To start, I am a M.Night.Shyamalan fan. Since 6th Sense and through the lukewarm decade after that. Hehe. I might be a little bias. I love his brand of horror and mystery. But that would imply that all his movies are the same. It’s not. Especially with The Visit. I started watching with low expectations, as his fans would have get accustomed by now.
The experience watching The Visit is one with growing dread that something really bad is going to happen soon, it gets you early in the movie but you insist to sit there trying to uncover what it is before it happens. Of course Mr.Shyamalan left you some clues…you just didn’t think it through. That’s why I keep coming back to his movies. I love how the interest is sown as early as it can and kept you glued to the screen. You’d also given the time to sympathize the characters, understand their story while readying yourself for the ultimate twist at the end. Because The Visit could easily have been a simpler narrative if handed to another director but Mr.Shyamalan executed something more atmospheric and plays with your visceral fear. And let’s not forget it’s a found footage movie…you know how shitty lots of those can be 😝
(Honestly it’s hard to write this without giving away one spoiler word lol)
The movie is lightly introduced with all the main characters, a seemingly happy single mother with her 2 children, whom she will be sending off to her parents’ home for a chance of first reunion. She and her parents cut off their ties since she ran off to marry her lover 15 years ago. The dysfunctional family is thematically discussed and acts as the basis of the characters’ actions later in the movie. The emptiness and vulnerable facade the 2 children put on to survive their parents’ separation are expertly played by young virtually unknown actors Olivia DeJonge (Becca) and Ed Oxenbould (Tyler) (both actors are Australians). These 2 actors are truly the stars of the movie. Becca and Tyler are very charming and witty, with the warmth of their impulsive and childish actions, it makes them very believable characters to root for. The use of the internet slanga and some funny observations of the current teenage trends brought into their conversations also makes them enjoyable to watch. It reinforces the realistic feel of the footage Becca and Tyler took of the whole week over their grandparents, to look at the horrors unfolding though their own eyes.
One thing I felt at the scene in the car when the mother was driving them to the train station at the start of the movie was that it reminded me of a similar scene in The Shining. It’s the same irk from The Shining that the young children would be left at the mercy of mentally unstable adults. And the pale, white, unforgiving snowy setting in a secluded area where there are no immediate neighbours. However this movie is more of a thriller than horror. Ah you see? It’s really hard to not spoil it! If you’re already 30mins into the movie you’d know why. Hold on to that thought, and wait until the end where all your theories are SCREWED. At least half of mine did…lol! Thank you Mr.Shyamalan for another mind challenging thriller-horror. I enjoyed trying to investigate though I fall flat on my face everytime!!
4.5/5 recommended to fans and non fans alike. Critics also gave Mr.Shyamalan a thumbs up for this one (which is rare).
Rotten Tomatoes wrote:
The Visit provides horror fans with a satisfying blend of thrills and laughs — and also signals a welcome return to form for writer-director M. Night Shyamalan.
‘A return to form’ guys!! Come and watch the weirdest, perilous one week spent at the grandparents home. Fill your stomach to your heart’s content, run and play around the large yard but do not.ever.leave your room after 9.30pm *evil laugh*
Rated 18+ : Female nudity (back), suggestive scenes