"Hide and Seek" barely even qualifies as a movie. It's an easily digested piece of commercial product, not unlike a loaf of bread or those pantyhose that come in an egg. This is a commodity entirely pieced together by a committee and then an assembly line. It trots out the world's oldest and hairiest "thriller conceit" (a creepy child's "imaginary friend." Ooooooohh!) and then proceeds to beat the thing to death for 95 endless minutes. And tossed on top of this ridiculous piece of generic fluff is the formerly reputable Robert De Niro, an actor who seems single-mindedly intent upon destroying his sterling reputation.Ever seen The Believers? How about The Amityville Horror or The Shining or ANY old movie that contains a gloomy little kid and a creepy old house? Yeah? You've seen several?
Good, then you can save yourself the staggering numbness of this Hide and Seek fiasco.
Here we have a Daddy and his moppet. Mommy just got done slicing her wrists in the bathtub, so Dad and Mop must, logically, immediately relocate to a gothic manse in the country, one that comes complete with a few goofy neighbors and hardwood floors. Moppet starts acting more mopey than she was before, and it's all "Charlie's" fault. Who's Charlie?
What's most mind-boggling about Hide and Seek is how astonishingly skinny the whole thing is. There's precisely ONE plot point in the whole tired affair, and there's zero in the subplot department. This tired little greeting card of a thriller slogs aimlessly through its one-note narrative. I couldn't tell if the movie was impressed by its own lack of creativity...or if it simply did not care. Paint-by-numbers predictability earns you first-place in the January box office trenches, so I doubt very highly that anyone even looked at this thing once the final cut was slapped together.
Oh, except for the ending. Hoo boy. Imagine watching a dog sleep for 85 minutes. And then, for the final ten minutes of its life, the dog turns into a rabid, frothing squirrel. That's Hide and Seek. Not bad enough that the bulk of the movie is crashingly dull and face-slappingly predictable; the ending trumps all by being dull, predictable and also amazingly stupid.About a year ago everyone in Hollywood wanted to jump upon the "Horror is HOT right now!' bandwagon. And films like "Hide and Seek" are the inevitable result. (Only the marketing people insist on calling them "thrillers," because "horror" seems too distasteful to the AARP crowd.) "Hide and Seek" is the worst sort of warmed-up, washed-out, CBS-movie-of-the-week material there is. It doesn't have the balls to go for real scares, and it doesn't have the brains or the creativity to try something unique or even remotely original. This movie exists for only two people: those who are too scared to see a REAL horror movie - and those who currently work for Robert De Niro. If you don't fit into either of these categories, feel free to avoid "Hide and Seek" forever.