Long time readers of this 'ere fine publication will no doubt remember that I went to NYU film school with some guy named Manoj Shyamalan. Nice guy, bit of a dork (but weren't we all?). After school, once most of us had lost track of each other and gone our seperate ways, he later changed his name to 'M. Night' and began cranking out mediocre movies with wacky surprise endings and has somehow parlayed this into some weird ego-driven fantasyland where his movies don't even need titles or advertising as long as people are aware that they were made by 'Night'. Like Hitchcock without the 20-year string of masterpieces or Andy Warhol without whatever the hell anyone ever saw in his work.
Two years ago, 'The Buried Secret of M. Night Shyamalan', an unintentionally hilarious at first, then tedious as all hell THREE HOUR 'documentary' about Shyamalan's mysticism and ability to talk to ghosts and shit proved to be just a poorly done Blair Witch-style promo for The Village. But since the Sci-Fi channel isn't exactly picky about what they put on the air, they were more than happy to oblige Mr. Night with 3 hours of airtime that would otherwise go to another airing of 'Snake King' or 'Raptor Island'.
But that was two years ago. Now, Shyamalan's got a new movie to hawk to freak-show loving masses passing by him on the boardwalk. The rubes aren't going to fall for another mockumentary, surely. The next silly publicity stunt has to be bigger, more ego-driven, and an even sillier desperate attempt to shamelessly self promote himself.
Enter Michael Bamberger, a writer for the prestigious movie publication Sports Illustrated who was previously best known for trying to get a 16 year old girl kicked out of a golf tournament on some obscure rules technicality. Well apparently this guy has gotten tired of being a jock-sniffer and is now our most trusted source on all things Shyamalan. The result is the book that put the 'sick' in 'sycophant', 'The Man Who Heard Voices, How M. Night Shyamalan Risked His Career On A Fairytale'. A book that the New York Times has called 'unintentionally riotous' and 'deeply embarassing'.
In case you don't feel like signing up for the NYTimes website, here's my favorite parts;
"Mr. Bamberger met the auteur at a dinner party ("Night's shirt was half open — Tom Jones in his prime")and became awestruck ("What kind of power could he have over me?")."
"...an actress in Night's presence is "like Moses before the burning bush.""
"Night reminds himself of Bob Dylan — and Mr. Dylan's ability to affect a wide and diverse audience is very like Night's, according to the book."
Now that's quality nut-baggery!!
My favorite part of all of this may be the title of the book. Implying that he's 'risked his career' on this silly movie about some goofy bitch who lives at the bottom of a swimming pool. I suppose others may think that he risked his career a little bit more by making four shitty movies to follow up the Sixth Sense.
For more M. Night Hilarity, check out TBogg's contest to predict the awful ending of Lady in the Water. Mr. Bogg introduces the contest by including this spot-on summary of Manoj's work to date:
He made a lot of money with The Sixth Sense.
He made us say, "What the --? Are you kidding me? Jesus, that's stupid!" at the ending of Unbreakable
He tested our faith, our patience, and our good nature with Signs.
And with The Village he reminded us that we had seen that episode of Twilight Zone about thirty years before.
Yes, M. Night Shyamlan, who makes the auteur theory want to move to Milwaukee and change its name to Larry, is back...and he's discovered water imagery! with Lady In The Water.
Of course, you can expect all of this to be deleted and a huge retraction to take its place when I'm hired to write 'M. Night Shyamalan; Like John Lennon fucked Einstein' in 2008...
Special thanks to Jackson for the tipoff...