Director: M Night
Starring: Gael Garcia Bernal, Vicky Krieps, Rufus Sewell, Alex Wolff, Ken Leung, Aaron Pierre, Emun Elliott, USA. 1h 48m
At first glance this was always going to be an awkward film for any director to make , after the great success of Sandcastles, the amazing graphic novel detailing the dark and immersive story of a group of strangers trapped on a beach, am night was the only person who probably is just crazy enough to take this on and to convert it for the Hollywood screen .
I had read the comic several years before when it first came out I have to buy a new copy as I had lost my original lent to it a dear friend who maybe one day will give it back to me, so now I have a fancy new version with extra insights from the author and cool little sticker that says it is being made into a movie. but for the life of me I couldn’t quite work out how he was going to translate this into a story for the big audience , but strangely he has come up with her intelligent and intriguing storyline which dips from the curious into conspiracy.
There’s not a lot of mystery as to the background of the narrative ,a group of strangers find themselves on a small secluded beach , with an Eden like appearance however there was some kind of phenomenon which is making them age faster., But the story begins in a very different way to the graphic novel which begins on the beach itself instead M Night decides to take things back a step further and we see a family arriving at a very luxurious and plush retreat and offered a ride to a very special place along with a small handful of other recruits but it’s a mystery as to why these people have been selected, And you really need to think outside the box if you’re ever going to get close as to why they have been selected.
Stop wishing away this moment.
Things move along as you would expect and remain quite true to the original text with only a few tweaks which in hindsight make for a better movie whereas the book made better use of the world of comic imagination. The characters slowly begin to realise what the audience already knows, what time seems to be passing normally their bodies seem to be ageing faster, leading to a host of strange realisations, conflict and emotional distress , as they attempt to leave the area there some kind of natural force field which knocks them out.
The question novels author made the story the philosophical tapestry of ideas and multiple conclusions but with one doom felt kick to the gut ending , and with a director such as M knight who is well known for his twisting turning in your face thriller’s I was expecting something that would up one the original story , However he seems to have given the film an unusually comical big blockbuster ending which is definitely easier on the audiences psyche but really stripped away the nihilistic overturns off the original story which didn’t do anything for previous fans.
Related: The Visit (2015), Twilight Zone the Movie (1981)
Lists: Graphic Novels to Cinema Screen
Spotlight: M Night Shylaman