Split: Movie Review

A Riveting Horror Film

Split Movie Poster
(Photo courtesy of Google)

Split Movie Poster (Photo courtesy of Google)

Wayne Chan, Photojournalist

Disclaimer: This article reveals twists and important details integral to the plot

The movie Split, directed by M. Night Shyamalan, is a horror film with a hint of suspense that captivates the audience’s’ undivided attention throughout its duration. Austin Chan (11) said the film

“kept [him] on [his] edge.”

The film is criticized by some for demonizing the Dissociative Identity Disorder (DID), therefore almost exploiting and misrepresenting a condition that many suffer from. While it is true that the star of the film, Kevin Wendell Crumb played by James McAvoy, does have DID, but the issue is exaggerated to a point where it is scientifically impossible for any humans who suffer from the condition to realize the plot of the story. The trailer reveals that a man with DID abducts three teenage females; however, it does not reveal his intentions with them. This would lead the viewers to believe that this was probably a case of sexual harassment. In reality, the film stars a victim of DID who, by sheer belief, changes his brain chemistry to generate a 24th persona with a human body of unrealistic physical capabilities. This persona was known as ‘the beast’ and can run fast, scale walls like spider man, possesses inhuman strength, and withstand point blank shotgun blasts with relative ease. Another plot twist of the story is Kevin’s intentions with the victims of his capture. The girls were sacred food for ‘the beast’ to eat. The main character and her friends must escape before the emergence of this ‘beast.’

While the plot unravels, the main character’s background story is told in segments of flashbacks, but to me, the true success of the film was the unique personae and how Casey Cook, one of the victim, appeals to each of them to gather information and eventually orchestrate her escape. In the film it was stated by Dr. Fletcher, Kevin’s therapist played by Betty buckley, Kevin’s disorder is stimulated by his childhood abuses. ‘Dennis’ the strict and uncompromising neatfreak is said to have developed to mitigate the unusual atrocities Kevin suffered from his mother. Another interesting persona would be ‘Hedwig’, a curious 9 year old who is constantly looking for a friend. As a result of his specious friendship with Casey, he often falls prey to manipulation. There is ‘Orwell’ who I believe is named after George Orwell, the renowned author of the satirical work Animal Farm. ‘Orwell’ is seen examining social effects and speaking english with extravagant vocabulary obviously stemmed from intellect.

For me the movie was an exhilarating 2 hours of entertainment.  It has the classic thrill of horror movies while possessing an intelligent twist to conclude the film.