Saturday, July 21, 2018

GLASS: First Trailer

This is truly an excellent image. First, melding the four faces together--Kevin, Dr. Staple, David and Glass--demonstrates that which is not possible: all four of these characters are their own, that is, they have their own role to play in the film, just as you and I have our own "roles" to play in our individual lives. No matter how badly one hates individuals, one can't simply decide all people are alike or created equally and then attempt to make them fit into a pattern or a perception of reality, which is what the Left is attempting to achieve all over the world today.
Now, we have an issue of "erasure," specifically, that the word GLASS is written over the eyes and part of the nose of the conglomerate face in the poster. Erasure is meant to demonstrate that something is inadequate, and yet necessary. So, the word GLASS "erases" the dominant features of the conglomerate face, because the conglomerate is not adequate to relay to the viewer what the film makers want to say, however, it's necessary because there is not a better image which can, so the image is in a state of inadequacy but necessity, because there is so much more they want to say, but can't.
Surrealist artist Rene Magritte did a famous image of a pipe and titled the work, This Is Not A Pipe, and it caused a bit of an uproar, because, of course it was a pipe; but no, it was only a picture of a pipe, not a real pipe. We can "deconstruct" the word GLASS in the same way: this isn't actually glass, it's a digital image of glass,... or does GLASS refer to the character Mr. Glass? Or does GLASS refer to the title of the film? We actually don't know to what GLASS refers, and so this open-ended word, "erasing" the identities of the characters, fractured by all the shards, splinters and cracks, leaves us with quite a mess; or does it?
Symbolically, we know that glass means meditation: when someone looks into a mirror, or through a window, for example, they are meditating upon themselves and matters of the interior world; likewise, GLASS is calling for us the viewers to meditate as well, especially given the fractured and damaged nature of the glass we see with the fragments of characters; have our own identities been damaged, or are they endangered? Between the A and the first S is a big white spot, suggesting that the "glass" we see that produced all the damage and splinters was hit by something really hard; there is a saying, "to hit someone between the eyes" so they can see something that is obvious and apparent to everyone else, and that looks like what this poster has exactly tried to do: that is, hit the viewer between the eyes with the reality of what is happening to our own identities and why. 
In 2000, writer/director M. Night Shyamalan released his super-hero film Unbreakable starring Bruce Willis as David Dunn, a man who had been the sole survivor of a train wreck (and a devastating car crash) unscathed, and Samuel L Jackson as Elijah Price, aka, Mr. Glass, who suffers an extremely rare disease that makes his bones excessively susceptible to breakage. In January 2017, Shyamalan released Split, starring James McAvoy, who portrays Kevin, a character with 23 distinct personalities inside him, including one called "The Beast." Willis' David Dunn has a brief cameo in Split; when Split proved to be a critical and financial success, it was announced that Unbreakable and Split are part of a trilogy dubbed, The Eastrail 177, for which we now have the first trailer for this third film, which picks up 3-4 weeks after the end of Split.
The job of a great artist (and Shyamalan has had a rough road to walk these last 15 years, so he deserves this) to recognize, distill and then articulate what is happening within the world and then present it in a comprehensible format for their audience so the audience can have a "privileged perspective" upon current events, and this trailer does just that. With the opening lines, "It's amazing to meet you," to the diagnosis of delusions of grandeur, it's not difficult to connect this doctor with the world-wide socialist trends of associating individuals and people who are truly gifted with inflated egos who lack consideration for the mediocre. In short, the struggle of the "mental instabilities" of the three men--Glass, Kevin and Dunn--reflect (just like a piece of glass) the struggle of the world today, and the self-appointed superior socialist who thinks they know how to "solve" a problem they can't begin to comprehend. When she notes it's a growing field in psychiatric research, it's Shyamalan quietly jabbing us in the ribs and saying, "Can you believe how elitist these socialists are with their phony labels?" because there have been two main prongs of the socialists' attack which Shyamalan appears to be taking upon himself.
Sarah Paulson portrays Dr. Ellie Staple; the name is particularly interesting because when we staple something together, we want to "keep it together," such as pieces of paper; that's probably at least one level of the symbolism of her name, that she views the three men as nothing more than "case files" and not really human beings with individuation and gifts, rather, she is the arm of the psychiatric institution (a great socialist monolith of government control, think about what happens at the end of The Chernobyl Diaries and what happens to the American tourists).
This is an interesting little note: the psychiatric hospital being used (although we don't know if it will be named as this in the movie) is the Allentown State Hospital, which perchance references the 1983 Billy Joel hit song Allentown about workers who are depressed because the steel industries are closing; the song is meant to give hope and sustenance to the hard-workers; if there is a link between the hospital and the song, it suggests that the "delusion of grandeur" being investigated by Dr. Staple is that of the American work ethic and our belief in the strength and perseverance of individuals. Perhaps you will recall the 2016 film Cure For Wellness which also takes place in a psychiatric hospital: that was the same hospital where Adolf Hitler recovered from his wounds after World War I, so I don't think it's such a stretch to link the mental hospital with the 1983 hit song Allentown.
First, masculinity.
