Despite the release date delays and rumors of five different endings, on paper, Godsend is loaded with terrific

potential. It?s a horror film that deals with the moral dangers of human cloning and it stars Greg Kinnear, Rebecca

Romijn-Stamos and the legendary Robert De Niro. It can?t possibly end up that badly. Unfortunately, it?s much worst then

this viewer could have conceived.

As mentioned earlier, the initial plot hook is great. Godsend is about family (Kinnear and Romijn-Stamos) that loses

their only son (Cameron Bright) in a car accident. A Dr. Frankenstein-type scientist played by De Niro quickly enters the

picture and offers the bereaved parents an opportunity to get their child back through the magic of human cloning. The catch

is that they would have to kill all ties with the outside world and live in a small, secluded Stepford Wives-type town. As

you might expect, our protagonists? dream situation slowly ends up being too good to be true.

The performances are strong as one might expect. After great performances in two distinctly different films, Auto

Focus and Stuck On You, Greg Kinnear proves once again that he is an actor to pay attention to. He is incredibly

convincing in even the film?s most awkward moments. Rebecca Romijn-Stamos is equally strong in her role. She adds a great

deal more emotional weight than the end project deserves. Cameron Bright is also very good. He brings nice subtle touches

especially in the creepier and mysterious aspects of his character. Robert De Niro for the most part is solid. He hams it

up a bit towards the end. Unfortunately the role is underwritten. Just when the film should take his character into a more

complex territory that De Niro could easily handle, it fails in doing so.

Godsend?s biggest problem is that it fails to live up to its potential. The script and direction slowly plods away to

its conclusion without any enjoyment. The film starts off interesting enough but quickly degenerates into plot contrivances

and an unending array of cheap scares that go nowhere. The film takes way too long to reach its conclusion. The third act

is an absolute major letdown. It?s one of the weakest and laziest that this viewer has seen in recent memory. If the

chosen ending was this lame, one can only imagine how bad the other four endings are.

Nothing is worst than a movie that completely lacks a worthy pay off. The performances are literally the only good thing

going for this dud but unfortunately it?s not nearly enough to save this wreck. With a hot topic subject matter as

potentially fascinating as human cloning, this film should have been at the very least thought provoking. Simply put,

Godsend is an utter waste of time. It is so far the biggest disappointment of 2004.

Official Score