Godsend (2004)

Genres - Horror, Thriller  |   Sub-Genres - Psychological Thriller, Sci-Fi Horror  |   Release Date - Apr 30, 2004 (USA)  |   Run Time - 102 min.  |   Countries - Canada , United States   |   MPAA Rating - PG13
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Review by Derek Armstrong

This one should be marked "return to sender." Godsend takes a timely and potentially hot topic -- human cloning -- and makes it about as interesting as yesterday's dead skin cells. The film stars Rebecca Romijn, an actress whose emotional range should never be tested, and Greg Kinnear as parents so ravaged by the loss of their child, they agree to go into witness relocation to become genetic guinea pigs. The film knows that something eerie will happen when the cloned boy reaches full term, but it can't decide what. So it throws a bunch of red herrings and other spaghetti against the wall, and the result is a limp thriller rife with possessed-boy/serial-killer clich├ęs. What's worse is that Mark Bomback's clunky script consistently telegraphs its "surprises." Moments before his demise, the original Adam, trying out basketball shoes, says ominously to his mother, "I'm going to go test these shoes -- outside," practically winking at the audience. The child actor Cameron Bright is certainly capable of being creepy, but for a far better use of his talents, see Birth -- in which he plays a dead man reborn, rather than a dead child. The last hope for the film is Robert De Niro, but he shows a poor charisma typical of the "I'll take anything" phase of his career, which includes such winners as Showtime, City by the Sea, and Hide and Seek. Taken in conjunction with the execrable Arnold Schwarzenegger vehicle The 6th Day, Godsend suggests that cloned humans remain as far from connecting with moviegoers as they are from becoming a viable scientific reality.