This is a retro-post. I put this online 24 December 2005 using the date it was originally sent out.
My review of “AI” — the Kubrick film as interpreted by Steven Spielberg. Rest assured that there are NO SPOILERS in this review.
I guess I must start by saying I went out of my way to avoid all reviews, spoilers, and everything for this film because I didn’t want to be tainted. I don’t usually do that.
I’ll also add the disclaimer that my expectations for this film were absurdly high. This was one of the most anticipated films in a long time.
First and foremost, Haley Joel Osment is phenomenal, stupendous, amazing, incredible, and wonderful. A virtually flawless performance. Why this kid didn’t win an Oscar for Sixth Sense is beyond belief, if he doesn’t get it for this film, I’ll scream. He stole the show. His acting was BY FAR the best part of the film.
Secondly, this film was a visual masterpiece. It’s also easy for the viewer to look at a scene and define at as Kubrick or Spielberg. They had collaborated on this film quite a bit some years ago before scrapping it.
Thirdly, when the film works, it works very, very well.
Which is why it irks me that in many places it doesn’t work. I think this could have been a far better film if it were 20 minutes longer for the first two parts, and 15 minutes shorter in the third part. The film, although continuous, is clearly divided into three acts.
Before watching this film, it would benefit the viewer to be familiar with the story Pinocchio (classic version, not Disney).
I will gladly answer questions, but am keeping this review spoiler free.
I do think you should see the film and make your own judgement.
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