The Good, The Bad and The Verdict: Split
Hello Dear Reader, it’s me here again with another sage and succinct review to help guide you through the often-chaotic world of cinema. In the past, I’ve spoken about Deadpool, Bojack Horseman and even the odd video game or two. This time, I’m giving you my thoughts on Split, the James McAvoy helmed thriller that continues M. Night Shyamalan’s recent film comeback.
For those unfamiliar with the piece, the Jason Blum produced outing tells the tale of a man named Kevin (McAvoy) who kidnaps three girls after a birthday party. Victims Claire (Haley Lu Richardson), Marcia (Jessica Sula) and Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy) are to be offered up to the 24th personality inside Kevin (A violent entity dubbed “The Beast”) when it makes its emergence.
Though I never thought I would say it, an M. Night Shyamalan film genuinely deserves an Oscar. James McAvoy acts his ass off in this production and when watching his performances, you genuinely believe he’s a mentally ill person shifting between the mindsets of a young boy, a germophobic older man and even a charming British woman named Patricia. He’s astonishing. Watching his performance wiped away any curiosity I had regarding what original attached star Joaquin Phoenix might have done in the role. He was originally attached during early production.
Casey, Kevin and his countless other personalities are the stars of the production here. We get to spend a ton of time with them, find out what makes them tick and even see parts of their lives before the story was set into motion. Who don’t we get to visit? Marcia and Claire. As I was watching the film, I found myself saddened by their lack of character development. In retrospect, Shyamalan should have kept the story as a cat and mouse game between Kevinx23 and Casey or began the narrative earlier, perhaps showing sub-personality Dennis as he roamed the streets of Philadelphia, looking for suitable young people to abduct in order to provide The Beast food.
If you liked The Visit and were interested in Shyamalan’s work from Signs and beforehand, this is a movie for you. It’s not perfect, but after the string of misfires the man once dubbed the next “Spielberg” has had in recent years, it is a welcome and kick-ass return to form. Welcome back M. Night, I and everyone who liked Signs, Unbreakable and The 6th Sense missed you massively. Don’t leave us for the valley of mediocrity again any time soon please.
Also, there is twist, but it is amazing. Trust me on that.