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DVD Talk review of 'The Village' (spoilers contained within)

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DVD Talk review of 'The Village' (spoilers contained within)

Old 01-11-05, 06:53 PM
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DVD Talk review of 'The Village' (spoilers contained within)

I read Jason Bovberg's DVD review of The Village at http://www.dvdtalk.com/reviews/read.php?ID=13991 and...

Warning, there are spoilers below (though whether or not it matters, is debatable). If you haven't seen the movie, stop reading now.



Really stop reading.....




Jason, I don't know if the twist is the point or not, but if you didn't realize that the film took place in the present very early in the film, then you weren't paying attention. The biggest clue is the guy who was Hyper or whatever it was he had. Early on someone said that there was medicine in the next town that could cure him. That automatically put us no earlier than the late 20th century.

Ultimately, i think the movie was less than great (Signs was better, as I recall).

The reality is that Shyamalan(sp) will never get another surprise like the 6th Sense, unless he makes movies (many of them) that have no surprise at all. Once the audience no longer expects it he will have the ability to do it without everyone trying to figure out what it is up front.
Old 01-11-05, 07:53 PM
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I don't agree that the twist is immediately descernible (although I did sense it coming fairly early). Medicine has been around for a while.

Even if you "got it" early, the reveal at the end is still meant as a twist, upon which the whole foundation of the film is built. Yes, there's an effective romantic subplot in there, but it wouldn't mean much without that Twilight Zone premise.

I think I agree with your last statement, that he should just quit with the surprise endings. Trying to live up to expectations is his Achilles Heel now.
Old 01-11-05, 08:43 PM
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I really enjoyed the film, mainly because the "twist" seemed obvious from the beginning (dumb luck on my part, I assume), and I was neither proud nor angry for having "figured it out". It simply "was" and therefore it was easy to just sit back and enjoy what was great about this film (of which there is quite a bit) without worrying about being surprised or cheated or anything. That said, I can perfectly understand where some of the other reactions came from and while I disagree with it, I think your review is fair in its assessment. It's certainly much better than so many of the silly 0-star reviews I was reading when it came out in theaters. There's a lot of good in this film as well as bad.

das

Last edited by das Monkey; 01-12-05 at 12:01 PM.
Old 01-11-05, 10:51 PM
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I have to be the one to disagree on this one. I really enjoyed the hype that the trailers created for this movie. Sadly, they proved to be the best thing, other than Bryce Howard about the film. I had no clue that the film took place in the present until the "twist" @ the end. Unfortunately for me, I was really hoping for the "monster" threat to be a real one rather than what it turned out to be. The only character worth paying attention to is Bryce Howard's. I felt she was totally beleiveable and she really made you root for the success of her character. And it doesn't hurt that she's absolutely gorgeous either! In any event, I was totally disapointed in this film and expected something considerably darker and far more visceral than what was presented. The only thing the Village is is disappointing.
Old 01-12-05, 12:00 PM
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What I don't understand is how his whole review paints a less than great picture of the movie, you have to try to not feel like your being used while watching it etc. The video transfer is just okay... and then it has a "Recommended" rating - everything about it sounds like a “Rent it” to me - especially as once you know the ending the movie will be even more obvious/irritating in its attempts to manipulate its audience as you'd be aware of why they are doing what they are doing...

I have not seen it yet, but I won't be buying a movie if the extras could have been better and the video quality was just okay and the movie itself is maybe par probably below par… what the heck in that makes it “Recommended”?? Often I wonder whose ass DVD talk reviewers are kissing – because they just keep losing credibility… you don’t see IGN saying this game was over all just okay, crappy in spots and poorly designed we give it a 8.5 out 10.
Old 01-12-05, 03:30 PM
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You can talk straight to me. I'm here.

As I say in the review, I did find a lot to admire in "The Village," particularly the first hour. I think I make it clear that although the twist hobbles the film in the end, it's got some admirable qualities.

