30 Day Film Challenge Reboot Day 3: Doin’ the Twist

Welcome to the second edition of the 30 Day Film Challenge!

“Plot twists are a staple of many classic films, including 1960’s Psycho, 1968’s Planet of the Apes, and 1980’s The Empire Strikes Back. They’re still common in modern-day films, but are usually a bit of a gamble. When done well, the result is something like M. Night Shyamalan’s The Sixth Sense. When done poorly, the result is something like M. Night Shyamalan’s The Village. And this is without even mentioning the constant threat of having twists spoiled by the internet and social media. In my opinion, a good twist is one that creates a whole new experience for the viewer when the film is rewatched with foreknowledge of the twist, without rendering the whole film meaningless (“it was all a dream!”).

My choice for the favorite twist-y film is 2003’s Identity. Spoilers ahead for an 18-year-old film. The film starts out as a seemingly boilerplate slasher film/murder mystery, before we eventually learn that the events are all taking place in the protagonist’s mind. Part of the reason I like this twist is because – unlike the “it was all a dream” cliche – this revelation actually has important consequences for the protagonist, since the various characters represent separate identities all vying for control of his psyche. But this twist is just one of many in the film!…some of which were more well-received than others.

Prompt: What’s your favorite film twist?”