Home » Unbreakable movie review (2000)- by Cody Leach

Unbreakable movie review (2000)- by Cody Leach

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positive movie review

Sentiment on individual actors/characters mentioned in the Unbreakable movie review:

Actor/ CharacterSentiment
Bruce WillisMeh
David DunnMeh
M. Night ShyamalanPositive
Samuel L. JacksonPositive
Note: Sentiment analysis performed by Google Natural Language Processing.

Full text transcript of the Unbreakable movie review:

You know, the only thing that this movie is missing is Samuel Jackson saying you’re unbreakable muthafucka.

So Unbreakable tells the story of a man who becomes the sole survivor of a horrible train accident, only to set him on a path to finding out the link to his own abilities as well as his place in this world. All right, guys. Well, leading up to the release of Glass this weekend, I figured it was a good time to talk about Unbreakable as well as revisit my review of split, which is actually a review that has changed quite a bit since I initially saw the film. But I’m not doing it alone. Actually, I’m kind of radanovich on this one because Brian Lomax and Brian Lomax movie talk already had plans to do this. And in conversation that got brought up that I was thinking about doing it as well. We’re like, hey, you know what? Let’s do it at the same time. So Brian Lomax’s review is actually already up at the recording of this video. So as soon as you’re done watching this review, go over to Brian Lomax movie talk. I’ll have the link for his video down the video description below and check out his review. Come back on Wednesday to check out my revisited review of Split, as well as Brian’s review of split. And then both of us will probably have a review of glass out sometime on Friday, I’d imagine, unless Brian’s a lucky bastard and gets it out first. So check all those reviews out, guys. Now, let’s talk unbreakable. Back in the early 2000s, M. Night Shyamalan, Shyamalan, how the hell you want to say his name was the director that everybody had their eye on? He made a storm with The Sixth Sense, which is a movie that a lot of people still hail as his greatest film.

A lot of people Still Hail is one of the greatest horror thriller films of all time for good reason because it’s incredible. Unbreakable was his follow up. And unfortunately for the initial reception in the initial release of this film, as far as success goes, this movie was way ahead of its time. If you released Unbreakable nowadays when superhero is the craze, comic book films are the biggest films by far in the world right now. No question back in the early two thousands, you were lucky to get a good one every three or four years. We were just getting the X-Men. We were just getting Spider-Man and comes along this movie, Unbreakable. That’s like this deconstruction and grounded take on the comic book and the comic book world of the comic book film. And it takes a totally different, grounded approach to a storyline that by now especially, we’ve seen a million ways from Sunday and even now in twenty eighteen, Unbreakable still remains one of the best one of the most unique and one of the most awesome comic book films to ever be released. I’ll go ahead and get this out of the way now. This is my favorite film of M Nights. Unbreakable has always been one of those movies that especially whenever it was very underrated and kind of under scene back in the day, I always kind of gravitated towards it because it felt like this hidden treasure that I held.

But nowadays it really is kind of going to follow. And it feels like people have revisited this movie and rediscovered this or found out about it later on. And even now, like I said, it’s still relevant and even is more relevant now than it was back when it was released. And it’s starting to gain this following. And you’ll find a lot more people saying how much they love Unbreakable now than you did back when it was released, when M. Night was all the craze. But talking specifically about why I love this film so much, let’s just dive right into the story. So you get David Dunn played by Bruce Willis, and he’s this everyday man. He works a nine to five job. He’s got a broken relationship with his wife. He has a young son who kind of is stuck in the middle of the turmoil of his parents. The opening scene. This film gives you a lot of information about who this character is without having to tell you a ton of exposition. It’s just all seen through the eyes of this child in this little monorail train where she’s looking at him, trying to flirt with this woman, trying to hide his wedding ring. I’m talking about his fear of water, all of these things that are very important and integral to not only the character, but the journey and his story and his character arc that we’re about to go through during the runtime of Unbreakable given to you very subtly.