This is a film that teetered on the edge of Rent It/Recommended. I chose the latter for what I've said and also for Howard's amazing performance.

Or maybe I'm just kissing ass.
Old 01-12-05, 11:28 PM
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Would more people like The Village if it had a different ending? I personally can't think of one way I would improve the movie. It made my list on the top 10 movies of all time (Am I the only one?). Shyamalan has three on my top ten list (Signs, The Village, and The Sixth Sense). His movies and Hitchcock's movies are perfection when it comes to my taste in movies. The atmospheres created by their movies are just so real and creepy. I don't watch movies for the endings, I watch movies for the entire movie. There are only a handful of movies besides theirs that I can sit through without taking a break during the middle of the movie (I have Movie Attention Deficit Disorder). However, I am a little dissapointed in the amount of DVD extras Shyamalan's movies contain. He is one of the few directors who I would actually want to hear some commentary from. In the future I hope Shyamalan changes his name so people can go into his movies without trying guess the endings and just enjoy the movie.
Old 01-13-05, 12:03 AM
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I thought the review was fair. You can only give a movie like this so many stars because it’s so obviously flawed. Even though I liked it quite a bit, I felt betrayed as well when the twist came around. I was really involved with Ivy and the other characters towards the end, and then you know what happened, and it totally disconnected me from the story. I no longer cared for the characters, I just felt pity for them. That is definitely not the way you want to end a movie. It’s sort of as if that unraveled the entire story, made it inconsequential. It would have been so much more fulfilling if there was truth to the monsters and the time period—but like Jason said, the whole movie’s foundation was that twist.

The real flaw though is that so much emphasis was placed on it. I haven’t seen it since I went to the theater, but perhaps if shyamalan didn’t try so hard for that AHA! moment it would have worked out better. Because the premise isn’t a bad one at all, I think.

edit:
I agree he should quit with the surprise endings--he's a perfectly capable screenwriter, he doesn't need them. But I hope he redeems himself soon because his directing is where it's at.

Last edited by Jacobsen; 01-13-05 at 12:49 AM.
Old 01-13-05, 02:03 PM
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Got to love the back cover's last line........"ranks up there with Hitchcock's best."

Are you crapping me?????

Night can't even sniff Hitchcock's talent.

Saxon
Old 01-13-05, 03:14 PM
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Yeah, it's not Hitchcock, but I was pleasantly surprised by this one. The Noah character bugged me a bit (like a JarJar) but I thought it was an original story - and that's saying something these days. The ending was not a surprise at all, but I was not disappointed with it and it made sense in the scope of things (the whole premise was just a little outlandish).
Old 01-13-05, 03:26 PM
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Originally Posted by Jason Bovberg
You can talk straight to me. I'm here.

As I say in the review, I did find a lot to admire in "The Village," particularly the first hour. I think I make it clear that although the twist hobbles the film in the end, it's got some admirable qualities.

This is a film that teetered on the edge of Rent It/Recommended. I chose the latter for what I've said and also for Howard's amazing performance.

Or maybe I'm just kissing ass.
Hmmmm… I was just putting it out there - but I'm glad you are "Here" I certainly was not trying to talk behind you're back, and I apologize for the “kissing ass” statement – hopefully it is obvious to all that that is not the case and I was intending to be more tongue and cheek, maybe even humorous but did not mean to offend... often how I think/say things in my head are not well translated in text as the person reading has no insight into my intentions.

My comment was certainly not directed solely at you Jason, as it has been a ongoing "thing" that has bothered me about this site, Although I enjoy reading the reviews as they are usually well written and entertaining (at least as much as a review is meant to be) and very informative, it just seems that the “translation” from the long form review to the “at a glance” rating is often skewed… and since I’m talking to you on a post about your review I’ll stick to it.

