Director: Keith Thomas
Writer: Scott Teems
Starring: Zac Enron, Ryan Kiera Armstrong, Sydney Lemmon, Kurtwood Smith, John Beasley, Michael Greyeyes, and Gloria Reuben
Review: Remember like three years ago when Stephen King adaptations were the hot trend of the moment? Movies like It and Doctor Sleep were surfing that wave that Stranger Things inspired a few years before then. Well, I guess Blumhouse wanted some of that action. Only it’s three years too late. And they forgot to hire literally anyone remotely talented.
Honestly, Firestarter might be the most passionless movie I’ve ever seen. It feels like no one really had an idea for what to do with this. Nothing feels inspired. It’s just like they looked at Stephen King’s bibliography and was like “what’s left? Oh, Firestarter. It’s been a while since we’ve had one of those” and that’s where the thoughts stopped. Seriously, there is nothing to take away from this movie. The dialogue is bland. The acting is god awful. There’s no interesting choices in the directing. It’s just dull and safe every step of the way.
Seriously, I went the entire movie without feeling any emotion. Do you know how hard that is to pull off? Especially in a movie about a child discovering that she has deadly powers. That’s like my jam. I grew up on X-Men. Stranger Things is one of my favorite shows of all-time. When you put a child into what essentially counts as a horror themed superhero origin story, it’s almost guaranteeing that I’ll eat it up. But, apparently not if you butcher it as badly as these film makers did. I was just bored out of my mind the entire time. I knew exactly how long the runtime was and how much time my showing had left, because I could not keep my eyes off of the clock the entire time. For a movie that clocks in at about 90 minutes, it sure feels like an eternity. I’ve seen a lot of bad movies at the theater lately, but it’s been a while since I’ve found one quite this boring.
So, yeah, I don’t recommend you see Firestarter. If you’re at all interested, I’d go back and watch the original first. Now, I can’t endorse that one either. I’ve never seen it and I’ve never heard anyone say anything good about it, but it’s gotta be better than this shitshow. I have to imagine those filmmakers at least cared about what they were putting on screen. Everyone involved in this version should be ashamed of themselves.
(Side note: I think I owe New Mutants an apology, because that looks like a masterpiece compared to this dribble.)
TL;DR: Firestarter is a contender for least inspired movie of the year and is borderline unwatchable.
Score: 1/10 (Unbearable)