Movie Review: Split

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Plot twist! The biggest surprise is that M. (Manoj) Night Shyamalan finally gets his Hitchcockian groove back. Split (2016), Shyamalan’s deviously playful horror thriller, is completely bonkers and satisfies as a companion piece to his earlier, more successful works.

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Of course, I have a cameo. I’m billed as ‘Jai, Hooters Lover’

James McAvoy is both frightening and magnetic in his split personality role. He demonstrates his crazy-good acting skills as the devious kidnapper who imprisons three girls in an underground bunker. He tells them they are being kept as “sacred food.”

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I face my greatest challenge yet: being directed by M. Night Shyamalan (oh, and playing a dozen distinct personalities…but mainly the first thing).

To make matters worse, he suffers from dissociative identity disorder (DID), meaning his victims (one being the resourcefully enigmatic Anya Taylor-Joy from The Witch (2015)) are never sure which of his 23 tortured souls will steal the limelight next.

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Wouldst thou like the taste of butter…and a pretty dress? Wouldst thou like to live deliciously?

A radical psychiatrist played by charismatic Betty Buckley (Abby from Eight is Enough) believes DID patients can access supernatural abilities.

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24 personalities? I thought eight was enough.

It’s this convincing concept that grips the audience through every suspenseful turn. I was tickled by this film even though it transcends the boundaries of common sense and good taste.

 

 

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