The Village: The Innocence of Art

Is it possible for us humans to picture innocence? – The world that we live in is surrounded by beauty only if we try to comprehend its existence. It is the dark corners of our hearts that touches the last strings of our emotions. Then we all together kneel and at times shed tears with a friend, a family or alone. If we overcome the emotions and close the doors of the dark corners of our hearts, we will understand that this world that we live in is more than just a grim picture. The vision that is gifted to us by nature gives us the opportunity to view a picture; scenery to experience the work psychologically. To our vision scenery from the distance for example is nothing, but a picture. It will feel real the moment we get close to it and touch it. It is when we notice a painting for example, somewhere in a gallery of art or at a friend’s home; we pay close attention to it for its beauty and most importantly to its innocence. The reason we cherish a good painting, for we comprehend its meaning and we try our best to protect its innocence.

It’s been eight years since the release of M.Night Shyamalan’s ‘The Village’ and I have heard throughout these eight years some positive and negative remarks. There are some who cherish the film like me and there are some who don’t. Everyone is entitled to their opinion, and so am I. Not only as a fan of Mr. Shyamalan it is because I see innocence in his work. I believe there has to be some artistic feeling when it comes to any form of art. Be it theatre, a painting or a film. I am going to put aside what people think about ‘The Village’ and present to readers that the film in its all honesty is a painting in the form of a motion picture. Unlike critics, I see a film from different point of views, for critics only pay attention to when the film will end and then they commence their writing by looking at one side of the coin. They forget that a coin has two sides. So, let’s flip it and see what the other side really offers.

The Village is about a population of a small, isolated countryside village who believe that their alliance with the mysterious creatures that inhabit the forest around them is coming to an end. Every film of Shyamalan, if one pays close attention to presents an atmosphere that is complex with conflicted characters. In the film, the village itself is set as a character much like a book based on the people of the world and their problems, fears and feelings. The concept of the film’s storyline is drawn to present the current world that we live in. Elders for years mentioned to the young ones in the village that in the woods stands creatures. They are taught to never cross the forbidden lines and if they don’t cross, the creatures will never step in the village. This simple idea comes from a simple household, for every parent guides their child towards better things in life. Every parent tells their child not to go outside when it is dark. Come home early. But, in the film this simple idea is presented in much larger scale and Shyamalan directed a film based on that idea and presented it much complex manner.

We are living in interesting times. The global village is facing some serious challenges both politically and economically. And many of these issues are confronting humanity in our societies. Joseph Tainter in his book ‘The Collapse of Complex Societies’ says that as societies get more and more complex, more and more investments will produce less and less benefit until the point is reached when investments in more complexity no longer brings an increase in benefits. In our society today most of us are to blame for inadvertently inflicting the damage to others environment. The extent and reversibility of that damage depend partly on properties of people. There are some who introduce pain to animals and some to trees for example. In this world the more we have the more we desire for better things. Some even go beyond the line of humanity and forget humanity to achieve what they want to achieve.


Who do you think will continue this place, this life? Do you plan to live forever? It is in them that our future lies. It is in Ivy and Lucius that this way of life will continue. Yes, I have risked! I hope I am always able to risk everything for the just and right cause. If we did not make this decision, we could never again call ourselves innocent, and that in the end is what we have protected here: innocence! That, I’m not ready to give up. – Edward Walker (The Village)

 As a writer and director, Shyamalan’s goal is to deliver a message, for every writer has a message to share. Sending a message through art is the definition of innocence. In our society, despite all the negativity in its corners, we still have good people among us.