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film criticism by maryann johanson | since 1997

The Covenant (review)

It’s as if the WB took Harry Potter and turned it into Five Hot Underwear Models Go Back to High School and Do Magic, with some accidental pseudo-adolescent homoeroticism thrown in for fun. There’s nothing the least bit scary or the least bit interesting in this instantly forgettable bit of juvenile fantasy soap-opera fluff — awed teenagers intoning phrases like “Book of Damnation” and “Sons of Ipswich” doesn’t quite do it, nor does the occasionally hilarious baroqueness of the film’s design, which tries to invoke New England old money gone Hogwarts. The biggest challenge is in distinguishing the “teen” hero (Steven Strait: Sky High) from the “teen” villain (Sebastian Stan); they appear to have been cast from the same Teen Hottie (Male) mold, and in the same shades of plastic, too boot. Still, one line is classically awful, and is sure to become legend: “How about I make you my wee-yotch?”

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MPAA: rated PG-13 for intense sequences of violence and action, some disturbing images, sexual content, partial nudity and language

viewed at a private screening with an audience of critics

official site | IMDb

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