Film

Film

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After the abominable Myth of Fingerprints and World Traveler, indie hack Bart Freundlich has now traveled the path you almost hoped he’d take: He’s sold out to Hollywood. With any luck, he’ll have divested himself of all personal style within 10 years; until then, there’s Catch That Kid, a stale, overbudgeted, child-empowerment fantasy that’s every bit as excruciating as the director’s previous work. Curiously, his mantra has shifted from “Families are for losers” to “Families are cool”: In order to get the money for her paralyzed mountain-climber dad’s operation, 12-year-old Maddy (Kristen Stewart) and her buddies Gus (Max Thieriot) and Austin (Corbin Bleu) conspire to rob a bank, leading to such one-liners as “If we get caught, we go to jail forever—like, until we’re 21!” Freundlich veteran James LeGros, cast here as a disgruntled security guard, should consider asking Todd Haynes for another role, pronto.

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