It’s exciting to see Shyamalan on such confident footing once more, all these years later.
I am writing this review from the Scottish Highlands, where the peace is broken only by the occasional low-level flyby of a jet fighter plane. I was walking yesterday along the banks of Loch Tummel, and I came to a lively waterfall that was tumbling through the woods. The birds were singing and the sun was doing its best to penetrate the mist, and then the sky was shattered by the arrogant roar of a warplane, swooping low over the hills, then gone in an instant.
The flights are part of a joint defense exercise by the United States and Royal Air Forces, and they fly on nearly every clear day. Folks up here don't like them much. It's like being subjected to a daily version of one of those moronic displays where the Blue Angels demonstrate how much noise they can make.
The low-level training missions are no doubt important for security, but they have contributed to a good deal of grumbling among the citizens who live in their path. That grumbling, in a way, is what "The Fourth Protocol" is about. There are a lot of U.S. military bases on British soil, including the famous one at Greenham Common where anti-nuclear protesters have been camping out for years. If there were a nuclear accident at one of those bases, it would seriously undermine our welcome over here.
"The Fourth Protocol" involves a Soviet plan to smuggle the elements for a nuclear device into Britain, assemble it and detonate it right next to a U.S. base. The explosion would be so huge that its precise location would be obliterated, and it would look exactly like an American accident. Result: pressure for the Yankees to go home and a strategic victory for the Russians.