Disconnected. That’s the word that came to my mind several times when I was watching the movie. And it summed up the movie for me.
The Happening, from our very own “Night” whose armour isn’t so shining anymore, is a movie that I never felt a connection with. You know how you watch a movie and feel engrossed in it? Not so with The Happening.
The Happening’s about a strange incident that causes people to act weird and kill themselves. Is it a terrorist using chemicals? Is it the government? Is it neither? Who cares. Like I said, you feel a disconnect from the characters and the story and that’s not something you want to feel when you’re in a movie. The premise of the movie’s interesting but the story failed to hold my interest and if your audience doesn’t care about your movie’s characters then you’re in trouble.
Shyamalan clearly has the talent to make a good movie, as he demonstrated with The Sixth Sense. As I read elsewhere, maybe he should focus on the direction and let someone else write the script. The whole writing-directing thing isn’t working out so well for him.
PS: A better title for the movie would’ve been, What’s happening?