Movie Review: The Happening

Last weekend, I had the chance to go see The Happening. My thought was that it would be a typical, suspenseful, yet profound movie from M. Night; however, it was hardly those things.

Ever since Signs, I’ve loved the simpleness of M. Night’s plots and the profound message they convey (Signs: seemingly coincidental events really being the workings of a higher power, The Village: the notion that love can overcome any obstacle, etc).

Unfortunately, I went into the theater with the idea that people just disappeared in this movie (Someone had said “rapture-esque” a while back). That is NOT what happens. They commit suicide- and when I mean “they”, I mean just about everyone.

Strange as it may seem, this is a movie about love. The two main characters are somewhat remorsefully married and spend much of the movie distant from each other. The plot is fairly predictable from start to end, so don’t expect surprises like the end of The Village. The movie seems to rely almost solely on its shock factor, as neither the acting (except, perhaps, Mark Wahlberg), the effects, nor the plot really do it justice. It really feels like an independant-type film where everything is just B-grade. Granted, that worked for both Juno and Napoleon Dynamite, but those were comedies.

More shocking that this blatant failure at a movie was my response. I know the … suicides weren’t real, but shouldn’t I have been a bit more bothered by them? Granted, I was very unsettled, but to me, they were almost … interesting. I walked out of the theater thinking about the movie and a little in shock. I didn’t know then how to quantify what I had just seen. The ending was amazing- I’ll give it that, but have we devolved so far as a society to find depicted, graphic suicide entertainment?

6 thoughts on “Movie Review: The Happening”

  1. Hey! I checked out your site tonight. Pretty cool stuff. I enjoyed reading your blogs. You are very funny. I am going to have to try out that recipe for the muddy buddies. I like to bake or make stuff. I will see you at the Barrel. Have a good Sunday!

  2. life’s short. I would watch this if Jon Heder was the star. We’ve all seen enough movies with him in it that induce suicidal tendencies. Was there a ‘subliminal theme’ in this one too? (like 6th sense::red stuff)

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  3. I agree. When I saw the previews I was intrigued but it’s sad that these particular previews made a better movie than the movie itself. I know that’s what they are supposed to do but I would rather keep thinking it is something way cooler than mass suicide.. I also agree that our going so low as to finding people committing suicide entertainment….but in the same respect can’t that be said of murder as well. Since when should we be so awe struck by bad things that happen to people . ie murder, rape so on and so forth. There are a ton of senseless movies who glorify so to speak the murders and so on of people. As Christians that just doesn’t make sense.

    Not against you in particular just kind of thought out loud to myself in reference to a movie I had just recently seen! Possibly a new found conviction! We as Christians should value life! I don’t quite know where to take this in my life personally!

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  4. i was gonna go see that movie.. but.. i read a couple reviews and everyone was saying that it was horrible.. so i decided to see the incredible hulk instead. that one was a pretty good movie 😀

    thanks for the review.. i was going to rent it.. but im thinking now it prolly isnt worth it..

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