Sunday, January 21, 2018

The Sixth Sense (1999)

Some movies have very limited replay value.  The problem with a twist ending is that it will probably put your movie into this category.  At most, you might get a second viewing just to see what you missed.  The more reliant the movie is on the ending, the less likely you are to watch it a third time.  Much of the value of The Sixth Sense is in not knowing how it ends.

It starts with Dr. Malcolm Crowe and his wife, Anna, at home after Malcolm receives an award from the city.  Malcolm is shot by an intruder who turns out to be a former patient named Vincent Grey.  Malcolm is a child psychologist who failed to help Vincent.

Malcolm is meeting with Cole Sear.  Cole’s story is similar to Vincent’s, so if Malcolm can help Cole, it might serve as an act of redemption.  You see, Cole is ostensibly a normal kid.  Sure, he’s a little weird and doesn’t quite fit in.  It’s not unusual for a kid to be picked on.

He has a secret, though.  Yup.  If you were around 20 years ago, you might remember that the kid sees dead people.  It terrifies him, as well it should.  It’s not something that a young child should have to see.  He may see the deceased hanging from a noose or with an obvious wound.

Malcolm is intent on helping Cole, regardless of how strange it sounds.  When Cole is able to help a young girl, Cole is able to come to terms with his ability.  It also prompts him to give Malcolm some helpful advice.  They realize that they won’t see each other again, as the twist ending is coming soon.

I don’t want to give away that ending, as you don’t really see it coming.  This is one of those movies to watch on Netflix or to rent.  I don’t know that I’d recommend buying it unless you’re intent on having every Bruce Willis movie out there.

I don’t see this movie a lot on the cable channels.  I don’t know if it’s that I don’t go looking for it or if it’s that it’s faded into the background.  It’s a shame because it is a well-written movie.  I didn’t see the ending coming the first time around, although I probably should have.  This is what prompted me to watch it again when it became available on Netflix.  I wanted to see all of those moments that foreshadowed the big ending.

The movie was still entertaining.  There is a scary element to the movie.  It’s definitely not something for young children.  As I said, there are some violent elements to it.  It’s also hard to do a full-on review, as it’s also such a well-known movie.  It’s well-known enough that parodies have been done of it.  The line, “I see dead people” was a catchphrase for years after the movie was release.

Still, I don’t think I’ve seen the movie since it came out in 1999.  As good as it was, it wasn’t a movie that I felt an urge to see again.  It will probably be another 17 or 18 years before my next viewing.

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