A sequel of sorts to both Split and Unbreakable. Willis returns as the indestructible David, who opens the film hunting the multiple-personality Horde, played by McAvoy. Soon both find themselves institutionalized alongside the catatonic Mr. Glass, played by Jackson. Their presence awakens Glass, who sets to work orchestrating an escape for himself and the Horde.
There’s more plot. Too much. Anya Taylor-Joy returns in a superfluous role as something of a love-interest. Sarah Paulson plays a doctor convinced everyone is delusional.
I had high hopes. I loved how Unbreakable explored the “What if your Dad discovered he was Superman?” premise. The breakfast scene where Willis slides the newspaper to his son and mouths “You were right,” still drives a lump in my throat.
Glass offers nothing so resonant. Rather than further explore Willis’s character, or even Jackson’s (who’s the titular character, after all), the film focuses on the Horde. McAvoy’s great in the role, delivering another tour de force performance, but to what end? The script doubles down on Unbreakable’s comic-book thesis, yet expends a good deal of screen time attempting to convince us Willis and McAvoy aren’t superhuman.
Sure, the film looks great. Shyamalan gives the three leads a primary color that he weaves through his compositions. But he struggles to stage the finale’s big action set-piece.
And the ending. Ugh. My biggest problem with Unbreakable was how the abrupt expository ending betrayed the film’s measured tone. This film’s ending left me longing for something so tactful. I won’t spoil it, but I waited 19 years for a sequel to Unbreakable and the adage about being careful what you wish for proves true.