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m night shyamalan latest movie

In 2019 it was reported that M. Night Shyamalan would be releasing two movies with Universal and hot on the heels of Old, the first of those. M. Night Shyamalan's body of directorial work is a bit of an M. Night Shyamalan film in The Last Airbender is an indisputable disaster. Filmography & biography of M. Night Shyamalan who started his career with the movie Praying with Anger. Check out the movie list, birth date, latest news.
m night shyamalan latest movie

M night shyamalan latest movie -

M. Night Shyamalan Hits On a Universal Fear

Culture

In Old, the director confronts the everyday, existential terror of life passing by too quickly.

By David Sims

A middle-aged man and his adult son on a beach

M. Night Shyamalan has been making Hollywood thrillers for more than 20 years, and despite his career’s ups and downs, he’s never lost the power to wring tension out of the simplest situations: someone opening a door, a shape walking across a TV screen, a scowl shifting into a smile. Early on in Old, his latest macabre roller-coaster ride, a trio of children play freeze tag on a beach, ducking and weaving and laughing while one of them stands motionless, waiting to spring back to life. It’s a knowing hint at the terror that’s about to unfurl—the sense that time is about to slip out of whack.

The beautiful, secluded beach where Old takes place is powered by one horrifying logic: If you stay on it, you get old—fast. Guy (Gael García Bernal) and Prisca (Vicky Krieps), on a sumptuous vacation with their two preteen children, arrive one morning and lay down their towels; within a few hours, their kids have gone through puberty and their own faces are scored with wrinkles. Shyamalan has made movies featuring ghosts, alien invaders, scary trees, and comic-book villains, but with Old he’s hit on a premise that is devastating in its simplicity. Everyone’s afraid of aging, right?

Read: When does someone become ‘old’?

The film, based on the graphic novel Sandcastle, by Pierre Oscar Lévy and Frederik Peeters, is maybe Shyamalan’s best since his (supremely underrated) 2004 hit, The Village. In Old, Guy and Prisca, along with the other beachgoers, have to figure out an escape before their age kills them. But they’re also tormented by the existential reality that their partnership—and their children’s many developmental milestones—is flashing by.

What parent hasn’t had that feeling grip them with terror? Old is a perfect, blunt title, but this film could just as easily be called They Grow Up So Fast, given the melancholy undertones of its often grisly plot. Shyamalan riddles his characters with insecurities and doubts about their place in the world, then hits the fast-forward button on their lives, giving them minutes to realize big emotional truths. One can almost hear him cackling in the background (and, as usual, he’s cast himself in a small role) as he continually poses this question to the audience: What would you do if you had only one day to live the rest of your life?

The beach (the film was shot in the Dominican Republic) is a perfect metaphorical landscape for that question. It’s peaceful and alluring, but unfeeling—a gorgeous spot to while away your time before being carried out by the waves and forgotten. Shyamalan and his cinematographer, Mike Gioulakis, take every advantage of the negative space that this big open canvas provides—the camera darts between characters, bobbing and swaying, lending the sense of time rapidly falling out of reach. Rather than swallowing his characters up in superwide shots to emphasize their insignificance, Shyamalan has them dominate the frame, standing so tall that the screen cuts off at their heads and feet, as if they’re growing so quickly, they literally can’t be contained.

That’s the kind of visual acuity that has always made Shyamalan a far better filmmaker than his reputation suggests. The early run of twist-centric horror that made his name—The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, Signs, The Village—led many to think of him as a one-trick pony, and subsequent big-budget flops, such as The Last Airbender and After Earth, saw him retreat to making smaller genre works. But that resulted in some of the most fruitful material of his career: thrillers such as The Visit and Split, which punched above the weight of their silly plotting because of Shyamalan’s skill with staging and atmosphere.

Yes, Old has plenty of the clunky dialogue that defines Shyamalan’s work—his characters often can’t help but overexplain what’s going on around them. It probably runs 10 minutes too long, with an ending that works too hard to lay out the silly reasoning behind the beach’s supernatural properties. None of that matters. The central conceit of Old has so much juice, and Shyamalan gets to explore so many fun—if sadistic—avenues over the course of one very long day. It’s his most ambitious work in years, wrapped in the delightful, tawdry packaging of a pulpy thriller.

Источник: https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2021/07/m-night-shyamalan-old-fear-aging/619529/

12. The Last Airbender (2010)

The Last Airbender is an indisputable disaster. Based on the Nickelodeon Avatar series of the same name, the live-action remake has everything and nothing at the same time. You want white people cast in East Asian roles? We got you. You want bad acting? Sure. Do you want any kind of directorial vision or a ironclad plot? You’re just going to have to find that elsewhere.

11. After Earth (2013)

After Earth’s reputation is saved by two things: a story written by cool guy Will Smith, and the fact that The Last Airbender is so comically bad. With that being said, the Jaden Smith star vehicle about a 31st century war between humans and aliens fell flat in a lot of the ways that The Last Airbender didn’t. After Earth appropriately reads like a writer's first venture in the sci-fi genre and lands itself at the bottom because it’s not even particularly good at being bad. It’s just… dull.

10. The Happening (2008)

I am wildly biased because The Happening is officially my brand of garbage. With that being said, it was received horribly by critics. The sci-fi tale follows an attack from plants that makes humans want to kill themselves. It gets bonus points for assuming that there would ever be chemistry between Zooey Deschanel and Mark Wahlberg, but that’s where the buck stops. What the plants didn't kill, the poor writing did.

9. Lady in the Water (2006)

To be honest, I’m not entirely sure what happened in Lady in the Water. It’s that weird. The film has the same "us vs. them" war-torn vibes like many of Shyamalan’s films, but then it pivots too hard to this foreign Blue World. Points for casting Bryce Dallas Howard, who is always great. Subtract the same amount of points away for failing to do what The Shape of Water did better.

8. Glass (2019)

Of all Shyamalan's disappointments, Glass might be the biggest of his career. Both Unbreakable and Split marked some of the most unexpected and impressive work of the director's career. Of all his twists, an anti-superhero trilogy that was never marketed as such is his greatest yet. The first two movies avoided all the cliches of the comic book genre, but Shaymalan couldn't pull off his landing in the final entry, and instead delivered a stunning disappointment—the likes of which was bad enough to bring down the legacy of the first two films in this series.

7. The Village (2004)

The superior Bryce Dallas Howard/Shyamalan collaboration is The Village, but not by too much. Set in what appears to be a 19th century Amish settlement (your headstones don’t fool me, M. Night!), the big twist is that the whole thing is actually set in the modern day. The plot twist doesn’t feel so shocking, and there’s a lot of filler between big moments. Shout out to the monsters looking like pissed off skeletal handmaids, though.

6. Wide Awake (1998)

The only directorial offering that M. Night Shyamalan gives us outside of the thriller or horror genre comes in the form of a comedy/drama called Wide Awake. The Rosie O’Donnell film is a charming enough tale about a kid whose faith in God is shaken after his grandfather dies. It wasn’t bad, but it wasn’t great, and thus it lands in the middle of the road.

5. The Visit (2015)

A found-footage film sounds a little cliché, right? But a found-footage film where grandma has a big pile of old diapers and tries to eat you after a game of Yahtzee? I have your attention now. The Visit is nothing short of a bananas spin on a weekend with your grandparents, but when your grandparents turn out to not be who you thought they were (cue: eating your grandkids), then we’re willing to sign off on the craziness.

4. The Sixth Sense (1999)

Amateurs will say that The Sixth Sense should be in one of the very top spots, but those people clearly didn’t watch Bruce Willis get shot minutes before getting introduced to a child who can see DEAD PEOPLE. It’s honestly basic arithmetic. That bit of a spoiler, however, is made up by very good performances, just enough horror, and otherwise good writing.

3. Unbreakable (2000)

Starring Bruce Willis and Samuel L Jackson, Unbreakable is one of M. Night’s career bests. Centered around a man who discovers his super-sensory ability to see who has committed crimes (along with some other insane superhuman abilities) after a train crash, Unbreakable is an excellent start to a trilogy that includes Split (which is good) and Glass (which is decidedly not).

2. Split (2016)

It’s rare that a sequel edges out its predecessor, but then again, Split isn’t particularly a sequel. While Unbreakable is a good movie on its own merits, Split takes it up a notch with James McAvoy’s 23 personalities. (There’s a "23 and Beast" joke to be made here, but we’ll leave it be.) In a career known for twist endings, the finale of Split—connecting it to Unbreakable—is of the best in M. Night’s filmography.

1. Signs

Signs is not a film that I thought would steal the top spot. It's M. Night candy. And yet, here we are, with Signs at the top. How can you ignore the cinematic masterpiece that involves, but is not limited to: pastoral America, Joaquin Phoenix with a bat, aluminum foil hats, baby Abigail Breslin’s fascination with water and its contaminants, and, of course, a pre-bonkers Mel Gibson? Signs is the pinnacle of what happens when M Night Shyamalan gets insane storytelling correct.

Justin Kirkland Justin Kirkland is a writer for Esquire, where he focuses on entertainment, television, and pop culture.

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Источник: https://www.esquire.com/entertainment/movies/g25909800/all-m-night-shyamalan-movies-ranked/

'Old,' M. Night Shyamalan and Hollywood's horror of aging women

Wanna see something really scary? According to Hollywood, it’s a woman getting old. That’s one of the unspoken themes of M. Night Shyamalan’s new summer thriller, whose ads feature a pair of female legs relaxing on the seashore. One leg is young and shapely; the other withered and skeletal. The title succinctly names the horror unfolding: “Old.”

We get the picture.

A woman aging, especially an attractive one, is still considered uncanny and unnatural. This source of horror should be long past its expiration date, but continues to haunt Hollywood because it reflects our society’s misogyny and fear of mature female power.

