The Sixth Sense (1999) Poster

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A movie that will not be outclassed in its genre for years to come
jayp-54 December 1999
When I first saw The Sixth Sense, I didn't know what to expect. I guess I was looking forward to a good scary horror flick. I was very surprised. I found that the purpose for this movie was far greater than just trying to scare the audience. I found this movie was showing not only the emotions of fear, but also faith, commitment, sadness of loss, and love. The end was so surprising, I had to see it again. The second time I watched it, I did it from a totally different perspective (this is a very rare quality for any movie), and I enjoyed it just as much, or maybe even more. I also, as many viewers have, tried to detect fallacies in the story. I couldn't find one. In addition, for those that appreciate great soundtracks, the music only helps to heighten the experience of the movie.

I believe that a great movie is one that helps the viewer perceive life and the world differently. The Sixth Sense is one of those extraordinary movies that does that to me. This movie reflects on some difficult subjects that will make the viewer walk away asking eternal questions. Questions about death, about letting go, about eternal love and commitment, about the love between parent and child, and between husband and wife. Maybe I read too much into this very wonderful film, but I believe it will be difficult to find a movie that has touched on these subjects so poignantly and so well for years to come.
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The most careful attention to detail
Steve Steckel25 October 2000
What makes this film so wonderful to watch is not simply the acting, or the terror it instills, or even the plot itself. It is the way in which the writer/director M. Night Shyamalan takes his vision from the page, and carefully crafts a tale that completely absorbs the viewer. As a result, we are treated to a wealth of emotion: fear, sadness, joy, confusion, and humor, each one a compliment to the other.

Haley Joel Osment delivers, plain and simple. By now, so much has been said about the young actor that any more would be repetition. Needless to say, his portrayal of Cole Sear is remarkable. His ability to communicate, through a simple look or gesture, the depths to which his character's soul has been thrust is what truly carries the film. He succeeds at this task beautifully, convincing us while never going over the top; indeed, by the time Cole utters his now-famous line, you not only believe him, you are chilled by the fact that Osment the actor may actually believe it himself.

Bruce Willis turns in a stellar performance, complimenting his young co-star while never overshadowing him. It is a tribute to his respect of the material in so much as he fine tunes his delivery to seem reserved, yet not too toned down.

The Sixth Sense is more than simply a wondrous two hours. It has, in effect, created a new genre of filmmaking... the film is neither drama, nor horror, nor action. Rather, it is a seamless blending of all three, a film that encompasses the best aspects of each genre, without being limited by the worst. Hollywood has taken notice of this, and one can only expect a series of poor imitations to follow. But at least they'll always have The Sixth Sense to guide the way.
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10/10
Incredible
Spirit-210 December 1999
The Sixth Sense is one of those films that rarely happens these days. In other words, I knew so little about it before sitting in the cinema that it wasn't ruined before it started.

I don't want to ramble on about it so I'll just say... absolute perfection. An incredible story that had me and my friends gripped from start to finish. The twist in the tale was totally unexpected as well.

After it finished we sat through the whole of the credits and talked about how fabulous it was. If only more films were like this. I can't remember the last time we did that!

Congratulations to all involved in this masterpiece.
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10/10
Brilliant
indianajonze23 March 2000
The Sixth Sense is a brilliant film, plain and simple. It is unique in that it relies on imagination and psychology to scare you and make you think twice about the world around you. The director did a fabulous job constructing the imagery of the film, and I genuinely did not know about the ending until it was revealed. Quite a shock! The Sixth Sense goes in my book as the single greatest psychological horror film I have ever seen. Anyone who bashes it are simply not giving it a chance or don't fully realize the complex dialog and imagery around them. Brilliant
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9/10
You'll be knocked for six
Joanna Kelly26 November 1999
This is an incredibly powerful film. Awash with emotion but never stooping to sentimentality this is the story of one frightened little boy you will never forget. All your worst childhood nightmares: the noises in the attic, the intruder in your house, that cold breath that makes your hair stand on end are here and then some.

