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#469450 - 06/27/01 05:08 AM Unbreakable: Whatcha think
krackkomik Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/18/01
Posts: 23
Loc: Austin, TX. USA
This may be old for anyone else and I have not scowered the archives for threads, but I would love to hear everyones thoughts on this movie. I had seen the movie when it came out and championed it to everyone I knew. Today I bought the dvd and was treated again with a beautiful movie, but the real prize is the bonus comic documentary. It is short, about twenty minutes, yet it goes miles. If you wanna see Miller, Gibbons, O'Neil, and Alex Ross talk about superheroes, this is the place, without of'course traveling cross-country to a con.
It is great to see these guys, but the real thrill is hopefully millions of others will watch this and pick up some books. It couldn't hurt! Now I love having-dare I say it- a niche to ourselves, But I have and want more discussion with newbies to our world.
This movie is a great conversation starter. Beyond it's supposed twist ending, the archetypes are displayed on a widescreen with bruce to boot. To see a whole flick about the orgin of a hero and villian, not the final battle, not the endless times the villian strikes in his futility to defeat the hero. I can say no more I'm too buzzed.
I would like to hear other opinions, not word fights like: it sucked--not so--yes it did and so on. explain yourselves. If you have no opinion, don't post.

I BELIEVE COMIC HEROES WALK THE EARTH


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movie picks: a man called hero-shreck-momento-swordfish-the third man-bullit.
_________________________
movie picks: a man called hero-momento-the third man-Unbreakable-bullit-ghost world.
I BELIEVE COMIC BOOK HEROES WALK THE EARTH

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#469451 - 06/27/01 07:38 AM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
Askia Offline
Member

Registered: 03/26/01
Posts: 291
Loc: Columbus, OH - USA
UNBREAKABLE. So very, very close.

My emotional range went something like this: Unrealistic expectation. Heightened anticipation. Dawning realization. Grudging admiration. Hopeful elation. Complete frustration.

M. Night Shyamalan carefully built up the conventions of the superhero genre and displayed them to an adult audience, even if we didn't quite realize what we were watching at first. We witnessed the disparate origins of the villain and the discovery of the hero; the presentation of the more than human abilities of the hero as more than incidentally miraculous; the exploration of the hero's impressive physical abilities; the discovery of the hero's weakness; the hero's first "official" case; and revelation of the secret villain, the puppetmaster behind the scenes. What was needed was the final(?) confrontation between the hero and villian. Up until the the final two minutes of the movie I was completely satisfied.

So imagine my shock and disappointment, when, 45 seconds after the revelation, the all-too important confrontation is shown as a freeze frame with a blurb that wraps up the plot. ARGH. I felt exactly like I did when I saw the opening of ALIEN3 at the theater: cheated and let down. What the hell -!

Shyamalan's mistake was NOT how UNBREAKABLE ended, but the way it ended, in merely telling the ending it and not showing it in maverick detail. It would have been different but completely logical end if Bruce Willis' David Dunn been seen picking up the phone to call the cops while Samuel L's Elijah Price sat there looking raving in his relief/psuedo-delusions. Or it would have been completely keeping in the genre conventions if Elijah suddenly sprang some sort of water-based trap on David while he made good his escape -- in a wheelchair, no less. A groaner, admittedly, but it would have at least set us up for a sequel. [img]/resources/ubb/wink.gif[/img]

I dunno -- it was an interesting look at adult version of superheroics that did itself a disservice in the denouement. But the overall presentation and the strengths of ideas, pacing, tension, and superb acting all around made up for the weakest ending. I'm a big believer in going out in a bang -- but this picture wimped out. Would have been a 9 out of 10 with a different, better ending, but as it is, it gets a 6.5 from me. Maybe with a second viewing I might be persuaded to change my mind.

THANK you for the tip about the DVD. I was already interested in checking out the movie again at some point and this added feature assures that I will.

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#469452 - 06/27/01 09:16 AM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
ScottChantler Offline
Member

Registered: 08/07/00
Posts: 675
Loc: Waterloo, Ontario, Canada
For most of the film, I was in Heaven. I recognized what Shyamalan was trying to do right away, and loved the fact that he was presenting it more as a Hitchcockian thriller than your standard "comic book movie". In fact, I thought the movie (right up until the end) would make a very fitting tribute to Hitchcock, in that the story structure, pacing, cinematography--even the fact that the director makes a cameo appearance--were reminiscent of some of Hitch's best work.

But once Bruce Willis put on his rain-cape "costume" and went out to save people, it lost me. At that point, it stopped being an interesting reflection on real people in recognizably mythical circumstances and became a "comic book movie". I remember my buddy and I turned to each other at that moment and said "okaaayy...", both expecting the worst, which is what we got. The "confrontation" between Willis and Jackson at the end had us rolling in aisles--we hadn't realized that we were watching a comedy!

