Thursday, November 30, 2006

In Which the Heavens Reveal...


...against every possible fucking odd that you might ever have imagined, that M. Night Shyamalan's Lady in the Water will now close 2006 as only the SECOND most psychotically arrogant, most queasily self-obsessed, most psychically misdirected, and absolute batshit craziest movie of the year. Apocalypto would be monumentally funny, and a boon to drinking-game concocters everywhere, if it weren't so truly horrifying to ponder the cultural factors and the individual mental corruption that have allowed it to exist. Even when the film wants you to laugh—and if you've never heard the ancient Mayan phrase for "He's fucked," you have now—the laughter sticks in your throat, clogged, I hope, by your disgust. The movie finally earns its premonitions of apocalypse, but more for what it is than for anything it shows or says. Full review here. F

(And thank whatever Powers might possibly still Be for the very good thing that is the Free Preview Screening, so that I could know my enemy without paying into his coffers.)

(Image © 2006 Touchstone Pictures/Icon Productions)

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15 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

YES. Same grade.

My friend and I saw it last night at an advance screening, and we were just horrified at the irresponsibility of Gibson's work. According to this film, the Mayans were inherently evil, blood-thirsty savages intent on ripping one another part. The last thirty minutes of the film were so awful that we were half-laughing, half-crying at the badness of it all. Problematic. That's all I can muster right now, PROBLEMATIC. The man is disturbed.

Oh, as if that weren't all depressing enough - my audience actually applauded. I yelled at them.

9:42 PM, November 30, 2006  
Blogger NATHANIEL R said...

thank god I don't have to see this now...

i have hated everything Gibson's directed up until now (well, i s'pose TMWAF was not horrific -just mediocre)

and an F for Stranger Than Fiction too! It is quite a sellout at the end but it had moments here and there.

6:09 AM, December 01, 2006  
Anonymous jenn said...

N - As always, I get my biggest laughs when you truly hate a movie - this one looks/sounds so incredibly awful - I love your description of it though:) Hope you're enjoying a snow day like I am!! xo - jenn

6:10 AM, December 01, 2006  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

That review.......I fucking love you, man.

7:27 AM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger damion said...

I, too, fucking love you Nick.

8:21 AM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

It's just getting more and more obvious to not shill money out on this weird sad sorry little man and his ever-growing bloodlust.

The Passion of the Christ was bordering on an F for me, so...

1:29 PM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger Kamikaze Camel said...

It's just getting more and more obvious to not shill money out on this weird sad sorry little man and his ever-growing bloodlust.

The Passion of the Christ was bordering on an F for me, so...

1:29 PM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger jeff_v said...

See, I think this movie looks stupid-awesome, just like The Fountain.

3:35 PM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger J.J. said...

Nick, I'd like more, if you've the time. I respect your opinions, but this review is too glib. Mental corruption...cultural factors...obviously Apocalypto makes you angry, and has insulted your intelligence. Why? Specifics, please.

Gibson isn't trying to establish fact with the movie. It is pure (and yes, perhaps sadistic) entertainment. But I can't possibly see what harm it does. Am I missing something?

Ali: You say, "According to this film, the Mayans were inherently evil, blood-thirsty savages intent on ripping one another part." Have you seen the film? There are two groups of people in this movie. The blood-thirsty ones, and the genteel ones who suffer at their hands. This dichotomy can be applied to any culture in any era.

I'm not trying to pick a fight. I just love talking about this shit. My thoughts are at http://aslittleaspossible.blogspot.com/2006/11/its-end-of-world-as-we-know-it-and-im.html

3:59 PM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger Nick Davis said...

For sure, it's glib. I feel like I haven't even said anything yet. Although the film's parsing of the Mayans into the Good and the Bad, an infantile and unexplained partition that is nonetheless meant to bear the weight of the portentous opening caption and final shoreline reveal (not to mention Gibson's press-savvy but desperate attempts to frame Apocalypto within the terms of contemporary politics) is one of the major veins of the movie that roused my contempt. Especially since any moral argument whatever is so quickly overwhelmed by viscera and bloodlust—the film's bloodlust.

But yes, more later.

4:06 PM, December 01, 2006  
Blogger Dr. S said...

I'm happy to say I hadn't even *heard* of this movie. On the other hand, I suppose that means that I'm now officially living under a rock.

1:19 PM, December 02, 2006  
Blogger Dr. S said...

Oh, yes, and I will third Damion and anonymous: I too fucking love you. Are you going to be in Philadelphia, or do you get to take the year off? Because I'm in need of some mad Nick time.

1:20 PM, December 02, 2006  
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