Bruce Willis gives one of the best performances of his career as the child psychologist trying to get himself back on track after a violent encounter with a former patient and it would be a crime if Haley Joel Osment were overlooked at coming awards ceremonies for his powerful performance here. It has been a long time since a child actor displayed such maturity in a role. Cole's innocent little face hidden behind his absent father's large-framed spectacles betrays a child coming to terms with a terrifying secret in the only way he can.

You don't need to go and see this film again to realise why the end is such a surprise but you will rush out to watch it again purely because it's an almost perfect example of it's genre.

Laugh, cry, jump a mile out of your seat, sigh with relief - but not too early... We did!
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9/10
Still Very Good Even When You Know The Ending
ccthemovieman-18 November 2006
This was hyped big-time when it came out and, if memory serves me, was a good conversation piece among those who saw it at the theater.

I didn't see it for a few years afterward, on tape and now on DVD. It was very good but I didn't find it as "the greatest movie ever" as some did. It is an involving story, however, and I've come to appreciate it more with multiple viewings. I've seen it three times, the last one looking for mistakes to disprove the surprise ending....but couldn't find any. The filmmakers covered their tracks. However, a couple of scenes were misleading. Those who have seen this movie know what I'm talking about. For those who haven't, I'm not going to spoil it here.

I enjoyed both Bruce Willis and Haley Joel Osment as the two leads. Willis has had many action-packed, profane macho roles in his career but I like him best when he's low key, as he is in here (and in "Unbreakable," to name another fairly-recent movie) The story is slow-paced but it sure is not boring. In a way, it's nice to see a slower-paced film be a big hit, as this was.

Osment, meanwhile, is a terrific child actor, as he has proved in other films. He's simply one of the best of his young generation. He and Dakota Fanning are the two best child actors I've seen in many years.

This isn't just some supernatural-horror movie. It's a nice human interest story. There is one scene late in the movie in which Osment's mom is having a talk with her young boy in the car. It is an extremely touching scene that brings tears - a great moment in the film.
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9/10
One of the best films of 1999!
Xophianic3 February 2000
I am embarrassed to admit that the only reason I saw THE SIXTH SENSE when I did was because THE BLAIR WITCH PROJECT was sold out. I hadn't seen BLAIR WITCH yet but I heard great reviews, and of course it was sold out when I went to see it. So my friend and I decided to see THE SIXTH SENSE instead. Not only did it turn out to be a better movie than BLAIR WITCH is, but it turned out to be one of my favorites.

THE SIXTH SENSE is about an award-winning child psychologist Dr. Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis), who is depressed because one of his former clients committed suicide because Crowe was unable to help him. Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) is a child that has social problems frighteningly similar to Crowe's old client, so Crowe decides he will try to help this child in order to find redemption. Cole later reveals that this problem goes well beyond normal social problems. He claims to be able to see the ghosts of dead people, but no one else can.

The acting in THE SIXTH SENSE was superb. Olivia Williams does well as Anne Crowe, Willis' depressed wife, and Toni Collette does a great job as Lynn Sear, Osment's loving mother who is very concerned for her child. I think that Bruce Willis is at his very best in this movie, and I happen to be a fan of Willis. But I think that Haley Joel Osment stole the show. He did an amazing job, expressing more combined emotions that most adult actors have to deal with. He is definitely the best child actor I've ever seen, and I am glad that Bruce Willis let him have the spotlight.

The plot is very entertaining, though at times you may wonder where it is going. The ending is the best part of the movie, and it completely changes whatever you originally thought of the whole story line. I applaud the advertisers of THE SIXTH SENSE for not leaving a trace of the surprise ending in the previews of the movie (unlike DOUBLE JEOPARDY) and I certainly will not give it away in this comment. But I will say that it will completely surprise most all of you. (I think many that say that they saw it coming are probably lying.)

