In my Urban Fantasy class today we discussed the following question about The Sixth Sense but could never reach consensus. (I’ll pose the question to be relatively spoiler free in case there’s anyone out there who hasn’t seen the flick). Both Cole (the kid) and Malcolm (the shrink) have secrets. We know when Malcolm learns Cole’s secret. When does Cole know Malcolm’s secret? The class was split down the middle with half, including myself, maintaining that Cole knows from the beginning, when they meet in the church. Others maintain that he only comes to realize it. Everyone pretty much agreed that he definitely knows by the end of the film—and before first time viewers do. So the question is when does Cole know?

I’m always surprised how much I like this movie, how it mostly holds up as a terrific plot stunt that actually strengthens the movie. The story you think you’re seeing and the story you’re actually watching inform each other quite movingly. If any of my fictional moms ever find themselves on film, I want Toni Colette to play the part. She does great moms. Course, she may be sick to death of moms. Hell, she can play any part she wants.

The red dress at the funeral party didn’t work for me, but mostly the details are wonderful. I keep trying to enjoy his later films as much, if at all, but so far it’s not happening. I haven’t seen Lady in the Water, but I did recently screen The Village. The village idiot did it is not much of a plot. The monster’s still wearing a red dress, but nobody’s dancing. How could a group of professional counsellors come up with something as dopey as the Village? With Shyalaman’s lame ideas. I suspected after Signs that he’d become afflicted with profundity. But The Village just seemed lifeless. I liked the blind girl, however, no matter how implausible her mission.