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Hide and Seek
DVD disk
06.23.2005 By: Quigles
Hide and Seek order
Director:
John Polson

Actors:
Robert De Niro
Dakota Fanning
Famke Janssen

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A boring old fart loses his wife, and he moves upstate to help their adorable daughter cope with the loss. But Charlie, the little girl’s imaginary friend, sees to it that things don’t go as planned, which is a nicer way of saying he torments and kills people.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
In some ways, this flick is very reminiscent of THE SIXTH SENSE, which is to say it builds and builds until it hits it’s “shocking” conclusion. But there are some standout differences between both films. First of all, THE SIXTH SENSE didn’t suck balls. And secondly, THE SIXTH SENSE had a gnarly surprise ending, much unlike HIDE AND SEEK’s god-awful “shit in your sock drawer” finale.

I was somewhat enjoying the movie until about 30 minutes into it, when I realized it wasn’t going to go anywhere. It basically sticks with one single idea through the entire thing: the mystery of Charlie. As such with all mysteries, a good ending is key, and in this case, essential. But instead, we’re given a pathetic and tired finish, filled with more holes than Swiss cheese. THE SIXTH SENSE got it right; it didn’t even need the awesome ending. Granted, it did accomplish that task, but even without it, the flick had other things going for it too, such as the subplot involving the young girl. This flick on the other hand... nada, nil, zilch, zero. All we get is simple build-up stuffed with throwaway characters just to keep you guessing, and then a lousy payoff. What a jip!

On the bright side, Dakota Fanning is creepy as hell, yet still manages to be adorable, while Robert De Niro is, uh, in the movie? Well, his character is more boring than a pair of old shoes, but even so, his presence alone is an upside. I can also admit that I was never really bored during the movie; aggravated maybe, but never bored. Think about it though, how good can a movie be if the most positive thing you can say about it is that it’s not boring?
THE EXTRAS
I don’t quite understand why, but the people marketing this DVD decided to promote there being 4 alternate endings, almost as if bragging that the filmmakers couldn’t think of a good way to finish the movie.

Commentary (with the director, editor, and screenwriter): There’s nothing more annoying than hearing filmmakers brag about how great their crappy movies are, especially when they happen to be praising exactly the stuff you disliked most. But, if you find that sort of thing funny, then check this out.

Alternate Endings (8:01 – with optional commentary): Not only are these sequences barely different than the original ending, they also are pretty lame. There was one sequence that was, to some extent, better that the original, but still pretty bad. The commentary is pointless too, because all they do is state what you can already see. What’s worse is that they actually chose the most stupidly obvious option for the final scene. Ugh.

Deleted Scenes (19:08 – with optional commentary): The commentary says it all, as all three people can’t even recall whether these were in the movie or not. There are 14 scenes, none of which are particularly great, but some are decent.

The Making of Hide and Seek (10:19): Your standard making-of, which means more talk, less show. The actors praise each other, while tons of clips from the movie appear in-between. Skip it.

Previs Sequences (3:32 – with commentary): Booooooring. Enjoy the fascinating words of the director as he narrates the lame ending in storyboard mode.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
With the likes of Robert De Niro and Dakota Fanning, I really wanted to like this movie. It had the looks of a creepy mind-f**k thriller, but it was too simple, too straightforward, and too friggin’ disappointing. Go ahead and hide this lazy stinker in the closet, and only seek it out if you don’t mind getting cheated by a lousy ending.
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