on 15 June 2003
i've seen sixth sense... i jumped and talked endlessly about that all important twist... i adored the re-invention of bruce willis....
i rented this movie becuase i was too broke when it was at the cinema, i was interested in the story-a little complex i thought something about some guy who survives a train crash and doesn't even have a scratch on him... maybe it'll be like a modern day superman...
i wasn't expecting what i got
from the start i knew i wasn't watching some big blockbuster action superhero movie from the cries of the baby born in the first scene... the camera action-the cinematography and that chilling soundtrack... this movie blew me away, just the concept of introducing the idea of super-human power to this guy whos life was not what you'd expect to be superhero, his wife is sleeping in a seperate bed, he works a menial job (no newspaper side job here!) making him almost like a comic book character is outstanding, it could have been a messy job but the director makes it poetry.
slow paced at times but for good reason, you not only get to know this ordinary guy struggle to understand what he might be but you also see an outstanding performace by Mr Jackson who plays a man who breaks easily-moulding the unwilling Mr Willis trying to help him understand his importance...
i swear i never get bored watching this piece of art
the soundtrack will soon be in my cd collection
and i will never look at comic books quite the same
please watch it
M. Night Shyamalon's vision...a cast with the likes of Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson...the genre, world, and outlying universe of comic book superheroes and villians...that are closer to home than we realize!
The story itself is a work of art. Themes arise as we see a man named Elijah (Jackson) search the world over for a sign, a hint that maybe someone is the opposite of him. What Elijah is is a frail man with a bone disease that makes his bones brittle and privy to breaking easily. Who he is looking for is someone who is...unbreakable.
David Dunn (Willis) is a security gaurd for a college stadium. He lives a simple life and raises his son with his wife (played by Robin Wright Penn). The two are going through a tough time but due to their history are working it out, while at the same time their son discovers that his dad is not like other kid's dads...
The movie is thick in theme and strong in character development. After all, we're talking about weaving the mythos surrounding comic book superhero's into the here and now. Good vs. Evil. Or is it? A superb plot with many messages and analogies that abound, "unbreakable" is more than just a film, or work of "art". It's simply another great story by Shyamalon.
The depth doesn't stop there, I encourage you to look at the bonus disc for features that delve further into M. Knight's vision behind the story, and the history of the superhero. It add's a lot to the overall package and makes this DVD all the more enjoyable as a gem in any collection!
on 15 May 2006
'Unbreakable' is an excellent film because it has a very specific mix of ingredients: Willis' character is reticent about his feelings and his acting is appropriately understated. Samuel Jackson plays not the overarching villain mastermind, but just another damaged character looking for answers. The soundtrack by James Newton Howard is crucial to the development of the mood for the entire film and the direction by Shyamalan is very 'Hitchcock-esque'. Shyamalan is a self confessed Hitchcock fan and movement and angles and colours help to enhance the telling of the story whilst never failing to remind the viewer of the Hitchcock influence.
This film is more than just a tale with a twist; every character in this film is damaged or missing something in his or her life and the film is as much about a quietly failing dysfunctional family as it is about the resolution of the mystery. If it is 'Die Hard II meets 'Signs' you want then this is not for you, neither is it like any other Shyamalan movie. Accusations by those that find this film tedious, slow, boring is analogous to saying "'Rocky' is only about boxing". This film could have won awards if it had a plot based on the social malaise similar to that of 'American Beauty' and Willis and Jackson have proved they have the acting skills to make a match for any of those highbrow films that take themselves so seriously.
on 28 August 2001
This has to be one of the best films of last year. Another brilliantly understated performance by Willis and a class act from Jackson. Everything from the imagery to the score of this film reeks of highly stylised class
The follow-up to The Sixth Sense is a much superior film, smarter and more stylish, a mix of thriller, mystery and comic book which sees S.L Jackson and Bruce Willis teaming up once again. Willis is again distancing himself from his action movie persona by making films like these, proving he is a very capable actor. Here he plays David Dunn, the lone survivor of a train crash- a man with a history of near-perfect health. He meets Elijiah, a comic book fan who kids call Mr Glass because of his crippling brittle bone syndrome. Elijiah takes an interest in David, and at first seems like a stalker. He wants to prove that David is almost like a superhero as he believes David is impervious to physical harm. He convinces David's son and tries repeatedly to convince David, who claims he has been both sick and injured and is just a normal man who got lucky. However, David eventually realises otherwise and at the request of Elijiah, uses his powers to help the weak and defenceless.
