THE VISIT (2015)

M. Night Shyamalan has become a punchline over the past few years.  Cranking out glorious failure after glorious failure.  But, lets not forget that there was a brief time that people were calling him “the next Spielberg”.  Pretty funny in retrospect, especially after seeing both The Lady In The Water and The Happening.  Just a few years ago his name was hidden from After Earth, like a dirty secret the studio was ashamed of.  All that said, Mr Night is back and I can say that we are finally laughing with him, instead of at him.

The Visit seems serves as  a vehicle to reinvent this “Auteur” and found footage suits M. Night pretty well.  The story follows two kids who are meeting their grandparents for the first time and are shooting a documentary to mark the occasion.  Once they meet their estranged grandparents, things escalate from odd to terrifying at a slow, but steady pace.

As snarky and critical as I have been, I have to admit that I enjoyed the movie.  The kids were annoying at first, but due to some pretty good writing, they grew on me by the end.  The biggest downfall of the movie is its second ending.  I won’t go into any details, but it just feels tacked on.  It is a little too sappy and probably belongs in another movie.  Minor gripes aside, The Visit is a fun ride and worth watching.  Maybe…just maybe M. Night has found a new way to re-brand himself and hope he continues in this direction.  The Visit releases 9/11 in theaters everywhere.

3/5 STARS

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