The Happening

So are you looking for a bit of a thrill? Want some suspense in your life? Do you enjoy mind bender type movies? If so, then march yourself right down to your local theater and buy your ticket for The Happening. If you've seen any of M. Night Shyamalan's previous work and liked it, you'll love this one just as much.

The main thrust of the story focuses around one family and their reaction and attempts to deal with a sudden and deadly natural event of some kind. I won't go into any more detail that that, because to do so would probably ruin the story for you. In typical Shyamalan style, the story is given to you in bits and pieces, much like how he presented Signs. It's up to you to draw conclusions based on the information being fed to you. This information comes in the form of news broadcasts, direct observation, and a bit of scientific deduction on the part of Wahlberg's character.

Shyamalan definitely likes to mess with your mind, and has a certain unique flare for focusing on the way individuals and small groups of people deal with disasters and catastrophes that affect everyone. You'll get plenty of the same this time around too. Zooey Deschanel also gives one of her better performances I've seen in awhile. A lot of her stuff tends to be a bit bland and uninteresting but she does well for herself this time around.

The only thing I could have done without is the blatant political statement toward the end of the movie. I don't know what's gotten into Hollywood lately ( ok, I do, but I mean, come on, it's my $8 ) but they're becoming more and more bold about spouting their crap than they used to. I could tell people in the theater didn't appreciate it any more than I did considering several people groaned about it right before the credits rolled. It's the only stain on an otherwise great movie.

Also, it may not be a good one for the kids since Shyamalan does tend to get graphic at times and there were some scenes in this movie that more properly belonged in a slasher flick. Just a heads up. Over all, I'd recommend this one despite the political bull at the end.

Some upcoming stuff that looks like it may be worth it:

June 27: Wall-E, and Wanted. Both may have some good potential, but I'm skeptical.
July 4: Hancock. Will Smith as an out of favor superhero. Looks like it should be funny if nothing else. I may see this one.
July 11: Journey to the Center of the Earth. Brendan Fraser ( The Mummy ). On the fence. Hollywood and their damn remake fever?
July 25: The X-Files: I Want to Believe. Yes, this one is definite. I mean, if you're into sci-fi at all, who doesn't like the X-Files?
August 1: The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor. Yep. A Mummy sequel. But the last two were good, so this one at least has credibility behind it.

After that it's looking like a long dry run clear into early next year unless more releases get added to the schedule between now and then.
"It is pointless to resist, my son." -- Darth Vader
"Resistance is futile." -- The Borg
"Mother's coming for me in the dragon ships. I don't like these itchy clothes, but I have to wear them or it frightens the fish." -- Thurindil

Well. I guess that's that then.

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Posted on Jun 14, 2008 12:09 am by Samson in: | 3 comment(s) [Closed]
Well, having seen a few previews for The Happening, coupled with your review, I'll be skipping this one. I can almost never escape the retinue of children and even when I can, I'm not much into gore anyway.

  • Wall-E - This is a definite, from the previews, I can't wait to see it. :)

  • Wanted - Haven't heard about this one yet, will have to see what it's about before I can decide if I'm interested or not, the name alone isn't exactly very descriptive. *shrug*

  • Hancock - Hmm, hadn't heard anything about this one yet either. On the other hand, "Will Smith as an out of favor superhero", how novel...

  • Journey to the Center of the Earth - You've got to be kidding, they've remade this one again? I've seen the original and will pass on the remake. :(

  • The X-Files: I Want to Believe - No thanks.
    I mean, if you're into sci-fi at all, who doesn't like the X-Files?
    *raises his hand* That'd be me. The first season of X-files was pretty good, but after that the idea got old and the story got boring. If they've made a movie out of it then that's yet another movie I'll be blowing off this year.

  • The Mummy: Tomb of the Dragon Emperor - Very cool! Even if you don't count The Scorpian King (admittedly more of a tangent than part of the series directly), The Mummy series has done great so far, if this 3rd installment is at least half as good as the first two were, it'll not only be a must see but also a must own! :)
  • [/list]

    [size=-1]hopefully my bbcode tags are right...[/size]

    Heh, no, the bbcode didn't work out so well. Sandbox doesn't support list or font sizing yet :)

    Yeah, I've seen some of the ads now for The Happening and it's somewhat amazing just how much of it they're giving away before you ever get to the theater. A lot of the scenes they're showing where people die are probably too graphic even for TV which is why they're not showing you. However, the gore isn't what the whole movie is about, and when it's there, it fits the story being told. Shyamalan may be graphic, but he's not gratuitous. I know for some people the line of distinction doesn't exist, but there it is.

    In to sci-fi but don't like the X-Files. Well color me shocked or something. Pretty much everyone else I know who's the least bit into sci-fi always manages to get in an X-Files reference or two before the day is done. I wasn't even aware there was going to be another X-Files movie until the other day when Whir sent me a link to a bunch of sequels coming out and it was on it. Then I saw the preview and just knew I'd be there. I'm assuming you aren't aware there's already one X-Files movie out there then. :)

    Yep. I suppose they've remade Journey to the Center of the Earth again. I only knew of one other movie version of it. Are there more? If so then this is an even sadder testament since that means they're remaking remakes ( of remakes? ) now. If you think that's bad, they're also doing a remake soon of The Birds. Yeah, go figure.

    Oh well, maybe one day Kiasyn and Company will come up with more thorough bbcode support for Sandbox. ;)

    I can very much appreciate that distinction, but even taking the kids to the hospital for bloodwork is more gore than I care for. Just never could quite get into seeing blood. *shrug*

    No, I guess that I hadn't realized they already had a X-Files movie out there, so then this will certainly be the second X-Files movie I miss. ;) Mainly, for me, the X-Files TV series just got boring after awhile. It started to feel like they were always putting too much effort (for my taste) into the whole let's make this "dramatic" by dragging it out so it fits our 40-minute hour block and I have always found more interesting alternatives to watch when it's on.

    Regarding the Jules Verne novel being remade as a 3D movie for 2008 (the 3D by itself is enough to disinterest me), check out the IMDB listings, this is like the 15th time they've done this one. *sigh* I suppose that just goes to show that Hollywood really loves Jules Verne...

    They're remaking Hitchcock's 1963 classic The Birds? Can't they at least leave the work of the 'masters' alone? They already made a sequel to it back in 1994 for TV called The Birds II: Land's End, wasn't that bad enough? :(

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