Bless the Child
Film: Bless the Child
Director: Chuck Russell
Writer: Thomas Rickman, Clifford Green and Ellen Green
Starring: Kim Basinger, Jimmy Smits and Rufus Sewell
This film begins with Kim Basinger on a bus. Sitting in front of her is a black woman who is excited about a star that is being seen for the first time since it was over Bethlehem the night Jesus was born. Basinger states that she is not religious, but does not argue with the woman. When she gets home, she finds her sister, played by Angela Bettis, waiting for her. Her sister is addicted to heroin and just had a baby. Bettis flees, leaving her daughter with her sister.
Some things we learn during this were that Basinger was married, but her husband left her. Her sister claims it was because Basinger could not carry a baby to full-term and had two miscarriages. The other thing is the baby may have autism. Basinger gets her checked out, but is not sure she is. Basinger is a nurse and admits that the child shows signs, but she also has other things that those with autism do not exhibit. Regardless, the girl goes to a special school to help her function better and it is run by nuns.
The little girl is played by Holliston Coleman. We see that there is a child murderer out there and this scares Basinger. Their bus goes past a young man who makes eye contact with Coleman. This scares her. We then see that inside the van is Eugene Lipinski. They are looking for a 6 year old boy who walks down the alley with a wagon. They lure into the van. We see that they have an odd tattoo on their forearms.
On the news we learn about a man who has created a group called the New Dawn. He helps with those that are struggling with addiction get back on their feet. This man is played by Rufus Sewell. We also see that Coleman is very special and has some strange abilities.
A FBI agent is called in to help track down this killer after the baby of the boy is found in the water. The agent is played by Jimmy Smits. He teams up with a detective who is played by Michael Gaston.
Basinger goes to work where she helps take care of Christina Ricci. She is in for an overdose that she states was not her fault. She is trying to leave the organization that Lipinski is in, but when she tried, they forced her into an overdose. She slips up that she knows Bettis and Basinger pushes her for more information. She is called out to help on another case and Ricci flees the hospital.
A miracle happens at Coleman’s school. There is a bird that flies into the window and breaks its neck. Lumi Cavazos, who plays a nun, approaches and watches as Coleman brings the bird back to life, much to the excitement of her classmates.
Basinger is then visited by her sister and her new husband, Sewell. He has heard about Bettis’ daughter and he wants her to come live with them, making them a family. Basinger declines, stating that Bettis has been out of her life for so long that she needs to ease her way back into it. Coleman is then kidnapped.
Basinger goes to the police and meets Smits, who wants to help her. This is when we learn that there are forces all around us. Sewell knows how special Coleman is, but he wants to turn her from God. He is hoping to get her to be the antichrist for Satan. What path will Coleman choose? Will she be saved before it is too late? Will Sewell be able to change her mind or will he kill her to prevent her doing God’s work.
I want to lead off stating that I am not very religious. I am a man of science, but I do like films about mythology, including Christianity. I like the idea that Coleman is supposed to be the modern Jesus Christ. What makes it even more interesting is that this time around it is the form of a young girl who is somewhat autistic. It does bring up the issue that the innocence a condition like this could bring, was it possible if there was a real Jesus, was he similar? I also like Sewell’s character as wanting to turn the savior into the antichrist. I also think this film has some good action as well as supporting cast.
Now I did have some issues with the film though. The first issue was that I was not a fan of the things that Basinger sees. There is a question that if they are real or not, because I do not believe she sees them before she is hit in the head. It could be her concussion is making her see the demons. If that’s the case, then I’m fine with it. If not, it does come off as a little bit cheesy for me. I also don’t feel that Sewell tries that hard to convert Coleman. I don’t know what more he could do, but I don’t see how trying to burn a crazy, old bum alive is going to make Coleman realize she is backing the wrong team. There are also some telekinesis things that don’t do much in the way of progressing the story for me either.
With that said, I don’t think this is a bad film. This is a psychology thriller with some horror elements mixed in. I really like the idea of the Christian mythology repeating itself and the devil still trying to convert God’s only child, this time being a young girl. I like Coleman, Basinger, Sewell and Smits’ characters a lot. I thought the supporting acting wasn’t bad and there is some good action. Now this is the not the best film out there in the genre, but if this sounds good, then I would recommend giving it a viewing.
My Rating: 6 out of 10