The Lady in the Water (DVD)

In short, this is supposed to be an allegorical fairytale, but comes across more so as a befuddling mess that’s about as identifiable as the events in “Dungeons and Dragons”.


Paul Giamatti, Bryce Dallas Howard, Jeffrey Wright, Bob Balaban, Sarita Choudhury, M.Night Shyamalan

Couldn’t help but laugh when one of the characters in M.Night Shyamalan’s – he’s the wiz-kid who burst onto the scene with his terrific “The Sixth Sense” back in 1999 – newest film is introduced as a film critic. That guy so doesn’t belong here. (And knowing exactly how us critics are going to treat his latest narcissistic jaunt, Night gets his comeuppance by offing the character in the film’s latter half).

The infamous – because Disney rejected it, and so Night shopped it around town until Warner Bros decided to take it up – “Lady in the Water” is one of those films that the abovementioned film critic would’ve been embargoed from reviewing indefinitely. Obviously starting to believe his own hype, and those old rumours that he’s the second coming, Night’s given up trying – and instead just shovelling shit into cinemas with the hope that we’ll be all be convinced it’s something much greater; if only because we’re expecting it to be.

In short, this is supposed to be an allegorical fairytale, but comes across more so as a befuddling mess that’s about as identifiable as the events in “Dungeons and Dragons”. Paul Giamatti is the terminally saddened super intendant of a block of flats. One night he spots a woman taking a dip in the communal pool after hours. Kneeling over to see who it is, he falls in… she rescues him. Next thing you know, the pastel redhead mermaid-esque angel (Bruce Dallas-Howard) is in his apartment, explaining to the man that she needs to “get home” to her fairytale world. And by the stage, she’s not the only one needing to get home.

Even when he’s not good; M.Night Shyamalan still has a good twist in his tale (like the interesting final few minutes of “The Village”), but the only twist here is that you think its gotta be an ok movie, but its all a ruse, its pure Shit.

Though the DVD features quite a few extras – including a gag reel, several featurettes, some deleted scenes and audition tapes – but the best moment was when the loading dock opened, I picked up the DVD, and put it back in its case.

Rating :
Reviewer : Clint Morris