In Shyamalan’s film, visitors to a tropical island resort are invited to enjoy a secluded beach, where something mysterious makes people rapidly age: Every half an hour, they grow one year older. The alteration (spoilers to follow) becomes apparent first in the kids, but soon the adults begin to feel and look older, too. The men acquire wrinkles and gray hair, but their essence isn’t really changed. They just look like mature, even more distinguished versions of themselves.

But for the females, accelerated aging is denaturing. They are subjected to terrifying physical changes, from a melon-sized tumor to warp-speed pregnancy to a fatal heart attack. The worst is saved for Chrystal (Abbey Lee), the young mom who looks like a swimsuit model.

For the females, accelerated aging is denaturing. They are subjected to terrifying physical changes.

We first meet Chrystal imperiously ordering a health beverage, obviously obsessed with keeping her scantily-clad bod in top form. When she ignores her husband on the beach to take selfies, the message is clear: Things will not go well for her.

Chrystal is the “vanity, thy name is woman” character, and whatever happens, it’s not going to be pretty. How do we know? Because movies have long been the place where male filmmakers get to enjoy the fantasy of torturing the hot girls who rejected them in high school. (For more on how thoroughly male Hollywood remains, even in the wake of #MeToo, see “This Changes Everything,” a recent documentary that actor Geena Davis executive produced.)

Gorgeous blondes don’t do well in “Old.” The first one who appears is stripping nude for a swim and saucily fluffing her hair. Her next scene shows her as a waterlogged corpse.

Chrystal’s fate is more protracted and gruesome. Her painful demise is the film’s visual piece-de-resistance. Her delectable body’s repulsive transformation echoes a pivotal moment in H. Rider Haggard’s famous Victorian adventure novel, “She.” Filmed multiple times, most famously starring Ursula Andress in 1965, the story concerns a beautiful 2,000-year-old queen who retains not only her looks, but power over men so potent she is nicknamed “She-who-must-be-obeyed.” That’s a big no-no. Her punishment is insta-aging in a pillar of fire, shriveling down to pathetic monkey-like creature.

For Shyamalan’s Chrystal, suffering through the deaths of her daughter and mother-in-law, plus the psychotic breakdown her husband, is not enough retribution for the sin of trying to appease the male gaze. She must be broken — in this case, literally. Pride in her beauty is laid waste.

Tellingly, Shyamalan makes plenty of woke-ish references to racism in his film, but misogyny goes unnoticed. It flows as naturally as the tide.

The filmmaker is tapping into a whole cinematic tradition known as “hagsploitation” that centers on attractive female characters who refuse to accept aging.

The filmmaker is tapping into a whole cinematic tradition known as “hagsploitation” that centers on attractive female characters who refuse to accept aging and seek to hold the spotlight. Some classic examples include “Sunset Boulevard” (1950), “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?” (1962) and “Death Becomes Her” (1992). In Hollywood’s brutal logic, women are allotted a brief period of desirability and then encouraged to disappear, a tradition satirized in Amy Schumer’s dead-on sketch “Last F**kable Day,” featuring Tina Fey, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Patricia Arquette as mid-life actors celebrating their freedom from patriarchal demands of beauty.

It is a standard idea that age confers power and added dignity on men. The silver screen may be hospitable to the silver fox — but mature women who refuse to fade away are monsters: evil witches, demonic nuns, horrible bosses, and grannies-gone-mad, all bent on sucking vitality from the young and generally wreaking havoc.

Hollywood’s accelerated aging trope highlights not only the fleetingness of socially prescribed hotness, but the reception that awaits women on the other side. Fans of “The Shining” (1980) will recall the terror Jack Nicholson experiences in the Overlook Hotel when the young beauty he caresses transforms into a decrepit crone.

Rapid aging is also the ultimate torture device for female characters deemed unacceptable. In “Bad Girls from Valley High” (2005), a trio of beautiful high school mean girls receive justice in the form of rapid aging that has them sagging, farting and peeing themselves. The film’s original title, “A Fate Totally Worse than Death,” says it all.

In Hollywood, as in life, society ensnares women in a Catch-22 where they are expected not only to remain preternaturally young and attractive, but punished for trying to fulfill those expectations. At 81, actor Kim Novak found this out when she dared to appear at the 2014 Oscars ceremony with a surgically-altered face far different from the flawless fantasy in films like Alfred Hitchcock’s “Vertigo.”

The maddening irony of the outrage over her failure to “age gracefully” is that, early in her career, male movie moguls had forced Novak to drastically alter her appearance so she would fit the mold of the quintessential cool blonde. As an older woman, she was vilified for following this logic to the end.

Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn were just 43 and 47, respectively, when they played aging beauties gone mad in “Death Becomes Her.”

Scary movies are supposed to conjure up what’s threatening while keeping it at a safe distance. But for women, the horror of aging hits especially close to home. In the social media era, there’s hardly a woman over 30 who hasn’t experienced the creeping dread of seeing an image of her face that doesn’t look quite right — “quite right” meaning appearing to be roughly age 27.

As women approach menopause — a time when experience, wisdom and freedom from pregnancy ought by rights to propel them into their most productive stage of life — they begin to panic that they are being deleted. Gloria Swanson was only 50 when she portrayed the hag Norma Desmond in “Sunset Boulevard,” and Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn were just 43 and 47, respectively, when they played aging beauties gone mad in “Death Becomes Her.” According to the upside-down rules of patriarchy, women must be annihilated early on because older women pose a threat: They are unruly and poised to operate beyond the bounds of male power.

This is a losing game not only for women, but for society, which desperately needs their mature powers. This point was made in a rare film to depict older females positively: “Mad Max: Fury Road (2015). Women are the savior of civilization in that George Miller movie, which not only starred Charlize Theron as fearless hero Imperator Furiosa but featured a motorcycle-riding band of fierce older women who guard the seeds that could re-green a post-apocalyptic world.

Related

Let’s hope it doesn’t take a real dystopian future to bring this point home.

For now, it seems, movie-goers will continue to flock to watch women punished for aging, transformed from titillating to terrifying. And here’s a plot twist for you: They will actually be replicating the horror of the film because a study shows that watching scary movies can actually accelerate facial aging. Grab the popcorn and enjoy!

Lynn Stuart Parramore

Lynn Stuart Parramore is a cultural historian who studies the intersection of culture, psychology and economics. Her work has appeared in Reuters, Lapham's Quarterly, Salon, Quartz, Vice, HuffPost and others. She is the author of "Reading the Sphinx: Ancient Egypt in 19th Century Literary Culture."

Источник: https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/old-m-night-shyamalan-hollywood-s-horror-aging-women-ncna1274883

M. Night Shyamalan's 'Old' falls flat, bogged down by clunky dialogue and 'ham-fisted' explanations, critics say

Thomasin McKenzie and Alex Wolff star in M. Night Shyamalan's "Old."

M. Night Shyamalan's latest film "Old" has no shortage of intrigue and suspense, but fails to live up to the director's previous work, critics say.

His latest thriller follows a family of four, Guy (Gael Garcia Bernal), Prisca (Vicky Krieps) and their children, Maddox, 11, and Trent, 6, during a tropical vacation. The family venture to a secluded beach at the suggestion of the resorts' manager, but quickly realize the idyllic spot is somehow causing them to age rapidly.

The beach is also visited by a rapper, Mid-Size Sedan, surgeon Charles and his family of wife Chrystal, young daughter Kara and mother Agnes, as well as a married couple, Jarin and Patricia. Adding to the terror is the fact that the group experiences intense blackout-inducing headaches if they try to leave the area.

Critics agreed that "Old" is not Shyamalan's best work, but far from his worst. The director has become famous for his shock plot twists and surprise endings which range from genius ("The Sixth Sense") to asinine ("The Happening.") "Old" seems to fall somewhere in between.

The Universal film currently holds a 55% "Rotten" score on Rotten Tomatoes from 153 reviews. Here's what critics thought of Shyamalan's "Old" ahead of its Friday debut.

Peter Travers, ABC News

The premise of "Old" is enticing, wrote Peter Travers in his review of the film for ABC News. The problem is that once it hooks you, it has trouble holding your attention for the span of its run time.

"Shot with a poet's eye and a tin ear for dialogue, this suspense thriller sets up a provocation that Shyamalan lacks the ability to develop much less sustain," Travers said.

"Old" is based on a graphic novel called "Sandcastle," which follows a similar premise, but leaves the mystery of the supernatural beach open-ended. Shyamalan, in adapting the material, added his own explanation for the strange occurrences.

Some critics felt the reveal (which will not be spoiled here) was a harmless addition to the fable, while others, like Travers, felt the concept was "lame" and detracted from the film.

"You leave 'Old' wondering how a brilliant premise could end with such a botch job," Travers wrote.

Read the full review from ABC News.

Rufus Sewell in M. Night Shyamalan's "Old."

Robert Daniels, IGN

Critics like IGN's Robert Daniels were quick to point out how beautifully shot "Old" is. Daniels praised cinematographer Mike Gioluakis for his creativity in capturing the horror on screen. He noted that the aging effects and make-up were also well-achieved by the special effects team.

However, stiff conversations and heavy-handed exposition in the character's dialogue left much to be desired, he wrote.

"'Old' works best when it focuses on the horror of young people experiencing the ravages of age long before their time," Daniels wrote in his review. "Strong performances from the entire cast manage to cover up what is quite possibly the worst and least rhythmically believable dialogue of M. Night Shyamalan's career, excluding his dismal live-action 'Avatar: The Last Airbender.'"

Much of the "ham-fisted" explanations were better left as mysteries, he wrote.

"Nevertheless, 'Old' is just as profound as any thriller Shyamalan has done," Daniels said. "It's a film that probably won't merit repeated viewings, but that first one is a thought-provoking meditation on what it means to be alive that brings up dark, buried feelings like the water that kisses the sand."

Read the full review from IGN.