In this opening scene, the train crashes. David Dunn emerges as not only the only sole survivor of this crash, but he comes out unscathed, not a single scratch on him. Enter Elijah Price, played by Samuel Jackson and one of my favorite roles of his and one of my favorite comic book villains. More on that later. And he has been searching his entire life basically to find somebody on the opposite end of the spectrum of him. Elijah has this disorder where his bones break much easier than everybody else. That’s something with the density of his bones and the marrow. And he is just gone through hell his entire childhood, even in the opening scene of this film, which is a very subtle and yet very disturbing way to introduce us to the tone of this movie, as well as to the tone of the character of Elijah Price and the hell that this character has endured his entire life from birth, literally someone who’s had to endure unlimited amounts of pain, unlimited amounts of healing, unlimited amounts of just realization that you are limited physically about as much as you possibly could be as a human being. And all of that psychological trauma and physical. Trauma makes him know, makes him long for the truth, that there is somebody else out there that is the opposite of him, somebody that does not break somebody that does not get hurt, does not get sick, does not get injured.

I’ve studied the form of comics. I spent a third of my life in a hospital bed with nothing else to do but read. I believe comics are our last link to an ancient way of passing on history. The Egyptians drew on the walls, countries all over the world still pass on knowledge through pictorial form.

I believe comics on form of history that someone, somewhere felt or experienced, and it’s the journey that these two characters go on together where you have a lot of pushing, David, you know, trying to get David to be that person, trying to get David to answer the questions that he has been asking in his entire life, getting David to question and push back on these life altering and life defining events from his college days on whether or not this actually valid or if it’s just a fallacy that he has accepted as truth.

If there is someone like me in the world and I’m at one end of the spectrum, couldn’t it be someone else? The opposite of me, on the other hand? Someone who doesn’t get sick, who doesn’t get hurt with the rest of us. And he probably. Doesn’t even know what. The kind of person.

These stories are about. A person put here.

All in all, on its surface, it’s two characters from completely different ends of the spectrum trying to find their place in the world, trying to find their purpose, trying to figure out what they are here to do. And behind all of that is just a deconstruction and a retooling and a ground to take on the superhero origin story. All the familiar elements are here. You got your hero discovering his powers, discovering the limits of what he can do, figuring out what he wants to do, what his place in this world is, and what his job going forward as a superhero is going to be discovering who his villains are, how he’s going to battle those villains, the introduction of the arch nemesis and how he became the arch nemesis. All of that is here and unbreakable, but it’s done in a way that has been done and no other comic book film ever made. And it’s the way that the good old QAM Hammer tells this familiar tale, this familiar comic book origin story template through these new grounded eyes is what brings me back to this movie time and time again. It’s what stuck me in back in the early 20s. What’s continues to suck me in here in twenty eighteen. And it’s what made me die long for the sequels that we thought that we were never going to get that. Thank God we are actually getting. And it’s not just the story that makes this movie good. It’s how Shyamalan tells the story as well. The way that he utilizes the camera, the way that he directs, the way that he utilizes the score.

Everything involved with the way that Shyamalan directs unbreakable is awesome perfection. Everything that you could have possibly done with this movie. Shyamalan takes it to The Nth Degree. There’s so many times in this movie where it feels like it’s purposely against the grain for what we know, superhero or comic book films to be. This is a very slow burn patient movie. There are numerous sequences in this where there’s no cuts. It’s all one take, it’s people having a conversation and the camera just stays on and lets the scene play out. I’ve even read some behind the scenes saying that they only did like one or two takes for some of these long shots. And just to keep it natural, they didn’t keep rehearsing over and over and over again, not to the point where the studio actually got nervous that they were going to end up with horrible takes in the editing room. But it works for magic. It works to make these characters feel real, feel grounded, feel almost like they’re not characters at all, which is the entire point of unbreakable. So many of these one shots, the opening scene with the baby delivery of Elijah, the train scene between David Dunne and this sports agent, this woman that he’s flirting with. Later on, there’s more scenes between David Dunne and Eliza, one in a stadium. It’s a one shot take have the dinner between David Dunn and his wife, where they’re discussing their marriage and where they want it to go and what they long for, what their reservations are.

