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Jason's Review of Firestarter 2022 ★★★

Watched May16, 2022

This is a perfectly OK genre film, certainly no more but no less either. The first hour I’d say is downright good in a low-key way most of the time, actually, but it goes downhill a bit in that last half hour. That last half hour is, probably not coincidentally, where the most significant deviations from the source material occur.

The story is simple and juicy, but while pretty well-done for the first two-thirds, it’s definitely a bit sleepy and feels like it could use a shot in the arm. Made me realize that there have actually already been several semi-pseudo-unofficial retellings of this type of story, with two (Looper and Midnight Special) being a hell of a lot better. Brightburn was more or less on a par I think, and I actually prefer this to 2018’s Freaks.

So yeah, I think a lot of the negative reviews for this are more than a little hyperbolic, as even when it gets a bit too cheesy in that last half hour I was never in pain watching it (other than that “Liar, liar, PANTS ON FIRE!” bit, perhaps) plus you’ve got a solid John Carpenter score to luxuriate in the whole time. And it ends on an interesting note and strong final shot.

Worth checking out, if only just barely, whatever you may have heard to the contrary.

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