Ever since I first laid eyes on The Sixth Sense I have been a huge fan of M. Night Shyamalan. I know he’s not everyone’s cup of tea but I love the twists and the vision he injects into his storytelling.
Over the last three years or so Hollywood seems to have fallen out of love with this diverse horror/fantasy filmmaker – maybe he just needed time off to recharge his batteries?
About a month back my partner called me into the room halfway through a new trailer she was watching – unfortunately I got there a few seconds too late to see anything worthwhile!
But my partner had seen enough to indicate it was a Found Footage film and one of the scenes involved a grandmother asking a child to get into the oven – sounds interesting!!!
So, for the next few hours I made sure I sat through every commercial break thrown at me…it wasn’t long until I came across what I was looking for!
Not only was The Visit a decent budget Found Footage offering – it was written and directed by Mr. Shyamalan.
That was more than enough for me – I HAD to see this film!
The film follows Becca ( Olivia DeJonge ) and her younger brother Tyler ( Ed Oxenbould ) as they go and meet their estranged grandparents for the first time.
There’s been a bit of friction between their mother and the grandparents resulting in them having no contact for a number of years.
Becca thinks of herself as a bit of a documentary maker and decides to film the whole experience in an attempt to mend broken bridges between her mother and the grandparents.
So the kids head for rural Pennsylvania where they finally meet up with their grandparents ( played by the impressive Deanna Dunagan and Peter McRobbie ).
At first the old couple seem like awesome grandparents that cater to the kid’s every need. But for some reason the children are told they are not allowed to leave the confines of their bedroom after 9:30 at night.
When the kids begin to question this curfew things start to get very strange….
Works Both Ways
It’s not often that I sit through a Found Footage movie that could of worked both ways – I think this is an indication of how well it is put together.
I was left with the feeling that this movie could also of worked if it was shot in a more traditional format – avoiding the Found Footage element.
There was an air of creepiness throughout it’s duration that would have come through ANY cinematography style – this was the main strength of the film.
I will have to admit that The Visit was not as good as I hoped it would be…but it was still very enjoyable.
I think I convinced myself beforehand that the ‘Shyamalan factor’ was going to propel this Found Footage into the classic zone – it didn’t!
But don’t get me wrong here – this WAS a very good Found Footage film.
The cast were superb throughout but I have to give special mention to the grandmother played by Deanna Dunagan – what an awesome performance in sinister creepiness ( she was born for this part! ).
M. Night Shyamalan’s movies are known for providing intelligent and bewildering plot twists that usually make the experience unforgettable. His latest offering does provide a couple of twists but I’m sad to say that I saw them coming a mile off.
I think this is what disappointed me most about the movie – I expected the climax to be another mind bending eye-opener.
But this really shouldn’t put you off watching the movie at all – I think 99.9% of Found Footage freaks will sit through this and be glad they did so.
It has plenty to offer and it sits on extremely high production values – definitely one for the ‘recommended watching’ list!