THE SIXTH SENSE is one of my favorite movies, and I think it is surely one of the best films of 1999. I hope it wins many Oscars this year, and I recommend that you go out and buy this movie now.
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10/10
One of the films of the Nineties
Readster8 December 1999
This is perhaps my film of the decade so far. The reasons are too numerous to go into in such a short critique. Surely there have not been too many films that can take you through the range of emotions that the Sixth Sense does. The prime emotion; fear, is a difficult emotion to generate in a modern audience that has seen it all before, but this film succeeds where others fail, praying on your imagination and generating suspense from subtle devices rather than blatant horror.

It is such a relief that the performances of Willis and the excellent Osment live up to an excellently directed quality storyline. I will be disappointed if the youngster doesn't receive at least an academy nomination.

I seldom go to the cinema twice to watch a film, in fact I cannot remember when I have done it before. Tonight I am taking an old friend to see this film as it will be a tragedy if he doesn't see it on the big screen. He has heard so much about it that he is reluctant to go, as I am when something is over-hyped. Just for a change though, here is a film that lives up to its billing and has you thinking about it for weeks to come. As for the twist at the end? Well it totally disorientated me, my mind spinning back throughout the whole film. A fantastic punchline to my film of the year.
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Death, Lfe, Fear and Hope
keval14 February 2000
Review: The Sixth Sense, Director: M. Night Shyamalam

As a film which has undoubtedly caught the eye of the film going world, it was difficult to avoid the surrounding hype and publicity. Luckily most of the people I had spoken to who had seen the film did not spoil the 'twist' at the end, which, although is rather a laboured point by now in reviews, certainly adds to the "Oh, I see now" factor.

The story revolves around a child psychologist played characteristically by Bruce Willis. I say characteristically, because although his portrayal is quite real, and at times touching, there always seems to be an unnerving 'Die Hard'-ness to his speech, lending the dialogue some comical qualities. Having said that, his overall attempts at revealing the vulnerable and disturbed psyche of his character achieve good results. As the psychologist, he is plagued by a particular event in his professional life which he perceives as his personal failure, and sets out to redeem himself by righting the wrong and wiping his failure from his conscience. This opportunity presents itself to him in the form of Cole Sear, played devastatingly well by Hayley Joel Osment. Cole has a problem, he sees dead people. To the outside world he is seen as a loner, a problem child, and has become increasingly isolated. Hence the need for a child psychologist. Once we have been introduced to these two central players, we are taken on a journey of discovery, as both of these characters in the space of the film will learn a great deal about each other, themselves and human nature.

It is this particular point which the film attempts to address so strongly - human communication. That when this breaks down, an inevitable cycle of interpersonal destruction takes course, sometimes irreversible. This is framed within the context of a superbly told ghost story. The sheer truthfulness and honesty with which the concept of fear is expressed by all the characters, is breathtaking. Cole's' experience of the walking dead, appearing out of nowhere, Malcolm's fear of a deteriorating marriage, and Cole's' mother's fear relating to her own existential angst. All of these are played against the backdrop of the often difficult but finally warm relationship between Cole and Malcolm. Eventually, and against the odds, each character displays courage and bravery as they face up to their existential and supernatural fears.

There are one or two niggling problems plot wise, but in a film where the overall atmosphere created is one which encompasses death, fear, and finally hope, it is impossible not to overlook incongruencies. Superb direction, acting and ambience lead me to think that M. Night Shyamalan has really succeeded in telling a chillingly touching story about the triumph of the human spirit.

February 14, 2000 Harshad C. Keval
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8/10
Even if someone spoiled the ending for you, it's still worth seeing
rooprect1 September 2014
There are over 2000 IMDb reviews for "The Sixth Sense" so I don't think I can add anything that hasn't already been said. But in case someone has already spoiled the ending for you (like some dumbbutt did for me and the entire office back in 1999, causing me to avoid this movie for 15 years), never fear... it's still VERY MUCH worth watching.

The cool twist is, of course, the main punch of this film. But it's the kind of film you have to watch twice. Once for the story and once for the poetry. So to all my fellow film lovers who happen to have friends & coworkers with big mouths, this film is still a real treat on a poetic & artistic level.

