Thursday, June 5, 2008

Night defending

Brad Brevet at Ropes of Silicon writes an impassioned defense of M. Night Shyamalan. Good for him. Unbreakable is a great film about the role of belief in the nature of identity. I like most of the rest of his films as well, to varying degrees. Isn't it time critics admit that their excess vitriol against Lady in the Water stems largely from the obnoxious film critic character getting the axe? Even if you didn't like the film, and it does have its issues, you should have the honesty to admit that Paul Giamatti was terrific in it.

4 comments:

Chuck said...

I wanted to like Lady in the Water but just didn't. The critic thing felt like much of the rest of the movie to me: a self-conscious hedging of bets, Shyamalan daring us to question his brilliance. Casting himself as a writer whose work will save the world is so obviously courting laughter that it HAS to be some sort of meta-meta joke, but, having watched it a few times, I can't find the joke.

I will say this-Giamatti is affecting, and it has a wonderful final image. But the supporting characters are Mickey Rooney-Breakfast at Tiffany's awful.

Chuck said...

Pardon my sounding like a fascist crab-I dig when it someone takes up the cause of a picked on movie-I was just with the masses in this particular case.

K. Bowen said...

But some of this goes back to the style being a bedtime story. A writer in a bedtime story isn't told that he might one day write a book that will only be of moderate interest to academics and stylish for a time before fading as younger academics develop new theories after previously unseen documents are made available by the archives. His work has to change the world. When seen in that context, I'm fine with it. I thought the film, on other points, was fairly humorous. The acting wasn't great. Then again, it's a fairy tale.

Daniel G. said...

I have to agree with Chuck here. And, in fact, I really didn't like Unbreakable. I tend to see Night films on the surface (annoying characters and such) and don't give much thought to whatever underlying message he's trying to make. I thought Giamatti's milk and cookies moment was humiliating.

Anyway, I'm still going to see The Happening because of its cast and because I can dig a summer thriller. My expectations are at rock bottom, though.