M. Night Shyamalan weaves us another tale of of mysticism that comes at the cost of a family unit. When a family visits a secluded beach while staying at a resort, they start to notice something strange happening.. something where everyone is seemingly aging by years within hours. It's a simple concept that has a lot of potential.
I think everyone was expecting to shit on this film, and the truth is it doesn't deserve that. It has some brilliant direction and camera work, the idea itself is clever, and it's yet another 'one location' film that stretches itself to ultimate lengths. I was never bored while watching and the ending (or the twist, as most would call it) wraps the whole thing up in a pretty bow that honestly made me enjoy it even more.
But, it isn't all sunshine and rainbows. The filming location is beautiful, but its limited capacity means that the film is 90% dialogue - and in order for this to work, the dialogue needs to be strong.. and it is not at all. Both the dialogue and the acting were the two things that held me up and prevented me from becoming immersed. Some characters come off as complete sociopaths, such as finding a corpse and only saying "damn" in a monotonous tone. Many of the characters are straight-up annoying, and the main parents are the only real couple I enjoyed (even Alex Wolfe was a bit of a bummer, and I usually like him).
However, I'd like to stress that this film doesn't deserve the hate it's been receiving. Sure, this isn't a "Sixth Sense" or even a "Split".. but it's definitely not an "Avatar" or even a "The Happening". It has a clever set up and it's beautifully made, and the twist-ending might be a bit predictable since there's obvious bread crumbs sprinkled throughout, but the way it's presented is satisfying and it works by adding another layer to the whole tale that would change your perspective on a second viewing. I feel the reveal could have happened much earlier on and made for an interesting B-Story line to follow, which would have given us a break from the failing characters we get stranded with, but that's my main critique. It has some creepy images, some body horror, and some wonderful direction, but the script should have received another revision before being put to film.
'Old' is a movie which might not age well over time (haha), but I think that it deserves a fair chance before being bashed by people who haven't even seen it. It's a fun time, just not a brilliant time.
"Old" is now playing in Theaters.
'Til Next Time, Mike Cleopatra