Academy Award winner Kim Basinger takes on the horror thriller field with Bless the Child, a movie that knows how to pick up the pace, but doesn't know what to do with it.
Bless the Child conveniently came out a year after The Sixth Sense, which also was about a kid with 'special powers.' I doubt it is a coincidence. In terms of plot, the movies are fairly unrelated, but the mood of the movie is similar. Unfortunately, Bless the Child is no The Sixth Sense.
My attention was held moderately throughout the course of the film, with some interesting and suspenseful moments. However, there really isn't one moment in the movie that has not been seen in some other movie. Bless the Child is decent enough but it is very unoriginal.
Its flaws do not end there. The acting and script are pretty mediocre. There are some good actors in the film, including Kim Basinger, Jimmy Smits, and Rufus Sewell, but none of them live up to expectations. I'm surprised that Basinger doesn't have a lisp after this movie, after listening to her try to pull off the line, "I just want my Cody back." Smits is convincing as an FBI Agent but his character is nothing to scream about, and he seems like a means to an end in the action department. His character is just there to get Basinger out of some tight spots. As for Sewell, he plays a good villain, but isn't very convincing as the leader of a religious cult. The only shining light in the movie is the brief appearance by Christina Ricci. But how did all these big names get involved in such a weak movie?
The quality of this film can be determined by its visual effects. Bless the Child has the worst visual effects seen in a movie in the last ten years, and that includes television movies. In a few scenes, Basinger is 'attacked' by a swarm of rats, only they look like a bunch of cheesy rubber rats with really sharp teeth. In other scenes, demons fly around overhead, yet they hardly look realistic. What am I saying? They don't look realistic. I wonder what the actors were thinking when they sat down for the premiere and watched the movie fall apart in their laps. Of course, they had to know in the process of making the movie...
Bless the Child has some suspenseful moments, but its originality is lacking. The computer graphics cap off a large string of faults, and it's amazing that big names like the ones involved in this picture ever signed on. Did they even read the script?
Review by Erik Samdahl unless otherwise indicated.
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