I haven't been so dismayed by the ending of a movie since Forrest Gump got up off that damned bench, turning a hilarious and fantastical first-person viewpoint of history into a weepy, tearful, third-person movie of the week.


I liked the prevelance of comics in the movie, and the attempt to discuss them in a serious manner. It's disappointing, however, that the character doing all the discussion turned out to be a first-class antisocial nutjob of the highest order, exactly what a lot of people are afraid that reading comics does to people. And the BEST parts of the movie are more a tribute to movies than they are to comics.


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Scott Chantler www.scottchantler.com


"We are here on Earth to fart around. Don't let anybody tell you any different!"
- Kurt Vonnegut, Timequake

[This message has been edited by ScottChantler (edited 06-27-2001).]
_________________________
Scott Chantler
www.scottchantler.com

"The more wonderful the means of communication, the more trivial, tawdry, or depressing its contents seemed to be."
- Arthur C. Clarke

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#469453 - 06/27/01 09:31 AM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
Jens Offline
Member

Registered: 07/24/00
Posts: 84
Please don't hate me for this, but as much as I thrilled to every minute of the Sixth Sense, I hated Unbreakable. All the things that really worked for me in Sixth Sense, didn't work for me at all in Unbreakable.

My main porblem with the movie is that it the pace is very slow, and whenever a character has said something, there's a few minutes silence so we can just contemplate the brilliant insight of that sentence. Every-single-fucking-time.

Overall I felt the movie took itself so serious with a plot that is fairly silly, that it fell flat on it's face.

Plot of Sixth Sense could be rather silly as well, but the build-up was better. We were shown pieces of the puzzle. And even though in the end all Sixth Sense was all about clever editing, it became a classic.


[This message has been edited by Jens (edited 06-27-2001).]

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#469454 - 06/27/01 08:28 PM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
krackkomik Offline
Junior Member

Registered: 06/18/01
Posts: 23
Loc: Austin, TX. USA
I agree with ya askia. I too was not happy with the ending, to the extent that I wanted more not the blurbs then credits.
Scott, how would you have liked to see the plot go if ya could start right before the train sequence?
From the point of view of writer/director, I can see the difficulties in trying to give us a comic ending. How do you put that kind of ending in without totally ruining the pace of the movie, which is slow. M. Night has a way of making an hour and forty minutes seem like two hours.
The sequence that I like most is the train station sequence, to be in Davids shoes, I would be horribly frightened and excited to no end. How would it feel to be a Hero that could only pick up the pieces and hope only a few get hurt. How do you decide to follew one person instead of another. Is rape not important enough, would I keep looking for someone that has done worse, and how could anything be worse? Just a few questions I would have to ask myself, not to mention, how could I possibly touch everyone, what if the serial killer walked past and I didn't know. Huh! head hurts.
Love seeing your opinions.

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movie picks: a man called hero-momento-the third man-Unbreakable-bullit.
I BELIEVE COMIC BOOK HEROES WALK THE EARTH
_________________________
movie picks: a man called hero-momento-the third man-Unbreakable-bullit-ghost world.
I BELIEVE COMIC BOOK HEROES WALK THE EARTH

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#469455 - 06/27/01 09:25 PM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
Lee's Comics Inc. Offline
Member

Registered: 06/05/00
Posts: 114
Loc: Palo Alto, CA 94306
I liked the film, but my main complaint stems from the fact that I have been buying and selling comics for the past 2 decades, and couldn’t help but notice what I cosider a deficiency.

I went to a sneak preview of this film and I was sitting in the front row. I saw all the details quite clearly.

Samuel Jackson’s character is a big fan of super-hero comics. That in itself bugged me a bit. I hate to see comics once again pigeon-holed into that category. But, okay, I let that pass.

Now assuming Jackson’s character is mad for Super-hero comics, and he obviously has plenty of money. After all, he owns a fancy museum in a nice part of town, a cool car, nice threads etc. You would think that Jackson would have some of the best examples of super-hero comics around. How about some of the obvious greats. Kirby Fantastic Fours, Ditko and Romita Spider-man, Steranko SHIELD, Adams and Byrne X-Men, etc. But what do you see in his office? Quarter books. Lots and lots of quarter books. I’m talking Rom Spaceknight, Secret Wars 2, He Man etc. Every comic you see in this movie, and I mean EVERY comic is a junk book. Even the comics on display in the comic book store, which I understand was a real store, are quarter books, for some reason!

I think the producers should have taken the trouble to show some nice examples of these books, rather than giving a flunky a hundred bucks and instructions to pick up a couple of quarter boxes at the local store.

The Devil is in the details.