Todd Gilchrist, The Wrap

Dialogue wasn't the only flaw critics noted in reviews of "Old." Todd Gilchrist of The Wrap said the film's characters "feel like they've been engineered by some kind of algorithm in a screenwriting program."

"Among the ensemble stranded on the beach, there's a museum curator, an actuary, a thoracic surgeon, a nurse, and a psychologist; each of them might as well have been named for their profession, because Shyamalan not only assembles them with mechanical precision but also filters every situation in the story through the expertise they afford, guaranteeing a comical spurt of exposition at every turn to assess how or why circumstances have changed," he wrote in his review of the film.

The actuary does a lot of tedious number-crunching, the psychologists encourages others to talk about their feelings and characters react to situations in strange, unrealistic ways, he said. Many critics said that if these characters been more fleshed out, audiences may have been more emotionally invested in their life-or-death plight.

"As is increasingly the case in his films, Shyamalan is too preoccupied by the machinery of his ideas to give them a sniff test before unleashing them on characters that we should, or could, care about, if only they made choices that were remotely identifiable," Gilchrist said.

Read the full review from The Wrap.

Thomasin McKenzie and Gael Garcia Bernal star in M. Night Shyamalan's "Old."

Adam Graham, Detroit News

Like many critics, Detroit News' Adam Graham notes that "Old" is one of Shyamalan's better films, but falls short of previous successes like "The Sixth Sense" and "Signs."

"The problem is, well, Shyamalan, who over-exerts himself with showy camera work and mucks up the atmosphere he creates with his clunky writing," he wrote in his review. "Every time you're in, he pulls you back out."

Graham, too, found the ending underwhelming, saying "it's tough to deliver a doozy when the audience is trained to know one is coming down the pike."

Read the full review from Detroit News.

Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company CNBC and NBCUniversal. NBCUniversal owns Rotten Tomatoes and is the distributor of "Old."

Источник: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/23/old-reviews-what-critics-thought-of-m-night-shyamalans-thriller.html

Horror king M. Night Shyamalan on his nightmarish new beach thriller

In M. Night Shyamalan’s new film, a family travels to a beach and starts to get really old, really fast. Similar to how The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is invoked as a kind of meme, you could be forgiven for taking the central premise of Oldto be a joke — until, of course, it’s not. Previously harmless tumours begin to grow rapidly out of control; pregnancies spiral forward at an unnatural rate; extremely-early-onset dementia is settling in, becoming severe, and turning the situation violent. The M. Night age-play movie is here, and it’s not fucking around.

But tucked in between the scenes of gore, panic and existential horror are calmer, meditational moments about ageing — more specifically, the ever-increasing distance between the present and one’s youth. “I tried to describe something ineffable, really,” says M. Night. “The child who is trying to explain how it feels to suddenly now be 20-something talks about how there are more colours in the world than before, but they're quieter. She's saying: ‘I see more, but it doesn't mean as much to me.’” 

Like many of the director’s projects, Old is something of a Trojan horse for larger thematic questions — this time, about mortality and personhood. Based on the 2010 graphic novel Sandcastle, written by Pierre Oscar Lévy and drawn by Frederik Peeters, Old sees its protagonists have their whole lives effectively reduced to the span of a single day. The philosophical ambition of this premise is, according to the director, nothing like audiences have ever seen before. 

Though Old features genuinely pensive insights and boasts some of the director’s gnarliest body horror, it is also, fundamentally, kind of a silly movie. This is the natural result of the director’s blending of multiple genre components, particularly as this leans towards horror-comedy, a genre which Shyamalan arguably pioneered with 2015’s The Visit(walking so Jordan Peele could run, etc.) Three decades into a decidedly controversial career, the director gives us an insight into the making of Old, his present thoughts on the horror genre, getting older himself, his often maligned love of cameos, and more.

Hey M. Night, how’s it going today?
Good, good, having great conversations. It's fun to talk about people's emotions because that's what I get the most excited about — how they're reacting to the movie and their feelings about it.

So are you a person that quite enjoys doing press then?
You know, it's funny! It's so strange for me, because these are such personal movies. And most of the time it's the actors that are doing junkets like this. They made a movie: they spent six weeks on it, and then they talked about it. But for me, I've spent every second for two years — up until the very second I talk to you — only thinking about this movie. So there's a lot to talk about.

Great, then let's get right into it. This is going to be your first feature release since Glass in 2019 and you're coming up on nearly 30 years of filmmaking. How are you feeling about your career at the moment?
I'm grateful for sure. People are still interested in coming to hear the stories coming out of my head, which is unbelievable. I try to go back to the feeling I had when I was in the car with my mom and dad, driving through the Holland Tunnel to drop me off at NYU. I remember the feeling like I wanted to literally jump out of the car and run to the film school. I could not wait to start thinking about making movies. My parents are both doctors who probably thought I was insane at that time. But that excitement, I do still have that. So how long can I make that the reason I'm making movies?

As a kind of addendum, let’s talk a bit about Old and some of your more recent feelings on age and ageing.
I think when you're younger, everything is binary: "I'm in love!” or “I hate you, mom!" As you get older, everything gets a little bit more subtle. We don't notice it, because it happens over decades for us. But [Old asks], what if it happened in a matter of hours?

Universal Pictures

Is that an observation you made looking at your own life?
Right now, I would say I'm different than I was 10 years ago. Specifically, I am much more muted. And that's a sad thing, but maybe a helpful thing, because I don't get as high but I also don't get as low. I miss the intensity of the colours, the up and the down, but now because of that I'm able to have more nuanced conversations about things and I can see things [that I couldn't before]. Everything isn't the end of the world or the most important thing. It's all part of this kind of beautiful, larger song.

Did you find that this was quite an emotional shoot for you? You have all these existential ideas buzzing around, COVID hits, and then a hurricane comes and destroys the set. How were you feeling at that time?
This probably goes to the previous question. How I reacted to it was very different to other times. I kind of went: "Hey, I can't control that. I made the decision to come here. I made it for the right reasons, I believe. Let's just keep rehearsing, and let's rebuild in a smarter way," that kind of thing. So I remember not being as traumatised about it as I probably would have been at, say, 30 years old. And in the end, it worked out. I think the narrowing of my emotions has helped in those circumstances. 

Who, in your opinion, is dominating the horror genre at the minute? What are some of the best recent releases you can think of?
I haven't seen everything, so if I'm not mentioning something it's literally because I haven't seen it, but when I think of my favourite movies and their impacts, this set of movies has really affected me. The Babadook, It Follows, Hereditary, Ex Machina, The Witch: this set of very auteur, point-of-view [films]. I might take issue with some of their endings — as you know I'm a very endings-oriented person — but the salient feeling of darkness that each of those films creates is very inspiring. And I know the rarity of what they achieved in the body of those movies was exceptional, whether [the filmmakers] even know how exceptional it was. It was this rare combination of hearing a note and following it in a way that was just amazing. 

Universal Pictures

I've noticed that you're a bit of a cameo king. What is the particular appeal of appearing in your own films for you?
It probably comes from a deep-seated desire in many ways. The first movie that I ever made, I played the lead. I was 21 and we shot it in India. There was this idea of being writer, director, and actor that was influenced by the filmmakers of that time on the East Coast. 

I love the art form of acting. For me, learning to be present as an actor is so powerful. It's very hard to do when I'm the director and writer because those roles almost require the opposite of that: I'm kind of watching it more broadly, and trying to listen to that. 

A couple of years ago you spoke to Vulture about the “audacity” of making a sequel that nobody knew was a sequel. What would you say is the most audacious aspect of this film?
When we're saying audacious… perhaps it’s the "risk" that the leads are international, and that they play their [regular] accents. [Gael García Bernal] is not playing a Mexican dad, they're just playing a dad. It’s the audacity of saying: "Hey, we're [characters] that don't sound like you, that you have to identify with anyway.” 

And then of course there’s setting a visceral thriller outside in broad daylight, juxtaposing something that's supposed to be scary and making it all broad daylight and beautiful.

A big Midsommar vibe.
Exactly! Using cinematic languages that are newish for audiences, and certainly balancing tones of humour and mystery and Gothic horror and drama, and making sure that we're getting that balance into a place that I like. I do love to push people, to keep people uncomfortable. Where I feel most excited to tell a story is: "Oh, wow, this is unnerving. Where we're at, I'm right on the edge."

Old will arrive in cinemas in the US and the UK on 23 July.

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Источник: https://i-d.vice.com/en_uk/article/7kvdzq/m-night-shyamalan-old-interview

M. Night Shyamalan Explains Why Old Is His Most Intense Film Yet

Twelve hours after watching Old, the latest film from M. Night Shyamalan, I couldn’t shake it. It was sitting with me... lingering... haunting. Shyamalan is known for making smart, twisty-turny thrillers, but Old adds a brand new dimension: a punishing, unrelenting intensity. Truly, it borders on sadistic. So when I got a chance to talk to him about it, I was unsurprised to find that was exactly the point.

The director behind The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, and The Villagehas already surprised you, and now he wants to squeeze you until you can’t take it anymore. Old does exactly that. The film follows a family that, while on vacation, ends up on a mysterious beach where time doesn’t work as it should. Years go by in minutes and soon, little kids are teenagers, adults are senior citizens, and no one has any idea what’s going on, or if it can be stopped. Along the way, you’ll think about living in the moment, and the meaning of family, friends, and so much more. But mostly you’ll just be riveted. Here’s my chat (edited for clarity) with the man who, 12 hours prior, messed me up good.


Germain Lussier, io9:Man, Old was so intense. I think it’s probably the most intense thing I’ve ever seen you do. It’s relentless and never lets up. So I think that’s where I want to start. How do you go about balancing the tension and making sure that it’s impactful and emotional, but not painful? Because it really toes that line.

