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Has Shyamalan Failed To Create A Scary Eco-Villain?

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Reviews for M. Night Shyamalan’s latest film, The Happening, have been less than praise-worthy, with many complaints “rooted” in the choice of the antagonist for the plot. If you’ve followed our coverage of the movie for any length of time, you obviously know what I’m talking about — but for the sake of those who wish to remain surprised, I won’t reveal here what’s being slammed.

(Spoliers)

One review that hit the net a couple days ago had this to say:

“It’s plants that are responsible. They’ve decided to wipe out humanity and release the neuro-toxin as their natural weapon. This was far, far more clear in the script (and even the title “The Green Effect”) and I’m really of the opinion that it’s a pretty neat idea, though. What Shyamalan quickly finds, though, is that it’s very, very hard to menacingly cut to an evil-looking tree. That doesn’t stop him from trying, though, and he inexplicably adds wind as a way of livening up the scenes. When the leaves of a tree start to blow, evil’s afoot. It’s really, really hard not to laugh at and there’s even a real groaner of a gag-scene wherein Wahlberg timidly apologizes to a houseplant only to find that it’s made of rubber. Really.”

I guess that’s the real issue — and it makes sense. How evil can a field look? Though if anyone could build suspense over a houseplant, it would be Shyamalan. Still, will movies like The Ruins showing plants actually physically kicking human ass, people might be a bit disappointed over this choice in eco-monster. 

I’m still holding out hope. To get a feel for the film, check out this extended clip over on Yahoo! Movies. 

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