Maybe 'Mimzy' couldn't get a break from me from the start. When I began planning to take my six-year-old daughter to see this movie, fond memories of watching E.T. at the theater with my mother began to bubble up in my mind. Now, E.T. was a truly good movie. It captured both heart and mind for me when I was a child. Perhaps that is a heavy standard to live up to.
Though, now that I think of it, I did just pay 16 bucks for tickets to 'Mimzy'. I think it should have at least been a good movie.
But 'Mimzy' was not a good movie. It barely ranked 'mediocre'. I do have to admit my daughter liked it. It had that going for it. And it wasn't excruciating to sit through -most- of it. But it was billed as a family film. Shouldn't a family film appeal to the -whole- family? Shouldn't an adult be able to enjoy it, too?
To begin with, the story is very slow. I spent the first half of the movie waiting for something to happen or waiting for the things that did happen to mean something to the plot. And, while I go to a any sci-fi movie understanding there has to be some 'willing supension of disbelief', this one asked for me to suspend too much about things I shouldn't have to. Stuffed bunny from the future that talks to children and is here to harvest DNA to save the world? Check. I'll suspend disbelief for that. A Homeland Security officer that apologiies for detaining a family suspected of terrorism and cheerfully leaves in his helicoptor after watching said bunny (and the daughter, nearly) be sucked into a vortex of swirling light? Um. No.
There are some heavy-handed 'Don't destroy our world' messages which seem to be in there just for the sake of agenda. I'm not philosophically opposed to the messages at all, but you don't have to pound it at me with a 2x4. As for acting and characters: the children were good, the science teacher and his girlfriend were fair, but the rest of the cast were completely one-dimensional. And the Homeland Security officer...oh lord.
The ending was very disappionting, from the swirling vortex and the bunny to the flying utopian children, with some neat special effects being the only saving grace. It was the kind of ending that made me think, 'Holy Cow, I can't believe some one thought that was worth wasting film on...'
Knowing that this movie was 'based' on a short story after I saw the movie I decided to check it out, figuring the screen writers must have missed something that would have made this story good. (It took some searching. Appearently, most copies of the story 'Mimsy were the Borogoves' have been removed from the internet by the owners of the copyright prior to the release of the film.) I was left even more befuddled. It's a very good short story. It is not, in almost EVERY way, anything like the story the screen adapters created for this movie.
I think I know what the film makers were trying to say ('Please, don't destroy our world and our humanity!!!'), but they really fell flat as far as delivery. The movie was so simple and almost trite about it, I almost want to go out a pollute people's DNA. And that's coming from a card-carrying, tree-hugging liberal.
Despite all that, like I said, my daughter really enjoyed it. It's worth a look if you have a child 7 to 10-ish who likes any of the following: rabbits, time-travel, science-fiction stories, swirly blue lights, Tibetan mandalas and Pink Floyd t-shirts. You'll be able to survive the time in the movie being moderately entertained and only slightly annoyed at the inanities.
Better yet. Rent the DVD when it comes out.