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Thread: Old (M Night Shyamalan)

  1. #26
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    I thought for a hot minute that this would join The Village and The Sixth Sense as my favorite Shyamalans, before the last 15 minutes crash-land hard. Nonsensical stuff often accompany many of his works, but Old is the kind of genre film that really, really doesn't need a relatively grounded, plothole-widening twist, which is even more egregious in how much it's extended, underlined, and explained during the home stretch. Fine, retain that director's insert for the auteurists (and that camera shot is delicious enough), but if we must have twist keep it quick and brief please.

    Otherwise, the high-concept pulpiness of this scenario helps smooth over some of Shyamalan's inherent flaws (eg. dialogue that feels like it's translated from another language back to English), and he in turn gives maybe his most animated, best directorial effort ever. Every choice of odd angles and off-kilter camerawork here is so fitting, propulsive, and appropriately disorienting, always striving to unmoor us in the nightmarish slurs of slipping time and clashing mindsets the same as these characters. That I came out of the film surprised by this being PG-13, when in the moment it feels so grisly, is indicative of Shyamalan's suggestiveness of suspense and the horrific and at full power. The director even manages to locate the affecting undercurrent of this premise potently, with the conversation on beach at night as good a resonating emotional scene as he's ever done. 7/10
    Midnight Run (1988) - 9
    The Smiling Lieutenant (1931) - 8.5
    The Adventures of Robinhood (1938) - 8
    Sisters (1973) - 6.5
    Shin Godzilla (2016) - 7.5

  2. #27
    Replacing Luck Since 1984 Dukefrukem's Avatar
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    While watching this, if he hadn't inserted himself in the film, I would have thought this was a completely different director. There's a 40 minute stretch of panic that hasn't come close to any other stretch of drama in any of his previous films. Except of course until the ending when he puts his Shyamalan stamp on it. I didn't think he was capable to that kind of dynamic.
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  3. #28
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting Dukefrukem (view post)
    While watching this, if he hadn't inserted himself in the film, I would have thought this was a completely different director. There's a 40 minute stretch of panic that hasn't come close to any other stretch of drama in any of his previous films. Except of course until the ending when he puts his Shyamalan stamp on it. I didn't think he was capable to that kind of dynamic.
    It's been a while since a movie has been able to hold that sense of panic for a while.

    No Time to Die - ** 1/2
    Black Widow - *
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  4. #29
    For me, Shyamalan prioritizes gotcha moments for the audience over what actually makes sense in world. For example, the way he reveals that the kids are older (shot from behind as they talk to strangers who are confused about their stated age); the kids would have been looking at each other the entire time they were on the beach, so would have recognized something was going on in their sibling; thus, their surprise at suddenly being older makes absolutely zero sense in-world.
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  5. #30
    Administrator Ezee E's Avatar
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    Quote Quoting transmogrifier (view post)
    For me, Shyamalan prioritizes gotcha moments for the audience over what actually makes sense in world. For example, the way he reveals that the kids are older (shot from behind as they talk to strangers who are confused about their stated age); the kids would have been looking at each other the entire time they were on the beach, so would have recognized something was going on in their sibling; thus, their surprise at suddenly being older makes absolutely zero sense in-world.
    No excuse, but I had no problem overlooking this. Kind of like how you may not have seen someone in a few years and while they look the same initially, you know there's difference that you can't quite put a finger on.

    Didn't really affect me, all said.

    No Time to Die - ** 1/2
    Black Widow - *
    Nobody - ***


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