SEPTEMBER 16, 2007
The worst thing a filmmaker can do is be Paul Haggis. But the SECOND worst thing a filmmaker can do is setup a killer kid movie and turn it into a killer old Italian woman movie, which is exactly what Alfred Sole did in Alice, Sweet Alice.
I don't think it's spoiling much, since it's revealed halfway through, but it was still disappointing. Killer kids are always welcome in my DVD player. Luckily, the film’s other merits more or less make up for it. There’s a delightful cast full of despicable characters, such as an aunt that seemingly hates everyone in her family, and a fat landlord who may be a pedophile. Also, there are a few hints that the little girl we thought was a killer IS at least going to be one someday (and she does kill a cat by flinging it hard onto the floor - poor kitty!). And the music rips off Psycho’s to a certain, but not excessive, degree. Hurrah!
The only thing that really bummed me out was that nothing in the film was as creepy as the film’s poster (see below), which used to scare me at the video store as a kid. I also remember for some reason that there was a badly shrink wrapped copy of the film at the Sam Goody that I worked at during high school, and that the damn thing STILL freaked me out. Yet I waited like 15 years after being aware of its existence to watch it. What the hell is my problem?
Also, the religious stuff may turn some off. Of course, when the film was made (and also when it was set, which is 15 years before the film was made, for reasons that are never explained), the Catholic Church was more or less in good public standing. But nowadays, a woman so devout to its teachings that she would kill “sinners” is sort of nothing compared to the real world, where the priests molest little boys while the higher ups spend their time focusing on the “real” problem of, well, movies like this.
But hey, if you ever wanted to stab your priest in the neck while he fed you communion, let yourself live through this otherwise sort of pointless movie!
What say you?