Holes is the story
of a boy, Stanley (Shia LaBeouf), who’s sent to a work camp after being
accused of stealing a pair of sneakers (shades of Jean Valjean!).
Everyone at the camp is put to work digging holes in a dry lakebed.
There are flashbacks and a bad warden (Sigourney Weaver) with two bad
underlings (Jon Voight and Tim Blake Nelson), and Stanley’s friend, Zero (Khleo
Thomas). The story is why in
the world are they digging all these holes, raising memories of John Lennon
wondering how many holes it takes to fill the Albert Hall?
But should it take 111 minutes to tell this story?
Not in this lifetime, it shouldn’t.
I could tell it in ten minutes and, using literary license, could
even fill a normal 90-minute movie so it wasn’t too tedious.
But 111 minutes? Not
But these people
must be living in some nether world, certainly not in America. Stanley is a
good boy with no record who’s hit on the head by a pair of sneakers and
then arrested, tried, convicted, and sent to prison.
Worse, he’s sent to what appears to be a chain gang type camp
populated entirely by children at hard labor.
I’d like the filmmakers to tell me where this happens in America.
China and Cuba, maybe, not America.
Talk about a sick, surrealistic fantasy world!
family, seemingly nice people (the father is The Fonz, Henry Winkler,
who’s a nerd more interested in his inventions than in Stanley’s
plight), doesn’t care a lick about him .until the end. This is a real
never-never land. On one level I guess children will like it because it is about
children. But what
kind of filmmakers make a children’s movie that wants children to believe
that a good, well-mannered, young boy can be railroaded into prison because
he was inadvertently hit on the head by a pair of sneakers, and then that
he’d be sentenced to hard labor in a hell-hole of a desert?
This is no story I’d want an impressionable child to witness.
This is more a horror story than a children’s story. But, then, Bambi’s pretty frightening, too, so Disney’s in
familiar territory here.
The only thing
worthwhile in this movie for me was Jon Voight’s performance, which was
off the board. This is a Voight
never seen before.
OK, some people
won’t take this as seriously as I did, and will enjoy it.
Children might enjoy it. As far as I’m concerned, in addition to
being far too long, it’s reprehensible to make a movie like this, give it
a ridiculous Hollywood happy ending, and then target it to children.
May 1, 2003