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Overall Rating
2.58

Awesome: 10.78%
Worth A Look: 22.16%
Just Average: 13.77%
Pretty Crappy: 20.96%
Sucks32.34%

12 reviews, 95 user ratings



Lady in the Water
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by Luke Pyzik

"Dead in the Water"
1 stars

Even if I haven’t always liked M. Night Shyamalan’s movies, I’ve always found them watchable and interesting. I even found the lambasted “Village” to be a mildly entertaining mystery with an insolent twist that made me smile. He’s often accused of being smug and arrogant, which is valid, but I always contended I’d rather watch an arrogant filmmaker fail than a filmmaker with no ambition be mediocre. That argument doesn’t hold up for “Lady in the Water,” a movie so terribly boring and frustrating that not even M. Night’s arrogance or Christopher Doyle’s gorgeous cinematography can save it.

The film takes place entirely within an apartment complex in Philadelphia, where a wide assortment of wacky characters go about doing wacky things, like only working out one side of their body, grumpily watching the History Channel, and being an asshole film critic. Get it? The film critic is an asshole. You see how Shyamalan subtly and meticulously deconstructs the role of film critics? It’s very nuanced and layered. You have to watch closely. Anyway, in the middle of all the wackiness is Paul Giamatti,, the building maintenance man who finds a hot naked chick in the backyard pool. You see, we’re told in the opening credits that hot naked sea chicks used to appear to men to tell them important things about humanity (I’m guessing this is how Eli Whitney invented the cotton gin). Well, this particular hot naked sea chick has something she needs to tell someone in the apartment complex, and she needs to do it quick, because a mangy wolf wants to eat her, and then she’s gotta catch a ride home with that big ass eagle from “Lord of the Rings.”


Yes, you read that correctly. See, Shyamalan wants to invent a new fairy tale with a new mythology that plays by totally new rules. This might work if he could have found a way to make this story and these rules meaningful, entertaining, or insightful, but instead it feels like he’s playing Madlibs, shouting out the first thing that comes to mind. It’s like if I decided I wanted to invent a new fairy tale right now: See, there was this paper clip that lived in a village called Deskland. The paper clip’s name was San Fernando. San Fernando decided that in order to make his life meaningful, he would have to become a staple and go live in a stapler. But in order to become a staple, San Fernando would have to get someone to pee on him. So San Fernando tricked a man named Alibi to pee on him by pretending to be a toilet. But now that San Fernando was a pee-covered staple, he had to find a stapler in Deskland where he could live. He traveled all over Deskland and met a group of people named The Faction…


Imagine two hours of this.


“Lady in the Water” never stops rambling, inventing new rules and explaining itself away until its final minutes. It never takes the time to establish the world and then live comfortable within it. There’s never really any suspense or intrigue, as we can’t even begin to care about the characters. The performances in the movie are all fine, Howard does an adequate job of looking scared, wet, and cold, while Paul Giamatti manages to be the only thing remotely entertaining in the entire film. Well, I take that back. The wolf is pretty cool looking. The wolf deserves to be in a better movie. The cast seems to have faith that Shyamalan will put all this together to make something good, but I can imagine the collective cringe on their faces when they first saw it cut together.

“Lady in the Water” was marketed as a “Bedtime Story,” and true to its world, it will indeed put you to sleep. For all of its tedious, incoherent ramblings, the film could almost redeem itself if it managed at least to give us a few scares. But even the one scene with any sense of tension is spoiled by an eye-roll inducing monologue by the asshole film critic, the only guy in the room that doesn’t get it. Yeah, dude. It’s the film critic that doesn’t get it.

link directly to this review at http://www.hollywoodbitchslap.com/review.php?movie=14853&reviewer=381
originally posted: 07/27/06 11:41:08
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User Comments

