Race to Witch Mountain (2009) Poster

Race to Witch Mountain (2009)

  • Rate: 5.7/10 total 19,956 votes 
  • Genre: Action | Adventure | Family | Fantasy | Sci-Fi | Thriller
  • Release Date: 13 March 2009 (USA)
  • Runtime: 98 min
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Race to Witch Mountain (2009)


Race to Witch Mountain 2009tt1075417.jpg poster

  • IMDb page: Race to Witch Mountain (2009)
  • Rate: 5.7/10 total 19,956 votes 
  • Genre: Action | Adventure | Family | Fantasy | Sci-Fi | Thriller
  • Release Date: 13 March 2009 (USA)
  • Runtime: 98 min
  • Filming Location: Agua Dulce, California, USA
  • Budget: $65,000,000(estimated)
  • Gross: $67,128,202(USA)(5 July 2009)
  • Director: Andy Fickman
  • Stars: Dwayne Johnson, Carla Gugino and AnnaSophia Robb
  • Original Music By: Trevor Rabin   
  • Soundtrack: Fly on the Wall
  • Sound Mix: Dolby Digital | DTS | SDDS
  • Plot Keyword: Spacecraft | Alien | UFO | Convention | Mountain

Writing Credits By:

  • Matt Lopez (screenplay) and
  • Mark Bomback (screenplay)
  • Matt Lopez (screen story)
  • Alexander Key (book "Escape to Witch Mountain")

Known Trivia

  • The main title editing team put in Morse code into the sound mix that says “please turn off your cell phones”.
  • Meredith Salenger plays Natalie Gann in this movie. She also played the lead in The Journey of Natty Gann when she was a child.
  • “Siphon,” the alien assassin tracking the children and Jack, is referred to as “Duranian series.” Mr. Duranian was the principle villain in the original “Escape to Witch Mountain.”

Goofs: Continuity: When Jack and the kids sit down at the table in the restaurant the ketchup bottle is empty. but as they are talking the ketchup bottle is partly full, and has ketchup up the sides and top.

Plot: A Las Vegas cabbie enlists the help of a UFO expert to protect two siblings with paranormal powers from the clutches of an organization that wants to use the kids for their nefarious plans. Full summary »  »

Story: In Las Vegas, the regenerated ex-con Jack Bruno works as taxi driver. During an UFO Convention at Planet Hollywood, the skeptical Jack picks up Dr. Alex Friedman, who will present a scientific lecture in the event. Then he is pressed by two henchmen of his former boss, the criminal Wolff, that wants to talk to him, but Jack does not want to return to the crime life. Jack fights and gets rid of them; out of the blue, he finds two teenagers on the backseat of his cab. They tell that they are siblings, Sara and Seth, and they need to travel to a location outside Las Vegas in the middle of nowhere. Meanwhile the government finds a spacecraft that crashed nearby Las Vegas and is chasing the two aliens; after the investigation of the men of Major Henry Burke, they discover that the two siblings are the aliens. Jack Bruno, Sara and Seth are chased by Henry Burke's team and by the "Syphon"…Written by Claudio Carvalho, Rio de Janeiro, Brazil  


Synopsis: During the opening credits, news of UFO sightings around the world appear.

Jack Bruno (Dwayne Johnson) is a cab driver in Las Vegas, who is picking up and dropping off passengers to the UFO convention at the Planet Hollywood Casino and Hotel. One of his passengers is Dr. Alex Friedman (Carla Gugino), a failed scientist who is giving speeches about legitimate scientific theories of UFOs and outer space.

The next day Bruno is approached by two large men telling him that Wolff would like to see him. After fighting them, Bruno drives off, later noticing two children, Sara (AnnaSophia Robb) and Seth (Alexander Ludwig) sitting in the back seat of the cab. They tell him they need to go to a certain destination and are willing to pay all they have ($15,000) to get there. They lead him to a run down house in the middle of nowhere. Meanwhile, Major Henry Burke (Ciaran Hinds) is searching for information on the two aliens that landed some days earlier.

When they arrive at the house, the children tell Bruno that they will be re-united with their relatives soon. Before leaving Bruno hears a crash coming from the house. He is startled to find them hiding behind a couch. Though grateful for his concern, the children tell him they must continue their journey without him, as they can trust no one. Nevertheless, Bruno decides to follow them, which leads him to the basement of the house. There the kids are pursued and attacked by a strange creature as they retrieve an object in a plant. They manage to escape from this creature.

