In KAZAAM, basketball hero Shaquille O’Neil plays a wish-granting genie. The recipient of these wishes is Max, a twelve-year-old boy growing up in New York City. Max struggles with the prospect of a new father and is constantly bothered by a local hoodlum gang. Max’s father abandoned him when he was two-years-old, but Max still holds onto hope that he might find his father again. As the film opens, Max is on the run from the school gang. He hides in an old building and finds Kazaam. Kazaam must grant Max three wishes. Max asks for a Jaguar XKE. Next, Max asks for junk food. Max finally wishes for a reunion with his father, but Kazaam is distracted. Kazaam finally comes to the rescue and serves up a plateful of special-effects to save the day.
This is a movie that is unapologetically about magic. It is also perhaps a little too dark and brooding to be enjoyed by small children, and the dialogue and story are too juvenile for older children. It is a bad attempt at comedy, fantasy and action that tries to be all things to all people, yet fails. Due to some excessively vulgar language, unnecessary violence and an unmistakably New Age slant, the movie falls far short of a movie for children, despite a few moral elements.
(NA, L, V, O, M) New Age worldview that encourages children to seek out the good within themselves & to become happy & at one with the universe; 2 obscenities & 7 vulgarities; mild but gratuitous violence involving fist fights & chases by bullies; and, magical elements & scenes of urban decay