9/13/17 morris campbell not bad imo 4 stars
2/06/17 Leires The movie was sitting on a TNT barrel. Love/hate stuff indeed. 3 stars
7/30/16 Jaekn Not worth the $5.00 to own in one of those superstore box deals 1 stars
3/16/16 Luisa Shyamalan needs to stop acting in his films, no onscreen charisma, it ruins the film 3 stars
5/18/14 JP Williams Standing ovation from a packed theater when my wife and I first saw this. Really enjoyable. 5 stars
3/11/14 Howard Mark Yes, I was in bed, tired as all get out, but my imagination was captured by the characters, 4 stars
7/09/13 Reptilesni Ordinary people become part of something extraordinary. I love this film. 5 stars
2/09/13 Langano If you don't take it so serious you just might enjoy the story. 4 stars
9/19/12 jenn thanks for this, my family and I love this movie. 4 stars
2/05/12 Monica S Charming, moving fairy tale . . . if you give it a chance. Wonderful acting. 4 stars
1/11/11 Perk Good movie. Very sweet fairytale. Might make u cry! Happy ending:) 5 stars
8/08/10 Eric Quite pleasant and a great deal of fun. Good work on storytelling. 4 stars
8/07/10 Bill P Surprisingly good! Great Giamatti! I've recommended it to friends. Surprised at the critic 4 stars
11/07/09 jimbob a picture for the evolved with wonderment, one of the best movies ever, you know i truth 5 stars
10/27/09 Steve I find myself watching it over and over each time it comes on. Flawed, but so enjoyable. 4 stars
6/20/09 JR Wow, so M. Night plays a gifted writer/ prophet who saves the world. My God, what an ego. 1 stars
3/16/09 :] wth...? 1 stars
3/07/09 Raul Valdez Jr not that bad 4 stars
2/20/09 ES Drew me in and kept me up late wanting to see what would happen, lots of great ideas n fun 4 stars
1/19/09 gLottis Giamatti was very genuine, and the film was enchanting 4 stars
1/12/09 Anonymous. one of the worst films i've ever seen. 1 stars
12/21/08 tain movie was interesting... best soundtrack EVER. 3 stars
12/04/08 Shaun Wallner Very Boring! 1 stars
10/22/08 Bonnie An adult fairytale to be sure, and not a bad one, but his true talet lies in scaring people 4 stars
10/13/08 g. just ok 3 stars
9/30/08 Tim Paul Giamatti's Cleveland Heep won me over as he struggled with the pain of his loss. 5 stars
9/28/08 Sean Imaginative and insightful into a fairytale. Absolutely beautiful. 4 stars
9/21/08 Callum It is a beautiful movie. A fairytale everyone should watch. 4 stars
7/24/08 Helden Multilayered & surprisingly satisfying...I enjoy every MNS film I see. 4 stars
7/24/08 jeanne Masturbatory, self-indulgent, utter bollocks! A criminal waste of Giamatti, Wright, Balaban 1 stars
6/21/08 David This film is a brilliant Myth. Dumbies don't get it. 5 stars
6/15/08 LordHat Very good. 5 stars
6/14/08 Casey When I told people who didn't like it, it was a fairytale, I saw a lightbulb go on 5 stars
6/14/08 Steph This movie could be an IQ test. The narrow-minded dim-wits will hate it. 5 stars
5/19/08 PAUL SHORTT IT HAS ALL THE SUBLETY OF A BRICK APPLIED TO THE HEAD 1 stars
3/24/08 John Smith Great film, great review - (not automatically biased as so many critics are!) 5 stars
2/09/08 Deltaboy49 This film has a big, big heart and is full of wonderment 5 stars
1/11/08 pablo Much better than all that Harry Potter nonsense 3 stars
10/01/07 Rick Utter failure, nothing intriguing or new about the ideas 1 stars
8/20/07 Jubei A mess of a film.Zemeckis would've made magic with this premise.Unnerving. 1 stars
8/13/07 Claire Beautifully un-cynical 5 stars
7/06/07 me crappy movie, made no sense 1 stars
6/30/07 Danielle Ophelia I didn't hate it, but I was constantly aware of its shortcomings. 3 stars
5/08/07 Charone Easily one of the dumbest movies I've ever seen in my entire life. 1 stars
4/18/07 zenshark Don't waste your time. 2 stars
4/01/07 Quigley Giamatti is excellent; this movie is not. The opening sequence is the best part 2 stars
3/27/07 fools♫gold OthehumorofShyamalan: castinghimselfastheimportantwriter"whosewordswon'tbeunderstood4years" 3 stars
3/02/07 David Pollastrini Bryce is hot! 2 stars
