‘SPLIT’: Dissociative Identity Disorder Movie | Film Review
Split is one of 2017’s most anticipated psychological horror film. It was written and directed by M. Night Shyamalan, and this week it premiered on cinema. The film stars James McAvoy, Anya Taylor-Joy and Betty Buckley. It follows a man with 23 different personalities who kidnaps three girls.
The argument of the film, besides being captivating and intriguing, also holds an important – true – issue that many do suffer; personality disorder. And we must take our time to congratulate James McAvoy for his fantastic 23 character performance and his accurate depictions of someone with dissociative identity disorder.
The film opened at No. 1 this weekend with more than $40 million in domestic sales. Though McAvoy is best known for his work in the X-Men prequels, he has received praise from critics for his performance in Split, but also the Hollywood film has faced criticism for how it portrays mental illness.
In a different light, many mental health advocates warn that the film stigmatizes dissociative identity disorder and may directly impact those living with it. “You are going to upset and potentially exacerbate symptoms in thousands of people who are already suffering,” said Deckel, a DID specialist at Mount Sinai’s Icahn School of Medicine, immediately after seeing the film.
The National Alliance on Mental Illness describes that disorder, as one in which someone alternates between separate identities that they formed within themselves. “Often these identities may have unique names, characteristics, mannerisms and voices,” the group says.
And as the person switches between them, they will “experience gaps in memory of everyday events, personal information and trauma”. The disorder is a way for someone to escape reality, possibly a traumatic one like abuse, through a “disconnection between thoughts, identity, consciousness and memory”. and even though some have been sceptical.
The movie has been recived with a lot of anticipation and success, and even Shyamalan has teased us with a posible sequel:
“This was the introduction to this character,” he explained. “And I want you to taste the world of as many as I can do in one movie and for you to connect with them”.
“And then, maybe there’s a future…” he said with a laugh.
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