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items tagged with M. Night Shymalan

Performers, Script Sink "Closer": Also, "Maria Full of Grace"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2004-12-15 00:00:00

Clive Owen, Natalie Portman, Julia Roberts, and Jude Law in CloserCLOSER

In Mike Nichols’ adaptation of Patrick Marber’s play Closer, we are first introduced to Dan (Jude Law) and Alice (Natalie Portman). He’s an obit writer; she’s a former stripper.


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"The Village" Proves Shyamalan Needs a New Formula: Also, "Catwoman"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2004-08-04 00:00:00

Bryce Dallas Howard in The VillageTHE VILLAGE

Nobody likes a know-it-all, so I have nothing to gain by admitting that I figured out The Big Twist in M. Night Shyamalan’s The Village after about 15 minutes. But I’ll venture that this popular writer-director has everything to lose by continuing to make his cinematic spook shows so repetitively, predictably “surprising." If you find yourself less than enthralled by The Village’s narrative, you have far too much time to ruminate on how Shyamalan will attempt, yet again, to pull the rug out from under you; he’s undermining his talent – and the man does have some – with his implied “Bet ya didn’t see that coming!” finales. (It’s becoming easy to respond with, “Oh yeah I did.”)


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"Scary Movie 3" an Improvement, but Not Clever Enough: Also, "Runaway Jury" and "Radio"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2003-10-29 00:00:00

Anna Faris and Drew Mikusa in Scary Movie 3SCARY MOVIE 3

With Scary Movie 3, the assignment of directing has been passed from Keenen Ivory Wayans to Airplane!’s David Zucker, which is a big step forward right there. (Zucker isn’t much of a director, either, but at least he has ideas on how to shape a scene, and is actually pretty adept at making his film parodies look like the films they’re parodying.) Plus, any time Zucker and company are satirizing the outrageous pomposity of M. Night Shymalan, whose Signs receives – and deserves – particularly harsh treatment here, Scary Movie 3 is everything you want a movie spoof to be: smart, funny, and more than a little mean. (And heartening – until now, I thought I was the only one who detested Shymalan’s “Hitchcockian” appearance as the vet who accidentally kills Mel Gibson’s wife in Signs.) The wide-eyed, appealing Anna Faris returns as the lead, ably satirizing Naomi Watts’ reporter from The Ring, and comic actors such as Charlie Sheen, Jeremy Piven, Queen Latifah, Camryn Manheim, and legendary spoofster Leslie Nielsen all score some laughs. So why is Scary Movie 3 still so disappointing?


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"Signs" Point to Disappointment with Shyamalan’s Latest: Also, "The Master of Disguise"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2002-08-07 00:00:00

Rory Culkin, Mel Gibson, and Abigail Breslin in SignsSIGNS

M. Night Shyamalan is a clever, clever man. I don’t necessarily mean that as a compliment, though, as he’s clever in a way that’s completely vexing to film critics, or at least, to critics who remain underwhelmed by his output.


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"The Others" Adds Complexity to Summer: "American Pie 2," "Rat Race," and "Osmosis Jones"
Written By: Mike Schulz
Section: Movies

Category: Reviews

2001-08-22 00:00:00

Nicole Kidman in The OthersTHE OTHERS

Alejandro Amenabar’s ghostly The Others feels like the film version of some beautifully chilling short story by Lovecraft or Shirley Jackson, where “Boo!”-style thrills take a back seat to dread and psychological complexity; it’s a savvy, entertaining piece.


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