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SF in film and TV
October 1999

A Good Plot Twist Will Take You Far

M. Night Shyamalan, director and writer of this summer's surprise-hit supernatural film The Sixth Sense, has made a record screenplay deal of almost $5 million for his next work, according to a report in the October 19th Los Angeles Times. Another supernatural drama set in Philadelphia, Unbreakable will star Bruce Willis (again) and Samuel L. Jackson. Disney plans to release the film by Thanksgiving 2000. The previous record screenplay deal was $4 million to Shane Black for The Long Kiss Goodnight. The Sixth Sense has grossed nearly $250 million in North America so far.


Critical Traps

The October 1999 issue of Harper's Magazine has an article by Lee Siegel (not online) accusing virtually all the critics of Stanley Kubrick's film Eyes Wide Shut of missing the point, of not evaluating the film on its own merits.

Instead, the critics denounced the film for not living up to the claims its publicists had made for it, reduced it to a question of its director's personality, measured it by how much information it conveyed about the familiar world around us.
Siegel's article makes numerous provocative points about traps that critics can fall into, such as responding more to the publicity hype or media speculation about a film than to the film itself, or of failing to comprehend a work of art that does not (in the hyper-realistic manner of virtually all Hollywood films) reflect immediate experience.


Bookmarks -- Movie Reviews

Here are reviews available online of New Rose Hotel:

  • Review by Kevin Thomas, Los Angeles Times 8 Oct.
  • Review by Amy Taubin, Village Voice Sept. 29 - Oct. 5
  • Review by Janet Maslin, New York Times 1 Oct.
    (Thu 21 Oct 1999)

© 1999 by Locus Publications. All rights reserved.