KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia – So this is a pretty tricky review to write. Mostly because Split is an M. Night Shyamalan movie and it revolves around a central twist. The twist is pretty obvious and if you basically stay awake for the first 15 or so minutes of the movie you can pretty much work out what it will be. However, I will endeavour to keep this one spoiler free.
Long story short, this movie is not very good. It’s not that the story or the performances are particularly bad. It is more that this particular movie is at least an hour worth of padding that does not really go anywhere.
It is almost as if he had the choice between exploring a story that would actually have depth and character development but then chose instead to go for something shallow. Which is basically what we get with this film. It is shallow, despite making a half hearted attempt at being a social commentary and the final act of the film is quite visceral.
The entire second act is pretty much just a jumble of unresolved plot threads that have the potential to be more interesting than what you are watching. However, the film literally just ignores them in favour of railroading the viewer to its contrived drama.
To be perfectly honest, with some heavy editing this would be a pretty excellent short film, but then they would not be able to charge full price for it. Which is a shame because it is obvious that while not commanding a huge budget, it obviously had a much bigger budget than what these sort of films normally get. And who knows what they spent that budget on because the entire movie basically revolves around 4 rooms and 2 broom closets with a few outdoor sets.
So in all honesty I can’t really recommend that you pay money to watch this one, but if you like this sort of quasi-psychological thriller you could do much worse. – The Binge
Header photo from Split’s official website, Universal Studios.