2/20/07 Stu Padasso It made me believe in people again. 4 stars
2/13/07 The chode Garbage. 1 stars
1/29/07 Indrid Cold A bold, unusual idea for a major studio movie, but it ends up muddled and boring. 3 stars
1/26/07 alice oh my god, this was so boring I could see dead people ! 1 stars
1/10/07 Tracey Chambers How quickly he believes shes something other than ordinary. Turned me off. 1 stars
1/01/07 Rubye Intriguing for those with imagination and magical souls 5 stars
12/28/06 grace yost it was great, excellent will watch it again and again 5 stars
12/14/06 Donny Martwick First half had so much potental. They should of had 100 wolfs and magic powers. 2 stars
12/03/06 Mike Self-indulgent 2 stars
9/27/06 Raj Its like having E Coli for dinner. VOMIT INDUCING CRAP! 1 stars
9/26/06 Erin Amidon ET meets SPLASH and both are utterly clueless as to what to do with each other! 2 stars
9/15/06 Ben The water in my toilet looks better than this! 1 stars
9/14/06 M Night Worth 2 C Not formula mainstream flick 4 stars
9/13/06 Poonam THE WORST FILM OF THE YEAR 1 stars
9/03/06 Jenny Um - The Village was better than this movie - if that tells you anything! 2 stars
9/02/06 Dragon The Artist Not too bad, a hell of a lot better than The Village,about as medieocre as Signs 3 stars
8/30/06 Killjoy Sleep inducing movie he made for his kids and we have to endure the torture! 1 stars
8/25/06 Stanley Thai Not one of M. Night's best but still a great film. 4 stars
8/24/06 Al Guy He's getting tiring. 2 stars
8/23/06 Chad Thomas M. Night has lost his mind! 1 stars
8/21/06 G Sherfy "Tepid" is apt; the world wisens to Night's trick that he's a good direc. 1 stars
8/17/06 KAREN MATLOCK very disappointing 2 stars
8/15/06 Rohit Shocker from the guy who made 'Sixth Sense' - Night gone mental here 1 stars
8/14/06 Becca totally blew ass. cried laughing. WORST MOVIE EVERRR. 1 stars
8/10/06 michael average and wait for the DVD 4 stars
8/09/06 melivorous Great Storytelling 4 stars
8/09/06 Dragon The Artist A hell of a lot better than that everso disappionting The Villiage, thats for sure!! 4 stars
8/06/06 Roadkill Report If you notice, at least in a dozen scenes in the move you can actually see the overhead mic 1 stars
8/06/06 Erik Van Sant Somebody peed in the pool. M. Night Shama-lama-ding-dong has flown the coop. 1 stars
8/05/06 nicklor24 one of my top 10 films, original and fantastic, check it out 5 stars
8/01/06 Forderve So different and original, it's a good fairy tale with deeper meaning than most movies 5 stars
8/01/06 Caddy One of the best movies I've ever seen. Too bad people are so cynical these days. 5 stars
8/01/06 Tim in VA A dreadfully boring and possibly drug-induced cinematic excretion. Two thumbs down. 1 stars
7/31/06 Luisa Great actors...bad movie...M.Knight is only getting worse...he needs to lose the ego... 2 stars
7/30/06 Marty original concept but obvious vendetta for critics. giamatti rocked. 3 stars
7/29/06 Sano Charming, Original...I liked it as well. 4 stars
7/29/06 Troy M. Grzych Held my interest but was a bit slow. I enjoyed the ride. 4 stars
7/28/06 Bad Critic Idea (Narphs and Scrunts) was retarded... but Giamatti was typical with a great performance 3 stars
7/24/06 Ole Man Bourbon Beyond ridiculous. Superlatively horrid. Egad. 1 stars
7/24/06 moondog cliché, tired, expected... worst movie I've ever seen 1 stars
7/24/06 Mark This deserves negative stars 1 stars
7/23/06 ahnold Still imaginitive, original and entertaining. 4 stars
7/23/06 Jay Yup this movie sucked big time. Oh and the Chinese woman is actually Korean. 1 stars
7/23/06 Roy Smith It's ridiculous...and I loved it. I'm strange, so sue me. 4 stars
7/21/06 David Hollingsworth It really doesn't make sense. 2 stars
7/21/06 Nightjorn crap movie crap movie crap movie 1 stars
7/21/06 scotty great movie great movie great movie 5 stars
IF YOU'VE SEEN THIS FILM, RATE IT!
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USA
  21-Jul-2006 (PG-13)
  DVD: 19-Dec-2006

UK
  18-Aug-2006

Australia
  07-Sep-2006




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