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"After I read his books I feel like I have a fist indentation in my solar plexus "  -director Darren Aronofsky about his adaptation of Requiem for a Dream from a Hubert Selby Jr novel
 The World of Film in Australia - on the Internet Updated Tuesday September 15, 2020 

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Security guard David Dunn (Bruce Willis) uses his supernatural abilities to track Kevin Wendell Crumb (James McAvoy), a disturbed man who has twenty-four personalities.

Review by Louise Keller:
You've got to hand it to M.Night Shyamalan for sheer chutzpah as he blends the characters from the melodramatic Unbreakable (2000) and terrifying Split (2016) in the third of the trilogy. Although the result is not the spectacular film he no doubt intended (the word 'spectacular' is used towards the end), it does hold our attention - most of the time in any event. Shyamalan makes the most of his three charismatic leading men purporting to be the comic book gods among us and places them in a psychiatric facility where the brains, the anarchist and reluctant hero come together. Ultimately the grand scale concept dissipates in a puff of its own self-importance.

The concept is as crazy as the characters and one of the film's challenges is how to blend the attention grabbing delusional central characters from Split (James McAvoy once again thriving on playing Kevin and multiple roles) together with the wheelchair-bound Samuel L Jackson and black caped Bruce Willis from Unbreakable. The idea to place them all together in a psychiatric facility is a sound one, using Sarah Paulson's meticulous, stitched up Dr Ellie Staple as the central pivot for the action. Not a hair out of place, Paulson wears pastel shades in situations that are anything but muted. Shyamalan's use of straight to camera directing style is effective at the stark facility.

McAvoy looks like a version of The Hulk, albeit not green, while Willis is more subdued as David Dunn, the security guard train wreck survivor. Jackson is suitably over the top as the comic-book crazy Elijah Price, whose bones are so brittle, they break like glass. Good to see his purple lapelled jacket is still intact. I like the way Shyamalan shoots the scene in which Price tells his name - in profile.

By the time all the main characters are pitted together in the final showdown, the film reaches its most ridiculous. Shyamalan appears again in his now customary onscreen cameo: he overacts and overstays his welcome. The narrative ends decisively but let's hope the promise of a new spin-off series does not eventuate.

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(US, 2019)

CAST: James McAvoy, Bruce Willis, Samuel L. Jackson, Anya Taylor-Joy, Sarah Poulson, Spencer Treat Clark, Charlayne Woodard, Luke Kirby, Adam David Thompson, M. Night Shayamalan

PRODUCER: Marc Bienstock, Jason Blum, Ashwin Rajan, M. Night Shayamalan

DIRECTOR: M. Night Shayamalan

SCRIPT: M. Night Shayamalan


EDITOR: Luke Ciarrocchi, Blu Murray

MUSIC: West Dylan Thordson


RUNNING TIME: 129 minutes


AUSTRALIAN RELEASE: January 17, 2019

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