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  • Writer's pictureSteven Pluto

Split (2016)

Updated: Nov 21, 2022

M. Night Shyamalan reappears in your neighbourhood theatre with his latest mind bender, Split. The film stars James McAvoy, a man with a dissociative identity disorder whose two dozen personalities are all fighting for control.

The McAvoy character abducts three young girls in preparation for the newly emerging personality simply called, The Beast. It’s a race against time as the three girls must find a way to escape, before The Beast awakens.

I believe, M. Night Shyamalan was wise to return to low budget films after he unsuccessfully tried to go mainstream with The Last Airbender and After Earth. This new release, Split, is a creepy thriller that will surely keep movie goers talking about the film, long after it ends. It truly is a return to form for Shyamalan, but this film is not for everyone. Most parents will be uncomfortable with the whole abduction angle alone and add to that the flashbacks scenes of child abuse of one of captives, Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy)? Well, like I said, the film may not be for everyone. So be forewarned.

Split does provide very strong performances, from McAvoy, Taylor Joy and Betty Buckley as McAvoy’s psychiatrist Dr. Karen Fletcher. But like most of Shyamalan’s films, he tries too hard to throw something in that attempts to throw off the audience but in so doing, it lessens the film, for me.

I did like the twist at the end however, and am sure Shyamalan’s fans will get how he plays up a possible sequel to one of his earlier films.

All in all, Split is a very entertaining film that brings Shyamalan back to the forefront of his craft; as long as you can stomach the subject matter.

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