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M. Night Shyamalan had the ending of Glass in mind since Unbreakable

**Spoilers for GLASS**

This weekend audiences finally got to check out the final entry in M. Night Shyamalan’s Eastrail 177 trilogy – GLASS – the third movie after UNBREAKABLE and SPLIT, and in unshocking Shyamalan fashion, they got a shocker of an ending.  While we only realized SPLIT was the second movie in the trilogy upon its release in 2017, Shyamalan says he’s had this whole tale mapped out for close to two decades, desiring to bring the whole thing to an operatic conclusion.

The ending in discussion involves several parts. First, the epic showdown between David Dunn/The Overseer (Bruce Willis) and Kevin Wendell Crumb/The Horde (James McAvoy) comes to an abrupt halt when the latter learns that the train crash caused by Elijah Price/Mr. Glass in UNBREAKABLE killed Crumb’s dad too. This leads Crumb (in Beast form) to kill Price, only to keep going after Dunn. Soon the whole thing is broken up by who we think are police, but who are actually part of a secret society tasked with wiping out people with powers, with Sarah Paulson’s Dr. Ellie Staple a member of their ranks. They shoot Crumb and drown Dunn, effectively wiping out all three leads. But Price, the mastermind, prepared for this, and made sure to record video of the entire showdown, which his mom (Charlayne Woodard), Dunn’s son (Spencer Treat Clark) and Crumb’s victim/pal (Anya Taylor-Joy) to upload the video for the world to see, leading to their exposure around the world.

Yeah, there’s a lot going on with that finale. Shyamalan spoke with EW about the conclusion and was asked if this was how he meant to end it all when he envisioned the saga back with 2000’s UNBREAKABLE.

“I did. I always thought it was a little bit of like an opera, even when I was starting on Unbreakable. I thought this was a very operatic end to it all [with] people screaming and all of these kinds of implications. It was about implications more than anything. I’m a big fan of One Flew Over the Cuckoo’s Nest as you can probably tell. The format of that movie just blew me away when I saw it. The idea that the journey of the main character gets fulfilled by another character is a very powerful idea.”

While it may have seemed like a shock for audiences to see Dunn show up at the end of SPLIT – revealing itself as a sequel – Shyamalan has gone on record that he always had grander ambitions for this world of grounded heroes and villains. That includes a recent interview where he said he had included The Horde in the early draft of the UNBREAKABLE script, but eventually took it out.

As for that ending, Shyamalan may have had this ending in place for some time, that doesn’t mean it was a good idea. The very last few minutes of the movie abandon what he created with UNBREAKABLE all those years ago – which was effectively a deconstruction of the superhero mythos and applying it to a very grounded world. With the ending of GLASS, he all but succumbs to the prospect of world-building by introducing this secret society of hero/villain killers, making the setting feel less like a grounded world and more like an aspiring, large-scale universe. Sure, there are the themes of embracing what makes you special – themes in the two previous movies – but the execution of the ideas is what betrays the finale.

So, no, I didn't like the ending of GLASS, but the rest of the movie is just fine and quite entertaining. For those of you who have seen the movie (if not, why are you down here?) what did you think? Did it live up to your expectations or were you left scratching your head like me?

GLASS is in theaters now. 

Source: EW

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