Wednesday, July 19, 2006

Lady in the Water -- A Review

I wanted to like this movie. Going to a movie knowing that it will be different (and not in the "This time the gay cowboys will be transgendered, and fighting the Nazis in space!" way) is exciting. And I like both suspense and fantasy movies. Yet, I still found myself coming down on the side of Scott Brown's "Suck Watch." "Lady" is just not a good movie, and it borders on very, very bad.

The plot, for all of the tortured descriptions I've read, is really quite simple. A fairy tale unfolds at an apartment complex in Philadelphia. That's pretty much it. The idea is actually kind of neat, but Mr. Shyamalan really doesn't come close to fulfilling its potential. First off is the problem of the names: "narf" and "scrunt." It's difficult to take something scary seriously when it's called a "scrunt." And "narf" kept reminding me of "Snarf" from the Thundercats. Snarf!

Also back in this movie for Bryce Dallas Howard's character is that archaic, contraction-less way of talking last seen in The Village. With all the "do nots," "will nots," and "scrunts," the dialogue is very distracting.

On the positive side, this felt like Mr. Shyamalan's quickest paced movie, and there was no twist to be disappointed by.

However, these positives are not enough to outweigh the above negatives combined with the myriad of other problems with the movie (poor casting in several roles, poorly timed jokes, ridiculous plot turns, etc.). It's too bad that this movie is probably going to flop -- I can't see word of mouth doing many favors for this one -- because I like Mr. Shyamalan's creativity. I think he needs to team up with someone (I'm available, ahem) who could act as a sound board and rework some of his ideas. As for Lady in the Water, I hear that Pirates of the Caribbean is pretty good.


Blogger Reel Fanatic said...

Thanks for the warning .. I'll probably give it a chance, but for my money, M Night hasn't made a truly great movie since Unbreakable

7:00 PM  

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