The Village

Year: 2004
Director: M Night Shyamalan
Producer: M Night Shyamalan
Writer: M Night Shyamalan
Cast: Joaquin Phoenix, Sigourney Weaver, Bryce Dallas Howard, William Hurt, Brendan Gleeson, Adrien Brody
The master of the huge twist is back again, and you realise how he didn't do himself any favours with The Sixth Sense, it being such a huge film and the twist at the end being such a mindblower.

Now, it's his trademark and audiences will demand it from every film he does. And in a film as slow and dreary as The Village, the payoff had to be big to satisfy.

Thankfully, it is. Before that though, the story of a village that seems to be set sometime in the late 1800s and its scared inhabitants meanders along at a snails pace.

Why are they scared? The woods surrounding the village are supposedly filled with creatures, called 'those we do not speak of' even though they're referred to constantly, with whom the villagers share an uneasy peace; they won't go into the woods if the creatures stay out of the village.

When a baby dies, the idealistic young man Lucius (Phoenix) lobbies to leave the village and travel to the outside world (hotbeds of vice and danger called 'the towns' as described by the village elders) to bring back the sort of medicine that would have saved the child.

Amid the romantic entanglements of the youth in the village, things turn worse and the creatures seemingly start a rampage, coming into the village and leaving dead animals and red scars on the doors (the bad colour) as warnings.

So after Lucius is fatally injured in a lover's triangle, his blind bride to be is allowed to travel to the outside world for medicine for him (the reason for which becomes obvious in the twist).

Once more (as in The Sixth Sense) the twist came from nowhere and was a very big and well thought-of surprise (in fact, it was even less obvious than that of The Sixth Sense.

But the rest of the movie takes a big investment of patience, and the truth behind the creatures is a big disappointment.

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