When leaving they are attacked by a "Siphon", a creature built to destroy a certain targetin this case the children. The Siphon pursues them until it causes a crash of his spaceship into a train, the creature survives, though wounded. The trio eventually find themselves in a small town, hiding. They explain to Bruno that they are aliens from an distant planet, who are sent to Earth by their parents because the government of their dying planet intends to attack and invade Earth so that their kind may live on there. They also explain that the object they obtained at the house contains the results of an experiment which their parents set up. The research from this experiment will save their planet without having to attack and invade Earth. However their planet’s military prefer the idea of invading Earth and sent the Siphon assassin to stop them. They are next pursued by government agencies trying to retrieve the children for experiments.

They are joined by Dr. Friedman at the UFO Expo, who is familiar with outer space and travel. When the Siphon arrives, it prepares to attack but Sara uses her powers to knock him through a wall. At first the children are captured along with Bruno and Friedman. Nevertheless the two humans escape and come to rescue the kids. The Siphon causes a distraction by attacking the base. They manage to free the children and reach their ship. By running the Siphon over they can escape but the Siphon hangs on and gets on board. Bruno and Seth battle the Siphon in the lower sections of the ship, unmasking him in the fight. Finally, Bruno defeats the evil alien by knocking him out of the ship’s airlock, which kills him. Nothing is mentioned about the fate of Henry Burke, though he was last seen disappointed and upset for his failure and was talking to his boss on the phone, with a possibly of getting fired. The kids drop Jack and Alex off and after a tearful goodbye, they head back to their ship, but give Bruno and Alex a device that will allow the kids to always find them. And Sara gives Jack the power to use his brain to the mind reading ability.

During the end credits, Bruno and Dr. Friedman (now a couple) are speaking at a UFO convention about their new successful book called "Race to Witch Mountain". The last scene shows them driving off in a car Bruno dreamed of getting honestly as he had mentioned to Friedman earliera Ford Mustang similar to that driven by Steve McQueen in ”Bullitt”. As they are about to leave, the device the kids gave Bruno before they left goes off, indicating that they may be returning. [D-Man2010]


FullCast & Crew

Produced By:

  • Andrew Gunn known as producer
  • Mario Iscovich known as executive producer
  • Ann Marie Sanderlin known as executive producer (as Marie Sanderlin)
  • Amy Stenftenagel known as associate producer

FullCast & Crew:

  • Dwayne Johnson known as Jack Bruno
  • AnnaSophia Robb known as Sara
  • Alexander Ludwig known as Seth
  • Carla Gugino known as Dr. Alex Friedman
  • Ciarán Hinds known as Burke
  • Tom Everett Scott known as Matheson
  • Chris Marquette known as Pope
  • Billy Brown known as Carson
  • Garry Marshall known as Dr. Donald Harlan
  • Kim Richards known as Tina
  • Ike Eisenmann known as Sheriff Antony
  • Tom Woodruff Jr. known as Siphon
  • John Duff known as Frank
  • Bob Koherr known as Marty
  • Kevin Christy known as Matt
  • Bob Clendenin known as Lloyd
  • Sam Wolfson known as Imperial Stormtrooper Ciardi
  • Bryan Fogel known as Imperial Stormtrooper Gray
  • Robert Torti known as Dominick
  • John Kassir known as Chuck
  • Beth Kennedy known as Stenftenagel
  • Jonathan Slavin known as Gallagher
  • Harry S. Murphy known as Analyst D. Pleasence
  • Ted Hartley known as Four-Star General V. Lewton
  • Jack Eastland known as General E. Albert
  • Meredith Salenger known as Natalie Gann
  • Andrew Shaifer known as Casey Taylor
  • Suzanne Krull known as Gail Ross
  • Steve Rosenbaum known as Oren Bergman
  • Christine Lakin known as Sunday
  • Corri English known as Herself (Brokedown Cadillac)
  • Randy Dunham known as Himself (Brokedown Cadillac)
  • Don Ian known as Himself (Brokedown Cadillac)
  • Jeff LeGore known as Himself (Brokedown Cadillac)
  • Danny Reuland known as Himself (Brokedown Cadillac)
  • Dave Engfer known as Iscovich
  • Omar J. Dorsey known as Police Officer Hough (as Omar Dorsey)
  • Joseph Leo Bwarie known as Frankie Valet
  • Paul Nygro known as Teddy Tentacles
  • Brandon Scott Miller known as Hendricks (as Brandon Miller)
  • Andrew T. Janey known as Repola
  • Dennis Hayden known as Ray
  • Shengyi Huang known as Shira the UFO Huntress
  • Hiromi Oshima known as Fem-Alien #1
  • Christina Wun known as Fem-Alien #2
  • Christopher Dobler known as Hansen (as Chris Dobler)
  • Garrett Patrick Marshall known as Bomback (as Garrett Marshall)
  • Buck known as Junkyard
  • Cheech Marin known as Eddie
  • Len Anderson IV known as NORAD Analyst (uncredited)
  • Nathaniel Best known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • David Black known as High Roller (uncredited)
  • Patty Chong known as Hot Model / Gambler (uncredited)
  • David Cohen known as Bus Driver (uncredited)
  • Jeff Corbin known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Hugh Daly known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Natasha Delahunt known as Western Dancer (uncredited)
  • Kevin Deon known as Soldier / Guard (uncredited)
  • Aliza Finley known as Girl Jack Bruno Signs Book For (uncredited)
  • Lanette Fugit known as Alien (uncredited)
  • Gilley Grey known as Country Dancer #1 (uncredited)
  • Victor Harris known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Cindy Iglesias known as Alien (uncredited)
  • Brian Irvin known as High Roller (uncredited)
  • Christopher Karl Johnson known as Country and Western Dancer in Bar (uncredited)
  • Waymond Lee known as Space Conventioneer (uncredited)
  • Natalina Maggio known as Convention Anime Character (uncredited)
  • Chandler Maness known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Stefan Mavi known as Alien Larper (uncredited)
  • Ryan McBay known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Matt Mitchum known as Special Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Marilyn Monrovia known as Country Dancer #2 (uncredited)
  • Bob Pepper known as Hotel Guest (uncredited)
  • Lee Reherman known as Lieutenant Gunn (uncredited)
  • Franklin Ruehl known as Ufologist (uncredited)
  • Michael Santos known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Kyle Shaw known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Delia Sheppard known as Highroller (uncredited)
  • Rob Simone known as Ufologist (uncredited)
  • Chambers Stevens known as Dave Green (uncredited)
  • Kevon Stover known as Casino Guest (uncredited)
  • Whitley Strieber known as Whitley (uncredited)
  • Tino Struckmann known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Matthew Thane known as NORAD Specialist / Military Guard (uncredited)
  • Thom Tran known as Black Ops Soldier (uncredited)
  • Pleasant Wayne known as Bar Girl (uncredited)



Supporting Department

Makeup Department:
  • Donna J. Anderson known as hairdresser
  • Allan A. Apone known as key makeup artist
  • David A. Brooke known as special makeup effects artist: mold maker
  • Cheryl Eckert known as key hair stylist
  • Anna Fleiner known as key makeup artist
  • Alec Gillis known as special creature effects creator
  • Alec Gillis known as special creature effects designer
  • Camille Henderson known as makeup artist
  • Barry R. Koper known as key makeup artist: second unit
  • Louis Lazzara known as makeup department head
  • Brad Look known as special makeup effects artist
  • Rhonda O'Neal known as hair stylist
  • Charlotte Parker known as hair department head (as Charlotte A. Parker)
  • Susan Simone known as makeup artist
  • Rachel Solow known as hair department head
  • Tom Woodruff Jr. known as creature and makeup effects co-designer
  • Tom Woodruff Jr. known as special creature effects creator
  • Soo-Jin Yoon known as hair department head: second unit

Art Department:

  • Nicole Balzarini known as art department coordinator
  • Mike Bomar known as paint foreman
  • Scott Buckwald known as property master
  • Aric Cheng known as set designer
  • Ryan D. Compton known as propmaker gangboss
  • Hugh Conlon known as construction coordinator
  • David Corral known as greensman
  • John Eaves known as concept illustrator
  • Christine Fegley known as set painter
  • Jared Fleury known as assistant property master
  • Vanessa Gibson known as construction estimator
  • Ted Hardwick known as set dresser
  • Billy Hunter known as set designer
  • Kon Iliov known as propmaker foreman
  • Tom Ivanjack known as stand-by painter
  • Sean Lira known as set dresser
  • Ronnie Lombard known as greensman
  • Randy Martens known as greens supervisor
  • Richard N. McGuire known as gangboss
  • Gary Metzen known as painter
  • Christopher Morente known as greensman
  • Ron D. Peake known as welder gangboss
  • Frank Piercy known as paint supervisor
  • Gregori Renta known as gang boss
  • Mark Richardson known as assistant property master
  • Josh Roth known as set dresser
  • Lori Rowbotham known as set designer
  • Liza Rudolph known as set decorating buyer
  • Tommy Samona known as lead man
  • Steve Sickle known as greens foreman
  • Rob Simons known as assistant art director
  • Eric Smith known as paint foreman
  • Jana Treadwell known as set dresser
  • Whit Vogel known as additional art department coordinator
  • Harry Weinmann known as pre-viz designer/supervisor
  • Kyle Michael Wilson known as art department assistant
  • Julie Witherington known as on-set property master
  • Fante Zamora known as set dresser
  • Amanda Hunter known as graphic designer (uncredited)




Production Companies:

  • Walt Disney Pictures
  • Gunn Films

Other Companies:

  • ABC News Video Source  thanks (as ABCNews VideoSource)
  • BBC Motion Gallery  thanks
  • BT Industrial Supply  expendables
  • Buena Vista Negative Cutting  negative cutting
  • Central Casting  extras casting
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  camera cranes
  • Chapman/Leonard Studio Equipment  camera dollies
  • Chef Robért Catering  catering
  • Corbis  thanks
  • Direct Tools & Fasteners  expendables
  • Fisher Technical Services Rentals  camera & performer flying system
  • Gentle Jungle  animals supplied by
  • Getty Images  thanks
  • Go For Locations  locations website hosting
  • Goldman & Associates  local extras casting
  • History Channel  thanks
  • J.L. Fisher  camera dollies
  • Klass Security and Investigations  anti-piracy film security (uncredited)
  • Klass Security and Investigations  screening services
  • LoopEase  loop group
  • Marshall/Plumb Research Associates  script research
  • Monster Picture Crane  stunt rigging crane
  • Movie Movers  cast trailers
  • Pacific Studios Inc.  chromatrans background
  • Panavision Remote Systems  Supertechno cranes provided by
  • Paramount Transportation Services  transportation services
  • Picture Mill, The  end title sequence (as Picture Mill)
  • Reel Security  production security
  • Rockbottom Rentals  walkie rentals
  • Sandman Studios  Motion Graphics (Sandman Studios)
  • Sony Pictures Studios Scoring Stage  score recorded at (as Sony Scoring Stage)
  • Spacecam Systems  aerial cameras provided by
  • Star Waggons  cast trailers
  • Star Waggons  hair and make-up trailers
  • Technicolor Digital Intermediates  digital intermediate
  • Technicolor Digital Intermediates  opticals
  • Technicolor  release printing
  • Thought Equity  thanks (as Thought Equity Motion)
  • Transportation Resources  transportation equipment
  • Walt Disney Music Library, The  music preparation
  • Walt Disney Records  soundtrack
  • Walt Disney Studios  re-recorded at
  • Warner Bros. Eastwood Scoring Stage  score mixed at (as Eastwood Scoring Stage)
  • tacticalproshop.com  tactical equipment
  • yU+Co.  main title sequence designed and produced by


  • Andes Films (2009) (Chile) (theatrical)
  • Audio Visual Enterprises (2009) (Greece) (theatrical)
  • Falcon (2009) (Czech Republic) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (Argentina) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (Germany) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (UK) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (Japan) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (Netherlands) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (Singapore) (theatrical)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures (2009) (USA) (theatrical)
  • Film1 (2010) (Netherlands) (TV) (limited)
  • SBS6 (2011) (Netherlands) (TV)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (Argentina) (DVD)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (Argentina) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (UK) (DVD)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (UK) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (Netherlands) (DVD)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (Netherlands) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (USA) (DVD)
  • Walt Disney Studios Home Entertainment (2009) (USA) (DVD) (Blu-ray)
  • Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures Finland (2009) (Finland) (all media)