M. Night Shyamalan: You know, it’s funny you say that. I think in my head, when I thought of doing the movie, I thought of it as this relentless, tumbling, thing. In my head, I’m like, “It should be like 100 minutes long and it should just tumble tumble tumble because you should be feeling what the characters are feeling like.” So much happens so quickly that I can’t even keep up with it. Only in retrospect you kind of internalize it, so as we were editing it, we would squeeze it and squeeze it until it had just that sharpness where I had just enough time. And sometimes we went a little too tight and then we opened it back up. The audience needs just that moment to take a breath here for a second so that they [breathe], then the next horror starts to happen. That calibration is kind of like hearing it back and forth. Iterate, iterate. I do like, I don’t know how many passes I did. Eighteen? Eighteen passes of the movie to get to the cadence that eventually found this movement, this breathing movement or lack of breathing so you’re like this [tenses up his body]. You should feel, when the movie’s done, “Oh man. My body has been like this for so long” and now when you move it you’re like, “Oh wow. I didn’t realize my body was doing this for so long.”

The cast of Old finds something very creepy.

io9: Well you calibrated that right, trust me. And a lot of it also comes from the editing, of course, and the music. But the camera angles and the shot choices throughout are fascinating too and really unsettling. Tell me a bit about your thought process with the canted angles, the close-ups, the off-balance compositions, and stuff like that.

Shyamalan: I had a lot of time to really think through how I wanted to shoot it and draw everything very, very meticulously. This happened on Sixth Sense as well where I thought I was going to shoot at a time and then I got punted because of Bruce Willis’ schedule, and I spent more time on the shots. This exact thing happened because of the pandemic—we bumped from May to the fall, so I just kept thinking and working the shots. Mike [Gioulakis, the director of photography] and I were on Zoom constantly. I would draw and hold it up and say, “How about this?” or “How about that?” and there was always a principle to it. It isn’t just kind of, “Oh, this is a cool shot.” In fact, we use that as a pejorative thing. When I say to Mike “Oh that’s a cool shot,” we’re like, “Oh, man. That’s getting cut.” That can’t be the reason to do it. It has to have language.

Some of the things you’re probably feeling are one of the principles in that the camera moves independently of the events that are happening in the movie. So it represents time in that way of it’s not stopping on you for your line [of dialogue], it just happened to go by you. If we catch it, we catch it. You get this feeling of it’s moving irregardless of the events that it’s watching. And whether it’s a zoom that’s pushing past everyone or a dolly that’s just continually spinning past them and you’re catching off-screen very important lines and stuff like that, that was an important way to represent time in the piece with our camera movements.

io9: Yeah, absolutely. It works really, really well. Now, I saw it fairly recently, within the past 12 hours. So I’m still processing everything. But while it really does make you think about different aspects of life, the thing that’s sticking with me most is the disturbing implications of aging in a day. In your mind, what are the most disturbing possibilities about this scenario, if it actually could happen?

Rufus Sewel, that doesn’t look good.

Shyamalan: You know, it’s funny. The more I thought about it, for me, often times these movies are me working out something. So me trying to figure out how to internalize my parents getting very, very old. The kids becoming adults. How do I internalize all this and what my struggle is? I’m trying to hold on to something. I’m trying to hold on to the kids when they were babies and I could just tuck them in and I knew where they were, and my parents who were always there and I could go to them for advice, and they would take care of me even when I was adult. They would take care of me, but then that has flipped. Me holding on to things. I think by the making of the film, then watching it, you have to let go. Otherwise, your life’s a nightmare. You have to let go and be in that particular moment and not think about if this is going to happen to me in a few minutes or this was the thing I lost from a few minutes ago. That keeps you in this hell and I think the characters that are always trying to escape time and escape that beach end badly.

io9: Oh that’s for sure. OK so, obviously you’re known for films with big twists. So when you have a movie like this that feels like it could have one [but I won’t say either way], is that expectation a burden or is it a blessing? Can you use that to your advantage?

Shyamalan: Honestly, it’s not one that bothers me because it is my natural cadence of telling stories. I really enjoy it as a viewer, as a storyteller—to unfold things is exciting for me. I think it would be different, let’s say, Sixth Sense... it would be different if Sixth Sense was a book that I happen to adapt. Now I’m like, “Oh, man, they want me to do that?” But that’s naturally how I think. And so Unbreakable and Signs, The Village, it just feels very natural, that cadence. It isn’t something that feels outside of me, I like unfolding stories. In fact, the fun part, for me, of writing stories is picking out the format of how to tell the story. If the story is about you being a killer, how do I tell that story? Is it from your point of view? Your wife’s point of view? Your neighbor’s point of view? When exactly do I find that out, is fun. That’s fun. The storytelling part.

Thomasin McKenzie and Alex Wolff aren’t the only actors who play these characters.

io9: That kind of brings me to my next question. For the sake of the movie, you put the characters through some horrific situations. So, what was your most enjoyable or most kind of evil discovery in writing? The thing that that you’re like, “Oh, man, am I really going to do this?” And you do it.

Shyamalan: Well, I knew what happens in the cave at the end was going to be kind of like the nightmare Gothic thing, because I remember thinking, “Wow, you know, if time was moving that fast, if you broke a bone, that would be really weird. Right.” [Laughs] So I just kind of went with that and went, wow. By that point in the movie, I loved spinning all the ramifications of time in kind of grotesque ways that would happen to you immediately. I guess maybe because my family’s all doctors, those are the first ideas that came to my head was all the kind of medical stuff.

io9: Yeah, I described the other medical scene to my wife, who is very squeamish and she’s like, “Just stop talking. I don’t even want to hear about it.” And I said, “Imagining watching it!” Shifting a bit, high-concept, contained movies like this are kind of rare in Hollywood and the studio system. Why do you think that is and how do you continue to get to make them while so few other people are?

Shyamalan: Dude, I don’t know the answer to that. It’s changed so much since 1999. When I did the first one, everyone was doing it. That was an amazing year. That was The Matrix and Blair Witch and Magnolia and Being John Malkovich and American Beauty and I could keep on going. That was just the big movies. Those were the big movies. You know, my hope is that there’s certain things that bring people to the movie theaters now because there’s so many other formats to see. And my hope is that uniqueness, originality, being different is one of the reasons to leave your house and come see [a movie]. When I promote our movies and with our marketing partners at Universal, I say “Make it feel so different that they can’t not see it.” As much as we can, celebrate what’s different about it. That’s our weapon, it’s Not Packagable by nature. That’s the thing to celebrate and make them go “Oh yeah, I remember that movie. I want to go see that.” Whenever I see a trailer or promotion and I go, “Oh, I know what that is, I’m good,” I don’t give them the option to do that. It’s like “I don’t know what that is.”

io9: Yeah, this is that for sure.

Shyamalan: I am hopeful, to answer your question, that there will be lots of those in the marketplace.

Shyamalan’s previous film, Glass.

io9: Me too. Now, I’m a huge fan of Eastrail trilogy and Glass obviously put a period on it. But, you know, so did Unbreakable. So at some point, could you pull a Split and come back to that world or are you just completely done with it?

Shyamalan: Look, if I did it, I would never tell you now, right?

io9:That’s a great point.

Shyamalan: [Laughs] But honestly, I’m not a big sequel guy. And I think the reason I’m not a big sequel guy is that the primary thing that gets me to make a movie is this thing we’re talking about. I’ve never seen that or I’ve never done that. And so I want to try this new color. So by its nature, what gets me going is that it’s original.

io9:Sounds good. Now I saw on Instagram you’re writing a new movie and I know you won’t tell me anything about it, which is absolutely fine. But what I’m wondering is, what drives you? What makes you think “Well, Old is done, I’m doing press this weekend and now I’m on to the next thing”?

Shyamalan: I think the healthiest relationship that I can have with my art form is putting all my love into it. Understanding the relationship between that piece of art and the audience. What that relationship wants to be, what’s the best form of it? Put all my love into it and then don’t worry about the outcome and move on to the next story. The less I think about it as a business proposition and the more I think about it as an art form, the better. So this is just like “Move on.” I’ve done everything I can do for the movie. I’m very happy with it and I’m so excited for you guys all to see it. So go on to the next one and I’m very excited about it. I find peace in writing stories and learning about these new characters. Now, in two years when we meet and we talk about that movie, you’ll know what I was figuring out here.

Old was filmed using strict covid-19 protocols.

io9: Last question, like you said, you had to push this movie because of covid. But beyond that, it’s filmed mostly on a beach, in another country, there are so many difficult things. What was the most difficult thing about making Old and how did you get past it?

Shyamalan: It was incredibly difficult. I make small movies. These are small movies. They literally have an end. The money’s out and that’s it. So we just have to figure out how to do it in that amount of money. That’s it. And when you’re shooting in a pandemic, I made the decision to pay for all of the safety features to shoot in the safest way possible. We made our own lab. I paid for the whole hotel. All these things that I wasn’t anticipating doing. We were super stressed and doing it in the hurricane season and just all of it outdoors on a beach. Everything on the beach every day. We’re weather-dependent every single day. We’re wave-dependent. If there’s a storm that happens 100 miles away, we’re going to get hit two days later, we know it in advance. So it’s like the waves are going to come crashing up and how to be nimble and all. There was so much respect for nature. We did this ceremony when we finished—everybody, the cast and crew went and put flowers in the ocean and thanked the ocean. It was a local tradition to thank the ocean and the beach for letting us be there and boy, was that the truth. The beach allowed us to be there for that time period and make that movie.


That movie, Old, opens on Friday. It’s excellent but not for the faint of heart. You’ll hear more about that from us soon.


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Источник: https://gizmodo.com/m-night-shyamalan-explains-why-old-is-his-most-intense-1847285700
m night shyamalan latest movie

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M. Night Shyamalan's 'Old' falls flat, bogged down by clunky dialogue and 'ham-fisted' explanations, critics say

Thomasin McKenzie and Alex Wolff star in M. Night Shyamalan's "Old."

