Saturday, June 28, 2008

"The Happening" Wasn't Happening For Me

Every other Friday, Don and I go out for "date night." We usually end up at a movie--most of the time we just show up at the theater and choose something last-minute. I like the surprise of not planning what we're going to see ahead of time, but sometimes it's pretty slim pickin's at the Cineplex--tonight was one of those nights.

Almost everything there was either a kids movie (Kung Fu Panda, Wall-E) or something we'd already seen (The Visitor, Sex and the City--ok I saw that twice!) or something I had zero interest in (Mongol--no thank you! Get Smart--Don's going to have to take the kids if he wants to see that one!). So that left us with The Happening--the newest thriller from M. Night Shyamalan. Can someone tell me what's happened to M. Night? I think almost everyone would be in "agreeance" that Sixth Sense was amazing and brilliant--but after that it's been pretty much downhill.

Signs was ok--I'm a big Joaquin Phoenix fan and I found the movie semi-interesting. Same with Unbreakable--it was just "a'ight" for me and had some cool stuff going on. Then there was Lady in the Water--god-awful and The Village which was so stupid I've blocked it from my memory.

I hadn't read any reviews of The Happening but I was hopeful that maybe it was time for M. Night to come out of his slump and give us a new masterpiece. It didn't "happen."

To tell you the truth, I'm not even sure what it was about! The movie starts on a busy afternoon in Central Park--suddenly everyone stops moving and then they all start killing themselves.

Next we meet Elliott (Mark Wahlberg), a science teacher in Philadelphia, who learns of this strange "happening" and flees for the country with his weird wife (Zooey Deschanel) along with a fellow teacher and the teacher's daughter.

Not a whole lot happens after that--the bizarre suicides continue around them as they run through the countryside trying to figure out why. The trees? And the plants? Is it their fault? Are the trees trying to kill everyone? It's never really made clear. They run and hide. They have a strange run-in with Betty Buckley (Eight is Enough!).

The weird wife is feeling guilty because she has been keeping a secret from her husband. A secret so shocking she can't stop thinking about it even though she is surrounded by gore and horrific acts of suicide. At one point she blurts it out because they are all probably going to die and she just can't die with this secret. But I'm going to give it away. Are you ready for it? Are you sitting down because it's a doozy:

She had dessert with a male co-worker! Tiramisu! (I'm not kidding).

That's about as exciting as it gets.

The end was a huge letdown. Remember the end of Sixth Sense? OMG! Bruce Willis is the dead guy!? I never saw that coming! OMG!

The end of The Happening was like "Wha...?" "It's over?" (Thank goodness).
"I have something to tell you....."



Anonymous said...

I'm so glad I didn't see that one. I saw "Don't Mess with the Zohan" a few days ago. Pretty funny, I've seen funnier.

Anonymous said...

That sounds like a movie for the hubby ONLY! I like a good chick flick!

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