M. Night Shyamalan is one of the few directors who deserves the hype and popularity he gets, at least for this film (I haven't seen any of his others but soon will). Everything is meticulously planned, every camera movement, every shadow, every color and every editing cut, almost to the point of obsessive mania. In the DVD extras he and his crew explain why they did everything the way they did; for example they do a lot of long takes because their philosophy was that rapid cuts tend to disrupt the viewer's thought process. So instead of showing a dialogue between two people in a volley of closeup cuts, the scene is done with 1 camera filming them from the side, slowly, almost hypnotically moving between both of them as it gets closer over the course of perhaps 2 minutes.

I could go on for ages about such scenes, but you probably get the point. If you enjoy the classic directors known for their careful & deliberate approach to filmmaking, directors like Orson Welles ("Citizen Kane"), Otto Preminger ("The Man with the Golden Arm"), Kurosawa ("Seven Samurai") or even the younger crop of great directors like Steven Soderbergh ("Traffic") and Alfonso Cuarón ("Children of Men"), you definitely have to check out this movie and other works of Shyamalan.
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9/10
The Sixth Sense
auuwws1 January 2021
One of the best psychological horror films that I have seen, the film's story was excellent and interesting, the embarrassment in the film was good, the script and the acting were the best bad in the film, especially the child's acting, which was very impressive, the body of his character with distinction, I could not guess the toast of the end and was dazzled by the great end
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9/10
I'm not one to watch a movie twice...
Sterling521 September 2008
...but I had to watch this one again, right afterward, because I needed to go back and watch for clues. Honestly, and I won't give away the 'ah ha!' moment, but I knew that he was... well, you know, what he was. What I didn't get was how that was possible, or how the interaction with the others that I saw... so I had to go back and watch the movie AGAIN, just to make sure there were no errors in the filming of it. Sure enough, I found none that I could call an error, and was totally blown away with how this was filmed. I am a writer, and I also adapt novels for scripts, and when something like this comes along, that something that just totally grabs me and says, "This is something special... this is not the ordinary..." well, I am impressed. I aspire to write something that can really AH HA! someone in this way. I recommend the movie, highly.
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10/10
A Masterpiece
finding-something22 March 2006
A perfect balance. Sad, but not self-pitying. Triumphant, but not cheesy. Frightening, but never grotesque. Shocking, but not gimmicky. Touching without being cheap. Visually it is stunning. There are some truly amazing shots, the attention to color is appreciated. Haley Joel Osment as Cole is extraordinary. What a promising career ahead of him. Bruce Willis, as a workaholic child psychologist, ought to be extremely proud of this, as it may be some of his best work. Tender, brooding, regretful, determined. Perfect. Toni Collette, is really phenomenal. I think she gets overlooked, but with any less talented actress, the film would have certainly suffered.

I watched this film again recently, absolutely certain I would have lost some of the awe I had for it since last watching it on the big screen seven years ago. I was pleasantly surprised. It was just as moving, eerie, and beautiful. An obvious top five film of all time for me. Quite the freshman effort from Mr. Shayamalan.
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10/10
Brilliantly crafted and well worth seeing....unless some idiot told you THE secret!
MartinHafer11 July 2011
I am making 100% sure I don't in any way reveal the surprise twist in this film--too many have and I think those people are evil. So, if you know THE twist, you'll probably not enjoy the film nearly as much when you first see it. But, if you haven't, it's a heck of an enjoyable film.

Haley Joel Osment delivers a truly amazing performance considering his age. He is THE reason the film works as well as it does and I wish the Oscar folks had given him some sort of special award to honor his great work. And, in addition, I can't believe I am saying this, but Bruce Willis and the director, M. Night Shyamalan, were at the top of their game as well. The other huge star here is the writing--and it was superb because it was so original, creative and the story bears many repeated viewings as each one reveals yet another layer of complexity.