- Lee Hester

Lee’s Comics
1020 N. Rengstorff Ave.
Mountain View, CA 94040
(650) 965-1800

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#469456 - 06/27/01 10:30 PM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
Sir Tim Drake Offline
Member

Registered: 01/10/00
Posts: 341
When I started reading this thread, all I remembered about UNBREAKABLE was that I'd hated it; I couldn't remember just why. Thankfully, the comments here have refreshed my memory. Lee Hester's post reminds me of something else in that movie that rubbed me the wrong way: the scene where the woman tries to buy a piece of original art for her young son, and Samuel L. replies with an angry rant about how this is *real* art and not intended for children. That scene robbed the movie of much of its credibility. I'm sure that every adult who reads comics wishes that they weren't seen solely as children's fare, but I have a hard time imagining any comics fan who would be so ridiculously vehement in trying to dispel that misconception.

Moreover, as some have noted, the movie focuses solely on superhero comics. It defines comics as nothing but the superhero genre. This is obviously false, and it also weakens Samuel L's claim that comics are serious, high art, since, as Mr. Hester notes, he's reading such unartistic crap. There are many superhero comics that can and should be considered as high art, such as the ones Mr. Hester mentions, but Samuel L. isn't reading any of those. And seriously, folks, if this guy is so fascinated with comics-as-art, then why does he limit himself to superhero comics? Why isn't he reading PEANUTS and LOVE & ROCKETS and MAUS and... well, you get the point.

This movie is about superhero comics, but it wouldn't have hurt if M. Night could've at least acknowledged in passing that there are other kinds of comics too.
_________________________
Aaron Kashtan

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#469457 - 06/27/01 11:14 PM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
paulski Offline
Member

Registered: 05/16/01
Posts: 2197
Loc: Adelaide, SA, AUSTRALIA
Gotta say, I'm surprised by a lot of the comments thus far. I know everyone's got different tastes, but I really liked the hell out of this movie!

Personally, I thought Sixth Sense was a lot slower than Unbreakable. It seemed to take an eternity to get to the point where the kid spills his big secret - dead people, yeah, we worked that out early on. Don't get me wrong, I liked Sixth Sense too, but only gave it a 7 compared with an 8 or 9 for Unbreakable.

I thought the build-up was great. We're introduced to the characters and the concept of real super-heroes, David's finally convinced of Elijah's story, he goes out in the field for the 1st time & nearly bites it, and then, at the ultimate high point for David, his whole world comes crashing down. Sure, the ending was a bit abbreviated but I can understand why M.Night wanted to finish the movie at that point - to leave the audience thinking about the twist (I sure didn't see it coming!).

But what do I know - I liked Hannibal... [img]/resources/ubb/wink.gif[/img]
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Paul Rogan
37 year old fanboy and proud of it

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#469458 - 06/28/01 12:51 AM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
Cheese0012 Offline
Member

Registered: 01/23/01
Posts: 277
Loc: NYC
I liked this one too. Not unlike Sixth Sense I didn't expect much, and was given a lot more. I thought the end was a little off, but in retrospect showing the whole phone call and the police carting Jackson away wasn't needed and would've just prolonged the ending. The "shocker" would have worn off before they could tell that much story, this way it ended quick and people were still feeling the shock when the credits rolled.

As for setting it up for a sequel, I read somewhere that they signed for a three picture deal, so expect to see more of David Dunn in the future.

It brings up the much asked question, what is the most successful comic book movie? Superman is a popular one, if you can sit through the stunningly stupid opening titles, but all in all a fine movie. Batman, well, um, no. The Crow (which is actually on right as I write this) is pretty faithful to the book and pretty well done, I like the movie more then the book, sadly the sequels and TV show have been so terrible they have tainted the first. X-men? I liked xmen for what it was, silly summer movie fare. I had a few problems with it (what the hell was a 30 something Jean Grey doing with a teenage looking Cyclops?) but all in all it was damned fine. Men In Black (which I watched them shoot in Times Square on Monday)? Or Unbreakable, I just saw it for the first time, so I'm heavy on it right now, my judgment is tainted. Still to come is Ghostworld later this summer and Spidey next year, and Ang Lee's signed on to do the Hulk. Marvel says Daredevil, punisher, Blade 2, Dr. Strange and Ironman are on the way, Daniel Aranofsky's Batman: Year one has a lot of promise, and I haven't heard much else from the DC camp. SO what do y'all think?
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#469459 - 06/28/01 01:48 AM Re: Unbreakable: Whatcha think
Bill Anderson Offline
Member

Registered: 02/01/00
Posts: 113
Loc: Albany, NY USA
When the movie ended on that freeze-frame of Willis in the hallway, all I could think of was the way episodes of Police Squad! used to end. I half expected a monkey to come jumping into the shot while Willis tried to stay perfectly still.

By the way, on what planet is the average comic book 35 pages?

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