I want to go on the record and say that as a kid, I enjoyed this film, however now watching it after all these years since seeing it in the theatres as a more critical viewpoint, this film sadly disappoints, despite a talented cast on board to this project.
Disney’s more modern re-telling of ‘Race to Witch Mountain’ sees Jack Bruno (Dwayne Johnson) as a taxicab driver who has made some wrong decisions since he was seventeen. However, he quietly enjoys being a taxicab driver and is greeted by two teens who look human like, but are secretly from another planet that need to obtain a rare and unique object. Both aliens have unique and peculiar abilities as Sara can use telekinesis and can read people’s minds, while her brother Seth has the ability to transparent through objects and is quite strong, like destroying a car with his face. Yeah, that happens!
There’s no question that there are some moments that is touching and humorous. I found Sara’s ability to read minds often being hilarious and the relationship that forms with Jack and these alien teens can be quite heartfelt thanks to strong performances from Dwayne Johnson and AnnaSophia Robb that sell its believability. Plus, some action sequences aren’t bad to watch either, mainly for its car chases being exciting to watch. Additionally, Sara and Seth’s abilities are cool to watch like Sara moving objects with her mind, the Vegas poker machines is funny and inventive, and while Seth doesn’t have much to shine, his powers are quite cool like opening locks from the outside by moving through walls and doors.
Unfortunately, everything else is quite a drab to watch. The film often feels lazy, building suspense only to be a cop-out (it is done quite a few times that feel repetitive) and the story isn’t quite as fleshed out, or should I say lack of explanation only to explain it when the film reaches its 50 minute mark. By that time, you’re like, wait what does that object do, why are you teens here? Plus, I know the villain is this big mystery, but by the end feels rather weak and uninteresting. It just seems to be another goal for our heroes to eventually avoid as if that wasn’t enough, the government from Witch Mountain is on their tails and Jack’s mob boss after him as well. It’s just too much going off all at once.
‘Race to Witch Mountain’ has plenty to show and like, but ultimately I can’t help but to find this mildly amusing at times with a somewhat unfocused plot arcs in a film all about getting these alien kids back home.