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Movie Review: Lady In The Water
Movie Review: Lady In The Water
Our king of the cinema, Mitch Cyrus, is back with another movie review. For his latest, he went out and reviewed M Night Shayamalan's latest thriller, "Lady In The Water". From time to time Mitch has been known to have string opinions, and that is most certainly the case here. Cinematic genius or uber-suckitude personified? Find out here.
M. Night Shyamalan was once heralded to be “the next Steven Spielberg”. Based on his latest work, “Lady in the Water”, he can only be described as the next Oliver Stone or Woody Allen; a director so full of himself and drunk with his own power and ego that he thinks he can throw crap up against the screen and his adoring public will call it ‘art’.
I had thought that the man who did create two excellent movies in “The Sixth Sense” and “Unbreakable” and one good one in “Signs” might have just had a slight slump with his moronic “The Village”. That’s not the case at all, as this film is one of the stupidest, most boring pieces of self indulgence since Stone’s woeful “Alexander”…but without the really cool cinematography and battle scenes. Not content to just try (and fail miserably) to emulate Spielberg in his storytelling abilities, Shyamalan also tries to emulate Hitchcock by putting himself in all his movies. This may have been a unique and quaint touch by the Master of Suspense, but Hitchcock was wise enough to only include himself in a brief cameo. Shyamalan keeps giving himself larger and larger roles, and in this movie the ego run amuck hits Terrell Owens levels; casting himself as a writer who will “one day write something that will change the world”.
This story is supposed to be based off bedtime stories Shyamalan used to tell his young children…and I can see how effective they must have been because anyone listening to this drivel for more than five minutes would immediately fall asleep. The basic storyline is that a stuttering loser maintenance man (Paul Giammati) in a decrepit apartment building discovers a sea nymph creature in the swimming pool (Bryce Dallas Howard, wasting the true acting talent she has just trying to look ethereal for 90 minutes). She must get back to ‘her’ world with the assistance of humans without getting killed by mangy creatures that look like dreadlocked hyenas.
You need a scorecard, an interpreter, and three cups of espresso to keep up with the terminology. The sea nymph’s name is Story, and she is a narf. The hyena creatures are snarks, and they can only attack her on dry land. To get to the Blue World, she will be aided by humans taking the support roles of the Healer, the Symbolist, the Guild, and the Guardian. If they succeed, the Great Eatlon, a giant eagle, will spirit her away…that is unless the eagle is thwarted by tartutics, nasty little monkeys who were last seen flying out of the Wicked Witch’s castle to terrify Dorothy.
In other words, Shyamalan also now envisions himself as J.R.R. Tolkien, and tries to foist upon the audience his own little made up world with its own languages, myths, and characters. But instead of noble Hobbits, brave warriors, powerful wizards, and immortal elves on a quest, we get the stuttering slob, a weightlifter who only concentrates on one side of his body, a trashy Korean co-ed who acts as translator for her stereotyped mother, a cross word puzzle geek, an animal rights loon, and a cynic in the form of a movie critic. M. Night is still just a little itsy bitsy bit bitter about the drubbings he’s gotten the last few films, and he takes his frustrations out in a manner best suited to a third grader; by making the critic (Bob Balaban) a despicable villain who almost blows it for our heroes and gets hideously dispatched by a snark. Now under the right circumstances, I’m all for critic mauling…but this just smacks of juvenile tantrums; all that was missing was M. Night looking right into the camera afterwards going “nyah, nyah, nyah, nyah”.
Not only is Balaban representing the critics Shyamalan despises so much, he also serves as his symbol for movie executives, as Disney turned down this film after reviewing the script and rejecting it as too stupid and incomprehensible to produce. Think about that one…the same studio that gave an OK to a script about a secret map on the Declaration of Independence and another with Vin Diesel as a baby sitter thought THIS script to be too far out in Weird World. That’s like being turned down by producers of The Springer Show for being too white trashy.
The “hook” with all previous M. Night Shyamalan films has been the last minute twist that throws everything you’ve seen so far for a loop. In this one, the twist comes when the final credits are rolling, and you realize you spent two hours and $8 on something this bad.
My Rating: Mike Phipps. ½ Football. Giamatti’s performance is the only thing stopping this from getting a big, fat nothing.
Otto Graham: Over 4 Footballs. HOF quality movie
Bernie Kosar: 4 Footballs. Excellent
Brian Sipe: 3 ½ Footballs. Very Good
Frank Ryan: 3 Footballs. Good
Bill Nelsen: 2 ½ Footballs. OK. Well worth seeing.
Kelly Holcomb: 2 Footballs. Disappointingly inconsistent but some bright spots.
Tim Couch: 1 ½ Footballs. Poor. Had potential, but lack of support led to an overall stinker.
Jeff Garcia: 1 Football. Horrible. All hype; no performance.
Mike Phipps: ½ Football. “We gave away Paul Warfield for THIS?” level of suck
Spergon Wynn: No Footballs. UberSuckitude personified.
Jul 26, 2006 8:00 PM
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