Glass - This Movie Rocks In A Glass More Half Full Than Half Empty Kinda Way
Dir: M. Night Shyamalan
Starring James McAvoy, Bruce Willis, Samuel L Jackson, Sarah Paulson, Anya Taylor-Joy
M. Night Shyamalan’s twofer latest is a long-awaited sequel to his best film (Unbreakable) and one of his more entertaining (Split.) As such this voyage into the “Shyamalan-a-verse” assembles Bruce Willis’ The Overseer (we would have stuck with “Security Man” personally), Sam Jackson’s Mr Glass, and James McAvoy’s room-for-one-more-up-over-the-top, the Horde, all brought together and promptly finding themselves locked up in an insane asylum, where brilliant scientist Sarah Paulson tries to disavow all of them of believing they are in anyway in possession of super hero attributes.
It would be easy to call it a return to form for the former golden boy writer-director (who once again gives himself an inevitable – and inevitably awkward – cameo.). But to be fair to the man, he has been on pretty good form once more for his last two – The Visit and Split – and so this falls very much in line with those, even if it falls a little short of the 19 years of built up expectation for an Unbreakable follow up (itself one of the finest and more subtle examples of the super hero movie in recent years.)
What it does do is dissect the nature of the superhero – and by default comic books in general – with a daffy, entertaining post-modern scalpel, all the while messing with audiences’ expectations and prior interpretations. One excellent turn on the subject matter occurs in the third act, when Willis’ David Dunn and McAvoy’s Kevin Wendell Crumb are set to have a final face off atop the city’s tallest new building, with Mr Glass set to blow the thing to pieces in spectacular style. In what looks like a snub to Man of Steel, Age Of Ultron (and numerous others that seem to associate the word climax with mass building destruction porn) they never get there, and instead have a punch up in a car park. (Surely also a nod to the fact that Shyamalan brought this all in for the relatively miniscule budget of $20 million, financing it himself by putting his house up for collateral.) It’s a witty subversion in a film that likes to go down that path.
The cast are uniformly on form, with McAvoy and his array of 20 odd (very odd in some cases) characters to the fore, and Paulson as watchable as ever. Also, good to see Willis back in a decent film.
Yes, of course there’s a twist near the end – and what Paulson is on about is a tad indecipherable. But it doesn’t really matter much. Whilst it lacks the impact of its two predecessors, Glass is a decent ending to an unexpected trilogy.
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