Horrorfest 2018 Presents: Split (2017, M. Night Shyamalan)

Even though I agree with those who feel that Split is not a realistic potrait of someone with mental illness, as a horror film it works a lot. Shyamalan goes back to what made him an effective director, and I have heard good things about The Visit, as well. James McAvoy is really terrifying in this movie, and Anya Taylor-Joy is a perfect foil for him, particularly for reasons that I cannot spoil in this review. Kevin turns out to be a rather complex and interesting case study, especially since he has multiple personalities living inside his mind.

Due to the film’s run time not all of them are shown, and the ones featured range from harmless to disturbed. Both Kevin’s doctor and Casey, the film’s protagonist, have the misfortune to discover the last hidden identity Kevin has stored away: The Beast. Which leads to a pretty frightening last act and McAvoy doing some excellent acting. He was really perfect for the main role. Taylor-Joy gives a strong, haunted and understated performance in a film that rests on the audience believing this could happen. With Split M. Night reaffirms that he is back to making quality films worth seeing, and I eagerly await Glass, which comes out next year.

Viewer Beware, You’re In For A Scare

Back when I was a kid, Goosebumps was all the rage. Everyone read the books, owned the books, and loved the books. R.L. Stine helped make reading cool, which despite his stories being cheesy or very kids oriented was still a good thing: anything that gets kids to read should be encouraged. In fact some of his tales had twists that M. Night Shyamalan wishes he could come up with. So I was happy that Netflix Instant Viewing now has the rights to the show, which channeled the books pretty well, as all four seasons have been released so far. But hey its a start and I plan to go through the show as much as possible. I started last night with the pilot, titled The Girl Who Cried Monster.

Really its merely a solid episode, yet I still enjoyed it anyways. I vaguely remember reading the book, and it has a trademark Stine twist that made me smile a bit. The creature effects are rather decent for a kids TV show that aired on Saturday mornings, and the main protagonist starts off with their narration, which was part of Stine’s books. I do plan on continuing to watch the show, and go through the rest of the series. Which I will share here as a side project to my Horrorfest, as its fitting to view a horror oriented show while also watching horror movies.

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