By the way, while nominated for six Oscars, the movie somehow won none. Instead, the darkly cynical "American Beauty" carried off five of the trophies--though I really didn't think this winner was nearly as good a movie. Good, yes...but not great like "The Sixth Sense"....provided some moron didn't tell you THE secret.
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8/10
I Remember When Shyamalan Was Like This
parthaykulkarni3 March 2021
Most people today criticize M. Night Shyamalan movies. That's probably going to happen when you release movies such as Avatar: The Last Airbender or After Earth, but it wasn't like this at the turn of the century. When The Sixth Sense was released, it was kind of a big deal, for good reason. The movie is not only well-directed, well-written, well-acted, well-edited, etc., but it's a classic movie and it will stay in my memory for a long time.
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A Film For Thinking People
Lechuguilla24 June 2004
A child psychologist, played by Bruce Willis, tries to help a troubled boy, played by Haley Joel Osment, who says he sees ghosts. This film could easily have been one of those dreadful fright night horror flicks played for cheap shocks, aimed at a juvenile mind. Instead, the film maker chose to tell a story of fragile human feelings, and hidden assumptions. "The Sixth Sense" thus appeals to a more mature audience.

This film is carefully constructed, and deliberately slow, so that we can absorb the excellent cinematography, and have a chance to find clues that will help us avoid preconceived ideas. But our assumptions are hard to overcome, and most of us are headed for a surprise ending, an outcome which is made possible as a result of superb film editing.

And the acting is well above average. I would not have cast Willis in the role of the fatherly psychologist, but he is more convincing than I would have predicted. Osment's performance is as good as I have ever seen for a child actor. And Toni Collette is totally convincing as the boy's mother. Both Osment and Collette deserved their Oscar nominations.

This film may, or may not, have a subtext. I found what could be one, but then I may have been reading too much into the story. Sensitive, thought provoking, and well crafted, "The Sixth Sense" is one of the better films of the last ten years.
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9/10
It Really Captured My Attention
Hitchcoc3 April 2006
I rented this and watched it around midnight a couple years ago. This film, like "Poltergeist," has contributed a line to the eternal world of cinema: "I see dead people." I will not spoil this for someone that has not seen it. My comments are on the craftsmanship that is this film. It starts with Haley Joel Osment, who will go down as one of our great child actors. He has the vulnerability and pain that expresses itself so well. His continual bouts with his "gift" bring him more pain. He gets an ally in Bruce Willis's character, and they begin to face things together. Unfortunately, like most movies that present something supernatural, a set of rules apply to the world and it these rules that make it fairly easy to pull this down. However, I would rather have them craft it as best they can than try to keep consistent in every aspect. Like "Memento" which I saw pretty close to the same time, I don't want to think too much or the fine fabric of the film starts to unravel. How's that for cowardice?
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8/10
Strange but ultimately rewarding
SKG-225 August 1999
First of all, I've read a few comments about the pace of this movie being too slow. I sort of agree with that, but I think it's refreshing to have a movie which takes its time and builds things with subtlety(although here, as I said before, I think it took a little TOO much time). And I think it was realistic at how long it took for the boy to learn to trust the doctor and for how long it took the doctor to discover what was really going on.

Having said all that, in addition to the pace, there were some times when I felt a little queasy, like I wasn't sure what exactly the movie was trying to say. At other times, I was caught up in it, especially in the performances of Willis and Osment. Then came the famous twist ending, and I will tell you that I was quite surprised, and it's making me turn the movie over and over again in my mind. I probably will have to see this again. Overall, while I don't think it's the best of the year, it is a good film.
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10/10
Shyamalan's best film and the only film of his I consider a masterpiece
TheLittleSongbird6 January 2012
I have to say I am not a fan generally of M Night Shyamalan's films, but I absolutely loved The Sixth Sense. It is a beautifully made film with an afterlife that is anything but angels and harps, and the score has lots of subtlety and atmosphere to it. The script is chilling, intelligent and poignant and the story complete with a knockout twist ending(easily the best and only wholly believable ending of Shyamalan's movies) is simplicity at its finest. Shyamalan's direction is wonderfully controlled, which is exactly what the story needed. Haley Joel Osment gives perhaps his best performance here, though he's superb in AI too, while Toni Collette plays the troubled mum very convincingly and Bruce Willis is suitably quiet and reflective. Overall, a wonderful film and Shyamalan's best by a mile in my opinion. 10/10 Bethany Cox
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10/10
one of the greatest reveals of all time
SnoopyStyle7 September 2015
Child psychologist Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis) celebrates an award win with his wife Anna (Olivia Williams). Deranged ex-patient Vincent Grey (Donnie Wahlberg) breaks in and shots Malcolm. Vincent then commits suicide. The next fall, Malcolm is treating distressed Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) who lives with his single mom Lynn (Toni Collette). His suffering leaves him an outcast at school. After another episode leaves him in the hospital, he tells Malcolm his secret that he "sees dead people".

