“Split” leaves audiences split up


Courtesy of www.hercampus.com

Maria Zuniga, Contributing Writer

Social media buzzed after “Split” hit the movie theaters on Jan. 20 creating controversy. The director and writer, M. Night Shyamalan, is known for his elaborate endings from other movies such as “The Village,” and “The Sixth Sense.” For some of the audience, the ending worked faultlessly; for others disappointed is an understatement.

The movie begins with Kevin Wendell Crumb (James McAvoy) an irrational man with a dissociative identity disorder kidnapping three teenage girls. Kevin developed 23 personalities after having to deal with abuse as a child from his mother. At this point in the movie the 23 personalities have inhabited his body.

The girls, Casey (Anya Taylor-Joy), Claire (Haley Lu Richardson) and Marcia (Jessica Sula) are being held captive in the basement of a zoo where Kevin lives. Casey is the traditional awkward girl in every movie. An outsider. Shyamalan develops her character by giving the audience insight of her life through flashbacks. The flashbacks reveal why her character is essential to the plot while also creating more mystery.

Kevin’s personalities are preparing for something crucial. Shyamalan exposes each personality through the eyes of the girls, a gay fashion designer, a rebellious nine-year old, a creepy old church lady, an aggressive control freak as well as others.

While Claire and Marcia panic to escape, Casey’s life experiences help her to stay calm and rational. She tries to understand Kevin’s personalities hoping that it would lead her and the girls to safety. When things take a turn of the worst she finds herself alone. Casey meets the 24th personality of Kevin as she fights for her life.

The ending caused audiences to split up. In the theaters you could hear two split opinions. People said it was great because of the awareness it created about the disorder, and others said it took on more than it could handle.

“It had a lot potential, however it was very anti-climatic,” said Fatima Diakete, a junior from William Paterson University. “It had a lot of build up just to be disappointed at the end.”

Although not everyone was satisfied with the ending Shyamalan wrote, he did a great job working with limited locations for the movie. The action took place in the basement of the zoo and at the home of Kevin’s shrink, Dr. Fletcher (Betty Buckley). The basement of the zoo was dark, eerie and discomforting; giving the movie a sense of horror and thrill.

The audience did agree that McAvoy’s performance was exceptional. His use of body language, facial expression and accent is why each personality was a success.

“Split” is a movie that took its audiences by surprise and currently stands at 101.7 million at the box office.