The Happening

20th Century Fox Released 2008




out of 10
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Movie Summary

M. Night Shyamalan

The Happening is an environmentalist drama in which nature finally lashes back against humanity for its toxic polluting. Citizens of Philadelphia begin acting erratically, leading to a rash of unexplained and gruesome suicides. There seems to be no reason behind the deaths, as the victims showed no signs of depression or despair. Soon the situation spirals into a near epidemic, and Elliot Moore, a high school science teacher, sets out with his family to flee the northeast. He tries to figure out what is behind the growing plague of self-injury, and his scientific know-how leads him to explore the possibility of mind-altering toxins that are being released into the air. However, as opposed to some sort of terrorist activity, Elliot and his wife, Alma, realize that nature itself has become the ultimate terrorist. Finally humanity is going to have to answer for centuries of pollution, and it may be too late to stop it.

Metacritic Score

  • 60

    The New York Times Manohla Dargis

    A divertingly goofy thriller with an animistic bent, moments of shivery and twitchy suspense and a solid lead performance from Mark Wahlberg.

  • 50

    Los Angeles Times Carina Chocano

    It doesn't help that Wahlberg, whose work usually ranges from solid to inspired, is bewildering off-key here, though it may have something to do with playing off Deschanel, who red...

  • 50

    Variety Justin Chang

    In short, this is a Shyamalan movie minus the bravado, the swagger; there are no audacious attempts to pull out the rug from under the audience, no ham-fisted lessons about the imp...

Trivia, Notes, Quotes and Allusions


  • TRIVIA (0)

  • QUOTES (0)

  • NOTES (5)

    • Production budget - $48,000,000
      Domestic gross - $64,506,874 (49th)
      Worldwide gross - $163,403,799 (40th)

      Domestic adjusted for 2013 - $73,311,433
      Worldwide adjusted for 2013 - $185,706,824

    • Other production companies:
      UTV Motion Pictures
      Spyglass Entertainment
      Blinding Edge Pictures
      Dune Entertainment

    • Tagline:
      We've Sensed It. We've Seen The Signs. Now... It's Happening.

    • Filming locations:
      New York City, New York
      30th Street Station, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
      G-Lodge Diner, Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
      Jardin des Tuileries, Paris, France
      Jardins du Louvre, Paris, France
      Julia Masterman High School, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
      Literary Walk, Central Park, Manhattan, New York City, New York
      Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
      Ridley Creek State Park, Media, Pennsylvania
      Rittenhouse Square, Philadelphia, Pennsylvania
      Phoenixville, Pennsylvania
      Unionville Village, Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
      Wynnewood, Pennsylvania

    • Music:
      Black Water
      Written by Patrick Simmons
      Jealous Heart
      Written by Thomas Richard Smith Sr.
      Performed by Marsha Thornton
      Piano Concerto No. 21 In C K467 ('Elvira Madigan': 2.Andante)
      Written by Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart
      Performed by Radu Lupu, Uri Segal and English Chamber Orchestra
      Smooth As Silk
      Written by Stephen Lang & Marc Ferrari
      Performed by Stephen Lang


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