This is one of the best reveals in movie history. It's not simply a shocking twist. Anybody can write a random twist that aims to shock people. This twist is well-planned and constructed from the first moments of the film. Shyamalan lays out not only clues but the right amount of clues. It is a twist that people are unlikely to foresee but then beat themselves for not forseeing it. He gets the perfect balance.

The other question is whether this is a good movie without the twist. The great thing is that the intensity does not rely on the twist. HJO has the perfect wise innocence quality. It has great creepiness. It's a traditional ghost story and a well made one. The intensity ramps up as the ghosts reveal themselves. This would be one of the great horrors even without the twist.
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10/10
Awesome
danny_collinge2 August 2005
This is a must see film, I'm a great fan of thriller/horror films and this is by far the best. the acting is superb the storyline is superb the horror is awesome!!! this film has the best twist ever anyone who says they knew that the film would end like that is a liar!!!the acting of Haley Joel Osment is incredible he was also brilliant in AI. this is not one of those films that drags on or that is forgettable like a lot of other thriller/horror films (the grudge, dark water)your remember this one forever!!!!

Main good points: great acting, great storyline, great twist-------------- main bad points: none
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10/10
Emotional, chilling, and the end will give you shivers
pokemon_trainer_lucas24 June 2019
What an incredible film! No matter how many times I watch it, it never loses its affect. It's the kind of horror movie that has the odd jump scare, plenty of suspense, and a plot that is intensely captivating. And then, when you get to the end, it slaps you round the face with the ultimate twist! I literally felt my blood run cold when the twist was revealed. Shyamalan does an incredible job, and none of his films since this one have ever had quite the same awe inspiring twist as this film. I recommend it highly!
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9/10
Eerie, creepy and superb
jamiecostelo5816 December 2006
Upon first watch of The Sixth Sense, I was hooked and shocked at the same time. I expected a complete horror story, mixed with the usual gore and stomach-churning scenes we ordinarily witness in other movies with a similar theme. The Sixth Sense is anything but. It details the emotional aspects of love and devotion, as well as having to cope with being an outsider.

The purpose of The Sixth Sense is to captivate us into looking and evaluating our own lives, on how we treat ourselves, our husbands and wives and our parents and friends. It details these points to graphic effect.

Young Haley Joel Osment is terrific as Cole, the young boy who sees 'dead people', and portrays his emotions and his mind to an easily captivating audience. Also wonderful to see Bruce Willis turn away from his usual 'action man' sequence to allow us into the equally troubled mind of Dr. Malcolm Crowe.

A divine and heartwarming film combining elements of horror and suspense has made The Sixth Sense an engaging film that is simply unforgettable. It's another firm favourite of mine.
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Clever ghost story
bob the moo15 February 2002
Award winning child psychologist Malcolm Crowe is confronted and shot by an ex-patient. Years later he has recovered from this experience and begins to treat a child who suffers from similar problems. The young boy, Cole, claims to see dead people and requires Crowe's constant attention - to the detriment of his marriage. With Cole becoming increasingly scared and withdrawn, Crowe is his last hope.

This film is an old-fashioned ghost story, replacing gore with a genuine spooky atmosphere. The story is deceptively simple and plays almost innocently for the whole film until Cole's visions are revealed. The true genius of the story isn't revealed until the final twist when we see how we have been duped by a good director! Even without the twist, this is still a good film - the story of Cole is well done and is chilling and frightening sometimes. However it is also quite human, as it is essentially the story of Cole overcoming his fears.

