Maybe you’ve read articles about “Split” being director M. Night Shyamalan’s return in form. Maybe you’ll think so too if you’ve seen “The Happening”, “The Last Airbender” or the preposterous “After-Earth” starring Will Smith and his son Jaden. Here’s the deal: “Split” is Shyamalan’s best film since 2002’s “Signs”, and we owe it all to James McAvoy, who plays not one, not two, but 23 roles! McAvoy is out to dazzle us, and boy does he ever. Let me start from the beginning: McAvoy plays Kevin, a psychiatric patient who suffers from dissociative identity disorder. When the movie opens, 3 high-school girls are kidnapped by Dennis, one of Kevin’s “alter egos”. His motive? To prepare them for the emergence of his terrifying 24th personality. Still with me? I don’t expect you to. But I can tell you that even when things spin out of control, you won’t be able to take your eyes off the screen. Cheers to McAvoy, who delivers the juiciest performance of his career. And cheers to M. Night Shyamalan, who knows exactly how to mix mirth with malice. We’ve waited years for his big return. Now it’s here. I’ll say no more, except to say that you’re in for a mind-bending trip.
★★★ Very good