Suspended Disbelief

Your NiceWork movie reviewer received his orders and obeyed them at once. He sped directly to the local AMC Cineplex to sit in smug judgement on M. Night Shyamalan’s new spooker:

The V is a down button on an elevator. If it were an up button the movie would be called DEAIL

No sooner had your reviewer settled down into his plush theater seat than Mr Shyamalan began to unsettle him with upside down shots of Philadelphia from an inverted helicopter. Buildings depended like stalactites behind the opening credits giving your reviewer a bout of reverse vertigo: the feeling that you are about to fall straight upwards.

WHAT HAPPENS: Three guys and two gals get stuck on an elevator suspended motionless around the 21st floor of an office building. One of them is a psychokiller of sorts who takes advantage of the repeated blackouts to psychokill.

BEST TOE-CURLING SCENE: Dwight the custodian heads way up to the roof of the building to see about unsticking the stuck elevator from above. As he steps out of the stairway onto the roof, a gust of wind whips his little cap away. He runs after the cap as it scoots along the tar and gravel then pops over the edge of the roof…

BEST PERFORMANCE BY A NON-HUMAN: There’s a devilish raccoon in the basement walking around the buffers at the bottom of the hoistway.

BEST PERFORMANCE BY NON-MAMMALIAN NON-HUMANS: A pair of devilish pigeons give Dwight the custodian the fright of his life as he descends the hoistway from the roof.

BEST FIGURING OUT THAT SOMETHING SUPERNATURAL IS AFOOT: By the Latino security guard who, thanks to a good Catholic education, knows an incursion of the Prince of Darkness like the back of his amulet-clutching hand. SPOILER ALERT: When assailed by the Evil One, try praying in Spanish.

BEST STEPPING INTO A PUDDLE OF WATER WHILE  HOLDING A LIVE ELECTRICAL CABLE GIVING OFF SPARKS: The other security guard.

BEST UNSHAVEN UNBELIEVING PHILADELPHIA PD DETECTIVE: The unshaven unbelieving detective from the Philadephia Police Department. SPOILER ALERT: He never shaves, but eventually he believes.

Was DEVIL a good spooky spooker? Well, yeah, sure. It gave your NiceWork movie reviewer the very heebie-jeebies he willingly sought, but not so much that he couldn’t endure to the bitter end. He sat right there a-twitching until the final credits rolled. DEVIL even had a happy ending of sorts if you don’t count the dozen or so people who get hauled off to Hell in various ways (e.g. by broken glass in the jugular) before the unshaven detective gets everything nicely sorted out.

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One response to “Suspended Disbelief

  1. WELL.

    I am tempted by the devil raccoon, the scary scary supernatural timez, the cynical unshaven detectives.

    But I am bewarned by the fact that after The Sixth Sense I became afraid everytime I saw an open silverware drawer which I couldn’t remember opening, after Unbreakable I got scared of door-to-door salesmen (“I like your house. Can I come in?” “What?” “I like your house. Can I come in.”) and after The Lady in The Water I became afraid of Paul Giamatti.

    BEWARNED IS WHAT I AM.

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