Willis delivers a careful, understated performance. His choices in recent years have been remarkably good (with some exceptions). This is just yet another great role from a man who's career looked like it was dying after "striking distance" and "colour of night". He hits just the right note here. I'm not a big fan of child actors as a rule, but Osment is really good here - never falling into the "cute child" category. I don't know if he should have got the Oscar, but he's still good. The rest of the cast are good, but really it's the central relationship between Willis and Osment that makes this film.

The plot may have some holes in (some ghosts hang around where they died, one comes to find Cole etc), but overall this is very good. The director weaves an interesting story that stands on its own, but makes it even more memorable by challenging how we accept and assume things in movies by delivering a great, clever twist at the end.
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9/10
The Sixth Sense is a sensory trap, a film that traps the viewer from beginning to end, offering a multitude of visual experiences that are perfectly constructed
fernandoschiavi20 November 2021
At the end of the second half of 1999, the movie world was awestruck by a phenomenon at the box office. Blair's Witch (1999) debuted in theaters around the world, breaking records and showing the public that there was a new way to fix people in their seats, fearing the protagonists' next step. Less than a month later, still not remade from the witch's fright, behold, the film by a hitherto unknown director hits theaters, surprising with its atmosphere of wonder. This director is M. Night Shyamalan and his work: The Sixth Sense.

It is precisely the focus given to these four characters (Malcolm, Anna, Cole and their mother) that makes The Sixth Sense so terrifying: by making the viewer 'intimate' with its protagonists, Shyamalan makes us really care - and fear - for they. But that's not all: the camera work of this young director is also extremely skillful, especially in the sequences that take place inside the apartment in which the boy lives: slight oscillations in the frames give us the impression that that little family is constantly being observed. By the spirits that trouble Cole. Furthermore, the tone of the narrative becomes even more frightening thanks to the clever photography of Tak Fujimoto, who deftly explores the Gothic style of some points of the architecture of Philadelphia, where the story takes place.

The secret brought by young Cole is revealed only in the second act, until then, there are no frightening sights or hauntings. The spectator follows the facts in the physician's perception, anticipating this revelation, in a slow and cadenced narrative, when the boy's discomfort becomes evident and is transmitted to the public, without sparing them the shivers. From then on, the until then psychological drama is enveloped by supernatural elements with the presence of disturbed ghosts in search of help. There are the school hangmen, the one who knows where the gun is hidden and the girl who drools - always scary displays, accompanied by the right soundtrack and smart, well-chosen camera placements.

It becomes impossible not to get caught up in the drama of little Cole. Now, who would have the courage to approach these entities in a state of absolute suffering to try to listen to them and make them understand their new condition? Among the rules observed by the boy, two are fundamental, but which make it easier for the public to foresee the final surprise: 1) one ghost does not see the other; 2) many do not know they are dead. Even with this anticipation of this surprise, Shyamalan acts consciously in the presentation of the pieces that will lead to the climax as the red color shown only at the right moments, leaving the final revelation just like the icing on a cake enjoyed and enjoyed slowly.

It's wrong to think of it as just a ghost film, which is a shallow vision of a well-formed work about the end of a relationship, the difficult acceptance of a separation, when each axis avoids seeing the other. In fact, all of the director's work allows for a deep analysis of life stages hidden in supernatural metaphors. Just as an example, Body Closed can be seen only as the emergence of a hero and, consequently, a villain, but it also brings a reading of divorce through opposites; Signs is a film about alien invasion making up for the loss of faith in the face of the death of a loved one; and even the criticized End of Times brings a cataclysm and a pre-apocalypse to show that Men, by destroying Nature, walk backwards in evolution, slowly committing suicide...

