As a diehard fan of the horror/thriller genre, I was very excited at the prospect of watching M. Night Shyamalan’s Split on the big screen. The trailer looked promising, and I can confidently say the movie fully lived up to its potential. A dark and demented horror-house, Split delivers a potent dose of chills that leaves you both clinging to the edge of your seat and craving more.
The theme of the movie is a deliciously disturbing exploration of the dissociative identity disorder, albeit with a classic Shyamalanian touch. Talent powerhouse James McAvoy shines as the flawed yet intriguing Kevin Wendell Crumb, a young man playing host to a horde of distinct personalities. Anya Taylor-Joy of The Witch fame plays the introverted yet equally flawed Casey. The way these two characters, both victims of similarly tragic circumstances, interact makes for a highly compelling and persuasive storyline.
With Split, Shyamalan, the king of cliffhangers, has created a twisted psychological thriller that delves right into the heart of the human psyche and explores the many diverse elements at work there. It is a grim and forbidding world, where the ones who suffer are regarded as ‘pure’, while the ‘untouched’ are expendable. The story experiments with the clichéd stuff of horror movies—kidnapped damsels in distress and a deranged psychopath who loves playing cat and mouse—but takes it in a completely unexpected and refreshingly original direction.
All in all, I found Split to be highly enjoyable, a roller-coaster ride filled with enough mystery, suspense and excitement to make it one of the standout horror movies of 2017. There’s even some dark humor sprinkled here and there, so one gets a complete, well-rounded cinematic experience.
I believe, with this one, Shyamalan has struck some serious gold!