12 October 2015

M. Night Shyamalan's THE VISIT

THE VISIT

Working Title:
Sundowning

USA, 2015
Director: M. Night Shyamalan

8/10









With his last 3-4 films, M. Night Shymalan trolled his audiences so goddamn much [okay, "The Lady in the Water" has its fans, but there's nearly no-one who likes "The Happening", "The Legend of Aang" or "After Earth"], I would have never thought, that he'd ever get his filmmaking-feet back on the ground - but omg, he did. And how! 2015 was his year. First, he re-garnered popularity with the slightly Twin-Peaks-like Fox series "Wayward Pines" (86% on RT, 7.8 on Imdb), and then this: "The Visit", not only a surprisingly huge success (more than 80$ worldwide against a super-low budget of only $5), not only a critical success (62% on RT, 6.5 on Imdb), but actually his best movie since "The Village", and one of the better found footage flicks in recent years.


Two kids, Becca and Tyler, go visit their grandparents for the first time ever, while their single mom, who has had massive problems with her parents in the past, goes on a relaxing vacation. Becca, decides to film a documentary about her grandparents in order to help her mom reconnect with her parents. However, during their stay, the kids discover that their grandparents are not only acting very weird, but also hide a dark secret...

The plot is simple, but effective and fun, and thanks to Shyamalan's incredibly gripping direction and very well written screenplay, the whole thing turns out to be a super-entertaining best-of-both-worlds-combination of hilarious 'youth meets elder' comedy and chilling horrorfest, delivering a great deal of laughs and an equally great deal of scares, and thanks to the fabulous pacing, there is no chance for you getting bored or annoyed. There is always enough tension and suspense to keep you glued to the screen. Almost every scary scene is followed by a funny or an emotional one, making this a successfully schizophrenic cinematic rollercoaster-experience.


At every single minute, you can feel how confident and self-assured Shyamalan was about this whole thing. This is especially incredible compared to the uber-fail "The Happening" where it seemed as if he lost his marbles completely, or "After Earth" which was nothing more than routinely done commissional work *yawn*. Well, "The Visit" is exactly the kind of Shyamalan that I loved back in the days of "The Sixth Sense", "Unbreakable", "Signs" and "The Village". A filmmaker who knows how to lure the audience in with a semi-gimmicky twist flick that is actualy much more than just some "Usual-Suspects"-like one-trick-pony - and in case of "The Visit", he also proves that he is able to shoot a found footage film where the footage makes sense, where you don't get frustrated about stupid characters shooting stupid footage for no fucking reason at all
(I look at you, "The Gallows"!).

The absolute best thing about "The Visit" is the cast. There's super-talented Ed Oxenbould ("Paper Planes"), one of the funniest movie kids since Junior, a super-amusing whirlwind who constantly raps about his ladies and his oh-so-gangsta life and everything else, who replaces swearwords with names of female popstars because it sounds cooler, and who made me grin with almost every line he delivered. There's also Olivia DeJonge ("The Sisterhood of Night") who gives an immensely believable semi-nerdy teenage girl, Kathryn Hahn ("Tomorrowland") as adorable mom, Deanna Dunagan ("The Naked Face") as one of the creepiest old ladies I have ever seen, and Peter McRobbie ("Law & Order") as super-friendly grandpa who's is actually not super-friendly at all.


Highlights: the semi-disgusting scene in the barn, all of Tyler's raps, laughing Grandma, "Yahtzee!!", hide and seek with a twist, every night scene, especially the one with the camera in the living room, the zoom, both oven-scenes, the twist, attacking the man on the other side of the street, the entire badass finale.
"The Visit" is clearly one of the best theatrical horror films of 2015. I mean it!
Shyamalan-haters gonna hate.

6 comments:

  1. I found myself really liking this one, it had great creepy moments but I have to say the star was Oxenbould he was priceless, Made me crack up throughout the film. Favorite part that made me laugh out was when he opened the bedroom door and saw Nana clawing at the wall then closing the door: "Jesus Becca I'am blind.

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    1. Indeed! Oxenbould was clearly the highlight of the movie. Every line, every freestyle rap made me giggle like crazy :)

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  2. Shove cookies into my face* YAHTZEE!!!!

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    1. YAHTZEE!!!!! Best card game scene ever :D

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  3. If it's good, it's good. I'm actually pleased to hear MNS is back on track. Tell me, does M. Night show up in this one in a pivotal supporting role?

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