what was going to happen next.
Most people are probably most familiar with Shyamalan's The Sixth Sense -- or maybe Signs. When I think about what's so fascinating about those two films -- and his other ones -- I can only say that all of them seem to take really ordinary people, living really ordinary lives until they are suddenly thrust into some very peculiar -- and frightening -- life or death situations. That appeals to me. Really appeals to me. Sure, other films do that, too, but there's just something about M. Night's movies that hit home for me. Every single time.
One of my favorites was Lady in the Water, which starred the wonderful Paul Giamatti. This movie, if I remember correctly, was roundly panned but I loved the fantasy element which occupies most, if not all of, Shyamalan's work -- and this one was really unique. I suppose I can see how some people wouldn't care for these movies -- maybe they are an acquired taste -- a taste which I acquired immediately after seeing The Sixth Sense.
I love that M. Night inserts himself into his movies -- it's always amusing to see when and where he'll pop up. And though I don't know a whole lot about Philadelphia, I love that he often uses his hometown (reared, not born) as a backdrop in his films -- and as a nod to the city. I also love the twists at the end -- though sometimes that means the film doesn't have a storybook ending. Half the fun, though, is trying to figure out just what the twist will be -- or, sometimes, being totally surprised because the twist is that there is no twist.
So, call me weird but I'm a fan of Mr. Shyamalan -- can't wait for his next one.
Maybe I'll even go to the theater to see it.
And, now that I think about it, this may go a long way toward explaining how my own slightly off-kilter brain actually works.
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When you are offended at any man's fault, turn to yourself and study your own failings. Then you will forget your anger...Epictetus