All in one. Take the final fight of this movie. Let’s talk about that final fight for a second. This is going to be skipping over a few chapters, but fuck it. Traditionally in comic book films, the final battle is like the most epic scene of the movie. This is where you get all guns blazing, all the special effects you bring out, all the stops for this final fight. Unbreakable does the opposite of that. Unbreakable, just like the rest of the direction in this movie goes in a much more subtle, grounded take. And the final battle of this is just one David Dunn has taken on the mantle of being this hero found somebody who is doing a horrific crime and just chokes the dude out. There’s no big fight scene. There’s no elaborate fight choreography. There’s no special effects, no huge set pieces. It’s David Dunn in a bedroom choking out a murderer, and it’s all in one shot, which adds to how grounded and how awesome as well as the score, which just pumps you up when you watch it. How grounded and awesome is Final Fight is and how grounded this movie is and how kind of inspirational the character of David Dunn is, the fact that he has finally taken on the mantle and he has been who he is supposed to be in this world, taken out this evil slowly while the guy is fighting with every last breath that he has, slamming into walls, leaving huge ass frickin holes in the wall, taken out of the ground, socking him in the stomach.

Nothing’s working because David Dunn is unbreakable, Mitch. Everything about that final fight is just like the crescendo to the movie that’s almost like the climax, like the ending in this movie where the twists and everything is almost an epilogue to that final fight. That is the climax. That is when this character arc comes to its crescendo. That’s when the story has reached its climax. That is when we are completely with David Dunn and David Dunn has reached what he has been trying to find for his entire life, all in that fight. There was also a lot of cool, little subtle signature Shyamalan tricks to at least as far as his earlier films. He did some tricks with colors and specific camera tricks like that with Sixth Sense, with the color red, you get to Unbreakable. And he kind of utilizes colors to section off the worlds of our hero and our villain. You get David Dunn. His uniform is green. A lot of his clothes are green. Some of the ways that the lighting is used inside of his house makes different shades of green. When you get to Elijah Price, everything is purple, his car is purple, his hair almost looks purple at times. His suit, his jacket, his purple, his cane, his purple. When you get into even glass, which are not even talking about, they even sectioned off those colors in the poster with the horror or the beast, whatever you want to call, and kind of taking on yellow like shamans always used colors in a very interesting way.

And none of that really adds or takes away from the film. Most people could probably watch it one hundred times and never notice it, but it is one of those neat little Shamila and early signatures that I’m glad that he seems to be getting back to with split and glass. And I’ve hinted at a little bit, especially talking so much about that final fight that I love so much. But the score to Unbreakable is awesome. It is one of my favorite movie scores of all time. There is a reason why when all of us saw split and you see that scene where the Horde is talking to itself in the mirror and you start to hear that slow rise of that unbreakable score and everybody’s like this sounds familiar what’s going on here. This is unbreakable.

What’s going on here? Shamal on that score sticks with you. That score totally highlights all the things, all the themes, all the tones that he’s going for with Unbreakable. And probably the best section of it is in that final fight whenever that score is rising up. And it just has you pumped, like inspired by David Dunn, rising to what he is supposed to be. A score needs to do something like that. Very few movies have a score that can heighten your senses and heighten the way that you are receiving visual images. This score does it now. We talked about the characters. Let’s talk about the actors themselves now. I am a Bruce Willis fanatic. Die Hard is my favorite film of all time. Yes, I have referred to Bruce Willis for maybe the past ten years as the king of the Red Box because he don’t seem to give a fuck anymore. But let’s go back to the early two thousands when he did give a fuck, when he had a sixth sense. And now you’re in Unbreakable. Unbreakable is one of his best performances. It often competes with the sixth sense in my mind for his best dramatic performance. And he’s very subtle. You know, some would almost call it a monotone type of performance because, you know, when when Bruce Willis wants to be serious, he’s quiet. He’s not really a whole lot of emotions. He’s very stoic and he’s very subdued.

