Lady in the Water Reviews

  • Lady in the Water has some interesting moments, but fails because the story is so uninspiring. It simply does not achieve the greatness that it thinks it deserves.

    Julian Roman — MovieWeb

  • Shyamalan's most alienating and self-absorbed project to date.

    Lisa Schwarzbaum — Entertainment Weekly

  • M. Night Shyamalan's Lady in the Water is one of the more watchable films of the summer. A folly, true, but watchable.

    Manohla Dargis — New York Times

  • This pretentious, humourless (except for a joke-about-a-joke centring on the film critic) movie is breathtaking in its absurdity.

    Philip French — Guardian [UK]

  • Though the result is too idiosyncratic to be regarded as just one more summer-movie whiff, those who see it may feel a need to act like a pool lifeguard and blow the whistle on Shyamalan.

    Mike Clark — USA Today

  • If the ultimate goal is entertainment, then Lady in the Water enthusiastically rises to the task.

    Desson Thomson — Washington Post

  • It is possible to wrestle yourself from the movie's hokey ambitions. There is a good chunk of Lady in the Water that is simply too well made and affectingly acted to dismiss as a mere exercise in arrogance.

    Wesley Morris — Boston Globe

  • Shyamalan is mystically assuming that any idea or image that pops into his skull will make a shapely tale, no matter how much cock-and-bull logic he has to invent to Gorilla Glue it together.

    Michael Atkinson — Village Voice

  • The story is so convoluted and ultimately preposterous that you're almost embarrassed by the earnestness of the actors trying to carry it off.

    Jack Mathews — New York Daily News

  • Murky like the water in the pool, or like Christopher Doyle's cinematography.

    Joe Morgenstern — Wall Street Journal

  • In the end, Shyamalan's stumbling Lady never gives us a reason to believe.

    Amy Biancolli — Houston Chronicle

  • For weeks the Web has been rich with rumors that Lady in the Water is a dog. The noble truth is that M. Night Shyamalan's new thriller isn't half bad. The awful truth is that it's not really half good, either.

    Philip Wuntch — Dallas Morning News

  • M. Night Shyamalan doesn't have an ego problem. He's just a humble screenwriter and director who makes himself a star of his own movie -- as a character who is a writer, whose words will save the world from despair and destruction.

    Michael Booth — Denver Post

  • Like Splash reworked by a grandiose Sunday-school teacher.

    David Edelstein — New York Magazine

  • Just when the story begs for some clean lines and a sense of direction, we get dithering and misdirection and another confused-tenants sequence.

    Michael Phillips — Chicago Tribune

  • It's hard to think of a deadlier shotgun marriage than Jacques Tourneur's poetry of absence and Spielbergian uplift, but Shyamalan has patented the combo, adding pretentious camera movements that are peculiarly his own -- even the jokes are pretty solemn.

    Jonathan Rosenbaum — Chicago Reader

  • It's a busy made-up universe -- with rules, rituals, and a deity-tree that could give the Hindu hierarchy a run for its rupee. And it's extremely silly.

    Steven Rea — Philadelphia Inquirer

  • Shyamalan is too gifted a filmmaker to waste his time, and ours, on such twaddle. The best thing that could be done with Lady in the Water is to deep-six it and hope that his next project doesn't occur to him over milk and cookies with the kids.

    Colin Covert — Minneapolis Star Tribune

  • These days, movie fans have grown accustomed to being force-fed a film's reality, to having it hammered home from first loud frame to last. Lady in the Water offers more subtle submersion, a baptism of soulful quirks and daringly sweet imagination.

    Tom Long — Detroit News

  • As with all of his other films, Lady in the Water offers plenty of grist for after-movie dinner conversations. The film is not without merit, just difficult to figure out. Maybe that's the way Shyamalan wants it.

    Bill Muller — Arizona Republic

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