By Stephanie Zacharek
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Alan Scherstuhl
By Charles Taylor
By Melissa Anderson
By Inkoo Kang
By Amy Nicholson
By Sam Weisberg
The best thing about The Abduction of Zack Butterfield is TJ Plunketts performance as the title character. Teenage Zack is meant to be a golden boy (good student, respects women, fantastic athlete), but early in the film Plunkett shades in slight asshole vibes for the character, which later manifest as steely survival instincts. Zack needs them to outwit April (Brett Helsham), the psycho female soldier who kidnaps him, explaining her action by saying she identifies with female high school teachers who have affairs with male students: I like men, but they suck. Find yourself a boy, before they become a man, and you make your own man. As Zacks frantic parents endure doofus policemen and FBI agents, Zack is handcuffed, physically and emotionally battered, and made Aprils uncomfortable confidante. Hers is a sad tale of a cruel mom, a stepdad who loved her (and made her a surrogate son) but not enough, and adult men who mistreated her. Flipping moods at the drop of a hat, April keeps Zack on his toes in what becomes a game of psychological one-upmanship. The script is often ludicrous (gratuitous digs at feminism; muddled commentary on war and the military), the sets look like sets, and the actingaside from Helsham and Plunkettdoesnt even rise to the level of student films.
Please note that any comments from "Dellavar" or "Ron Walsh" are coming from producer and co-writer Stephen Ryder. Obviously upset at the justly terrible reviews he's been getting for this movie, it looks like he's picked up some aliases to defend his celebration of pedophilia (hot women will have sex with you and make you breakfast if you play along!) By the way, I love how he tries to use "the feminist point of view" as an insult. Regardless of anyone's politics, Stephen, your poorly-written, incompently-directed movie is an insult to film.
There were no sets used in this movie, Ernie. It was filmed 100% on location. There was no set decorator, no art director. Each interior was real and unprepared. Thank you for an otherwise unusually incisive summation from the feminist point of view
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