The Happening (2008 film)

2008 film directed by M. Night Shyamalan

The Happening is a 2008 film about a strange, horrible and unprecedented crisis that begins in Central Park. A high school science teacher, his wife and a young girl do what they can to survive it.

Alright, there appears to be an event happening…
Written and directed by M. Night Shyamalan.
We've Sensed It. We've Seen The Signs. Now... It's Happening.

Elliot Moore

  • [to house plant] Hello, my name is Elliot Moore. I'm just going to talk in a very positive manner, giving off good vibes. We're just here to use the bathroom, and we're just going to leave. I hope that's okay. [Elliot touches leaf] Plastic. I'm talking to a plastic plant. I'm still doing it.

Alma Moore

  • [Watching a news report about the airborn toxin, presumed to be the result of a terrorist attack] It makes you kill yourself. Just when you thought there couldn't be any more evil that can be invented.


  • [To teachers, calling for a cancellation of school] Alright, there appears to be an event happening. Central Park was just hit by what seems to be a terrorist attack. They're not clear on the scale yet. It's some kind of airborne chemical toxin that's been released in and around the park. They said to watch for warning signs. The first stage is confused speech. The second stage is physical disorientation, loss of direction. The third stage... is fatal.

Private Auster

  • Oh, cheese and crackers!


Take an interest in science. What could be the reason bees have vanished?
To be a scientist, you must have a respectful awe for the laws of nature.
Elliot: You're not interested in what happened to the bees? [Jake shakes his head] You should be more interested in science, Jake. You know why? Because your face is perfect. The problem is, your face is perfect at 15. Now, if you were interested in science, you would know facts like the human nose and ears grow a fraction of an inch each year. So a perfect balance of features now, might not look so perfect five years from now, and might look downright whack 10 years from now. [students laugh] Come on, buddy. Take an interest in science. What could be the reason bees have vanished?
Jake: [after a long pause] An act of nature, and we'll never fully understand it.
Elliot: Nice answer, Jake. He's right. Science will come up with some reason to put in the books, but in the end it'll be just a theory. I mean, we will fail to acknowledge that there are forces at work beyond our understanding. To be a scientist, you must have a respectful awe for the laws of nature. [Jake raises his hand] Jake?
Jake: How much does the human nose grow each year?
Elliot: It's miniscule, buddy. Okay? Don't worry about it. You're going to be a heartthrob your whole life. I was just messing with you.

Julian: Hey, I'm going to tell you something that you should never tell your best friend.
Elliot: Why is everybody saying that?
Julian: [referring to Alma] I saw her on your wedding day.
Elliot: Again with the wedding. What?
Julian: I walked into her waiting room by mistake, and she was crying. She looked up and I saw her face. She wasn't ready to jump in, Elliot. That's not who she is. She's never going to jump in when you need her, man.

Train Conductor: The train service has been discontinued. This will be the last stop for all passengers.
Elliot: Hey, what do you mean? Where are we?
Train Conductor: Filbert, Pennsylvania.
Elliot: Filbert? Does anybody know where that is? Why are you giving me one useless piece of information at a time? What's going on? Hey, why would you just stop? You can't just leave us here!
Train Conductor: Sir, we lost contact.
Elliot: With whom?
Train Conductor: Everyone.

Nursery Owner: We're packing hot dogs for the road. You know hot dogs get a bad rap? They got a cool shape, they got protein. You like hot dogs right? By the way, I think I know what's causing this.
Elliot: You do?
Nursery Owner: It's the plants. They can release chemicals. [to his plants] OK babies, we are going to be going, but we will be back soon, OK? [to Elliot] Oh, plants react to human stimulus, they've proved it in tests. [to his wife] You get the mustard?

Elliot: [shots are heard firing in the distance] Oh no...
Alma: What "oh no"?
Elliot: The toxin? The toxin's affecting them?
Woman in Group: Are those people killing themselves?
Realtor: You were with the Private, what do we do?
Alma: We need to do something!
Elliot: Just let me think...
Alma: [as shots continually fire in the background] They're dying!
Elliot: I need a second...
Realtor: They released it? We're not near the roads!
Alma: We can't just stand here as uninvolved observers!
Elliot: I need a second, okay? Just give me a second!
Alma: We're not gonna be one of those assholes on the news who watches a crime happen and not do something! We're not assholes!
Elliot: Just a second!
Woman in Group: There were children in that group!
Alma Moore: Elliot, please, tell us what to do!
Elliot: I need a second, okay?! Why can't anybody give me a goddamn second?! [talks to himself] All right, be scientific, douchebag. Identify the variables.. isolate groups.. design the experiment.. that's what we're.. careful observation, measurements, that's what I'm trying to do, interpret the experimental data, interpret... What if it is the plants? That group was larger than ours. This thing's been escalating all day. Smaller and smaller populations have been setting this off. They react to human stimulus. Maybe people are setting off the plants?
Alma: What are you saying? That guy was crazy! We have to save them!
Elliot: They're already dead! What if they're targeting us as threats? This part of the field may not have been set off. Something in this field could be releasing the chemical into the air when there's too many of us together. Let's just stay ahead of the wind!

Jared: Got kids?
Elliot: No.
Jared: How come? You got... a problem?
Elliot: No. She wanted to wait.
Jared: Really? For what?
Elliot: For me to grow up. Why are we talking about this?

Alma: Mrs. Jones, um, something's happened along the east coast.
Mrs. Jones: Whatever it is that you think is so important that you need to tell me - don't. Just keep it to yourself. The world don't care about me. I don't care about it.

Mrs. Jones: [to Elliot and Alma]' So what's with you two? Who's chasing who?
Alma: I'm sorry?
Mrs. Jones: Ain't no time two people staring at each other, or standing still, loving both with their eyes are equal. Truth is, someone is chasing someone. That's the way we's built. So, who's chasing?
[Elliot raises his hand]

Nursery Owner: You know plants have the ability to target specific threats. Tobacco plants when attacked by heliothis caterpillars will send out a chemical attracting wasps to kill just those caterpillars. We don't know how plants obtain these abilities, they just evolve very rapidly.
Alma: Which species is doing it if you think it's true?
Nursery Owner: Plants have the ability to communicate with other species of plants. Trees can communicate with bushes, and bushes with grass, and everything in between.

Mrs. Jones: [confronting Elliot] I hear you whispering! Thinking of stealing something?
Elliot: No ma'am, we're not.
Mrs. Jones: Plan on murdering me in my sleep?
Elliot: What? Nooo.

Jess: Hey, Alma.
Alma: How's it going?
Jess: Hangin' in there.


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