And that’s what this character needs to be. That’s what kind of highlights all of the insecurities, all of the holes in his heart and his life and his the way that he sees his world is just a gigantic void, even though he has a wife that he loves, that he wants to love more and have this relationship back to where it was, the fact that he has the son that he loves, that he wants to be the man that his son wants him to be. All of these things, even though he has all of that and he has made very life altering decisions to get there, he still feels like he has this huge void. And you get a lot of that just through Bruce Willis, his performance, the way that he is just very monotone and subdued and stoic in a lot of ways. It’s Bruce Willis, his delivery of this character that adds to the title of Unbreakable, because this character is very broken. When we first meet him, there’s nothing about him as a person that seems like he is complete in any way, that he is this one solid rock. By the end of the movie, he gets there because he finds his purpose. He figures out what he’s supposed to be, and it fills that void in his life. And even though all the story direction, all the direction by M. Night Shyamalan, all of the little ideas that he puts into the script definitely hammered those themes home.

I do think that Bruce Willis performance is the vehicle that makes all that stuff work together. And then you get into Samuel L. Jackson. Now, this is one of my favorite performances by him, and he has got a laundry list of awesome performances and a lot of very performances, too. Some of them are loud and animated, some of them are comedic, and some of them are sinister, like Elijah Price, a.k.a. Mr. Glass. Now, throughout this entire movie, he’s a very interesting character. I won’t even classify him as a villain yet. But we get the character of Elijah Price and he is the opposite of the title, even though David Dunn emotionally and as far as his place in the world is bro. Alija is broken in every possible way you can be as a person, he’s broken physically, he’s broken mentally, he’s broken emotionally. This is a guy that has absolutely nothing left to hang on to in this world, aside from finding that opposite end of the spectrum. And it’s Samuel Jackson performance, much like Bruce Willis as David Dunn, that hammers all of those themes home and drives it throughout the entire movie. The fact that he is kind of like this likable, somewhat charming and sympathetic character throughout most of the movie, when you see him chewing this guy’s ass about trying to buy some piece of art for his four year old son, when you see him kind of crack and little subtle kind of corny jokes to David Dunn about I need your credit card number, all these things that make you like the character of Elijah Price and they make you want to get behind his cause and actually make you want him to find those answers.

Even though you want to see David Dunn find all those for his own gain. You want to see a larger find somebody find somebody that gives him that purpose in life, that answers those questions that he has lingered onto since birth. And it’s almost like he’s a mentor in a lot of ways. You always get these training montages or, you know, you got this this mentor, this Rosow Ghoul in Batman Begins type character where they guide the up and coming hero to being that hero. They train them or they tell them what they need to do or where they need to find or they give them little. With great power comes great responsibility type lines that they keep in the back of their head through their entire lives and their entire careers. A superhero. And even though it’s completely different than anything you’ve ever seen, Elijah Price is kind of that mentor character for David Dunn. He’s the one guiding him and pushing him and driving him to find this, to push yourself to figure out what your abilities are, to figure out your place in this world.

And all of that makes for absolute tragedy and borderline shock, depending on how much you’re paying attention throughout the movie. When you get to that final twist and find out that Elijah Price is not only evil, but he is the arch nemesis to David Dunn and he has orchestrated all of the events to bring him forth in this world. You get to that twist. And like I said, it does feel like the epilogue still, because that final fight is kind of the crescendo in the climax for me when I watch this movie. And when you get that handshake and you see these visions of Elijah burning down this hotel, causing a plane crash, causing this train crash, killing hundreds of people just on the off chance that he does find that one unbreakable person. Again, subtlety. It’s very subdued. It’s very grounded in the way the movie presents it to you in the way that M. Night Shyamalan presented to you. But when you really let that sink in the psychosis of this character to go through that much and to put that much evil into the world, to find the opposite end of the spectrum, it’s terrifying. It’s haunting, and it’s tragic because we have like this character and rooted for this character and been sympathetic for this character since the opening frame.

When he comes out of the womb with broken legs and broken arms, almost gave him.

There were so many times that question was people. But I found so many sacrifices.

Just fine, you cried. And lastly, the thing that I have appreciated a lot about this movie upon my most recent re watch is how so many, even just small, seemingly inconsequential things about this story and about these characters all have PAY-OFF by the third act of this film. Of course, you get the payoff with David Dunn becoming the superhero.