You said this Movie teetered on the edge of Rent it/Recommended and what prompted you to round it up was “Howard's amazing performance” and the first hour. This is where we differ as I (if drawing the same conclusions as you from watching the movie) would have rounded down. I will not buy a movie that isn’t thoroughly good or great as a whole, certainly not just to see one actor’s performance of a character or the first half of the movie... I would rent it though and I would still get to see Howard’s performance and yet not pay $25 (for example) for something I might never watch again, I know you said that the first hour was good (again a rent would allow me to see this), but after knowing the ending you also said you could look back and see when you were being manipulated, which I would think would be even more obvious in a second viewing and take a lot away from the “good” of the first hour, plot points that come up that you know will not be explained would all be more apparent and make the lasting appeal of owning a copy fairly low in my mind especially with a just okay video transfer and only a few coulda-been-better special features…

Now this not to say some people will not love this movie and others will hate it, there is no accounting for taste, a review is only meant to give you/us some insight and in particular DVD talk has set up there review rating system to help others purchase the cream of the crop DVD’s and avoid the clunkers or poor quality releases and other pitfalls. And I am simply saying I think the long form review and the “at a glance” ratings should be more in line. I think that is not the case sometimes at DVD talk and have for the most part resigned to the thought that often the “at a glance” rating will not be a good indicator… but even with that knowledge it is still frustrating to me if I think that is the case as I do here. So you see if I can’t rely on the “at a glance” rating then it holds no credibility in my eyes, thus the losing of credibility comment. I think on average DVD talk reviewers are often too nice to the movies they review.
Old 01-14-05, 12:57 PM
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Perhaps I just see a problem with our "At a Glance" ratings. Everyone--readers and reviewers alike--seems to ascribe different meanings to Recommended and Rent It, in particular (we've also gotten heat for our DVD Talk Collector's Series rating). Personally, Rent It says to me that the film is worth a one-time watch and, after that, it's forgettable. Recommended says, to me, that a film is worthy of a second and even third look. I think "The Village" falls in that category. That's just one man's opinion.

I guess I don't think of films in black-and-white terms. Yes, I will round up, whereas you will round down. If I find something valuable inside a film that has problems, I can still recommend it. For that reason, I have a large collection of DVDs. I'm more likely to buy than rent.

As always, I recommend reading the actual review over simply glancing at the "At a Glance" judgments. You're right, it's probably not the best indicator of our thoughts about a given film: We're more concerned with the content of the actual review. There are many personalities and idiosyncracies among our reviewers, and we often have two entirely different takes on the same film.

But I think this really just comes down to you not liking "The Village."
Old 01-14-05, 03:30 PM
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*Spoilers*

*SPOILERS*


Can someone please verify something for me? A friend of mine INSISTS that within 10 minutes of the movie starting, he knew that this movie was not set in the 1800's due to the way the windows worked. He says that they didn't have sliding windows then, and the fact that they slid open and stayed up with no assistance clued him in on the fact that the windows were modern style windows, and so he knew that was a clue to the ending. He said even if they did have sliding windows, they would have used a pully system to open and hold them open. I disagree. Can anyone verify if the windows in The Village were actually from that time period, or if in fact, it was a clue from M. Night??? PLEASE someone help me prove him wrong. He says he took Architecture in college, which I don't think has anything to do with 19th century architecture.

Rob
[email protected]

Last edited by ylomnstr; 01-14-05 at 04:07 PM. Reason: Spoiler Tags
Old 01-14-05, 03:48 PM
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i guessed the ending within 20 minuets of the film.
Old 01-14-05, 05:21 PM
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Feeling very alon here...

I'm not a movie "buff", nor do I have any technical knowledge (beyond my own opinion of good vs. crappy) of cinematography or sound. So, with that disclaimer, and the fact that this is coming from someone who loves sociology and psychology; I found no problem with the ending. I don't think it's so hard to believe that a group of people could become so fed up with the violence in our society that they would try to make their own utopia. The only thing I had an issue with (and mostly because I didn't go back to really check on it) was the explaination as to why the airspace was restricted. I also liked the unstated (but obvious) conclusion that evil in society is unavoidable. I'm one of those people who think that people are basically bad by nature.

