Glass Parent Guide
One of the most pretentious, plodding and boring films in the theater.
Parent Movie Review
Glass reintroduces us to David Dunn (Bruce Willis), Philadelphia crime fighter and vigilante, blessed or cursed with super strength, who debuted in the film Unbreakable, Now, Dunn is trying to find four missing girls who have presumably been abducted by Kevin Wendell Crumb (James McAvoy), reprising his role as “The Horde” from Split, However, Dunn’s deductive skills are not rewarded: when he finds Crumb, the police commit both men to a mental institution. Along with Elijah Price (Samuel L Jackson), who has superhuman intelligence, Dunn and Crumb are added to the patient roster of Dr. Ellie Staple (Sarah Paulson), who attempts to treat them for what she sees as their super power delusions.
This plot synopsis suggests a film with the potential to be a taut, psychological thriller. It is not. Sadly, Glass forced me to waste two hours on one of the most plodding, pretentious, and generally boring films I have had the misfortune to sit through. Given that Glass is a sequel to the subpar Split, this isn’t surprising. Unfortunately, Glass not only perpetuates its prequel’s appalling stereotypes of the mentally ill; it adds a glacially slow plot and flat characters. M. Night Shyamalan (who not only directed but also wrote and produced the film) seems to have forgotten that characters need to have consistent motivations. (Frankly, I would have welcomed any motivations at all.) With the exception of David Dunn, and arguably his son Joseph (Spencer Treat Clark), who manage to stick to two-dimensional good guy impulses, every other character is either confused, bland, or just waiting to reveal their dramatic motives in the last 20 minutes.
If you have seen a film in the superhero genre lately, you know what to expect in terms of violence. The usual punching, kicking, grabbing, and general mischief that goes with two exceptionally strong people trying to clobber each other is about what you can expect in this movie, along with one stabbing and a shooting. Glass is trying to be dark and gritty and is well placed at a PG-13. Younger teens who are particularly sensitive to ominous sound effects and violence might want to avoid it. Otherwise, the biggest thing parents have to worry about is their teenagers lapsing into comas in the theater.
Glass is a film that really didn’t need to be made. Unbreakable was one of the few M. Night Shyamalan productions that was worth watching: Split already demonstrated that revisiting that universe was a bad idea. All this movie can aspire to is to be the final nail in the coffin of this series, but with all the sequel-baiting packed into the last 15 minutes, I don’t think we’re that lucky.Directed by M. Night Shyamalan. Starring Sarah Paulson, Bruce Willis, James McAvoy, and Samuel L. Jackson. Running time: 129 minutes. Theatrical release January 18, 2019. Updated January 18, 2019
Rating & Content Info
Why is Glass rated PG-13? Glass is rated PG-13 by the MPAA for violence including some bloody images, thematic elements, and language
Violence: Frequent hand-to-hand combat and beatings, which frequently lead to broken bones or death. Several young women are kidnapped and chained to a sink in an abandoned warehouse. A young girl is struck by a large table which is thrown across a room. A man is cut across the neck with a piece of broken glass and is shown bleeding heavily. A man punches the body of another man, whom he has murdered. A man is shot in the gut and is shown bleeding out. A man is deliberately drowned.
Sexual Content: None.
Profanity: Perhaps a dozen uses of language, all in the “Moderate” or “Mild” categories, with a few terms of deity.
Alcohol / Drug Use: There are shots in a restaurant which show cocktails on tables in front of diners, but these are not consumed.
Page last updated January 18, 2019
Glass Parents' Guide
There are many stereotypes about people suffering with mental illness - do you feel that these are fair or accurate? Do you think it is acceptable to make these kinds of negative generalizations about large groups of people? What can you do to promote greater acceptance of people with mental illness?
Read books about Glass
Robert Louis Stevenson’s The Strange Case of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde is one of the earliest tales involving someone with split personalities. This classic novella is a great example of 19th century gothic fiction.
What if everyone is born with two personalities? What’s Left of Me by Kat Zhang imagines a world where the dominant personality thrives and the recessive one dies. But what happens if the recessive one survives?
Agatha Christie’s And Then There Were None is an intriguing murder mystery with a vigilante at its heart.
Justice-keeping prodigies, villains, vigilantes, and vengeance are all part of Marissa Meyer’s YA novel, Renegades.
Related home video titles:
For a much more family appropriate (and entertaining) option, 2004’s The Incredibles is one of the best superhero movies ever made. Sky High (2004) explores the idea that heroes are among us, and even they have to go to high school.
Older viewers looking for darker and grittier approaches to the genre might appreciate 2008’s The Dark Knight, which finds Christopher Nolan’s interpretations of Batman and the Joker battling it out for Gotham City.
The first film in this franchise, Unbreakable, is also a much better approach to this topic, and without the toxic and unhelpful stigmatization of the mentally ill.