The most surprising aspect of “Glass” isn’t its twist but rather the film’s entire overdrawn theme. "What if superheroes existed in the real world?" is a sentiment that is echoed again and again and again and again in Shyamalan’s latest flick only this time unlike "Unbreakable" it’s not only Samuel L Jackson’s character saying it. In walk Dr. waste of a good actor, I mean Dr. Ellie Staple played by Sarah Paulson. Sarah’s main role in the film is to hammer home Shyamalan’s theme as if the audience is as intelligent as Kevin Wendell Crumb’s 9-year-old alter ego. Much like “Split,” this film is a two hour James McAvoy acting reel. Witness the splendor of Jimmy M doing close to fifty different character expressions within a split second (no pun intended) Does this enhance the picture in any way? Unlike "Split" where the entire draw of the film was McAvoy’s acting ability, this serves as nothing more than an unintentionally hilarious detour from anything relevant to the story that is already wholly unengaging. Bless James McAvoy for utterly giving everything to his Director, but boy was it distracting to the film's structure.
Much like seeing Tim Burton’s “Batman” I was marking time to see the triumphant return of everyone's favorite prominent superhero we've all originally come to love. Well, folks, David Dunn (Bruce Willis) is back and couldn’t be duller. Bruce is hardly in the picture; his character seemed to have had a mental relaxer much like Wesley Snipes did in "Blade II" where he's on set only to collect his paycheck. I’m not sure if Mr. Willis’ rates were higher than Mr. Jackson’s on the production or if Mr. Willis didn’t want to be in this film at all. He’s prominent for perhaps the first ten minutes of the picture which is its most robust half then lays around for the remainder of the movie acting as if he wants to get home as soon as possible. Where Bruce showed emotion in "Unbreakable" there is boredom in "Glass."
We finally land on Samuel L Jackson’s Eligia Price (AKA Mr. Glass) If you were wondering what he’s been doing for the past fifteen years, it has been pretending to be a vegetable so he can reveal to the world the existence of superheroes. When he reveals his true intentions, it's the return of a villain we all have grown to appreciate. He and James McAvoy chew up the scenery like two classic comic books villains wreaking havoc on the mental institution where this film primarily takes place. With this enormous build up the film ends with Mr. Glass’s master plan resulting in anticlimactic parking lot brawl. That’s right. The sequel you’ve been anticipating since 2000 has its climax end in a parking lot!
What’s so sad about "Glass" is how cheap it feels. For the third movie in a trilogy, one would expect a large scale conclusion. Something worthy of its fifteen-year build. Instead, we are served with a bottle film all taking place in the dumbest insane asylum I have ever come across on screen. It made the hospital staff’s incompetence from “One Flew Over The Cukoo’s Nest” seem like Alcatraz in comparison. With Shyamalan funding the movie himself with $20 million of his own money, you can truly see him trying to scale everything down to an unfathomable degree so he can keep the budget afloat. "Unbreakable" feels like an epic in comparison to THIS movie that has a straight to video quality to it.
The greatest weakness in “Glass” is how much we don’t care. This film tries desperately to make you believe what the circumstances would be if superheroes existed in the world we encompass. The problem is that this film can't stop monologging its themes to a bludgeoning degree. What made me fall in love with "Unbreakable" in the first place was that it was a story about a man just trying to live his life. David Dunn wasn’t interested in superheroes, let alone talk about them every five minutes in the film. We experienced the pain he felt through all of his failures that we could relate to. Dunn's marriage was failing; his relationship with his son was crumbling; he is working a dead-end job; nothing about him was unique; he was a nobody. Then Eligia Price walks in trying to convince him that he's extraordinary after miraculously surviving a horrific train crash. Thus he does something special in the end by saving others to bring purpose to himself. It was "Unbreakable’s" deliberate visual poetry through obscure angles, minimalistic dialogue and James Newton Howard’s stunning score that won me over. The only flaw in "Unbreakable" was Samuel L Jackson constantly comparing the real world to superheroes through his eye-rolling dialogue. Now that dialog is spoken by Jackson and Sarah Paulson throughout the entire film. When they aren’t exasperating Shyamalan’s dialect, we get to visit a comic book store not once but twice in the film. In that store, the words “HERO” and “VILLAIN” are placed before us on two big neon signs for the intellectually impaired. I was hoping to see another film that featured the cinematic obscurity and authentic world problems we must face every day as the first film did. Instead, I am told by Mr. Shyamalan through his characters why I should feel that this film is so special. Well it’s not special, nothing about is special and it will be especially cheap when it comes to purchasing on blue ray in the Walmart bargain bin.
-God, I miss James Newton Howard. I can’t believe he didn’t return. What happened?! His score was iconic. Who is West Dylan Thordson? He did an okay job, but his score is just sheer mickey mousing. There’s no emotion to it like Howard’s score. I knew I was in trouble immediately when James Newton Howard’s name didn’t appear in the opening scroll under “Music By.”
-Bruce Willis could have given less of than a shit being in this film. I really would love to hear what transpired between him and Shyamalan.
-Trying to draw a connection to "Unbreakable" by randomly inserting deleted scenes from it into “Glass” is just shamefully lazy. You can currently watch the deleted scenes on YouTube or from your dusty copy DVD copy of the original film.
-These are the easiest superheroes to kill. I’ll spray a water hose on David Dunn, yell “Keven Wendell Crumm” to Kevin’s face and throw a tennis ball at Mr. Glass. I have defeated all of Shyamalan’s supermen in one swift move! I… AM… A… GOD!!!