Writer/director/producer M. Night Shyamalan returns with an original thriller that delves into the mysterious recesses of one man’s fractured, gifted mind. Though Kevin (McAvoy) has revealed 23 personalities to his psychiatrist, there a remains one still submerged who is set to materialize and dominate all the others. Compelled to abduct three teenage girls, 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. The 24th personality is about to emerge. It’s called…The Beast.
2017, Color, Rated PG-13, 1 hour 57 minutes
1080p, 2.40:1 Aspect Ratio, DTS-MA 5.1 audio
Starring: James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy, Betty Buckley, Jessica Sula
Directed by: M. Night Shyamalan
After a series of misfires, Shyamalan is back in form again. This film doesn’t fall into the clichéd teen slasher horror genre. In fact, there are only a couple of moments that might make you jump. It’s a study in into the psyche of man who had to cope with childhood terrors by creating, and re-creating, new personalities to help him survive.
There have been historic, medical events of people that go through these adaptations that are so real, they cause physical changes in the human body. The new personality could be someone with an accent, another sex, a different age or even have to get insulin injections for their diabetes. Shyamalan takes these physical manifestations one step further: what if one of the personalities had supernatural powers? Could they survive mortal wounds? Bend steel?
McAvoy pulls off one of his best performances yet. If he can’t sell his character and the personalities that go with it, the movie fails. But fails, it does not! He actually only plays five different personalities, but he does then so seamlessly and naturally that the viewer totally accepts and sympathizes with him. Though the movie offers an alternate ending, I think the one Shyamalan ended up with works the best. I will not spoil the ending, but if you follow Shyamalan’s other films, I will say two words: Bruce Willis!
This film made it to number one for three weeks in a row when it played in the theaters. It is not super violent or bloody, but it is not geared for pre-teens, so be warned. View it with a light on if you must…Recommended.
The movie is preceded by several trailers. Split was film on an Arri Alexa XT digital camera and exhibits good detail, color and contrasts. Most of the images are on the warm side, but the shadow details are excellent and I did not notice any glitches or aliasing during the film. Sound is strong and clear. The surrounds are used judiciously with an occasional kick to the subwoofer. Overall, this movie look and sounds good, which lets the viewer get swallowed up by the story and not get distracted.
We have lots of extras, all of which are quite interesting: Deleted scenes, alternate ending, making of, Many Faces of McAvoy, The Filmaker’s Eye, a DVD version along with an UltraViolet copy for your portable devices.