Reviews: Unbreakable

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The Most Realistic Superhero Anything Ever
This movie is the most realistic imagining of superheroes ever. I literally mean it when I say that.

V for Vendetta due to being an extremely close second in terms of realism, and Hancock do to being the same medium and milieu will be used as scales to compare realism.

The origin of the super powers:
  • Hancock: Never really explained.
  • V For Vendetta: A "criminal" subject to cruel human experimentation that ended up giving enhancements somehow.
  • Unbreakable: By analogy from Elijah's genetic mutation that makes him weak, David has a genetic mutation that makes him strong and very resilient.

The super powers themselves:

The establishment of the conflict of the story:
  • Hancock: He can't fight crime well yet has super powers.
  • V For Vendetta: Following a nuclear war, the UK is being run by an oppressive far-right government that can only be countered by a certain anarchist with a plan.
  • Unbreakable: Elijah is trying to find a super-powered hero as an analogy to his crippling disability, and thus because a super-powered person is also the hero, the disabled person must be the villain by analogy. Using that, Elijah arranges accidents to find this super person, eventually finding David.

As you can see, Unbreakable is a much more realistic story than even V for Vendetta because of the way the super powers are introduced and the establishment of the conflict of the story. V for Vendetta tips the Sliding Scale Of Realistic Versus Fantastic by establishment of a completely different milieu than the current societal situation going on now, and Hancock tips Mohs Scale Of Sci Fi Hardness with his explicitly physics-breaking powers. Thus, Unbreakable is the most realistic primarily because of how it sets everything up and presents it, yet still remains in the Super Hero genre by virtue of having a super-powered person who fights crime.
  comments: 3
A Rewarding Slow Burn. One of The Best Superhero Films Ever.

This is very much a slow burn kind of thriller. What amazes me most is how wonderfully "Unbreakable" subverts and plays with superhero movie tropes...when really the more modern era of superhero films was still up ahead. ("X-Men" came out the same year. You could trace back the modern superhero film to "Superman: The Movie" but "X-Men" brought it back once again.)

This is very much a slow burn sort of film. It would be even more ideal to have absolutely no knowledge of what to expect and just watch it. Though, if you're on here. You probably already have a pretty good idea on what it is. In that case, stop reading and go watch it. Seriously. It's a superb film. This Shaymalan at his best (alongside with "The Sixth Sense"). The film has the touch and sensibility of a more artistic, more indie Shaymalan. His script, raw and aided with the magnificent score of James Newton Howard make for a movie that's not as flashy as any of its more traditional peers.

Verisimilitude is the word of the day here and this film really gets it. It builds itself up from the ground up with the most subtle of mythologies, all the way up to its final twist ending. And what an ending it is. Definitely worth your time. Go check it out.

  comments: 0