M. Night Shyamalan
Bryce Dallas Howard
I felt a true closeness to this movie. Like the people in this village, my parents referred to me and my siblings as “those we do not speak of” and whenever I misbehaved, as Adrien Brody’s mentally handicapped character often does in this movie, I was placed in a quiet room; the only difference being Brody’s character wasn’t beaten with corn for hours afterwards. As much as I enjoyed a couple of M’s previous films, in almost all their cases the rewatch value in them has been pretty much nonexistent for me. As I mentioned before, once you know the twist to his movies, enjoy them or not, the movie is usually not as fun to watch the second time around, not to me anyway. Add to that the fact that I felt the twist in this case didn’t hold up to about the 15 + questions I had concerning its possibility, or rather the many incidents that happened in coalition with it. THE VILLAGE’s story, on the whole, was a big disappointment when all was said and done.
won’t deny the fact that N’s, pardon, M’s writing, visionary style
and picturesque shots nevertheless give you a few reasons to give it a good
viewing, if just once. The pretty Bryce Dallas Howard (daughter of the great
Richie Cunningham), also gives a performance worthy of some of her father’s
best work on that beloved seventies sitcom (although the first time I saw this
movie it took me a good half hour ‘til I figured out she was blind). Day,
pardon, Night also serves up a minimum of two very touching, romantic
moments between Howard and Joaquin Phoenix that gives the movie that little bit
of heart it needed. But sadly, after the last twenty minutes tick by, you might
very likely feel as cheated as I did when you start back-tracking and putting
together all the wacky happenings that took place in the kooky village. In the
end, like any other William Hurt movie in existence, I can’t totally pan this
movie, because hell, Bill Hurt is one charming son-of-a-bitch. I suggest you
rent SMOKE and if you have a bit of loose change left afterwards, give THE
VILLAGE a chance as well…
The Village (24 minutes)
This feature puts you right into production, as you’ll witness the cast go through a 19th century boot camp of sorts to learn how to fend for themselves, just like the villagers in the movie have to do on a day-to-day basis; they also focus on the development of the creatures, how shooting was delayed for a while due to a blizzard that hit their shooting location in Pennsylvania and cast and crew interviews. There are also pieces on the editing, sound and casting of the film. Lots to see here and many of them are on-location shots. This is better than most making-of featurettes.
you’re offered up with 5 deleted scenes, which amounts to ten minutes time,
with a video introduction by M before each scene, and after it. A nice mix here
of some lighter moments and a couple of dramatic sequences that you might wish
would have made the final cut. Bryce Dallas Howard’s “declaration of love”
moment in the woods, called Pipes, is particularly worth a look.
Diary (4 minutes)
Bryce reads some of the notes she made in her diary during her experience making the film. It is all in voice-over and plays over some shots of the fields and the overall environment of the village. This is a very personal journal of hers and it doesn’t feel quite right hearing it.
Night’s Home Movie (3 minutes)
M likes to
include a different home movie he made onto each DVD of one of his movies. Cool
idea. It’s worth watching if only to see M in his teens. Oh, and it’s better
than BATMAN & ROBIN.
Production Photo Gallery