|Directed by:||Paul Verhoven|
|Written by:||Gary Scott Thompson, Andrew Marlowe|
|Starring:||Kevin Bacon, Josh Brolin, William Devane, Elizabeth Shue|
|Released:||August 24, 2000|
Sebastian (Bacon) is head of a science team working on a top-secret government project. Their creation is an invisibility serum creating limitless possibilities. They have had no problem turning their subjects (animals) invisible but for four years have had problems transforming them back into their visible form.
Working at home one night, Sebastian makes a major breakthrough and unlocks the secret. Hungry to become the first human to undergo the transformation, Sebastian acts against the wishes of both the government agency and his teammates and injects the serum into himself to create history. However, things go wrong when Sebastian finds himself unable to return to a visible state and this creates serious ramifications...
Hollow Man has potential which is exemplified by the dazzling special effects that are on the lips of all cinema goers. It’s a small wonder how the computer imaging team led by guru Scott E. Anderson (Starship Troopers, Babe) has pulled it off. Kevin Bacon manages to maintain a strong presence despite not being seen during most all of the film - I guess his voice was good enough.
A surprise for me came during the opening credits. I was bemused to find Elizabeth Shue taking top billing over Kevin Bacon. After seeing the entire film and given it’s advertising, I’m convinced Bacon had the lead and did have more screen time over Shue.
Although taking its time to develop the premise, the opening was promising. What followed was a sharp decline where all interesting storylines were discarded before culminating with a big action swansong more unrealistic than that of Mission: Impossible 2 (and that’s a big task). That’s what makes it all the more disappointing because at least with M:I-2, I was expecting Hollywood trash.
Paul Verhoven’s (Basic Instinct, Showgirls) direction does little to help the film with it all revolving around special effects. It subscribes to my old theory - why pump millions of dollars into making a film seem more realistic when the screenplay does exactly the opposite.
Given the film’s title, I could use many clichés to sum up my dissatisfaction with Hollow Man. For the record, let’s say that the film was missing a lot more than just Kevin Bacon.