Kazaam - 1/2*

Kazaam is a genie movie that doesn’t have a spark of magic. Shaquille O’Neal plays the genie, Kazaam, discovered by a highly annoying down-and-out kid, Max (Francis Capra). Unlike any normal kid in his situation, who would be delighted to get three wishes, Max doesn’t want anything to do with them. So, Kazaam is forced to act as friend and mentor to the irritating kid until he finally gets down to business, and makes his wishes. As filler, we are treated to some syrupy and boring family troubles, and several sub-par rap numbers. Shaquille O’Neal, while a camera-friendly presence, seems more interested in promoting his rapping ability than acting. Even a couple of nods to Shaq’s big presence on the court can’t lift his lightweight performance here. Even the magical effects throughout the film seem flimsy. The ninety minutes in the theater seem at least like twice that, and, trust me, you wouldn’t want to spend ninety seconds alone in a theater with someone as shudderingly annoying as Max.

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