M. Night Shyamalan made quite the impression with his third film, 1999's "The Sixth Sense." And that impression, which was built on plots that smacked both of Hitchcock and Rod Serling, continued for the next couple of films — 200's "Unbreakable" and 2002's "Signs" — despite some critics' complaints.
But things began to fall apart after that. His 2004 "The Village" was dismissed for its silly ending, 2006's "Lady in the Water" was dismissed for being both overblown and underwhelming while 2008's "The Happening" felt as if Shyamalan — while still capable of creating some creepy imagery — had run out of original ideas (nature is tying to kill us?).
He kept making movies, of course, with 2010's kids' adventure flick "The Last Airbender," 2013's sci-fi offering "After Earth" and the 2015 trek into family horror "The Visit." But it wasn't until 2016's "Split," which stars James McAvoy as a maniacally murderous split personality, that Shyamalan made something that smacked of his previous promise.
And now Shyamalan brings us "Glass," which is set to open nationally on Friday. "Glass" is a blend of "Unbreakable" and "Split," starring Samuel L. Jackson, Bruce Willis and McAvoy, all reprising characters from those respective films.
Jackson plays Elijah Price and Willis David Dunn, the two antagonists from "Unbreakable," while McAvoy is the blend of characters — but also The Beast — from "Split." The conceit is that all three are confined to a mental asylum, under the care of a psychiatrist (played by Sarah Paulson) who thinks they are delusional.
Anyway, that's what to expect at this point from Friday's opening film schedule. Oh, and this from the Magic Lantern: a big-screen look at Alfonso Cuarón's "Roma," which is now an odds-on favorite to win a Best Picture Oscar.
As always, I'll update when the area theaters finalizes their bookings.