By now many of you may or may not have heard that M. Night Shyamalan has finally made his big comeback after more than a decade of appalling us with one idiotic twist ending after another. But I’m sure there are many of you who have also heard that Shyamalan’s latest, The Visit is total garbage.
I happen to be among the group of people who believe the latter statement.
The Visit, written and directed by M. Night Shyamalan, follows the story of these two siblings, Becca and Tyler, who for some reason are really eager to visit their grandparents whom they never had a chance to meet. Their mother who has had a strained relationship with her parents over the years reluctantly agrees. No wait…she’s not all that reluctant, she wants to spend a week on a cruise ship with her boyfriend.
So anyways, the kids take a train-ride to a really remote area in the middle of nowhere, where the grandparents happen to live and very soon after meeting them, the kids begin to sense there’s something really fucked up about these two.
If making a slightly better movie than a really terrible one counts as a comeback then sure, Shyamalan has made a comeback, but in my book, Shyamalan has gone even lower down the barrel to a point where I don’t see him making even a passable and mediocre film again. There is an awful lot wrong with The Visit, first and foremost being that it’s a fucking found-footage film! which means there’s more and more of that annoying shaky-cam bullshit I absolutely despise. And the reason I say that I don’t see Shyamalan coming back from this is because the guy seems to have lost all his creativity. Granted, he was making bad films before too, but at least he was experimenting with some interesting ideas.
With this film though he’s gone to the most uninspiring, cash-grabbing movie sub-genre out there, the found-footage sub-genre which would at least guarantee him that his movie doesn’t bombs.
The Visit is all over the place with its tone, awkwardly trying to balance both comedy and horror but failing to succeed at either. The film’s cringe-worthy comedy comes mostly from Ed Oxbould who plays the younger sibling, Tyler and happens to be an aspiring rapper. So every fifteen minutes you have him dropping these random rhymes that left just left me with WTF face. The movie does have one or two genuinely unnerving moments but largely the horror in the film also feels contrived and the suspense, exaggerated.
And I can’t say the acting is particularly great either. The grandparents do a decent job of being creepy fucking grandparents but their performances didn’t really strike me as anything special and after sometime they lost their creepy novelty for me. As for the kids, Olivia DeJonge is alright as the older sister, Becca but Ed Oxbould is insufferable as her younger wannabe rapper brother.
I will say that the twist is effective. I did not see it coming and it is one of the few times, I think Shyamalan has got a twist right, but ultimately it just isn’t enough to save this pile of garbage.