Firestarter is a remake of a Steven King film from 1984. I have not seen the 1984 version either which starred Drew Barrymore. The 2022 version starred Zac Efron and Ryan Kiera Armstrong.
Charlie (Ryan Kiera Armstrong) is a young girl, the daughter of two people with psychic powers. Charlie has pyrokinetic powers, which means she can set things on fire with her mind. Her family has been on the run as the group that experimented on her parents was looking for them.
Charlie’s father (Zac Efron) wants her to keep her powers hidden while Charlie’s mother (Sydney Lemmon) wanted her trained. When Charlie had a fire incident at school, the secret government entity known as The Shop, sent the dangerous Rainbird (Michael Greyeyes) after them with the mission to bring Charlie in alive.
This movie was bad. I had some initial thoughts that this could be a surprise, but, sadly, it was not. It was boring, among other issues.
One of the things that jumped out at me immediately was that the dialogue of the film was laughable. People do not really talk like this. It felt very unsophisticated. Maybe you saw it in the trailer, but the “liar, liar, pants on fire” line is an example of how bad it got.
I think young Ryan Kiera Armstrong does an adequate job with what she had to do. The story was just not very good and there was very little in character development.
The story felt rushed and things happen that made no sense. Rainbird as a character was all over the place. Why he does what he does in the third act is completely up in the air. The insanity of the third act was not a good thing. It was downright ridiculous. There were plenty of times where I had to hold back laughter or comments about why someone was doing something stupid.
Kurtwood Smith, the iconic actor, was in this movie kind of. He was in one scene. I have no idea why he appeared here for the few minutes of screen time that he got. His appearance had no effect on the story either.
Sadly enough, even the special effects of the new version was lacking. It did not look great which was a shock for a film coming out in 2022. Maybe they spent too much of the budget on Kurtwood Smith.
Was there a purpose for this movie to be remade? I don’t know, but, for whatever reason, this was just a bad film.