Lady in the Water

[Amazon Link] [3.5
stars] [IMDb Link]

I see that this movie has won "Razzie" nominations for Worst Director (M. Night Shyamalan); Worst Supporting Actor (M. Night Shyamalan); Worst Screenplay (it's by M. Night Shyamalan); and Worst Picture. Its Tomatometer score is 24%. Ouch!

But I will defy the critical consensus; it's not that bad! In fact, I stayed awake for the entire thing, an increasingly rare occurrence. It has Paul Giamatti, who's always good. It's filled with colorful characters, and their interactions are interesting and often amusing.

Its premise, however, is completely fantastic, and the plot gets detached from reality sometime in the first quarter hour. It moves into a dreamlike mode, where the characters all (unquestioningly!) buy into the fantasy world, and diligently try to discover its oddball rules and what roles they're playing in it.

I can understand that some people might hate that kind of thing; it's not exactly my favorite cup of tea either. But on its own terms, it worked for me. Maybe for you too, if you can withstand the unspoken but obvious scorn of the video store rental clerk.

Last Modified 2012-10-21 6:40 AM EDT