as reviewed by Skylaire Alfvegren
The script for this foul, derivative combo of Big and Back to the Future must have resulted from a jaunt through the psyche of some ridiculously over-paid Disney exec who's so out of touch he thought splashing his psychoanalysis all over the big screen would edify other yuppie scumbags with inner children yearning to break free. God help this country if he is proved correct.
The Kid is sure to garner the yuppie moron stamp of approval. It even features Bruce Willis, whose years of skimming millions from stupid movie-going audiences have formed deep, unpleasant crevices around his mouth that appear when ever he goes for the patented, all-purpose smirk that hasn't really served him since Moonlighting. Still, that horrifying image is all over this yuck-filled saga of self-help.
Willis applies those crags to Russell, a stressed-out, cold as ice image consultant, who conquered his traumatic childhood by growing up to tell celebrities what to do. Ah, revenge. But money and power leave such a void, and through some inconceivable magic involving the moon, Russell's conflicted mind conjures up his traumatized, eight-year-old self, a chubby, lisping loser (Spencer Breslin) whose memory Russell must rid himself of in order to be whole.
Squished between the audience-pleasing comedy and two wise, female supporting players (a secretary played by Lily Tomlin and a cute assistant played by Emily Mortimer), is a 3D scrapbook of Rusty's childhood trauma–the fights, the taunts, the dying mother, the whole nine yards. It's not only stomach-churning but uncomfortable as you're forced to go through your own bumpy adolescence to the tune of overwrought bassoons. The score drips like imitation maple syrup over something lumpy and filled with bran that you choke down for the sake of necessity.
People who eat bran in the mornings probably have childhood promises they've failed to fulfill, and could do no worse than The Kid to help unleash their own inner child. Judging by the Pavlovian response the 30-something test audience showed at a preview screening of The Kid, it would appear that brains shrink as they grow older. Yours doesn't have to! Please avoid falling prey to this sort of pabulum when you're older (and we all know the studios will still be churning it out). Set off cherry bombs at your old junior high school. Go rent The Wall. Please just make the psychic pain go away.