M. Night Shyamalan's latest film "Old" has no shortage of intrigue and suspense, but fails to live up to the director's previous work, critics say.

His latest thriller follows a family of four, Guy (Gael Garcia Bernal), Prisca (Vicky Krieps) and their children, Maddox, 11, and Trent, 6, during a tropical vacation. The family venture to a secluded beach at the suggestion of the resorts' manager, but quickly realize the idyllic spot is somehow causing them to age rapidly.

The beach is also visited by a rapper, Mid-Size Sedan, surgeon Charles and his family of wife Chrystal, young daughter Kara and mother Agnes, as well as a married couple, Jarin and Patricia. Adding to the terror is the fact that the group experiences intense blackout-inducing headaches if they try to leave the area.

Critics agreed that "Old" is not Shyamalan's best work, but far from his worst. The director has become famous for his shock plot twists and surprise endings which range from genius ("The Sixth Sense") to asinine ("The Happening.") "Old" seems to fall somewhere in between.

The Universal film currently holds a 55% "Rotten" score on Rotten Tomatoes from 153 reviews. Here's what critics thought of Shyamalan's "Old" ahead of its Friday debut.

Peter Travers, ABC News

The premise of "Old" is enticing, wrote Peter Travers in his review of the film for ABC News. The problem is that once it hooks you, it has trouble holding your attention for the span of its run time.

"Shot with a poet's eye and a tin ear for dialogue, this suspense thriller sets up a provocation that Shyamalan lacks the ability to develop much less sustain," Travers said.

"Old" is based on a graphic novel called "Sandcastle," which follows a similar premise, but leaves the mystery of the supernatural beach open-ended. Shyamalan, in adapting the material, added his own explanation for the strange occurrences.

Some critics felt the reveal (which will not be spoiled here) was a harmless addition to the fable, while others, like Travers, felt the concept was "lame" and detracted from the film.

"You leave 'Old' wondering how a brilliant premise could end with such a botch job," Travers wrote.

Read the full review from ABC News.

Rufus Sewell in M. Night Shyamalan's "Old."

Robert Daniels, IGN

Critics like IGN's Robert Daniels were quick to point out how beautifully shot "Old" is. Daniels praised cinematographer Mike Gioluakis for his creativity in capturing the horror on screen. He noted that the aging effects and make-up were also well-achieved by the special effects team.

However, stiff conversations and heavy-handed exposition in the character's dialogue left much to be desired, he wrote.

"'Old' works best when it focuses on the horror of young people experiencing the ravages of age long before their time," Daniels wrote in his review. "Strong performances from the entire cast manage to cover up what is quite possibly the worst and least rhythmically believable dialogue of M. Night Shyamalan's career, excluding his dismal live-action 'Avatar: The Last Airbender.'"

Much of the "ham-fisted" explanations were better left as mysteries, he wrote.

"Nevertheless, 'Old' is just as profound as any thriller Shyamalan has done," Daniels said. "It's a film that probably won't merit repeated viewings, but that first one is a thought-provoking meditation on what it means to be alive that brings up dark, buried feelings like the water that kisses the sand."

Read the full review from IGN.

Todd Gilchrist, The Wrap

Dialogue wasn't the only flaw critics noted in reviews of "Old." Todd Gilchrist of The Wrap said the film's characters "feel like they've been engineered by some kind of algorithm in a screenwriting program."

"Among the ensemble stranded on the beach, there's a museum curator, an actuary, a thoracic surgeon, a nurse, and a psychologist; each of them might as well have been named for their profession, because Shyamalan not only assembles them with mechanical precision but also filters every situation in the story through the expertise they afford, guaranteeing a comical spurt of exposition at every turn to assess how or why circumstances have changed," he wrote in his review of the film.

The actuary does a lot of tedious number-crunching, the psychologists encourages others to talk about their feelings and characters react to situations in strange, unrealistic ways, he said. Many critics said that if these characters been more fleshed out, audiences may have been more emotionally invested in their life-or-death plight.

"As is increasingly the case in his films, Shyamalan is too preoccupied by the machinery of his ideas to give them a sniff test before unleashing them on characters that we should, or could, care about, if only they made choices that were remotely identifiable," Gilchrist said.

Read the full review from The Wrap.

Thomasin McKenzie and Gael Garcia Bernal star in M. Night Shyamalan's "Old."

Adam Graham, Detroit News

Like many critics, Detroit News' Adam Graham notes that "Old" is one of Shyamalan's better films, but falls short of previous successes like "The Sixth Sense" and "Signs."

"The problem is, well, Shyamalan, who over-exerts himself with showy camera work and mucks up the atmosphere he creates with his clunky writing," he wrote in his review. "Every time you're in, he pulls you back out."

Graham, too, found the ending underwhelming, saying "it's tough to deliver a doozy when the audience is trained to know one is coming down the pike."

Read the full review from Detroit News.

Disclosure: Comcast is the parent company CNBC and NBCUniversal. NBCUniversal owns Rotten Tomatoes and is the distributor of "Old."

Источник: https://www.cnbc.com/2021/07/23/old-reviews-what-critics-thought-of-m-night-shyamalans-thriller.html

Horror king M. Night Shyamalan on his nightmarish new beach thriller

In M. Night Shyamalan’s new film, a family travels to a beach and starts to get really old, really fast. Similar to how The Curious Case of Benjamin Button is invoked as a kind of meme, you could be forgiven for taking the central premise of Oldto be a joke — until, of course, it’s not. Previously harmless tumours begin to grow rapidly out of control; pregnancies spiral forward at an unnatural rate; extremely-early-onset dementia is settling in, becoming severe, and turning the situation violent. The M. Night age-play movie is here, and it’s not fucking around.

But tucked in between the scenes of gore, panic and existential horror are calmer, meditational moments about ageing — more specifically, the ever-increasing distance between the present and one’s youth. “I tried to describe something ineffable, really,” says M. Night. “The child who is trying to explain how it feels to suddenly now be 20-something talks about how there are more colours in the world than before, but they're quieter. She's saying: ‘I see more, but it doesn't mean as much to me.’” 

Like many of the director’s projects, Old is something of a Trojan horse for larger thematic questions — this time, about mortality and personhood. Based on the 2010 graphic novel Sandcastle, written by Pierre Oscar Lévy and drawn by Frederik Peeters, Old sees its protagonists have their whole lives effectively reduced to the span of a single day. The philosophical ambition of this premise is, according to the director, nothing like audiences have ever seen before. 

Though Old features genuinely pensive insights and boasts some of the director’s gnarliest body horror, it is also, fundamentally, kind of a silly movie. This is the natural result of the director’s blending of multiple genre components, particularly as this leans towards horror-comedy, a genre which Shyamalan arguably pioneered with 2015’s The Visit(walking so Jordan Peele could run, etc.) Three decades into a decidedly controversial career, the director gives us an insight into the making of Old, his present thoughts on the horror genre, getting older himself, his often maligned love of cameos, and more.

Hey M. Night, how’s it going today?
Good, good, having great conversations. It's fun to talk about people's emotions because that's what I get the most excited about — how they're reacting to the movie and their feelings about it.

So are you a person that quite enjoys doing press then?
You know, it's funny! It's so strange for me, because these are such personal movies. And most of the time it's the actors that are doing junkets like this. They made a movie: they spent six weeks on it, and then they talked about it. But for me, I've spent every second for two years — up until the very second I talk to you — only thinking about this movie. So there's a lot to talk about.

Great, then let's get right into it. This is going to be your first feature release since Glass in 2019 and you're coming up on nearly 30 years of filmmaking. How are you feeling about your career at the moment?
I'm grateful for sure. People are still interested in coming to hear the stories coming out of my head, which is unbelievable. I try to go back to the feeling I had when I was in the car with my mom and dad, driving through the Holland Tunnel to drop me off at NYU. I remember the feeling like I wanted to literally jump out of the car and run to the film school. I could not wait to start thinking about making movies. My parents are both doctors who probably thought I was insane at that time. But that excitement, I do still have that. So how long can I make that the reason I'm making movies?

As a kind of addendum, let’s talk a bit about Old and some of your more recent feelings on age and ageing.
I think when you're younger, everything is binary: "I'm in love!” or “I hate you, mom!" As you get older, everything gets a little bit more subtle. We don't notice it, because it happens over decades for us. But [Old asks], what if it happened in a matter of hours?

Universal Pictures

Is that an observation you made looking at your own life?
Right now, I would say I'm different than I was 10 years ago. Specifically, I am much more muted. And that's a sad thing, but maybe a helpful thing, because I don't get as high but I also don't get as low. I miss the intensity of the colours, the up and the down, but now because of that I'm able to have more nuanced conversations about things and I can see things [that I couldn't before]. Everything isn't the end of the world or the most important thing. It's all part of this kind of beautiful, larger song.

Did you find that this was quite an emotional shoot for you? You have all these existential ideas buzzing around, COVID hits, and then a hurricane comes and destroys the set. How were you feeling at that time?
This probably goes to the previous question. How I reacted to it was very different to other times. I kind of went: "Hey, I can't control that. I made the decision to come here. I made it for the right reasons, I believe. Let's just keep rehearsing, and let's rebuild in a smarter way," that kind of thing. So I remember not being as traumatised about it as I probably would have been at, say, 30 years old. And in the end, it worked out. I think the narrowing of my emotions has helped in those circumstances. 

Who, in your opinion, is dominating the horror genre at the minute? What are some of the best recent releases you can think of?
I haven't seen everything, so if I'm not mentioning something it's literally because I haven't seen it, but when I think of my favourite movies and their impacts, this set of movies has really affected me. The Babadook, It Follows, Hereditary, Ex Machina, The Witch: this set of very auteur, point-of-view [films]. I might take issue with some of their endings — as you know I'm a very endings-oriented person — but the salient feeling of darkness that each of those films creates is very inspiring. And I know the rarity of what they achieved in the body of those movies was exceptional, whether [the filmmakers] even know how exceptional it was. It was this rare combination of hearing a note and following it in a way that was just amazing. 

