Dark comedy, photographically as much as temperamentally, about a disturbed adolescent (Jake Gyllenhaal of October Sky) who has an imaginary friend in a demonic bunny suit giving him mischief-making orders. (The bunny's end-of-the-world forecast, however, carries little weight when the action is set in the thick of Dukakis's run for the Presidency.) First-time filmmaker Richard Kelly, age twenty-six, reveals an individual voice and an eccentric sense of humor (i.e., sometimes actually funny), and even when he hits predictable notes (e.g., the Grundy-ish old crone on the high-school faculty, who, when asked whether she knows who Graham Greene is, responds, "I think we have all seen Bonanza"), he hits them at his own unforced pace. Much the same can be said for his frugal use of special effects. The time-travel resolution is nonsensical even by time-travel standards, and it has the effect of wiping the slate clean in the chicken-hearted fashion of the it-was-all-a-dream convention. "Clever" is the compliment it was fishing for. "Gimmicky" might be the reasonable compromise. Jena Malone, Drew Barrymore, Mary McDonnell, Patrick Swayze, Noah Wyle. (2001) — Duncan Shepherd
This movie is not currently in theaters.