While the Sixth Sense was predictable, though tried a little too hard to be atmospheric, Unbreakable is more subtle and works on many levels, but was a much smaller hit. Shyamalan's style is present here, with floating cameras and contrasts in lighting, built around a twisting plot. Naturally there is a twist, not as overt as his previous film but one which leads to more interesting dissection. Jackson and Willis are equally impressive, and the rest of the cast are good, mainly Robin Penn and Spencer Clark. A highly interesting film worth several watches, and an original take on the typical Comic Book movie.
This double disc edition has plenty of interesting features- cast and crew chats, deleted scenes with director introductions, and a super hero feature narrated by Mr S. L. Jacko.
It often gets forgotten just what an exciting talent M. Night Shyamalan was during the early part of his film making career. True that Unbreakable, with its deliberate slow pacing and left-field narrative, would (and has) proved to be not everyone's cup-o-tea, but there's a film making craft here, and a genius idea brought to vivid life, that makes a spectrum of film lovers lament how his career nose dived, how his ideas quickly got as stupid as his acting...
Unbreakable challenges the thought process, spinning a story that's of a adult comic book heart, but also of a clinical human examination. The narrative is consistently ambiguous, holding the patient viewers in enthral as the cosmic conundrums come tumbling off of the screen. It's refreshing to find a story like this that is so devoid of cliché, where the wonderfully reflective Bruce Willis and the brilliantly fascinating Samuel L. Jackson feed off each other, their character's destinies superbly steered by cast and director. Unbreakable is a complex movie, but not needlessly so, its strengths are numerous for those of a keen eye and ear. It represents Shyamalan's most clever cinematic offering, to which the sad realisation comes to pass that he would never, as yet, be this smart and vibrant again. 10/10
on 29 October 2001
Unbreakable is obviously a work of the heart, a painfully slow movie that it's director M. Night Shyamalan has taken time to carefully craft, so for the impatient among you this could be quite an effort to sit through.
Technically this movie is superb, it's length affording a detail that comic afficionados may be able to spot in the later stages as integral to the story. The atmosphere similar to that of the Sixth Sense has the appearence of a normality that promises secrets beneath. A tension lies in the air ever present but undefineable until Shyamalan decides to let you in on his secrets.
Willis provides an understated performance that fits the tone of the movie as does Jackson repressing his trademark flair for the dramatic.It is Jackson who makes the movie, intriguing the viewer with the unasked questions he knows the answers to but isn't telling.
Unbreakable is a highly satisfying film in the same vein as the Sixth Sense, a pacing beautiful film to be watched on a rainy Sunday afternoon so that the time can be taken to admire it's workmanship.An enjoyable break from the norm
on 6 March 2002
Writer-director Shyamalan's follow-up to his breakout film The Sixth Sense has Bruce Willis as David Dunn, a campus security guard in an icy, aqueous Philadelphia, where he holds onto the last remnants of a separate-bedroom marriage to Robin Wright Penn. The only survivor of a train wreck, Dunn crosses paths with Elijah Price (Jackson), a comic book collector suffering from brittle bones who's now convinced that the hulking, bald protector-of-the-young Dunn has the kind of superhuman powers which have been denied to his fragile self.
I didn't much care for The Sixth Sense, a major success which seemed to me cold and manipulative, its characters mere puppets to be whisked away, and proof that the best way to get ahead in Hollywood is to pull a few strings. Nonetheless, one had to admire Shyamalan's commitment to his narrative: The Sixth Sense was a slow-paced movie, but it showed the signs of a director who was paying acute attention to each facet of the production, and saying damn you to the popcorn-eaters who wished he'd just hurry things up a bit.
Unbreakable is a much better film, entering into the realms of comic books and myth-making with notable success. Like The Sixth Sense, this is a softly-spoken, low-key film, finding more interest in Willis rooting through his airing cupboard than in putting the train crash up on screen, but every moment that unfolds here has something new and interesting to look at and think about, with Shyamalan's tendency for bold colours and camera angles not only approximating those found in comic books, but also giving us a different perspective on events - and it is a perspective we may have lost, that of a child's.
The Sixth Sense offered many examples of primal fear - of the dark, of what's under the bed, of being locked in cupboards - and granted us with its camera the chance to take the Haley Joel Osment character's point of view, and thus see dead people. In every scene in Unbreakable where a child features, the camera takes on this juvenile point of view. The opening sequence, for example, has Willis stumbling through a conversation with a young woman on the train, watched by a kid through the gap in the seats in front of them. This could be seen as the apotheosis of modern American cinema - we're all infantilised by mainstream studio releases, going goo-goo over movie stars, dribbling at love scenes and wetting ourselves during shoot-outs - but also lends the drama an emotional charge, so that the audience, too, starts to look up at Dunn and consider him as a great man. It also allows us to rediscover a very childlike sense of wonder in the world, with its bright hues and strange darknesses, its small battles between good and evil made much bigger.
