Unbreakable (2000)

“I should have known it from the children…” Ladies and gentlemen, you have now witnessed the most atrocious ending of this year. Unbreakable has a simple yet moderately sophisticated premise in the examination of what makes a super hero. The psychology going into it would be fascinating, like do you feel a civic duty to help others? This could have made ‘Unbreakable’ a good escapist flick with some imaginative thoughts, but instead it all gets destroyed by a lame lam-shackled ending that will suck the life out of everything good and decent.

There are numerous shots in the film that go on and on and are single coverage. This likely wouldn’t pose as much a problem if it weren’t so persistent and annoying. The opening scene where the camera dances back and forth between two seats to see Bruce Willis fumbly trying to hit on another woman is aggravating to the least in its set-up. Willis himself is a security officer for a college and basically suffering from a faltering marriage and overall loser status. That is, until he is the lone survivor in a horrific train accident. Samuel “Mr. Glass” L. Jackson seeks him out to reveal to Willis that he believes he has been chosen to do good, and comic books are true, and whatever else. How can you trust a man with Gumby hair?

Unbreakable is not a movie without merits, in fact it almost could have been a good film or at least a better one. There are moments of tension, and a scene with Willis stretching out his arms in a bus station a la Christ is particularly well directed. Then there is…. the ending.

M. Night Shyamalan had true break-out success with the monumental Sixth Sense but he is now a victim of his own success because everyone and their invalid grandmothers will be looking and waiting for a twist ending. And the payoff is NOWHERE near as rewarding as Sixth Sense. In fact, it might make you mad. Mad that it ruins the rest of the film that had its few moments. Mad enough … to become a super villain all your own.

Nate’s Grade: C

About natezoebl

One man. Many movies. I am a cinephile (which spell-check suggests should really be "epinephine"). I was told that a passion for movies was in his blood since I was conceived at a movie convention. While scientifically questionable, I do remember a childhood where I would wake up Saturday mornings, bounce on my parents' bed, and watch Siskel and Ebert's syndicated TV show. That doesn't seem normal. At age 17, I began writing movie reviews and have been unable to stop ever since. I was the co-founder and chief editor at PictureShowPundits.com (2007-2014) and now write freelance. I have over 1400 written film reviews to my name and counting. I am also a proud member of the Central Ohio Film Critics Association (COFCA) since 2012. In my (dwindling) free time, I like to write uncontrollably. I wrote a theatrical genre mash-up adaptation titled "Our Town... Attacked by Zombies" that was staged at my alma mater, Capital University in the fall of 2010 with minimal causalities and zero lawsuits. I have also written or co-written sixteen screenplays and pilots, with one of those scripts reviewed on industry blog Script Shadow. Thanks to the positive exposure, I am now also dipping my toes into the very industry I've been obsessed over since I was yea-high to whatever people are yea-high to in comparisons.

Posted on November 20, 2000, in 2000 Movies and tagged , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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