I’ve never gotten the sense that M. Night Shyamalan has a sense of humor about himself or, for that matter, has any idea of what people really think of his last few movies. Whenever he’s been confronted with their terribleness he always waves around European box office receipts or something, as if it’s proof that people adore him and it’s just the media that’s out to get him. He takes himself seriously and he takes his work seriously, and he doesn’t really seem to accept criticism. That’s fine. So what’s he doing making parody videos?
I’m not sure but he shot one for MTV in which he parodies the trailer for Devil, the new horror movie he produced about people trapped in an elevator with something evil. If the Devil trailer is noteworthy for anything at all, it’s that every time it’s shown in a theater anywhere the audience invariably laughs or groans whenever Shyamalan’s name flashes on screen. Some people are pointing to the fact that he’s willing to parody the trailer as proof that M. Night is willing to poke fun at himself, as if he understands that people are laughing at him and is trying to get in on the joke. I don’t see that here at all. Watch:
The parody video doesn’t really poke fun at M. Night or his work. It’s just sort of a light-hearted parody which takes the Devil concept and does something silly with it. Does it prove that M. Night has a sense of humor? Sure. Does it prove he’s willing to laugh at himself? Not at all, since he’s not really poking fun at himself here. In fact the video seems to go out of its way to avoid that, perhaps because MTV wanted him involved and was afraid of pissing him off. Just a theory. It’s still a lot of fun, let’s just not go giving M. Night too much credit for being involved in it. What’s really funny here is that even in a parody video, he’s still a terrible actor.
For comparison purposes here's the actual trailer for Devil. You'll have to provide your own laughter when M. Night's name appears:
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