At any rate, this is a director who knows how to use the camera, and his framing is rarely less than perfectly worked out. One scene of dialogue, as a doctor breaks the news to Willis that he might be the only survivor of the train crash, is partially blocked by a bandaged body which begins to bleed into its swabs just as Willis, and - through him - the audience, starts to realise what it is that has taken place; Elijah's early scenes are shot as reflections in shop mirrors and television sets, so that any movement into the frame comes as disconcerting, a sucker-punch threat from a different direction to that one was expecting. Shyamalan is also, clearly, a great director of actors: Willis, allowed to be more physically present here than in The Sixth Sense, is an inspired choice given the actor's track record for playing superheroes who always have a weakness, and Jackson, with a stare to take to the grave with you, gets comic-book obsessiveness spot on, a purple-cloaked shadow of reclusive, crippled menace. For me, the film's major acting triumph was in the rediscovery of Robin Wright Penn - radiant here, her blue eyes finding their own place in the director's colour scheme.
This is a stranger, less clear-cut movie than The Sixth Sense, and stronger for it, for its ambiguity is that of the real world, where we tend not to see dead people. Jackson's Elijah, Shyamalan's curious prophet, has a powerful speech about the "mediocre times" we live in, and we have certainly lost a lot from post-modernism's battle cry of death to myths. By asking us to look at life through a child's eyes, this filmmaker has, in his last two films, professed a touching idealism - a faith in storytelling - which is as fragile as Elijah's bones or a glass cane in an era when we tend to laugh at the mythical and serious, the mystical and sincere. People have responded well to both films, which is a promising sign in such cynical times - a sign that we still possess a desire to be wide-eyed and strung along, even if only occasionally. Where The Sixth Sense had its audience coming out of the cinema only to go back over the film, to try and spot where we were twisted around the storyteller's finger, Unbreakable should - once you've debated the strange-but-not-quite-true ending - have you looking over your life, trying to spot any extraordinary features which will make you a hero in a time of great ordinariness
on 8 October 2003
Bruce Willis has increasingly become one of my favourite actors in recent years, it's strange to think he was considered washed-up at one time. I saw Twelve Monkeys a little while before this, and I would draw a few parallels.
Firstly, there is something very archetypal about Bruce Willis's screen persona. He perfectly captures the picture of 'ordinary guy caught up in extraordinary circumstances', which allows you to relate to him. This is enhanced by his inarticulacy, which while often frustrating, probably comes closer to reality than the one-liner-packed performances we often see from other actors. To summarise, he was perfectly cast for this role.
Another parallel is in the slow-moving, quiet feel to both films. Unbreakable does not rely on loud dance music to create an atmosphere. There are many quiet moments, which is good for me, as I like to have time to ponder what's happening.
But Willis's functional but slightly dull character (I reiterate, I don't see that as a bad thing in this context) could not carry it alone. Sam Jackson is on fine form, suceeding in portraying a character who is both creepy and compelling. I particularly love the scene where he lectures the guy who wants to buy some 'serious art' for his kid. Those kind of serious, intense characters are great fun to watch!
I've not said much about the storyline, and that's because I think that the plot, while decent, does not make this film. If anything it's the way the plot develops, and the reactions of the characters to the unfolding events which makes this film so compelling. If it's flawed in one department particularly, it's that the plot development feels kind of uneven. Things creep forward slowly throughout most of the film and then, bam! Everything changes! It leaves you feeling a bit disorientated.
Still, it certainly is well worth the effort. 4 Stars to try and be as fair as possible, but for my own personal enjoyment, 5 stars! I'm looking forward to the next time I get around to watching it. It's definitely a break from the usual slick, fast-paced but hollow Hollywood shennanigans we've come to expect! I think I can say fairly confidently that MOST people will be well pleased with this purchase.
A child is born with a 'Brittle-Bone' defect, as a child his mother introduces him to 'super-hero' comics he grows up obsessed with the idea of there being such a person in reality.
When he reads one person survives a fatal train crash walking away without a scratch he believes after researching the survivor he may at last have found a man to fulfil his life-long fantasy.
This is a strange story that actually works pretty well.
With convincing performances by 'Samuel L Jackson' (Elijah Price) and 'Bruce Willis' (David Dunn)
M.Night Shyamalan' might not be everyone's cuppa-tea, he has written and produced a diverse and often strange selection of films,this certainly one of the better ones, as they are released i do feel a need to at least watch..........This one is worth a viewing.