Director M. Night Shyamalan is back with his new movie, The Visit. After a few major disappointments like The Last Airbender and After Earth, he’s decided to keep it simple with a shoestring-budget movie ($5 million dollars is considered a “shoestring budget”) in hopes of winning back his audience and his reputation. Sooo, he opts to make a movie about crazy old folks…you’re a gambler, Shyamalan.

In The Visit, Olivia Dejonge and Ed Oxenbould play Rebecca and Tyler Jamison, two siblings who go to visit their grandparents in Pennsylvania for the very first time even though their mom Paula, played by Kathryn Hahn, hasn’t seen them since she was 19. The grandparents, Doris and John (Deanna Dunagan and Peter McRobbie) welcome them with open arms. They have a rule, however: Bedtime is at 9:30 and it would very wise for the youngins to stay in their room. Things get a little nutso with Nana and Pop-pop during the daylight, but after 9:30 is craziness on a whooooole other level! The two kids soon realize that maybe this visit wasn’t such a good idea. No internet and cell-phone bars are the least of their worries!

Now, when I heard M. Night Shyamalan was directing this, I had SERIOUS reservations. I mean, dude directed like 3 flops in a row, and those films were horrendous. But, I liked the trailer so I decided, “What the hell? I’ve done worse with $10” and gave it a shot. After seeing this, I can honestly say…THIS MOVIE IS A DAYUM HIT! It’s filmed as found-footage, which means the movie looks like it’s being shot as a documentary (think Blair Witch) because Rebecca is trying to make a project of sorts. You’re seeing the film through the eyes of the camera lens, shaking and all. There is no musical score in this movie, either. Everything is natural just like it would be if you or I were filming something in real time. What’s also interesting about The Visit are all of the character’s personalities. We know the grandparents are strange, but the grandkids are odd in their own ways and to see all of these emotions play out onscreen is funny. Wait, did I say funny? That’s another thing…Visit has just as many comedic moments as it does scary ones. Sometimes the tone shifts are conflicting which under normal circumstances takes away from the seriousness of the storyline, well, not this time. The comedy is carefully placed to break tense moments and also to set up frightening scenes. Tyler is funny as shyt! Don’t worry, y’all, this is one scary movie. There are your usual jump-scares, but the way the film is shot makes you unaware of what direction the horror is coming. Even when you think you have that figured out, you still don’t know what Nana and Pop-pop are capable of doing because you think they’re old and really can’t cause much damage…you would be wrong! I haven’t seen a movie this good that has scary scenes in broad daylight which rivals those at pitch-black hours. These scenes are intense and the entire movie plays mind games with the audience. And talk about a plot twist? Maaaan, I was on the edge of my seat, mouth wide open like, “Whaaaaat?!” That twist is bigger than a giant baked pretzel! The Visit will have you looking at grandma and granddaddy in totally different light! Uh, I’m staying home next summer!

M. Night Shyamalan has redeemed himself. Let me tell you how this film had me; after I saw it, I came home and opened the blinds because it was too dark…but it was 4:45 in the afternoon! I can’t say enough about that plot twist. You will be floored! The Visit is rated PG-13 and they pushed every bit of it. It should’ve been rated PG-13 and 364 days! You’ll love how the violent scenes are shot and you’ll love how this film teases you. All my horror-film lovers, this one’s for you! I’m co-signing this one to the fullest! Yeah, old folks can be scary, but nothing is as scary as old folks in a bingo parlor. Scream “Bingo” by accident around one of ‘em and see what happens. You’ve been warned!

[youtube http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YfQnRjkuvaY]

 

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