Universal Pictures

I've noticed that you're a bit of a cameo king. What is the particular appeal of appearing in your own films for you?
It probably comes from a deep-seated desire in many ways. The first movie that I ever made, I played the lead. I was 21 and we shot it in India. There was this idea of being writer, director, and actor that was influenced by the filmmakers of that time on the East Coast. 

I love the art form of acting. For me, learning to be present as an actor is so powerful. It's very hard to do when I'm the director and writer because those roles almost require the opposite of that: I'm kind of watching it more broadly, and trying to listen to that. 

A couple of years ago you spoke to Vulture about the “audacity” of making a sequel that nobody knew was a sequel. What would you say is the most audacious aspect of this film?
When we're saying audacious… perhaps it’s the "risk" that the leads are international, and that they play their [regular] accents. [Gael García Bernal] is not playing a Mexican dad, they're just playing a dad. It’s the audacity of saying: "Hey, we're [characters] that don't sound like you, that you have to identify with anyway.” 

And then of course there’s setting a visceral thriller outside in broad daylight, juxtaposing something that's supposed to be scary and making it all broad daylight and beautiful.

A big Midsommar vibe.
Exactly! Using cinematic languages that are newish for audiences, and certainly balancing tones of humour and mystery and Gothic horror and drama, and making sure that we're getting that balance into a place that I like. I do love to push people, to keep people uncomfortable. Where I feel most excited to tell a story is: "Oh, wow, this is unnerving. Where we're at, I'm right on the edge."

Old will arrive in cinemas in the US and the UK on 23 July.

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Источник: https://i-d.vice.com/en_uk/article/7kvdzq/m-night-shyamalan-old-interview

M. Night Shyamalan’s Old: What Fans Are Saying About The Director's Latest Twisted Thriller

Are you still checking for wrinkles after your beach time the other day? We can thank the mind of M. Night Shyamalan for that with the release of Old last weekend. The filmmaker behind The Sixth Sense and Signs has delivered a summer thriller about the pitfalls of getting older through the story of a group of vacationers who find themselves rapidly aging on a mysterious beach. Now that theater-going audiences have had a chance to check it out, let’s get into what fans are saying about Old.

Olddivided critics in half, as it had just about the same amount of people celebrating it as it had others calling it dumb and knocking down the execution of concept. CinemaBlend’s own Mike Reyes gave the film a three out of five, sharing it was “uneven,” yet still a “frightening thrill” to check out. Old was also the No. 1 new theatrical release last weekend, overtaking Snake Eyes. Now to the fans:

M. Night Shyamalan’s Old Was Divisive Among Fans

Not unlike critics, there are a lot of different opinions about Old that you really have to see for yourself to decide whether or not M. Night Shyamalan’s latest project worked for you. As one fan pointed out, it’s the definition of a “love it or hate it” movie, but he was really into it despite noticing some flaws:

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Another fan took to Twitter to share his predicament with Old that many fans share. Although he was really into the concept and enjoyed his time with the film, he could also see why people might not like it considering a lot of its ideas just don’t make sense. He used Knives Out’s Benoit Blanc to illustrate his point too:

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Due to all the differing opinions running around about M. Night Shyamalan’s movie, there was plenty of room for hot takes, including this one that named Old as one of the filmmaker’s career best movies:

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To be fair, M. Night Shyamalan movies often garner this kind of reaction, and maybe that’s the beauty of the writer/director. He doesn’t make movies everyone will like, but they are sure to drum up a fun conversation.

Some People Straight Up Were Not Into It At All

Since we’ve touched on some mixed-to-positive reactions to fans, it’s only fair we share some of the gripes audiences had with Old next. One issue that came up a lot was M. Night Shyamalan’s writing, in terms of the dialogue the characters say throughout the film:

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Yeah, there’s definitely a lot of on-the-nose lines of dialogue about the characters being out of time and so forth. This fan knocked the performances too, which was an issue another one took. But then again, this person straight up hated Old even down to the final twist:

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It’s almost like everyone who went out to see Old saw another movie based on some of these reactions. Now this fan gave the movie partially a back-handed compliment while mixing in some high praise by grouping the movie with the cult classic The Room:

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The Room is an anomaly of a movie that fans still flock to almost 20 years after its release to make fun of and get drunk and high to experience it with friends (depending on your choice poison) – which makes it iconic in of itself. Will Old become a cult classic? Time will tell.

Fans Couldn’t Stop Thinking About One Breakout Star

One point of conversation that came up on social media after audiences checked out the thriller in theaters this week is Aaron Pierre’s Mid-Sized Sedan. This is the actor’s first film ever following finding roles in Krypton and The Underground Railroad, and audiences can’t stop thinking about him:

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Aaron Pierre was a standout of Old, as he played a key character in the film. Oh, and he’s also very good looking. Fans were sharing their new-found love for the 27-year-old actor, who is apparently British? He seems like the perfect candidate for 2022’s heartthrob if Old gives him more exposure to star in other projects.

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One fan went so far to fancast him as the next Green Lantern, and it’s honestly a solid idea.

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There’s also quite a bit of talk about M. Night Shyamalan naming the character Mid-Sized Sedan. It’s obviously a ridiculous name, but hey, there’s a lot of rappers with wild names. Here’s to more Aaron Pierre in our futures.

The Concept Inspired A Lot Of Hilarious Movie Memes

Sometimes the best measure of a movie's popularity is through how memeable it is. And wow, is Old one of those movies. Fans from far and wide took to Twitter to share their own funny ideas that poked fun at the concept. Here’s one that crosses over Titanic with Old:

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Fans were having a blast with Old’s whole premise of getting old on a beach. Another person was genius enough to mix a famous Scott Pilgrim vs. the World quote with the movie:

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Another viral meme got X-Men involved. In this one, they put together a photo with the actors behind Magneto and Professor X first from the prequels (Michael Fassbender and James McAvoy) alongside Hugh Jackman with Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart. Incredible:

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And finally, here’s a Marvel one that incorporates Old Man Cap into the Old movie. Of course someone had to.

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When there’s this many great jokes about a movie like Old, I take it as a good sign. A movie with enough good jokes about it is one people could really connect with. Anyway, now it’s your turn. Where did you fall in terms of your thoughts on Old? Vote in our poll below and check out what movies are coming next this year to get ready for our next roundup!

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YA genre tribute. Horror May Queen. Word webslinger. All her writing should be read in Sarah Connor’s Terminator 2 voice over.

Источник: https://www.cinemablend.com/news/2571273/m-night-shyamalan-old-what-fans-saying-director-latest-twisted-thriller

Old movie review: M Night Shyamalan's nutty new thriller has narrative wrinkles

If a movie doesn’t take itself seriously, then how can it expect anyone else to? What is the point of its grand ideas if it can’t get the audience to stop sniggering at them? There is a difference between sincerity and self-seriousness. And it’s something that director M Night Shyamalan continues to wrestle with, nearly three decades into his storied career.

Shot at the peak of the pandemic, and in many ways inspired by it, Shyamalan’s new thriller, Old, is both admirable and annoying. It literally loses the plot sometime around the one-hour mark, while it is knee-deep in second act shenanigans. This happens after Shyamalan has, in trademark fashion, set up an intriguing premise. He remains a remarkably efficient visual storyteller, but once again, his writing can’t keep up with his direction.

Watch the Old trailer here:

In its opening moments, we’re introduced to nice couple and their two children as they check in to a tropical retreat named Anamika — wild month for resorts, by the way, with The White Lotus and Nine Perfect Strangers — and shortly after their arrival, are told in hushed tones by the resort’s manager about a secret beach nearby. He tells them that he doesn’t reveal the hidden gem’s location to just anybody, but feels compelled to now. He offers a vague explanation. But neither Guy Cappa (Gael Garcia Bernal) nor his wife Prisca (Vicky Krieps) bother to ask him why they’ve been offered this special privilege.

The next day, the Cappas are driven to the beach (by a driver played by Shyamalan, in his customary cameo), where they are joined by a rich doctor and his trophy wife, a zoned-out rapper, and a middle-aged couple with skills that will later come in handy when the plot requires swift problem-solving. The group realises that the beach has mysterious properties--it rapidly speeds up the ageing process of whoever is on it, essentially reducing the average lifespan of a human being to 24 hours.

Suddenly, the Cappas must reckon with their impending deaths, and also contemplate the agony of losing their children, who are ageing more visibly than the adults because they’re also gaining mass. It’s a terrifying situation to be in, and Shyamalan skilfully sets up not only the plot, but also conflicts between the characters. It all comes to head in a breathtaking dolly shot that glides across the pristine beach as the characters are overwhelmed by paranoia.

This image released by Universal Pictures shows Gael García Bernal, left, and Alex Wolff in a scene from Old.(AP)

And that, for some reason, is when he decides to take his foot off the throttle and slam the breaks. Why? Your guess is as good as mine. Films like Old work only when the pace doesn’t let up. The moment the plot takes a breather, you’re compelled to analyse it, which is never a good situation to be in. You start regretting the leap of faith that you had willingly taken an hour ago. You begin to kick yourself for being so easily manipulated. And worst of all, you curse the director for having tricked you with such silliness.

By slowing down, all that Shyamalan does is turn the audience against him — a terrible position for any filmmaker to be in, but even worse for him, a man whose name still evokes groans when it pops up in movie marketing. This is true. You’d imagine that after his recent creative output — which he finances himself, by the way, having declared that he isn’t interested in making movies unless he has skin in the game — Shyamalan would’ve earned back some of that early-career cred. But, no. After Glass, this is the second disappointment in a row from the filmmaker, who makes it abundantly clear with Old that he severely needs someone to supervise him.