It's been plaguing the news--anyone keeping up with The Drudge Report at least--that "toxic masculinity," i.e., masculinity, that traditional masculine gender roles are viciously under siege by the Left; why? Like David Dunn who sees himself as a "protector," masculinity means leadership, courage and justice; three traits socialists hate (did Barack Obama, Hillary Clinton or Bernie Sanders have even one of these in any measurable degree?) because it makes otherwise easily herded people into thinking and self-actualizing individuals, and individuals (as opposed to those who want to mindlessly belong to a group) are the greatest threat to a socialist society. 
This is really a great costume. We know that feet symbolize will, and the shoes Mr. Glass wears looks like slippers rather than proper shoes. Purple symbolizes royalty and suffering; why? Well, back in the ancient days, purple was exceedingly expensive to produce, so much so, that only the royal family could afford to wear the color; after the Crucifixion of Christ, the King of all, purple also came to symbolize suffering as that is what a "good king" would do for his people, rather than have his people suffer for him, so the positive symbolism of the color denotes suffering (I know this sounds crazy, but without suffering there is no wisdom, and because wisdom is the greatest of all the treasures, one becomes royalty through their suffering because they have gained the greatest treasure of wisdom) but negatively symbolizes royalty: think of DC Comics' The Joker and his wearing purple; he wants to be treated like royalty, but is a psychopath. Because Mr Glass wears slippers instead of practical shoes, this suggests a life of luxury rather than a life of work and practicality, so Mr. Glass feels entitled to be treated like a king. The color of his jacket lapels are purple, so the same "royalty" theme applies, however, the rest of this amazing coat (from a costume perspective) has a metallic blue-into-purple quality, suggesting that the depression which blue symbolizes gives way to the "royal complex" Mr. Glass has. Compound this with the wheelchair: this king doesn't have a throne, but he's using his wheelchair has one, why? He's entitled. 
The second topic is that of individuality. I know it appears to be close to the first, however, this is where analysis of Mr. Glass comes into play. In spite of being a villain, Glass' extremely rare medical condition makes him highly individualistic--unique, singular, special--and socialists hate to admit that we are NOT all created equally; when presented with people such as Mr. Glass or David Dunn, one cannot honestly propagate that we are all created equally. This is evidenced by Shyamalan creating Kevin: 23 different personalities live inside of this one; why? Socialists believe, and I think we have to take Kevin as the unmasked face of socialism in the film (whereas Dr. Staple is the masked face, pretending she isn't really, but she really is) that all these different people (the various personalities of Kevin) are really all just the same as Kevin. If there were no individuality, in other words, then everyone would be just like Kevin, and there would be no boundaries of identity between one person and the next.
This is a highly-stylized shot; for example, what hospital do you know of that has violet colored lighting? As with the symbolism of purple discussed above, but we will articulate that meaning in just a moment. First, please note the windows behind Kevin in the middle and on the sides of the room; on the floor, in-between Mr. Glass and Kevin, we see the reflection of light, but it's what called "disembodied light," that is, it's being diffused and not valued, so the symbolic light which could be filling these characters with self-awareness and a sense of right-and-wrong, is, literally, being thrown on the floor and lost. Mr. Glass, on the left, looks like an old grandma in her rocking chair, and this isn't by accident, because Mr. Glass isn't just on the left side, he IS the Left, with their gender-switching, victimization and self-entitlement; Kevin is the image of false dignity because he's wearing yellow. Yellow is the color of gold, and because gold is always associated with kings, it denotes the kingship within us, our great dignity; however, we can choose to abandon that dignity, and that's when yellow symbolizes cowardice. David Dunn is, literally on the right, that is, the Right of politics. He's bound and chained, so he's suffering, this is where the violet light comes in: David Dunn is the image of suffering, but Mr Glass and Kevin are the image of self-proclaimed royalty who are entitled to not have to suffer. David wears a pale green hospital outfit, and we know that green is the color of new life and hope, so whatever happens to David in this scene is actually giving him a new purpose in life, even if it isn't readily apparent by the time the scene ends.
In the last few seconds, one of Kevin's personalities asks, "What do we call you, sir?" And Elijah Price says, "First name, Mister, last name Glass." This superbly echoes the introduction in Marvel's Dr. Strange when Kaecilius (Mads Mikkelsen) asks Stephen Strange (Benedict Cumberbatch) who he is and starts by calling him "Mister?" and Strange replies, "It's Doctor," to which Kaecilius asks, "Mister Doctor?" and Strange adds, "It's Strange," and Kaecilius concludes, "Who am I to judge?" By giving a title as his first name ("Mister") Elijah Price/Mr. Glass erases a part of his identity: Elijah. Elijah, one of the most powerful prophets of all time, meaning "My God is Yahu," Mr. Glass prefers to identify himself with his sinful nature, rather than the divine nature to which every single person is called (our soul which is God's Gift to each of us) and this is why he "teams up with" The Beast in Kevin: as an unmasked face of socialism, The Beast is the animal that socialists believe each and everyone of us actually is, not a child of God, merely an accident of nature with no dignity, vocation or purpose. The fruits of these labors have been a long time in coming for Shyamalan, but I'm confident they will be well worth the wait!
Eat Your Art Out,
The Fine Art Diner