We actually went to a theater!
Lady in the Water (M Night Shyamalan, 2006)
Perhaps I’m the only one, but I really liked Lady in the Water, the latest offering from M Night Shyamalan. Reviews of Shyamalan’s films tend to begin with praise for the Sixth Sense and then a comment about how it’s all been downhill from there. Frankly Sixth Sense, while good, is not my favorite of his films. That honor goes to Unbreakable.
Lady in the Water is a bit of a departure for him. It does not have the Big Twist that is the hallmark of his films (especially Sixth Sense, Unbreakable, The Village) in fact, it’s pretty straightforward as to what is going on.
Cleveland Heep is an apartment manager trying to find out who’s using the pool after hours. He falls in and is rescued by the midnight swimmer: a water nymph straight out of an old bedtime story. She’s here to help save humanity, but she doesn’t know how and so Cleveland must help her before she gets killed by a scrunt. It sounds silly and we know all this before the credits even roll, so where’s the fun?
For me it’s that once Lady gets past a slow start, it’s really very funny. Most of Shyamalan’s films have moments of quirky humor, but Lady in the Water is full of it. It’s a funny movie that is at once beautiful and whimsical, not meant to be taken too seriously, and yet it speaks eloquently to the unseen potential that we all carry around with us and are often too blind or afraid to see.