17 October, 2008

M. Night Syamalan's The Happening

Something happens to me every time I watch one of M. Night Shyamalan's films that draws a line between me and what I feel like is the rest of the world. Sometimes my reaction is so different than that of my peers, I wonder if we've even seen the same movie. Because we don't go to the movie theatre often, I don't get to watch a lot of movies until they come out on DVD. By that time, everyone and their sister's cat has given away secrets or spoiled the ending for me. I will not do that here, in case you haven't seen it yet.

There are three things that all of Shyamalan's movies have in common for me. 1. I hear a lot about what a waste of time it will be for me to even watch it. 2. I tend to be one of the last people on earth to even see it. 3. I actually enjoy them.

The reason I enjoy Shyamalan's films is because despite the "big knock your socks off reveal" that's become a bit of a signature for him since The Sixth Sense, he actually focuses on some of the things I personally feel are really important in every day living. Love, family, intuition, synchronicity and waking up to personal purpose and identity before it's too late.

For me, The Happening was another great Shyamalan film. I felt that people overdramatized the extreme violence and horror and save for a few scant scenes, I really didn't see what the big deal was. That said, I consider myself less desensitized by the media than most people because I don't spend 24 hours a day soaking in the doom and gloom. So, I certainly didn't overlook or pretend I didn't see the violence. While nearly everyone I knew came out of the movie saying it was depressing and violent, not one of them ever commented on the overall message.

And before those of you who have seen it start to puff up and prepare to call me a tree-hugging hippie lover, maybe I do smell just a bit like patchouli and I'm not the least bit ashamed of it.


JRB said...

Hello, I liked your look on the movie I saw it on DVD too. Even though I wanted to see it in the movies ,but I thought it might be stupid and I would have thought it was a waste of my time and money after coming out of the theater. I actually liked is so much it now on my favorite movies list. I got the message that Elliot and Alma had so fallen out of love- especially with Alma's secret friend who called her- and the storm sort of evolved around them and them finally realizing that they should reconnect and realize their true love. I am glad you got it too. Thank you for understanding what I understood.
If it is possible I would like you to email me at JRB01136@Yahoo.com . I love your analysis.

Morgan Mandel said...

Now I'm going to have to go get that movie to see what you're talking about.

Morgan Mandel