Lady in the Water

If there was any doubt that M. Night Shyamalan thinks of himself as a genius, this movie should remove it. A fairy tale transplanted to a Pennsylvania pool, Lady is equal parts inspiration and self-indulgence. M. Night casts himself as The Most Important Writer in the World, which tells you something. He also casts Paul Giamatti as the lead, which is always a good idea. Giamatti is Cleveland Heep, superintendent at the hotel, and one night, he finds a woman from another dimension in his swimming pool. This woman (Bryce Dallas Howard) is blank-eyed and beautiful, so she must be full of wisdom. And, indeed, she helps The Most Important Writer in the World to realize His Vision, and she helps Heep to come to terms with his personal tragedies, and she unites the residents of the hotel in an epic quest to return her to the magical Blue World. It’s exactly as good and bad as it can be with that plot, and so it is very good, and very bad.


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