Actors: James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy, Betty Buckley
Director: M. Night Shyamalan
Genre: Thriller / Horror
In his latest movie, Split, M. Night Shyamalan tells the story of a young man, who suffers from dissociative identity disorder with up to 24 different personalities. Kevin, the main character played by James McAvoy, offers a range of characters: The innocent nine-year old Kanye West fan, a snooty and sinister woman, an awkward, perverted guy with OCD and “The Beast”. And while James McAvoy convincingly performs every single character with a manic sense of humour and dark charm, the story disappoints a bit in the end.
The movie lives entirely from the great performance of its main actor, while the other actors’ characters go short. This is however not the actresses fault, but the stereotypical character description of hysterical horror movie teenage girls led by a smart and observant underdog. The psychiatrist, on the other hand, doesn’t get enough screen time to explain her hypothesis regarding Kevin sufficiently. In the end her whole character is useless, even though she’s able to prove her perceptions.
The atmosphere of the movie is gloomy and luring, and the audience wavers between being startled by the impenetrability of the multiple personalities and actually sympathising with some of those. The end offers no story twist, but instead adds a small unnecessary splash of supernatural to the mix, while some stories were not followed through. Summing up M. Night Shyamalan offers an average entertaining movie, which depicts cruelty and torture, but resigns from more detailed explanations about the actual mental illness.
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