A man dies while jogging. Ten years later, a 10-year-old shows up at his widow’s fabulous New York duplex and announces he is Sean, her husband. Reincarnation. The movie gets off to a good start. The whole family is there, and they are not gullible. They react in the way you would expect intelligent people to react. This isn’t your ordinary junk stupid thriller. Nicole Kidman is terrific in the way she is gradually seduced by this solemn youngster who knows things he shouldn’t know.
But the movie has a basic problem. There are only two possibilities:
He really is Sean. In which case, he’s an asshole, because he gives her no help. He never tries to explain anything, never says “Gee, honey, I know it’s crazy, but how about that time when we greased up with Wesson oil and ran naked down the deserted beach?” In fact, he acts like a kid, though a spooky one. Is there some explanation for this? Is his memory of being an adult spotty? When did he realize he is Sean? We don’t know.
It’s a scam. The kid is a psychopath. “Psychic readers” know things they shouldn’t know, too, and the principles of such cons are well-known. In which case we hate him, not Sean. What he is doing is extraordinarily cruel. He is threatening this woman’s actual sanity.
I won’t tell you which proposition turns out to be the case, in case you want to see the movie. But I’d advise you not to waste your time. Like I said, it’s a no-win situation.