No, it's no sixth sense, or amazing masterpiece, but it shouldn't have to be. It's better than 95% of the drivel that came out last year, and that's enough for me. I think with any movie, there are things that you can pick apart (ie. exactly how did they get the farm animals, their clothes, and their furniture), but I don't think the movie has to answer every question. Overall I really liked it.

Thanks for listening:-)

Me
Old 01-14-05, 10:14 PM
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Originally Posted by zidane349
i guessed the ending within 20 minuets of the film.

I guessed the ending when I first heard about the plot, and saw the trailer.

It is without a doubt, my least favorite film ever.

Last edited by BrentLumkin; 01-14-05 at 10:22 PM.
Old 01-14-05, 11:14 PM
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I had no clue of the "twist" of this movie,and was suprised at the conclusion.My wife said she doped it out when she saw the "boxes",something that went right by me.Modern locks,indeed.

Maybe I'm weird,but I can watch M's films without thinking of the inevitable twist;be it the alchohol,the exhaustion,or the desire to be suprised;I cannot say.I thought this was a fantastic film,the story,the camera,the acting;all were top notch.Maybe my blissful ignorance is a positive in this case......
Old 01-15-05, 06:14 AM
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I'm just glad I'm too stupid to figure out the twist/ending after five seconds of watching a film. Makes it much more enjoyable for me.
Old 01-15-05, 08:15 AM
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The Village was awarded the #10 spot on Ebert's 10 worst of the year (with a somewhat muted argument from Roeper who gave it a thumb up). It's interesting how many differing opinions there are on this one.
Old 01-17-05, 04:26 AM
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i thought this movie was ok, but i never even assumed that it took place in the "past". right from the second it started i thought it was in the present and that these were people living in a seclusive "older" manner. i think the water pipe thing right in the beginning as the movie began put me into that present-time mode. it honestly just didn't ever at any point seem to be in the past to me. i have no idea why.

to me the surprise was that they lived in a closed off forest/park area of some sort. i assumed they just lived in the woods somewhere remote.
Old 01-17-05, 12:38 PM
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Originally Posted by John-In-VA
I'm just glad I'm too stupid to figure out the twist/ending after five seconds of watching a film. Makes it much more enjoyable for me.
Same here. I am way too gullible. Didn't see the ending coming AT ALL. This might be a "bargain bin" buy for me when the price drops. For some reason I can't get myself to buy it.
Old 01-21-05, 12:33 AM
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I got the twist very early on. The film should have been a twilight zone episode becasue for me there just wasnt enough story to make it feature length. Definetly my least fav M Night Film (My fav being Signs).
Old 01-21-05, 03:12 PM
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Originally Posted by Dazed
Definetly my least fav M Night Film (My fav being Signs).
Same here.
Old 01-21-05, 06:14 PM
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A (spoiler) question - one that may help me understand the premise of the movie better.


At one point Edward Walker (William Hurt) mentioned to his daughter Ivy (Bryce Howard) how difficult it was for him to see his daughter go blind. I'm unsure, and perhaps I should've gone back to the actual scene to figure it out .. but was her blindness a progressively occuring thing, and hence preventable with outside medicine, or was her blindness caused by something that Edward Walker couldn't have warded off ?

If the disease was progressive, then it makes the premise of the movie hard for me to swallow. If I noticed my daughter's sight is being affected by a disease, I would be over that wall in seconds. Screw playing around with lofty ideals.
Old 01-22-05, 09:46 AM
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I think it was difficult for him to see his daughter going blind because he knew he could help her with help in the town. But he had to pretend there was the creatures in the woods.

I thought the movie was ok, not worth buying but it kept my attention the entire time.

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