After making a masterpiece like "THE SIXTH SENSE," like Cimino, with his "THE DEERHUNTER," following projects are hard to live up to the bar that has been set. But, while Cimino's following films had some worthwhile elements in most of them, Director M Knight Shymalan's efforts have none!
While not as completely horrible as "LADY IN THE WATER," "THE HAPPENING" is still pretty darned awful. Horribly miscast, overly long, and filled with scenes that add nothing to moving the story forward, the film is a complete mess. The writer/director mistakes the idea of nuance with a penchant for throwing out suggestions of bigger themes, without ever offering payoffs or explanations. It's like the audience is forced to watch the writer/director work on a roughdraft on screen, before he's thrown out the entire mess, and starts anew. Blecch! The plot? Ccity dwellers finding people are offing themselves for no apparent reason, sometimes graphically and always stupidly(hence the "r" rating), flee to the rural areas, only to find whatever's "happening" elsewhere is happening there too, with no safe haven around. There are links made between the events and similar events within bee colonies, self-destructing, but it's really a mess and ultimately, dumb!
FOX has provided the correct 1.85:1 aspect ratio for this 1080p/AVC MPEG-4 blu-ray. While colors are intentionally subdued(another dumb choice by the director), and grain is present, the image is generally solid, and notably better than the dvd counterpart. Detail is often very impressive, especially in close-up shots. However, there are few instances wherein the image offers the "jump-off-the-screen" effect one is used to from so many superior FOX blu-ray releases. Contrast is adequate, but dark scenes lack depth due to less than inky blacks.
FOX has provided a DTS-HD master Audio 5.1 mix. It alternates in quality throughout. There are chapters, wherein surround/panning effects help immerse the viewer(temporarilly)into the film, especially in one impressive scene within the long grass as survivors are running from an invisible threat. There are some creative bass effects as well. The biggest drawback of the mix, relates to the imbalance of the film's score, often overshadowing more subtle effects and dialogue.
FOX has included extras, as with the dvd, only all offered in HD here! These included featurettes, deleted scenes and a short gag reel.