I am a tad bit late on getting to finally watch this movie after so many years of wanting to see it. I mean common, the whole concept of something eerie going on in some little community out in the woods just sounds like a cool idea for a film. Or maybe its just me.. M. Night Shyamalan has always been a good scary movie writer. His movies are good in the way that they create a since of fear in us unlike other scary movies do that have make something very disturbing to scare us. Rather he takes what is simple and real that can be feared and makes it hidden and unknown so that we stay worried for the characters because of the very thing we can not figure out. This very technique is nicely played out in this film The Village. We know from the start that there are killer creatures that occupy the woods and that the people of the village know that no one is to go into the woods less they never return. This is a similar idea to the story of the ‘Maze Runner’, except they are trapped in the middle of a maze instead of in a village in the middle of the woods.
There are really three main characters in this film that play important roles. There is Lucius Hunt who is played by Joaquin Phoenix. He plays and excellent character being brave yet quiet. He is always wanting to cross into the woods to get medicine from the towns for the village. He believes that a pure heart and fearlessness will prevent the creatures from wanting to harm him. His character speaks of a man who is willing to test the boundaries of the society for the good of the people. With the type of man Lucius is there are not many others like him in the village and this makes him attractive to the women. However Lucius is to noble to acctually ask a women to be his lady. luckily for him, the women seem to do the picking and choosing of soul mates here.
There is a old past of love between Lucius and another main character Ivy Walker, who is played by Bryce Dallas Howard. This love they once had is strong and not forgotten. It shows the watchers how a true love for a person never drifts away completely and how there are soul mates that are meant to be with one another. Ivy plays a pure hearted and faithful blind girl. She is beautiful, caring and trusts in her man. The two of them are really quite different in how much they speak. Unlike Lucius, Ivy talks a lot and even gets annoyed at him when he does not talk enough with her.
The other key player is Adrien Brody who plays Noah Percy, a mentally challenge man who takes fondness to his caring friend Ivy. Noah often frequents the woods and again his safe returns is based on the notion that his innocence prevents the creatures from harming him.
We see the young generation that includes the three main characters naive yet curious about the true power of the unknown and willing to test it for the good of their community. The elders are the ones who have come up with the rules about not going into the woods and other rules to protect their community that they are well set and established in. The authority shows to be exhaustive in their rules to the point where they will not even take a chance for somebody to try and go into town to get something as important as medicine that could mean the difference between life and death.
Many of the scary parts in the movie have to do with their cultish rituals they practice to keep the ‘things that are not to be spoken of’ from coming into their town. But the idea itself of some sort of monster living just right outside of your community that keeps you trapped in the community is a pretty frighting reality. You receive glimpses of these creatures and what they are about through scary sounds and short glimpses of the creators and the things they do throughout the film. The further you get into the movie you figure out more and more about them as the movie goes on. Eventually love, jealousy, and the failed hope for something greater leads them to abandon the elders long set rules about entering the forest. In this story the brave and pure hearted prevail and the jealous and controlling are repaid for what they have done.
The people in their fault in this story question if the way they chose to solve there problems and pain was at all the right way. They quickly see that the pain and heart ache that they tried so hard to protect themselves from was to deny the basic truths about life. Nevertheless the corruption continues to go on as those in authority continue to control the naive.
The best part about this movie is the object of fear itself. The story shows that fear is of the unknown and what you think is real might actually not be real at all but just what you perceive as to be real and harmful. Even when we find evidence for the doubt in what we have been taught to fear, the movie demonstrates until we truly no for sure we will always believe in what we are afraid of and be scared. I would have to say this was one of the writers top films and will have to give it a Seven out of Ten.