Like Quentin Tarantino and Christopher Nolan, who are both brilliant, Shyamalan tends to get carried away without a producer to keep him in check. The ideas are all there, but the execution is all over the place. Consider the absolutely insane twist that happens around halfway into the film. Shyamalan builds towards it with a clarity of vision, with the unmistakable swagger of someone who knows that he has the audience by the scruff of its neck. But he doesn’t linger on the reveal as forcefully as he should have. He moves on to a new distraction mere moments later. This scene sort of functions like that nail-on-the-staircase sequence from A Quiet Place, but has about half the impact.

Also read: Glass movie review: M Night Shyamalan’s Avengers-style universe comes crashing down

Old is frustrating because it’s so promising — it's a Trouble in Paradise movie about mortality, an idea that we’ve all been forced to reckon with in the last year. And like The Irishman — stay with me for a second — it’s a film that Shyamalan couldn’t have made as a young man. It is, instead, a front-loaded facsimile of an M Night Shyamalan movie, made by the one-time wunderkind as he continues to chart his own path, for better or for worse. Old’s narrative wrinkles, however, are far more pronounced than the ones on its characters’ faces.

Old

Director - M Night Shyamalan

Cast - Gael Garcia Bernal, Vicky Krieps, Alex Wolff, Thomasin McKenzie, Rufus Sewell, Abby Lee

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The author tweets @RohanNaahar

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Close StoryИсточник: https://www.hindustantimes.com/entertainment/hollywood/old-movie-review-m-night-shyamalan-s-nutty-new-thriller-has-narrative-wrinkles-101628777838852.html

'Old,' M. Night Shyamalan and Hollywood's horror of aging women

Wanna see something really scary? According to Hollywood, it’s a woman getting old. That’s one of the unspoken themes of M. Night Shyamalan’s new summer thriller, whose ads feature a pair of female legs relaxing on the seashore. One leg is young and shapely; the other withered and skeletal. The title succinctly names the horror unfolding: “Old.”

We get the picture.

A woman aging, especially an attractive one, is still considered uncanny and unnatural. This source of horror should be long past its expiration date, but continues to haunt Hollywood because it reflects our society’s misogyny and fear of mature female power.

In Shyamalan’s film, visitors to a tropical island resort are invited to enjoy a secluded beach, where something mysterious makes people rapidly age: Every half an hour, they grow one year older. The alteration (spoilers to follow) becomes apparent first in the kids, but soon the adults begin to feel and look older, too. The men acquire wrinkles and gray hair, but their essence isn’t really changed. They just look like mature, even more distinguished versions of themselves.

But for the females, accelerated aging is denaturing. They are subjected to terrifying physical changes, from a melon-sized tumor to warp-speed pregnancy to a fatal heart attack. The worst is saved for Chrystal (Abbey Lee), the young mom who looks like a swimsuit model.

For the females, accelerated aging is denaturing. They are subjected to terrifying physical changes.

We first meet Chrystal imperiously ordering a health beverage, obviously obsessed with keeping her scantily-clad bod in top form. When she ignores her husband on the beach to take selfies, the message is clear: Things will not go well for her.

Chrystal is the “vanity, thy name is woman” character, and whatever happens, it’s not going to be pretty. How do we know? Because movies have long been the place where male filmmakers get to enjoy the fantasy of torturing the hot girls who rejected them in high school. (For more on how thoroughly male Hollywood remains, even in the wake of #MeToo, see “This Changes Everything,” a recent documentary that actor Geena Davis executive produced.)

Gorgeous blondes don’t do well in “Old.” The first one who appears is stripping nude for a swim and saucily fluffing her hair. Her next scene shows her as a waterlogged corpse.

Chrystal’s fate is more protracted and gruesome. Her painful demise is the film’s visual piece-de-resistance. Her delectable body’s repulsive transformation echoes a pivotal moment in H. Rider Haggard’s famous Victorian adventure novel, “She.” Filmed multiple times, most famously starring Ursula Andress in 1965, the story concerns a beautiful 2,000-year-old queen who retains not only her looks, but power over men so potent she is nicknamed “She-who-must-be-obeyed.” That’s a big no-no. Her punishment is insta-aging in a pillar of fire, shriveling down to pathetic monkey-like creature.

For Shyamalan’s Chrystal, suffering through the deaths of her daughter and mother-in-law, plus the psychotic breakdown her husband, is not enough retribution for the sin of trying to appease the male gaze. She must be broken — in this case, literally. Pride in her beauty is laid waste.

Tellingly, Shyamalan makes plenty of woke-ish references to racism in his film, but misogyny goes unnoticed. It flows as naturally as the tide.

The filmmaker is tapping into a whole cinematic tradition known as “hagsploitation” that centers on attractive female characters who refuse to accept aging.

The filmmaker is tapping into a whole cinematic tradition known as “hagsploitation” that centers on attractive female characters who refuse to accept aging and seek to hold the spotlight. Some classic examples include “Sunset Boulevard” (1950), “Whatever Happened to Baby Jane?” (1962) and “Death Becomes Her” (1992). In Hollywood’s brutal logic, women are allotted a brief period of desirability and then encouraged to disappear, a tradition satirized in Amy Schumer’s dead-on sketch “Last F**kable Day,” featuring Tina Fey, Julia Louis-Dreyfus and Patricia Arquette as mid-life actors celebrating their freedom from patriarchal demands of beauty.

It is a standard idea that age confers power and added dignity on men. The silver screen may be hospitable to the silver fox — but mature women who refuse to fade away are monsters: evil witches, demonic nuns, horrible bosses, and grannies-gone-mad, all bent on sucking vitality from the young and generally wreaking havoc.

Hollywood’s accelerated aging trope highlights not only the fleetingness of socially prescribed hotness, but the reception that awaits women on the other side. Fans of “The Shining” (1980) will recall the terror Jack Nicholson experiences in the Overlook Hotel when the young beauty he caresses transforms into a decrepit crone.

Rapid aging is also the ultimate torture device for female characters deemed unacceptable. In “Bad Girls from Valley High” (2005), a trio of beautiful high school mean girls receive justice in the form of rapid aging that has them sagging, farting and peeing themselves. The film’s original title, “A Fate Totally Worse than Death,” says it all.

In Hollywood, as in life, society ensnares women in a Catch-22 where they are expected not only to remain preternaturally young and attractive, but punished for trying to fulfill those expectations. At 81, actor Kim Novak found this out when she dared to appear at the 2014 Oscars ceremony with a surgically-altered face far different from the flawless fantasy in films like Alfred Hitchcock’s “Vertigo.”

The maddening irony of the outrage over her failure to “age gracefully” is that, early in her career, male movie moguls had forced Novak to drastically alter her appearance so she would fit the mold of the quintessential cool blonde. As an older woman, she was vilified for following this logic to the end.

Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn were just 43 and 47, respectively, when they played aging beauties gone mad in “Death Becomes Her.”

Scary movies are supposed to conjure up what’s threatening while keeping it at a safe distance. But for women, the horror of aging hits especially close to home. In the social media era, there’s hardly a woman over 30 who hasn’t experienced the creeping dread of seeing an image of her face that doesn’t look quite right — “quite right” meaning appearing to be roughly age 27.

As women approach menopause — a time when experience, wisdom and freedom from pregnancy ought by rights to propel them into their most productive stage of life — they begin to panic that they are being deleted. Gloria Swanson was only 50 when she portrayed the hag Norma Desmond in “Sunset Boulevard,” and Meryl Streep and Goldie Hawn were just 43 and 47, respectively, when they played aging beauties gone mad in “Death Becomes Her.” According to the upside-down rules of patriarchy, women must be annihilated early on because older women pose a threat: They are unruly and poised to operate beyond the bounds of male power.

This is a losing game not only for women, but for society, which desperately needs their mature powers. This point was made in a rare film to depict older females positively: “Mad Max: Fury Road (2015). Women are the savior of civilization in that George Miller movie, which not only starred Charlize Theron as fearless hero Imperator Furiosa but featured a motorcycle-riding band of fierce older women who guard the seeds that could re-green a post-apocalyptic world.

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Let’s hope it doesn’t take a real dystopian future to bring this point home.

For now, it seems, movie-goers will continue to flock to watch women punished for aging, transformed from titillating to terrifying. And here’s a plot twist for you: They will actually be replicating the horror of the film because a study shows that watching scary movies can actually accelerate facial aging. Grab the popcorn and enjoy!

Lynn Stuart Parramore

Lynn Stuart Parramore is a cultural historian who studies the intersection of culture, psychology and economics. Her work has appeared in Reuters, Lapham's Quarterly, Salon, Quartz, Vice, HuffPost and others. She is the author of "Reading the Sphinx: Ancient Egypt in 19th Century Literary Culture."

Источник: https://www.nbcnews.com/think/opinion/old-m-night-shyamalan-hollywood-s-horror-aging-women-ncna1274883

M. Night Shyamalan Hits On a Universal Fear

Culture

In Old, the director confronts the everyday, existential terror of life passing by too quickly.

By David Sims

A middle-aged man and his adult son on a beach

M. Night Shyamalan has been making Hollywood thrillers for more than 20 years, and despite his career’s ups and downs, he’s never lost the power to wring tension out of the simplest situations: someone opening a door, a shape walking across a TV screen, a scowl shifting into a smile. Early on in Old, his latest macabre roller-coaster ride, a trio of children play freeze tag on a beach, ducking and weaving and laughing while one of them stands motionless, waiting to spring back to life. It’s a knowing hint at the terror that’s about to unfurl—the sense that time is about to slip out of whack.

