Let’s get this one thing straight. M. Night Shyamalan’s The Happening is the worst movie I have ever seen. Ever. The fact that this is an honest attempt at a major motion picture is baffling. I simply can’t believe an actor the likes of Mark Wahlberg went ahead with this movie after reading the script. Perhaps he never finished it, or he might have realized what a piece of garbage it really was. Otherwise, I question his judgment wholeheartedly. There are so many things I would rather do than participate in such a god-awful film.
Disclaimer: The following scenarios may offend even the most sadistic human being. If you feel you may be offended, please block your ears and skip the next paragraph. I would rather trade medication with Anna Nicole Smith than be apart of this movie. I would rather drag race with Stevie Wonder as my wheelman. I would rather trade bunks with Cliff Burton. I would rather be an offspring of Chris Benoit. I would rather be manning the second coming of the Challenger. I would rather swap beds with Terry Schiavo. I would rather have been Owen Hart’s stuntman than had my name associated with this so-called “movie.”
This drama-horror debacle is a terrible attempt at artistic film-making. What is truly so sad is the level of potential the film has. As the story unfolds, we learn that an airborne neurotoxin has caused any human in contact to commit suicide. People being to stab themselves, cut their wrists, jump off scaffolding, and lie down in front of running lawnmowers. The mysterious epidemic is a first thought to be a terrorist attack, taking place initially in Central Park. But throughout the film, the real culprit becomes much more evident. And much more pathetic.
The film that could have been a well-written mystery-thriller about how humans are slowly destroying the earth—and how the earth is beginning to defend itself—quickly became a film with horrible dialogue about honey bees, Tiramisu, hot dogs, percentages and formulas, cheese and crackers, lemon drink, and roughly seventeen uses of the word “happening.” I’m not sure what is worse, the god-awful acting or the unforgivable screenplay. Mark Wahlberg’s overly polite attitude is far from believable, and Zooey Deschanel’s incredibly annoying personality throughout the film is deserving of air-punching and hair-pulling. Add to that the atrocious script delivering lines such as “You should really care about the science. You know why? Because your face is perfect” when referring to a 15-year old student, and you’ve got yourself a film that is simply laughable.
Actually, it is so laughable that this film is best watched with friends. With other viewers closeby, you could perhaps get some enjoyment out of the movie by pointing out the terrible dialogue, facial expressions and special effects.
How any person involved in this project didn't abort the mission half way through is beyond me. The payoff must have been phenomenal for anyone to risk ruining his or her career to this extent. Even Shyamalan must’ve realized what an awful movie this was, not making his usual cameo in the film, and stating that it was an attempt at a “B-Movie” days before release. The only thing is, B-Movies don’t have a $60 million dollar budget.
The truth is this is a Mystery Science Theater 300 ripping waiting to happen. If anything comes out of this movie, it is completely unintentional. In terms of fun, you’ll get a few enormous belly laughs from horribly delivered dialogue. It’s best watched when overtired or absolutely intoxicated. But in terms of actual artistic value, in a movie that’s supposed to be a groundbreaking, meaningful thriller, this film breaks records in falling short. This film should have never happened.