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Movie Reviews
by Todd Pearage

Split (1/20/2017)

Rated PG-13 for disturbing thematic content and behavior, violence and some language.

Starring James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy, Haley Lu Richardson, Kim Director, Jessica Sula and Betty Buckley

Directed by M. Night Shyamalan (The Sixth Sense, Signs and Unbreakable)

Todd's Rating: Worth Buying

Dynamic ImageM. Night Shyamalan is back!

While the mental divisions of those with dissociative identity disorder have long fascinated and eluded science, it is believed that some can also manifest unique physical attributes for each personality, a cognitive and physiological prism within a single being. Though Kevin (James McAvoy) has evidenced 23 personalities to his trusted psychiatrist, Dr. Fletcher (Betty Buckley), there remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls led by the willful, observant Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy, The Witch), Kevin reaches a war for survival among all of those contained within him—as well as everyone around him—as the walls between his compartments shatter apart.

Say what you will about M. Night Shyamalan, but I think he is one of our generation’s best. He is a master story-teller who keeps an audience guessing and looking for that signature twist ending. His latest film is classic M. Night Shyamalan.

Here’s a quick recap. M. Night Shyamalan broke new ground in 1999 with the “I didn’t see that coming” The Sixth Sense. His next film was Unbreakable. Personally, I loved it, but it was met with less than stellar reviews. Then came Signs and most people agree that this was a great film. But his next several films left audiences and even fans like myself scratching our heads. Even though I liked The Village, Lady in the Water and The Happening, there was a certain level of disappointment. But I can’t even begin to explain The Last Airbender and After Earth. Then in 2015 he released The Visit. It was a creepy, entertaining film with a twist ending. M. Night was back.

And now, with an incredible performance by James McAvoy, Shyamalan has succeeded in making a movie that you have to see. I love how M. Night Shyamalan tells a story. It doesn’t seem to matter what the story is about, he is able to raise the creepy factor higher than anyone else.

From the opening credits to the film’s final scene (I want so badly to tell you about the final scene, but I won’t), I was uncomfortable…which is exactly what M. Night Shyamalan wants.

McAvoy’s Kevin has 23 distinct personalities, and although we only get to see a handful of them “in the light,” we are treated to one very impressive performance.

Split is easily Shyamalan’s best film since Signs and is for sure “Worth Buying.”

There is a scene involving teenage girls stripped down to their underwear and another scene that heavily implies a child being molested.

There are several scenes of violence that are graphic and unsettling.

There is one use of the F-word and a few S-words.

  1. Why does Dr. Karen Fletcher work so hard to help “Kevin”?

  2. Read Galatians 6:2

      Share each other’s burdens, and in this way obey the law of Christ.

  3. How did Dr. Fletcher share Kevin’s burdens?

  4. What are some ways we can share each other’s burdens?

Todd Pearage Todd Pearage is a movie buff at heart, but he's not your traditional film critic. Todd is a blue collar film geek, from his job years ago at Blockbuster to his heartfelt online movie reviews. But Todd isn't just a film geek. He has worked with middle and high school students since 1991 as a youth pastor and is currently on staff at Calvary Church in Souderton, PA. Todd and his wife Lynda have three children, Brianna, Caleb and Addyson.

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