by David Roberts

Everyone knows children are not quite capable of acting, painting, singing and all those other things. Not all children obviously, but your children definitely are, and yet you find yourself putting everything you’ve got into seeing the positive in their creations and you fool yourself into thinking you’ve enjoyed them no matter how relentlessly terrible you know their performances to be. This is exactly how I felt while watching Kite, except I have no biological programming or emotional investment that makes me think this. Starring Samuel L. Jackson and India Eisley, Kite is a dystopian Film, based on the anime of the same name, which is two parts Hannah and one part Frankenstein, which, in case you didn’t get the reference, is highlighted by some terrible dialogue at some point.

The film is set in a future where the banks have crashed and the good guys are only considered to be good because they aren’t as bad as the bad guys. It begins with bad man bringing a young beautiful girl to be sold on as a prostitute, and probably to harvest organs from and forced to work in a second-hand shop for minimum wage, which is a fate worse than being harvested. The young girl has bright pink hair, and a gun in her purse with exploding bullets, which causes the would-be harvester to give birth to his brains out of his face. This young girl is Sawa, a drugged up semi-super hero with harboring the thirst vengeance for the murderer of her parents. Sawa is played by India Eisley, and not by Jamie King like I had thought, which probably would’ve led to the film being banned and my computer being seized by the police.

It comes to light quite quickly that Sawa is off her rockers on a drug called Amp that causes her to be brave, strong, and efficient in her fighting style while also, unfortunately, leaving her memory substantially missing. This, for those who might be confused, is exactly the same as what alcohol makes you think you are achieving while making you just increasingly less socially desirable and capable.

Furthermore, the presence of Samuel L. Jackson in this movie proves an interesting point: A great actor can seem worthless when coupled with a terrible script. The music, which is probably the only redeemable quality of the film, is used very rarely and not well. The script is like fine wine. . . costing a lot more to make than it’s ever going to be worth. Jackson is Sawa’s protector and father figure, ensuring she stays on Amp, kills the right people and doesn’t get caught. Sawa, on the other hand, performs some violent, sexy moves and kills many bad men. The sudden introduction of a guy called El Plot-Twisto gives the film a reason to end, but the whole concoction ultimately feels bland, grey, and under-worked.

I give the oddly named Kite 2/5, for the simple and yet unfortunate fact that there were so many amazing elements in it that it could have turned out better than it really did. I, however, looked at it like a child’s drawing that I was hanging up on the fridge--it’s just that I started thinking about sudden infant death syndrome while I was doing it.