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'Lady' should stay in the water

July 25, 2006|by BRIANNA DORSEY

In M. Night Shyamalan's latest film, "Lady in the Water," the fantasy world of a bedtime story comes to life. Paul Giamatti plays Cleveland Heep, a downcast manager of an apartment complex called The Cove. Bryce Dallas Howard plays a mystical being named Story.

In the beginning of the movie, Cleveland hears someone swimming in the pool from his cottage behind The Cove. He sees something in the water but can't get it to come out. Giving up he goes back to his cottage, but he slips and falls into the pool. He wakes up on his bed with a strange girl sitting on the couch next to him.

The girl says her name is Story and that she lives in The Cove's pool. She is there to fulfill a mission. When she does that, she will be returned to her own world. The only thing stopping her is a wolf-like monster.

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The movie isn't all that great. The plot is confusing. The movie was like a bedtime story - something parents make up that makes no sense to tell their little kids to get them to go to sleep. For instance, why all of a sudden does this mystical being just start appearing in the pool? And why do all of the people in the apartments just automatically decide to help Story? People in real life probably would have her committed.

It all just seemed unlikely to happen, even though it was a fairy tale. My friend and I found that we were laughing at parts which were obviously meant to be scary and we were scared of the parts that were meant to be funny (with the exception of a few truly funny parts).

I do think that Giamatti and Howard both do great work with their roles, but I don't recommend this movie unless you are really bored.

The bottom line is I'm glad that the newspaper is paying for my ticket, but, in retrospect, I should have been paid to go see this movie.

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