Kristen Stewart as Maddy
Corbin Bleu as Austin
Max Thieriot as Gus
Jennifer Beals as Molly
Sam Robards as Tom
John Carroll Lynch as Mr. Hartmann
James LeGros as Ferrell (as James Le Gros)
Michael Des Barres as Brisbane
Stark Sands as Brad
Lennie Loftin as Flagler
François Giroday as Nuffaut
Christine Estabrook as Sharon
Kevin Schmidt as Skip
It is tough being a young teen in a movie. Nobody understands you, you get no respect or attention, and you know that you are able to change the world by yourself without the help of anyone else. Oops, I described almost all 13 year olds. Catch That Kid is a movie starring 13 year olds, aimed at 13 year olds and will probably be enjoyed mostly by 13 year olds.
The movie does have things to offer for the adults that bring the kids in to watch it, but the amount of suspension of belief will overload many people. The premise is an often used one. One parent becomes ill and it is up to the kids to do something to save them. That something, in this case, is to rob a bank. Putting the moral aspects of this decision aside for a moment, the execution of the plot is done pretty well even if unbelievable.
The young actors (Kristen Stewart, Corbin Bleu, and Max Thieriot) do a good job showing emotion and interact well with each other. The characters that they play have a little depth to them and come across as real kids. In stark contrast are all of the adults in the movie who are all presented as cardboard cutouts. The mean/evil bank manager, the incompetent and bungling security officers, the all-forgiving mother, and the tragic/heroic father.
The action is all at a kids level, nothing huge and spectacular, but it still adds some suspense. The music is mixed in at reasonable levels so that it does not overpower the movie. There are many humorous points, most of them in the Keystone Cops vein.
Who should see this movie? If you are 13 you will probably think this is one of the best movies ever made. On the other hand, if you are not 13 then you will have to overcome the lack of strong adult characters, the “ends justify the means” moral, and the silly and contrived bank design. The movie is short and moves along at a good pace, so it shouldn’t tax the patience of parents escorting younger kids. Overall it is a mediocre movie, but given the subject and target audience that is more than can be expected.