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Disney's The kid

Threat advisory: High - High risk of entertaining activities

Movie propaganda

If you had a chance to meet yourself as an 8-year-old child, would that kid be happy with who you turned out to be? In Russ Duritz's case, the answer is a big No!

Russ Duritz (Bruce Willis) is a high-powered, successful image consultant whose life is suddenly turned upside down when he magically meets Rusty (Spencer Breslin), himself a t the age of eight. Rusty is a sweet, but slightly geeky, pudgy little kid who is not at all happy with who he turns out to be: a 40-year-old loser without a wife or a dog. Ironically, the kid helps Russ learn about himself and remember his dreams as a kid, in order to become the grown up he wants to be.

Also starring Chi McBride as Kenny, Emily Mortimer as Amy, Daniel von Bargen as Sam Duritz, Dana Ivey as Doctor Alexander, Susan Dalian as Giselle, Stanley Anderson as Bob Riley, Juanita Moore as Kenny's grandmother, Jean Smart as Deirdre and Lily Tomlin as Janet. Written by Audrey Wells, directed by Jon Turteltaub.

Cinematic intelligence sources

Intelligence analyst

Special Agent Matti

Theatrical report

Well, it's a little bit obvious, even if you haven't read any of the Propaganda, but that doesn't detract from an enjoyable afternoon's entertainment in front of the box.

Bruce continues to improve his acting credibility by not once running around in a dirty singlet saying "Yippie kiyay, mother-fucker." He also doesn't make that cat's bum face when he's trying to look deeply meaningful. You can see why M Night chose him for The sixth sense and Unbreakable. Spencer is a great match up because there's a déjà vu each time they look at each other. He also has a great sense of the comedic. Lily is a gem as Russ' harried personal assistant, neither wilting under his aggression nor overpowering him in his need for compassion. She is the friend everyone needs, even though she's paid to be.

You can tell who the love interest will be as soon as she appears on the screen, so there's no need for me to go into that scenario, but the "change the past and make a better future" scenario is even more familiar because you all secretly wish that you could do it. Just reach back and take out that issue-inducing event that you can't ever forget because it shaped every part of your life that came after it. Choosing the wrong man (Sliding doors), job, city or friend is a total bitch because you can't ever get over it: wherever you go, there you are.

Mind you, there's something to be said for a comfortable familiarity, which is what The kid brings to the party. You know everything will turn out all right, you just don't know how they'll get there.

Security censorship classification

PG (Adult themes, low level violence)

Surveillance time

104 minutes (1:44 hours)

Not for public release in Australia before date

Film: 7 November 2001

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Disney's The kid image
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