“Glass,” is perfect combination of the good, the bad and the ugly. This film is directed by M Night Shyamalan, the formerly disgraced director who is now on the rise. His most recent films include “Split,” “The Visit” and his less than favorable movies, “The Last Airbender” and “Lady in the Water.” This film, “glass,” is supposed to cement his comeback story from his previous box office and critical failures, but does it succeed? The short answer is no, however, there are some good things about the film.
The best thing about this movie is that it subverts your expectations on what a superhero film is supposed to be. The story goes as follows; The Horde, played brilliantly by James Mcavoy, is a man with a variety of other minds living inside of him, giving him the appearance of having Dissociative Identity Disorder. The most dangerous personality is one called “The Beast,” which is superhuman. This causes The Horde to think that he is some kind of superhero.
Although, at the beginning of the film he kidnaps 4 cheerleaders since several of his other personalities are predatory. This is a continuation from the movie, Split, which came out two years ago. At the end of the movie, “Split,” the twist is revealed that this is actually a sequel to a previous Shyamalan film called Unbreakable, starring Bruce Willis. Willis’s character is also superhuman, strong and invisible. In “Glass,” he has turned into a vigilante and is tracking down The Horde when both get caught by the authorities. They are both sent to a mental health facility since they are believed to be ill from believing they are actually superhuman. At this facility, they meet glass, played by Samuel L. Jackson. His perceived “superpower” is that he is extremely smart, but also that his bones are like glass and break easily. From there, the plot develops into an intricate set of mysteries and twists.
What is different here, is that the movie is less of the action film the trailers would have you believe and more of a drama on what is evil and what is good and the thin line between the two. There are many scenes dedicated to intense conversations and less on any action. It is becoming more and more frequent in today’s superhero films that the heroes are becoming more violent than the villains.
A study from the American Academy of Pediatrics National Conference and Exhibition revealed superheroes actually cause more damage than villains, according to CNN. “Glass” really analyzes that fact, and tries to ask the question, “Are superheroes really better than villains?” which is something quite refreshing. However, this and Mcavoy’s performance where he seamlessly switches between personalities at the flip of a dime are the only good things about this movie.
The thing that keeps this movie from being great, is its handling of mental health disorders. Though the first film clearly states that the character was misdiagnosed with Dissociative Identity Disorder, the film really blurs the line between the superpowers, and actual mental disorder. Furthermore, even though the three leads are locked away for supposedly mentally ill, they are constantly treated as less than human from the staff that work at the facility. It’s hard to root for a film when they treat mental illness with such disregard.Overall, Glass is a subversion from the normal superhero film that invites intriguing questions on the basis of morality.
Categories: Arts & Entertainment