A trip to hell

“Devil,” the new horror film written and produced by M. Night Shyamalan, hits theatres Sept. 17, 2010 and is meant to be nothing less than horrifying. In the film, five people get stuck in an elevator, one of whom could potentially be the devil.

The idea behind the film is chilling. The camera seems to capture all of the perfect angles and the music adds to the film’s unnerving effects. Despite this praise, however, the directors of the film, Drew and John Erick Dowdle, are being second-guessed by a majority of Hollywood.

Because recent Shyamalan films like “The Last Airbender” and “The Village” have been deemed less than extraordinary, “Devil” has to disprove poor expectations.

Alexa Mangini, sophomore, claimed that she would go see the new film despite the fact that she is not a fan of horror. According to Mangini, the preview made her curious to find out which of the five characters was actually the devil.

“I found myself watching the preview again and again to see if I could figure out who was causing harm to the people in the elevator,” she said.

She also stated that “the preview was filled with suspense which made [her] curious and eager to see the movie.”

Shyamalan has an iconic film history; his most famous movie “The Sixth Sense” (1999) is a classic American psychological thriller. It tells the story of Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) a troubled boy and his equally disturbed child psychologist (Bruce Willis). The film is known to have established Shyamalan as both a writer and director. It also introduced the public to his unique style of filming and his favored technique: the twist ending.

“The Sixth Sense” earned $293.5 million in the U.S. and ranked 35 on the list of box-office money earners as of April 2010. The film was also nominated for six Academy Awards: Best Picture, Best Director and Best Original Screenplay (M. Night Shyamalan), Best Actor in a Supporting Role (Haley Joel Osment), Best Actress in a Supporting Role (Toni Collette) and Best Editing (Andrew Mondshein).

Caitlin Siegert, sophomore said that her favorite Shyamalan film was “The Sixth Sense.”

“The movie keeps you in suspense and the end is shocking,” she said. “No matter how many times you watch it, it’s still awesome. It doesn’t get old.”

Despite the name he was building for himself, Shyamalan’s status as a director took a turn for the worse in 2004 with his film “The Village.” The film grossed $114 million in the U.S. and opened to critical reviews that ranged from negative to mixed.

Kristyn Lyncheski, a sophomore at SHU, believes that many people will want to go see “Devil” but “like other ‘horror’ movies, it won’t live up to its expectations.”

Seton Hall students still have high hopes for “Devil,” even with Shyamalan’s past. Matt Villani, senior, is “really excited to be scared by ‘Devil,’ [he just doesn’t] want to be disappointed.”

Even students who have not seen any of Shyamalan’s films, like sophomore Chris Reehil, are excited for the film’s release.

“The idea that the devil is amongst them in the elevator is interesting,” he said. “But to compare it to this time last year, I don’t think it will be as scary as ‘Paranormal Activity.’ But it’s cool that in ‘Devil’ the devil is real as opposed to a demon or spirit.”

The movie’s official trailer is giving viewers high hopes; only time will tell if this will succeed or plummet.

Laura Masino can be reached at laura.masino@student.shu.edu.

Author: Staff Writer

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