Hello Spill addicts,
Today I'm doing something a little different than my French movies highlights to put out there my point of view about the "hidden" message of the universally mocked The Happening
First let me make one thing very very clear: the movie IS bad, I'm not going to argue about it! However I had a pretty interesting talk with Antithesis, fellow spill member that's being discussed in the forum and migh interest more of you. So here it goes! Before you read this, I know that I probably read way too much into it but I still think my point is interesting.
I consider this movie as a criticism of human's way of dealing with problems of unknown origins. In the movie, people act stupid, not because of a bad script, but because it's the whole point: a caricature of what humans would do when they face the unknown. They act stupid because they got it all wrong: they think that they are the cause of these events...these happenings
Because the whole point is here: humans think they are the ones to cause the plants to "rebel", but what if it really was just something that happened, like the wind happens to blow harder sometimes...crazy you say?
Then remember the beginning of the movie: in the classroom, Wahlberg tries to defend the point humans have always had impact on nature and always analyzed natural events this way. A boy asks why humans always try to explain natural events from their own perspective, putting humans on top of a chain reaction. He says something along the lines of what if that was just natural, just happening...Antithesis brought to my attention the line is more or less "This is an act of nature and we may never completely understand it." Nobody really listens to the boy, the lesson ends and the movie carries on. If it's not important, then why is it in the movie in the first place? Shyamalan isn't he known for putting clues in his movies?
Antithesis adds "Shyamalan seems to use bad ideas (the killing plants) to let the audience know that this stuff is not important. Like the aliens in Signs who'd mastered interstellar travel but didn't think to invent a dry suit. There's almost always holes big enough to drive a galaxy through (obscure joke) but unlike other movies where you can pick those elements to death, in his movies they're there to let you know this shit don't matter."
To me the movie is not an eco-film, it's the opposite: by showing us all the fail attempts of humans to understand and control the happenings, shyamalan mocks the way they, and we, think. In fact he wants to show us that we have no impact on whatever happens in nature, humans are not gods.
Put that in perspective with the whole global warming debate, and you get a criticism of the greenwashing we all suffer from: sure humans should be carefull about the planet, but we're not the cause of everything.
The movie stays bad, and Shyamalan probably didn't think about any of what I just said. As Antithesis says, "that doesn't excuse this movie for having wooden acting and rather flat direction"...but it's interesting that such a reading of the movie seems possible...
Sorry for the long text, thanks for reading and please don't say I'm crazy, it hurts my feelings!