Monday, July 17, 2006

Time For Night To Fall

There's a fresh article on peddling, again, the popular M. Night Shyamalan fears that have been filling out far too many cyber-column inches of late. They expect that Night's reputation will either be made, or be felled, by The Lady in the Water.

It seems that Time also expect the film is just a little more likely to fail than to succeed.

To be fair, they are very sympathetic to his predicament - "If viewers of each new Shyamalan film get a twist, it feels predictable. If they don't, they feel cheated" - and do take the time to express how skilled a filmmaker he is, including a logical, well-earned comparison to Hitchcock, but all the same, this article can function as scaremongering, and if the film looks too much like a risk to unsure audiences, every think piece like this might as well be counted up as so many nails in Night's coffin.

I'm hoping, this Friday, that Night comes punching free and scrambles out of his shallow grave like something tacked onto the end of Carrie. If you are in the US, go, see the film this weekend. Drop your prejudices. One thing I know for sure about The Lady in the Water, is that it is a well made film, well intended and certainly not a glib, empty piece. That it is an attempt to make art, not just a commodity. That alone is worth seven or eight dollars and a couple of hours of your time, isn't it?

According to Night, Warners have already offered to make his next film, "sight unseen", but if he fails their accountants this weekend - or rather, if the audiences fail the accountants - I can't Warners giving up much of a budget, or every bit as importantly, much of a marketing push next time round.

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