Knock at the Cabin is just as annoying as unwanted people knocking at your door.
M. Knight Shyamalan’s new film, Knock at the Cabin, is releasing on February 3, 2023, from Universal Pictures. The film stars Dave Bautista, Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Kristen Cui, Abby Quinn, and Rupert Grint. Four strangers who experience visions of the apocalypse are tasked with uniting and presenting an impossible choice to a family at a cabin. That choice is for the family to willingly choose a member to sacrifice in order to save the world. Despite the star-studded cast, a partnership with Canon, and a very intriguing premise, the film fails to capitalize on its assets and leaves a bad taste in the mouth.
What Knock at the Cabin Does Right
Before I go into how much I do not like this film, there is some real good in the movie. In particular, the performances. Dave Bautista is the undeniable star of the film. Bautista’s portrayal of conflict and empathy is a resounding win for the movie. It adds a palpable sadness to the events and gravitas to the situation. It was elevated with the support of Nikki Amuka-Bird, Rupert Grint, and Abby Quinn, who are coming to the same goal but with their own very different motivations. On the other side of the situation, Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge, and Kristen Cui also give strong performances to counter the resolute home invaders.
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The film is very well crafted The cinematography and editing do ramp up the emotion, tension, and drama throughout the film. There were beautiful framing and symbolism that highlight the theme of the film. Without giving too much away, the framing of bugs is especially poignant. Also, the use of light is a masterpiece that reflects the characters’ feelings, health, and situation.
People Hate When Someone Knocks at Their Door
If Shyamalan’s goal was to leave the audience with the same feeling of annoyance after unwanted solicitors knock on your door to attempt to persuade you to their beliefs, then he achieved it perfectly. Knock at the Cabin will leave you as annoyed as a Mormon missionary knocking at your door saying they are there as a gift and doesn’t go away until you lose your polite composure. While the trailers do give strong hints at the religious theme of the film, as well as Shyamalan’s history, the overbearing and clumsy delivery makes the situation feel like a total bait and switch. Come in expecting a suspenseful thriller, instead get a terrible sermon.
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The worse part is that the resounding message of Knock at the Cabin is for gay people to accept the terrible and wrong-headed views of religion despite the pain and suffering it causes. They need to accept the hate, the pain, and the suffering, for the benefit of all. Talking to other journalists, I learned that the source material is a graphic novel and has a completely opposite ending.
This is Why Respectful People Don’t Knock Anymore
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Basically, Knock at the Cabin wastes its cast and production to be blasphemously preachy. In addition, it fails to explain the rules of the game and just comes off as some reverse torture and masochism. Despite strong performances and craftsmanship, even direction, the story just destroys the entire experience. Whether you agree with the message or not, the forced and incredibly anti-climactic resolution and cleanliness of it do not make sense from the messy situation that lead to it.
Window cleaner would not fix a broken window or turn it into a cup of tea. It’s as if the players won a game they did not know the rules of and got a prize that was never mentioned and no one actually wants.
For the forced shoving of a terrible sermon and wasting the art of numerous artists, I give Knock at the Cabin a 4/10.
Knock at the Cabin releases in theaters on February 3, 2023.
About Knock at the Cabin
Release Date: February 3, 2023 (USA)
Director: M. Night Shyamalan
Producers: M. Night Shyamalan, Ashwin Rajan, Marc Bienstock
Cinematography: Jarin Blaschke
Production Companies: Blinding Edge Pictures, MORE
Distributed By: Universal Pictures
Runtime: 1h 40m
Cast: Dave Bautista, Jonathan Groff, Ben Aldridge, Nikki Amuka-Bird, Kristen Cui, Abby Quinn, and Rupert Grint
While vacationing at a remote cabin, a young girl and her parents are taken hostage by four armed strangers who demand that the family make an unthinkable choice to avert the apocalypse. With limited access to the outside world, the family must decide what they believe before all is lost.
Do you already have tickets to Knock at the Cabin? What was the last M. Knight Shyamalan movie you liked? Do you like when people knock at your door? Let us know your thoughts and reactions on social media.
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