The Sixth Sense (1999)

THE SIXTH SENSE as the best bad movie of the year?  Maybe.  The 
surprisingly successful, more-subtle-than-scary, Bruce Willis-
starring spook-fest-- about a boy who can see dead people and the 
child psychologist that treats him-- is certainly an *effective* 
exciter, as evident by both the critical raves *and* the BLAIR 
WITCH-busting box-office.  (Good riddance, I say!)  And yet, un-
derneath the inventive plotting, the creepy subject matter, and an 
Oscar-worthy child performance (the terrifically tormented Haley 
Joel Osment), there's the inescapable, unmistakable, rather-reek-
able eau of awfulness.  No, nothing too putridly pungent; just a 
quasi-campy odor just off-putting enough to make the many snail-
paced, self-serious scenes seem almost laughable.  I suspect that 
in the wrong mood, with the wrong audience, this could be consid-
ered quite the howler.  (Who ya gonna call?  Psychbusters!)  How-
ever, as these are great times for ghosts and movies about ghosts, 
the competent work of writer/director M. Night Shyamalan (WIDE 
AWAKE) is not for naught.  Nor is his exceptionally capable cast 
wasted.  You'll get your money's worth...  With Toni Collette and
Olivia Williams.  (Rated "PG-13"/105 min.)

Grade: B                             

Copyright 1999 by Michael J. Legeros
Movie Hell is a trademark of Michael J. Legeros

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