As the summer movie season winds down, box office totals are dropping, as is the quality of films. New releases The Replacements, Autumn in New York, and Bless the Child all received tepid notices, although the spiritual content of the supernatural thriller Bless the Child made for a lively discussion about the growing respect for God in the unfortunately schlocky genre.
Hollow Man took the box office crown for the second week in a row, despite piles of bad reviews. Several new Christian reviews stacked the pile higher, including a particularly forceful one from J. Robert Parks of The Phantom Tollbooth, who says it's "so overwhelmed by stupidity and depravity as to be practically unwatchable. … Instead of exploring extremely pertinent issues like the transformation of the body and its effect on human identity … it's merely an excuse to indulge [an] obsession with human dismemberment. … The lowlight comes when [the invisible man] sucks on a woman's breast while she's asleep. It makes for an interesting special effect, and it feels like you're watching a rape." Holly McClure of Crosswalk.com agrees that "this is a dark, adult horror film that even some adults may not be comfortable with. … The script, plot and annoying behavior of Kevin Bacon ruin what could have been an interesting story." Movieguide's pan of the film, though, notes a somewhat atoning "warning about the dangers of playing God and having too much power."
Nearly every Christian critic gives a mild thumbs up to Space Cowboys, yet the areas singled out for praise are often completely opposite. For instance, World magazine was bored by the long setup as four old-timers brave the rigors of NASA training before leaving earth, and says "once the movie ...1