A and A's Movie A Day

Watching movies until we run out.

Unbreakable

June 5, 2011

Unbreakable

When this movie came out M. Knight Shyamalan was not yet a punchline. He had done a couple smaller indie movies (one with Rosie O’Donnell filmed on the campus of the school where Amanda went to college) and of course The Sixth Sense. Sixth Sense had been a colossal success and pretty much everybody on the planet had gone to see it twice because of its now-infamous twist ending. Under those circumstances he had pretty much two choices: he could make something completely different or he could try to re-capture the success of his third movie. He obviously went the second route. This was the first of a long string of attempts to make another movie that would do what Sixth Sense had done and make audiences need to see his film again and again to pick out the clues to the big twist.

I’m actually really fond of this movie. I like the concept of it. There are a couple scenes in the movie that really speak to me. On the other hand I can understand why the movie isn’t as much fun for some people (such as, for example my wife.) The movie has a cool premise, but it tries so hard to be clever that it could come of as tiresome.

The movie tells the story of a lonely and depressed man, David Dunn, whose marriage is falling apart, whose son is disappointed in what an unambitious failure he is and who is simply unhappy with his life and doesn’t know what he’s supposed to be doing. From there it slowly becomes clear that this is a super hero origin story. When David is the only survivor of a catastrophic train crash and doesn’t have a scratch on him he is contacted by a comic book obsessed art dealer who explains that he believes David in actually a hero impervious to damage and sickness who just doesn’t know that he’s a hero yet.

Elijah Price is a sad individual whose bones are brittle due to a congenital birth defect. He has been tortured all his life by his frailty (the kids called him Mr. Glass.) He believes, though, that there must be somebody out there who is his opposite – unbreakable where he is fragile. A real life super hero. He believes that David is that man.

This is not a super hero action movie. It is slow, deliberate, and cerebral. It is often more concerned with the gloomy color palette and carefully orchestrated camera angles than it is with advancing the plot.

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June 5, 2011 - Posted by | daily reviews | , , ,

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