The beautiful, secluded beach where Old takes place is powered by one horrifying logic: If you stay on it, you get old—fast. Guy (Gael García Bernal) and Prisca (Vicky Krieps), on a sumptuous vacation with their two preteen children, arrive one morning and lay down their towels; within a few hours, their kids have gone through puberty and their own faces are scored with wrinkles. Shyamalan has made movies featuring ghosts, alien invaders, scary trees, and comic-book villains, but with Old he’s hit on a premise that is devastating in its simplicity. Everyone’s afraid of aging, right?

Read: When does someone become ‘old’?

The film, based on the graphic novel Sandcastle, by Pierre Oscar Lévy and Frederik Peeters, is maybe Shyamalan’s best since his (supremely underrated) 2004 hit, The Village. In Old, Guy and Prisca, along with the other beachgoers, have to figure out an escape before their age kills them. But they’re also tormented by the existential reality that their partnership—and their children’s many developmental milestones—is flashing by.

What parent hasn’t had that feeling grip them with terror? Old is a perfect, blunt title, but this film could just as easily be called They Grow Up So Fast, given the melancholy undertones of its often grisly plot. Shyamalan riddles his characters with insecurities and doubts about their place in the world, then hits the fast-forward button on their lives, giving them minutes to realize big emotional truths. One can almost hear him cackling in the background (and, as usual, he’s cast himself in a small role) as he continually poses this question to the audience: What would you do if you had only one day to live the rest of your life?

The beach (the film was shot in the Dominican Republic) is a perfect metaphorical landscape for that question. It’s peaceful and alluring, but unfeeling—a gorgeous spot to while away your time before being carried out by the waves and forgotten. Shyamalan and his cinematographer, Mike Gioulakis, take every advantage of the negative space that this big open canvas provides—the camera darts between characters, bobbing and swaying, lending the sense of time rapidly falling out of reach. Rather than swallowing his characters up in superwide shots to emphasize their insignificance, Shyamalan has them dominate the frame, standing so tall that the screen cuts off at their heads and feet, as if they’re growing so quickly, they literally can’t be contained.

That’s the kind of visual acuity that has always made Shyamalan a far better filmmaker than his reputation suggests. The early run of twist-centric horror that made his name—The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, Signs, The Village—led many to think of him as a one-trick pony, and subsequent big-budget flops, such as The Last Airbender and After Earth, saw him retreat to making smaller genre works. But that resulted in some of the most fruitful material of his career: thrillers such as The Visit and Split, which punched above the weight of their silly plotting because of Shyamalan’s skill with staging and atmosphere.

Yes, Old has plenty of the clunky dialogue that defines Shyamalan’s work—his characters often can’t help but overexplain what’s going on around them. It probably runs 10 minutes too long, with an ending that works too hard to lay out the silly reasoning behind the beach’s supernatural properties. None of that matters. The central conceit of Old has so much juice, and Shyamalan gets to explore so many fun—if sadistic—avenues over the course of one very long day. It’s his most ambitious work in years, wrapped in the delightful, tawdry packaging of a pulpy thriller.

Источник: https://www.theatlantic.com/culture/archive/2021/07/m-night-shyamalan-old-fear-aging/619529/

The director M. Night Shyamalan is out on Friday with a new movie, “The Visit,” a film about two kids who have a lovely time hanging out with their grandparents.1

In classic Shyamalan fashion, the movie may provide a pretty huge shock: It’s earning a good score on Rotten Tomatoes! Not a great score, but leagues ahead of what we’d expect based on the director’s recent work. How did one of the most promising directors of the early 2000s get to the point where we’re expecting schlock?

Incorporating data from Rotten Tomatoes and OpusData, let’s review the story of how Shyamalan tanked his directorial reputation, and the small-budget horror comedy that might redeem it.

hickey-datalab-shyamalan

The Golden Age of M. Night Shyamalan

“The Sixth Sense” is a really good movie. The film is about a troubled child learning how to cope with the help of a psychologist friend (Bruce Willis) who’s learning how to move on with his life.2 “The Sixth Sense” made an alarming amount of money — it was the second-highest grossing film of 1999 — and generally pulled the carpet out from under the feet of audiences, earning an 85 percent certified fresh Rotten Tomatoes rating from critics and an 89 percent favorable score from fans.

Shyamalan next directed “Unbreakable,” a movie about a superhero and his mentor3 also starring Willis, this time alongside Samuel L. Jackson. Shyamalan’s first post-“Sixth Sense” film was also very well received — a Rotten Tomatoes score of 68 percent — though less of a box office smash. Two years later, Shyamalan hit another one out of the park with the 74 percent-fresh “Signs,” a surprisingly deep film about aliens4 with enough thematic depth to fuel one of my favorite movie theories.

All are solid Shyamalan! They’re the kind of movies that if you’re bored and they’re running on TBS you’ll watch to the end. They’ve each got a legitimate emotional turn and take a crack at interesting themes, all while using the patented Shyamalan twist.

But this schtick got old really fast.

The Breaking Point

In 2004, “The Village” constituted a bit of a breaking point for Shyamalan. The film featured Bryce Dallas Howard, Joaquin Phoenix and Academy-Award-winner/future-“Dragon Blade”-star Adrien Brody as people mixed up in a deranged Colonial Williamsburg situation5. Financially and critically, it was the worst of Shyamalan’s wide-release movies at the time. [Editor’s note: I disagree — the “The Village” was OK.]

The twist in “The Village” was nothing particularly new, and while the earlier three films had a solid emotional center (broken child bonds with surrogate father, broken man bonds with broken man, broken father connects with daughter), “The Village” just felt trite.

Once a director builds a brand, it’s difficult to bust out of it. If you see a Michael Bay movie, you’re going to get explosions. If you see a J.J. Abrams movie, you’re going to see lens flare. If you see a Steven Spielberg movie, you’re going to see a child of divorce learn self-reliance while being hurt by the world. And if you see a M. Night Shyamalan movie, you’re going to see a plot twist that attempts to shift the perspective of the viewer. By the time “The Village” came out, audiences had caught on. And while some directorial predilections are transferable and repeatable, Shyamalan’s became stale. He kind of became the Gallagher of film.

“The Village” garnered only 43 percent at Rotten Tomatoes, and while domestically it did about double its budget, the film was nonetheless a sign of things to come.

The Twizzlers

As exciting as Shyamalan’s 1999-2002 period was, that’s how disappointing his run since 2006 has been.

Shyamalan followed up “The Village” with “Lady in the Water,” a critical and box office flop about a man who finds a lady6 in a pool. “Lady in the Water” was innovative in one regard, at least, proving that it was possible for Paul Giamatti to be in a bad movie. This is a film that is literal self-insertion fan fiction by Shyamalan. Ever interested in hearing alternative viewpoints, I contacted a close friend of mine from college — the only person I ever met who loved this movie — to answer for its crimes. Then, this happened:

Screen Shot 2015-09-10 at 4.24.30 PM

He later added “This movie is actually entertaining because he tries so hard to throw in a twist that it feels like a high school play,” a sentence I deeply wish I wrote.

Moving on, Shyamalan would go on to make “The Happening.” The twist in this movie is that Mark Wahlberg was cast to play a person qualified to teach children about science. Indeed, several years later at a press conference promoting “The Fighter,” Wahlberg would say:

We had actually had the luxury of having lunch before to talk about another movie, and it was a really bad movie that I did. She dodged the bullet. And then I was still able to…I don’t want to tell you what movie…all right, The Happening. F— it. It is what it is. F—ing trees, man. The plants. F— it. You can’t blame me for not wanting to try to play a science teacher. At least I wasn’t playing a cop or a crook.

That feeling you are having right now? That’s your respect for Mark Wahlberg, hamburger entrepreneur, swelling.

While 2010’s “The Last Airbender” would make comparatively more money than the other shit-tier Shyamalan films, it’s by far the most poorly-reviewed of any of the movies he’s directed. It is legitimately difficult to pull off a 6 percent Rotten Tomatoes score. The wide deviation from the beloved source material, the whitewashed casting for characters who were canonically Asian and — of course — incoherent plot twists combined to make a thoroughly unwatchable film. And while it’s always important to be skeptical of a crowd-sourced encyclopedia, “The Last Airbender” somehow made it through the editorial gauntlet to earn a spot onto my third-favorite Wikipedia list, “List of Films Considered The Worst.”

By the time “After Earth” (2013) came out— a film that takes its twist verbatim from “Planet of the Apes” — studios were actively avoiding mentioning the name “M. Night Shyamalan” in trailers. “After Earth” proved to be a financial and critical failure, pulling $60 million domestically and languishing with an 11 percent Rotten Tomatoes rating.

Having hit that particular rock bottom, there’s really nowhere to go but up. Maybe the director will finally pull of one of his famous twists.

The Twist?

Those final two films — a CGI-fueled fantasy film based on a beloved cartoon and a CGI-fueled Will Smith family vanity project — feel a little out of step with the director’s previous oeuvre. Given how technically coherent and visually compelling the films are, it’s not really fair to imply that Shyamalan was out of his depth here, but it does make this forthcoming return to horror all that more intriguing, even if it does seem like he bit the “handheld shaky cam” cinematography bait.

“The Visit” was made for a dirt-cheap $5 million, so it’s basically impossible for it to lose money unless something terrible happens. The movie is sporting a frankly shocking preliminary Rotten Tomatoes rating of 64 percent fresh (as of Friday morning).

While the trailer does save it for the end, the promotional materials are referring to him by name again, making a point to mention it’s “From the writer and director of The Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, The Village and Signs.”

Take that however you will, but here’s hoping his time in the wilderness made M. Night Shyamalan a better director of the kind of movie that made him big in the first place: tense, tightly-written thrillers with a strong emotional core. Sure, there’s probably going to be gauzy convolutions of plot, but emotional heart can cover for that. Anyone who enjoyed his early work has to be rooting for a comeback.

Источник: https://fivethirtyeight.com/features/the-death-spiral-of-m-night-shyamalans-career/

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