The Visit was actually the very first M. Night Shyamalan film I have seen, although his films are discussed so much by film fans that I feel like I have seen many of his other films. Popular opinion would say that his last three films really have been terrible; The Happening, The Last Airbender and After Earth. So does The Visit manage to get back to the likes of The Sixth Sense and Signs? Well as I say I haven’t seen those but I enjoyed The Visit and would imagine its a step back in the right direction for M. Night Shyamalan.
The Visit has horror and thriller elements throughout the movie and largely works well as both. I liked the characters, it was refreshing that they actually had personalities unlike the usual boring characters that horror movies churn out and that’s especially the case where child characters are concerned. Thankfully that wasn’t the case here as the characters in The Visit are always entertaining. The story has a great air of mystery to it therefore keeping me engaged as I wanted to find out what the missing parts of information that our characters are also trying to discover. There are many elements to the story that make the audience raise an eyebrow, I liked the cleverness of these and the ambiguity as to whether or not they would be of any importance to the overall story. The tension was good but much like the Paranormal Activity series due to the day and then night format it meant that it wasn’t constant. However, in the absence of this tension came a very welcome but unexpected aspect of comedy. One character, Tyler, was largely responsible for this. This was made possible by his personality which I have already touched upon, these moments were a nice contrast and often a relief so I thought they worked well.
There are some emotional aspects to the film too but I often felt like these were shoehorned in. They weren’t bad and they never detracted from the movie I just felt that they could have been done better. I also found a bit of inconsistency with Tyler’s germ phobia but these were minor flaws. Aside from these issues I didn’t really have any, I thought that the whole cast perform well and make the film as believable as possible. The Visit is a clever film, it’s written and directed well and certainly is a horror/thriller that I will revisit in the future, it has that re-watchability to it.
The few very small problems were just that, small. Despite these the film is always great fun, I was constantly entertained and it’s the kind of horror/thriller where you can get involved in the story. Whether it was a jump scare, an intended laugh or a more sinister moment the film always gets the desired response from the audience so The Visit comes recommended from me. Just be aware that the next time one of your family suggests a trip to see the Grandparents you might not be so keen.
Rating – 8/10