Nim's Island Jennifer Flackett & Mark Levin

Nim's Island Jennifer Flackett & Mark Levin
To be completely fair to Nim’s Island, many wide-eyed, freckle-faced, bedwetting children will delight in the scenes with animals demonstrating human characteristics, as well as those involving Nim’s fantasies and Home Alone antics. They may even find humour in Jodie Foster’s misguided and cartoon-ish performance, which doesn’t at all match the tone or blueprint of the film. It doesn’t take a great deal of filmmaking panache to impress a child for an hour-and-a-half but the real test is to make them remember the movie fondly afterwards, and for their parents to find something within it to connect to. Nim’s Island doesn’t do this at all; instead it hybridises Romancing the Stone and Home Alone uncomfortably and tosses in some humdrum acuities about isolation causing schizophrenia, as well as the necessity for human companionship. The story follows young Nim (Abigail Breslin), who, having lost her mother years earlier, is left with her research scientist father (Gerard Butler) on a deserted island with nothing but animal companions. When her father winds up missing after a sailing mission gone wrong, Nim turns to the internet, convincing the reclusive and agoraphobic Alex Rover (Jodie Foster) to travel across the world to help. What makes the DVD version of this film so interesting are the many featurettes that focus on Abigail Breslin. From her three-hour daily school regiment to her swimming lessons to her animal training, it becomes very clear that her life consists entirely of socialisation with sycophantic adults who allow her to live in a sheltered bubble, unfamiliar with normalcy. The deleted scenes are quite extensive, as two entire storylines were cut from the film, one concerning Jodie Foster’s personal assistant and the other Abigail Breslin’s imaginary literary character friends "Huck Finn” and "Alice in Wonderland.” Plot holes surrounding Foster’s character and her day-to-day life with agoraphobia are filled in when the personal assistant scenes are viewed, which makes it seem like the only reason they were cut was because the actor playing him was kind of annoying. Sequences with Breslin and her imaginary friends are mostly boring and bring little to the film, but add credulity to her "Buccaneer” rant and make her seem slightly more unstable emotionally. (Fox)