The Sixth Sense (1999)

A movie that everyone knows the ending too.

When young Cole Sear (Haley Joel Osment) inexplicably starts seeing dead people, he lands in the care of child psychologist Dr. Malcolm Crowe (Bruce Willis), who is determined to uncover the truth behind Cole’s remarkable paranormal abilities.

The film is known for being M. Night Shyamalan’s breakthrough film. I mean it contains all his creepy atmosphere tricks, unexplained events, and out-of-this world twist ending. And the one thing that really pisses me off about this movie, and its legacy in today’s world is that it is only remembered for its twist ending. Because there is so much more to this movie than just an ending.

Shyamalan’s style and ambition is what makes this movie so great. He combines the essence of creepy psychological thriller, with some supernatural horror to create a atmosphere of unknowing and just overall creepiness. The film doesn’t use any CGI/special effects hocus pocus tricks, instead shows these ghosts in real life form. The cinematography is great, because of the way it moves around from one place to another, without losing sight of the action. Things come by unexplained but they catch your eye for a second, just so you don’t take your eye off the screen.

The writing is superb because its not only a ghost story, in the style of an old Hollywood picture but also it touches on some great character moments between all these people. By the end of the film, there are actually some resolutions these people have with each other and it actually may bring a tear to your eye every once and awhile, I know it almost did for me. Oh, and how can I not mention the ending? Yes, it is one of the greatest endings, if not greatest twist endings to any film, but if you haven’t seen it now, check it out!

The score is minimal, almost a little too underplayed. It works well in the first section but when it comes to the shocks it becomes any generic strings scrape from a slasher movie. This, however, shifts back as the shocks subside to something more touching. The music hits the perfect note during a scene where Cole’s mother stands in front of a set of pictures which show him with ectoplasmic entities beside him everywhere he goes. It is apparent that these are ghosts. But it almost feels more than ghosts, something about the music and image reminds me of the speech about god always being by us.

Bruce Willis is great in this very quiet, subtle role mostly because his acting style is so straight-forward and seems actually realistic when he’s talking normal, and not breaking out crazy action one-liners. Haley Joel Osment gives one of the best performances from a youg kid because in most films with a young actor, the film just calls for a couple of good reactions hots to show terror on his face. When instead with this film, he has realistically talk to Willis, and the scenes with them two are some of the best on-screen. Also, it would be wrong not to mention Toni Colletta who plays Osmen’ts mom, lalso has great moments where she shows the right emotion at especially the right time.

Consensus: The Sixth Sense features all the wonderful trademarks in M. Night Shyamalan’s films, especially his great writing, effective use of camera and feeling, and powerful performances from the cast, with also a crazy twist ending.

9.5/10=Full Pricee!!!!!!


  1. As great as this movie is, and as I’ve said before, it and Signs are my favorite M. Nightmare films, I still haven’t felt compelled to rewatch it since my first viewing, but reading the passion you have for it and your review I suddenly have a renewed sense (ha) of curiosity to see if it will resonate differently or as strongly with me. Great review and awesome reminder about one of the most interesting movies in the past many years.

  2. I agree with the above..I might have to rewatch it soon. I loved it on first viewing and also loved Unbreakable soon after. Since then he’s slid to mediocre…maybe not nearly as bad as his destractors would claim, but not nearly as good as his first two films.

    • I can’t lie I love it so much, and I’m glad you two will give it a second viewing. His last couple have been a bit of bummers, but I think this one is still one of his all-time best no matter what.

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