Of course, you get the payoff with Elijah Price taking his place as the arch villain. Of course, you get the payoff of Bruce Willis choking that motherfucker out in that room and saving most of that family. But you also get a payoff between him and his son, where his son has been wanting him to become this person that Elijah Price says he is all along. His son was kind of the other person in the world that innocence, pushing him to do his potential to go out there and be as good as he possibly can be. And you get all that payoff by simply David Dunn pushing a newspaper towards his son and mouthing the words, you were right. You get the payoff between David Dunn and his wife, the resolution between their relationship at the third act as well, all these things that seemed like they could just be inconsequential to the plot. A guy and his wife, who’s usually the secondary background noise character, is one of the main things driving forward his character arc and the fact that he has to think all the way back and uncover the truth all the way back to when he first met his wife to figure out the truth that he’s been hiding from himself in order to keep their relationship together.

And the most subtle thing when the thing that I love the most about their character arc is just the simple thing that Night Shyamalan puts in there whenever they have this conversation about when did you think that our relationship was on the rocks? When did you start to have doubts about us? And David Dunn tells his wife, I woke up from a bad dream one night and I didn’t want to wake you up to tell you. And it’s like it’s gut wrenching for her to hear that there’s something so subtle like that.

I had a bad dream. I don’t want to wake you up. Wow. That’s fucked up. That’s kind of how she views it like that. You could have said you cheated on me and hurt me less. And then you get to the third act of the movie after he has found his place in the world, he’s choke the dude out. He knows who he is. He knows his place. He knows that Elijah Price was right. And you get to the end and he’s carrying his wife up and kind of a very superhero like way that they direct it where he is kind of effortlessly Tair carries are all the way upstairs, laser in bed, hugs on to her and just simply says, I had a bad dream.

That stuff is awesome. It’s beautiful the way that they just pay off those subtle little character arcs and those subtle little story nuggets that could be inconsequential in the hands of a lesser director and a lesser film, but they all get their payoff and unbreakable. As far as the negatives, guys, this might be one of the only times, if not the only time, to the best of my memory, where I have none I have nothing about unbreakable that I can critique that could have been better. That should have been better.

That should have been changed or should have been taken out. Or you could have added something in. I think Unbreakable is an absolute masterpiece start to finish. I think this is a film that gets better. The longer that is existed, it gets better. With each time that I watch it, it becomes more relevant and more impressive and more of a crime that it was so ahead of its time. The more times that I watch it and it’s a film that no matter how many comic book movies we get flooded with every single year and how many we’re going to continue to get flooded with every single year, with that number growing each single year, Unbreakable will still hold its place and at least my top five comic book films of all time. So if you’re a fan of the superhero genre and you are only used to the typical kind of comic book template of Marvel and DC and Fox that we’ve seen over the past decade, and you want something that is a little bit different? Definitely. Definitely. Dedicate your time to checking out Unbreakable because it is one of these shining gems of the genre. And it’s a film that, as time goes on, will be marbled for how ahead of its time that it was absolutely go out and buy it.

So what do you guys think of unbreakable? Do you hold it in high regard like I do? Do you feel like it’s too slow and it just doesn’t really cover what you want from a comic book film? Are you excited for glass? Did you like split? But all of your thoughts down below unbreakable. And we will talk about them.

Keep an eye out later this week on Wednesday when Brian and I are going to be dropping our reviews on Split, which is actually going to be a revisited review for me because my thoughts have changed on the film. Keep an eye out for glass later on this week. And as far as things to look forward to outside of this M. Night Shyamalan little superhero trilogy, I have high tension coming up as my next patriarch on request sometime this week, as well as great night. So check that stuff out, guys. Whenever it drops, keep your eyes locked on this channel as well as Brian Lomax movie talk, please, like and share this video and hit that subscribe button. So it’s easy for you to keep your eyes locked on here and you can check out everything as it drops. So check that stuff out, guys. Check out the video description below for not only the link to Brian’s channel, but my social media links like Facebook, Instagram, Twitter spread. Sure. Picadilly merchandise like T-shirts and other cool shit that is designed by the great Woody Boin and my Patrie on page, which is a great way to get back to this channel, help this channel grow and get cool exclusive content for your eyes only. So check all that stuff out, guys.

And if you want to check out some more of my reviews, you could check out those videos by clicking right over here.:

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