Posted by: ara0062 | June 26, 2008

“The Happening”

When I first saw a commercial with Mark Wahlberg as a high school teacher lecturing his class about the disappearance of honey bees, I was immediately interested. First of all, IMO, Mark Wahlberg is hot, but the nerd/scientist side of me had what little curiousity I possess piqued with the thought of what WOULD happen if that started happening to the human species.

Plot Synopsis: (courtesy of http://www.imdb.com/title/tt0949731/synopsis)

“The film opens in New York. People start to get confused in Central Park, repeating their words, standing still and sometimes walking backwards. We hear a few screams. A woman reading on a bench takes her silver chopstick-style hair pin out of her hair and stabs herself in the neck with it. In the next shot, we see a science teacher named Elliot Moore (Mark Wahlberg), talking about the event science can not explain about thousands of disappearing bees, no bodies left, no trace. A student offers the opinion that this is a natural event that we will never fully understand. While speculating on the phenomenon that is the disappearing bees, Elliot is suddenly called out of class to a staff meeting warning about an apparent “terrorist attack” in New York in which terrorists have apparently released some kind of gas in Central Park, and advising that school is cancelled. As they leave, Elliot confesses to his friend Julian (John Leguizamo), a math teacher, that he and his wife are having some problems. Elliot and his wife Alma (Zooey Deschanel) flee Philadelphia on a train, with Julian, and his daughter Jess. On the train people start to get reports by cellphone that the attacks have been reported at their destination, and in many other places. Alma is getting repeated and insistant calls on her phone from someone called Joey, and she lies to Elliot about it. The train ends up leaving them in a small rural town, as the conductors have lost radio contact with everyone else. At a diner they see a newscast that suggests the suicides are not caused by a terrorist attack, but by a natural phenomena. A reporter says that the toxin switches off the part of the brain that keeps up from harming ourselves.”

MPAA Rating: Rated R for violent and disturbing images

Cast of Characters: Mark Wahlberg as Elliot Moore, Zooey Deschanel as Alma Moore, John Leguizamo as Julian, Ashlyn Sanchez as Julian’s daughter Jess, Betty Buckley as Mrs. Jones, Spencer Breslin as teenage boy Josh, Jeremy Strong as U.S. Army Private Auster, Brian O’Halloran as the Jeep Driver, and M. Night Shyamalan as Joey.

Stars:

I give this movie only 3 stars barely. I was…disappointed to say the least in this movie. It had great potential, but did not follow through with it. First of all, Mark Wahlberg is not believable as a high school SCIENCE teacher. Maybe a coach or history teacher, but not science. He was very.. unconvincing of his role in the movie, almost uncomfortably so. Also, the little credited plant/nursery guy gave more credence and convinceability of his role than anyone other than the little girl, Jess. The movie was a bit predictable with the beginning of the movie seemingly the most exciting. With a better lead cast, I think I could have really enjoyed this movie. I do have to say the movie had a much better light, airy feel compared to some of M. Night Shyamalan’s other more darker and deep films. That being said, I am a huge fan of his films, but this was definitely not a fan favorite of mine. I look forward to a remake of this one in about 50 years with a better all-star cast….

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Responses

  1. I saw this movie, and I must say I was very disappointed. It could have been made a lot better. It begins exciting and fizzes out like a punctured gas balloon as we keep watching it.

  2. I did not see this because my husband and our friend went and when they came home they said it blew big ones. They also agree with you Ara and 6mile that it starts out good and the rest is one big pile…. you know the rest. Sad… I love Mark Wahlberg’s work. As for M. Night well I liked 2 1/2 of his movies.


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