The chief problem with Bless the Child lies in its premise. As the film reaches its denouement and a glowing angelic host attempts to save Cody by snuffing out Sewell's satanic presence, one begins to suspect that this is the Hollywood equivalent of a Christian Rock album, attempting religious conversion by stealth and subversion. That said, the movie rolls along at a cracking pace and features several nice touches: Sewell is suitably creepy as the squint-eyed cult leader; Christina Ricci literally loses her head to the forces of darkness in a blink and you'll miss it cameo; and Cody's horrific waking nightmares put a new twist on what really lies at the end of the bed when the lights go out.
On the DVD: An awkward audio commentary pairs director Chuck Russell with visual effects supervisor Joel Hynek. Russell is keen on spelling out the rather obvious motivations of his characters while Hynek relays the difficulties encountered in realising the film's numerous special effects sequences, but it's hardly the kind of stuff that enhances your viewing of the film. A 10-minute featurette contains the standard enthusiastic cast and crew interviews. The inclusion of a theatrical trailer and seven virtually identical TV spots is simply overkill. The clear picture quality of the main feature shows off Peter Menzies' suitably Gothic cinematography, presented in 2.35:1 anamorphic format with 5.1 Dolby Digital sound. --Chris Campion
Commentary by Chuck Russell (Director) and Joel Hynek (Visual Effects Supervisor)
Languages: English Dolby Digital 5.1
Subtitles: English, English for the hearing impaired.
From the Back Cover
Cody quickly becomes the daughter she has always longed for, but six years later Jenna suddenly re-enters her life and, with her mysterious new husband, Eric Stark (Rufus Sewell), abducts Cody. Maggie discovers that the child possesses extraordinary powers...powers that forces of evil have waited centuries to control. Together with an FBI specialist in occult-related crimes (Jimmy Smits), Maggie races to save the life of the innocent girl who may hold the keys to save mankind....or destroy it.