The film is a beautiful spider's web, set up to catch the viewer and make us intrigued and curious about the unfolding of the story. Everything in the film reminds us of other facts that, later, make us understand and connect the dots of this great web that Mr. M. Night Shyamalan involves us. The script sculpted (yes, the term is 'sculpted') by the director is not only clever, but also full of such subtle details that after the film is over, I want to watch it again in order to try to understand. It in all its magnitude. No information is free and - detail - many of them go unnoticed until, suddenly, we realize that something relevant had been said a long time ago, leading us to recapitulate everything that happened so far, in a delicious attempt to reassemble the intriguing break -heads proposed by the plot.

In fact, it all lies between the lines - if only we could take a closer look. Yes, Dr. Crowe is dead and I believe it was the biggest plot twist of my time, but if we notice, whenever someone goes to talk to Cole and that person is alive, there are never any outlying colors in the scene. The film's photography is morbid and cold, giving a feeling of strangeness and unease, as if something is always going to appear behind the door or when the camera changes direction, however, when we notice that he was confronted by a spirit, always there is something in red on the scene, always! We can also notice that whenever they are talking together, there is never anyone around, or, if there is, they do not pay attention to the adult, only to the child, another sign that he was not really there.

Even when Malcolm is sitting across from Cole's mother, Lynn (Toni Collette), at no time does she look away or talk to him, only to her son. When Crowe goes to his house and tries to work on the case, there is always a distance with his wife, and if we look deeper, she is always alone at the dinner table at the restaurant, at her house and at the service, she never mentions her husband and live watching the wedding footage, which is unusual for someone who loves her husband as presented at the beginning of the film; even after the attack, she would never let go.

Cole's conversation with Crowe at the hospital was the final card to fall apart. After all, he told everything that Crowe was and couldn't see, just like us. We are not talking about a horror movie, we are working on a very well-produced suspense, where we are immersed in the depth of the characters' relationships, the fears that move us and how we are able to deal with the ending, if it really exists. The soundtrack is very well thought out in order to make us feel what the characters are thinking at the moment, be it fear, uncertainty or relief.

With all the great acting in the plot, and the incredible way M. Night Shyamalan directs the film, we audiences don't see all the signs of this incredible plot twist. But once we understand everything, The Sixth Sense starts to have a completely different story from what we believed it to be from the beginning. And that's precisely why this film brought all the fame of M. Night Shyamalan, and a completely deserved recognition. In addition, he took the opportunity to use color theory in his production. Everything that is red in the scenes is related to the death of the ghost that Cole sees, be it personal objects, clothes or even environments.

However, even this brilliant script could have been damaged if the protagonists' performances weren't convincing - and they are simply brilliant, highlighting the superb work performed by little boy Haley Joel Osment, possessed of enormous talent. His character composition reveals not only an impressive precocity, but also a profound professional responsibility - it is evident that he immersed himself unreservedly in the creation of the troubled Cole. His pauses, looks and inflections are always effective in every scene, helping to make his implausible character completely believable to the viewer.

But much of the credit is also due to Bruce Willis, as his perfect chemistry with Osment is vital to the audience's ultimate involvement. But that's not all: his frustration at the breakdown of his marriage is conveyed with great sensitivity, especially as he talks about it to Cole in what is one of the most emotional scenes in The Sixth Sense. Meanwhile, Toni Collette is also moving as she portrays the frightened Lynn, Cole's mother. Her despair at not understanding what is affecting the boy is only matched by her frequent attempts to get him to 'relax', as when pushing him in the shopping cart. (It will be a great injustice if the Academy does not grant nominations to all three). Also noteworthy are the strong presences of Olivia Williams, as Malcolm's wife (although her participation is small, which is one of the few flaws in the film), and Donnie Wahlberg, as the distraught Vincent.

The Sixth Sense is a sensory trap, a film that traps the viewer from beginning to end, offering a multitude of visual experiences that are perfectly constructed by its director and screenwriter M. Night Shyamalan in his first film of relevance, and also what it would mark his career forever. Blending features from different genres, The Sixth Sense cannot be described merely as a 'suspense', as it is not only capable of scaring us: tears and laughter (these more sporadic and with a nervous background) are also present throughout the projection.
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