Other Stuff

Special Effects:

  • Technicolor Digital Intermediates (opticals)
  • Furious FX (visual effects and animation)
  • Amalgamated Pixels (additional visual effects)
  • Proof (previsualization)
  • Amalgamated Dynamics (creature effects)

Visual Effects by:

  • Erika Abrams known as visual effects coordinator: Furious FX
  • Rebecca Aguilera known as rotoscope artist: Furious FX
  • Rebecca Aguilera known as visual effects artist: Furious FX
  • Kenneth Bailey known as technical director: Furious FX (as Ken Bailey)
  • John Baker known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Michael Baula known as digital artist
  • Matthew Beightol known as digital artist
  • Alan Boucek known as 2d/vfx supervisor: yU+Co
  • Joaquin Braga known as digital effects artist
  • Benjamin Bratt known as digital artist
  • Merlin Carroll known as roto and paint lead
  • Nicholas Cerniglia known as digital artist
  • Aaron Chiesa known as digital artist
  • Daniel Clark known as paint artist: Furious FX (as Dan Clark)
  • Christine Cram known as digital paint artist
  • Erin M. Cullen known as rotoscope artist: Furious FX
  • Warren Dent known as visual effects artist
  • Gregg Domain known as visual effects artist
  • Scott Dougherty known as visual effects executive producer: Furious FX
  • Eric Ehemann known as digital artist
  • Michael Fisher known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Patrick Flanagan known as digital compositor
  • Jay Frankenberger known as compositor: Yu+Co
  • Patrice Goldman known as visual effects coordinator
  • Adrian Grey known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Martin Hall known as compositor: FuriousFX
  • Linda Henry known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Jan Huybrechs known as 3D scanning: Eyetronics
  • Apirak Kamjan known as matchmover: yU+Co
  • Raymond King known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Raymond C. King known as technical director
  • Nik Kleverov known as visual effects editor (as Nikita Kleverov)
  • Richard Kratt known as digital compositor
  • Krystine Lankenau known as rotoscope artist: Furious FX (as Kristine Lankenau)
  • David Lingenfelser known as executive visual effects supervisor: Furious Fx
  • Kevin Lingenfelser known as creative supervisor: FuriousFX
  • Raymond K.L. Liu known as CG artist: Furious FX (as Raymond Liu)
  • Dave Lockwood known as compositor: Furious FX (as David Lockwood)
  • Chris MacKinnon known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Mary E. Manning known as Previsualization Lead (Proof Inc. )
  • Indah Maretha known as digital artist
  • Frank Maurer known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Landon Medeiros known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Anthony Meschi known as digital artist
  • Mindy Minkow known as visual effects coordinator
  • Roger Mocenigo known as compositor: Amalgamated Pixels
  • Travis Moore known as digital artist
  • C. Andrew Nelson known as digital effects artist
  • Erin L. Nelson known as digital restoration
  • Tony Noel known as compositor: Furious VFX
  • James P. Noon known as tracking
  • Jordan Nounnan known as previsualization artist: Proof
  • Sean O'Connor known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Kim O'Donnell known as compositor: Furious FX (as Kimo Pepe)
  • Jeremy Oddo known as visual effects
  • Cara Paul known as digital compositor
  • Reid Paul known as visual effects supervisor: Amalgamated Pixels
  • Michael Pecchia known as compositor: FuriousFX
  • Robert C. Powers known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Scott Pressler known as visual effects artist
  • Michael Ramirez known as tracking artist: Furious FX
  • John Reed known as visual effects producer
  • Amy Schrob known as visual effects artist
  • Anthony Serenil known as tracking artist: Furious FX
  • Christian Severin known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Bryan Shepperd known as cg artist: Furious FX
  • Mark Shoaf known as CG supervisor: Furious FX
  • Pedram Shohadai known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Prateep Siamwalla known as tracking
  • Valentin Sinlao known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Brian Smallwood known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Tiffany Smith known as visual effects associate producer: Furious FX (as Tiffany A. Smith)
  • Roland So known as matchmover
  • Adam Stern known as digital compositor: Furious FX
  • Ranko Tadic known as previsualization artist: Proof Inc.
  • Tracy Takahashi known as visual effects producer: Furious FX
  • Wilson Tang known as digital restoration
  • Britton Taylor known as digital artist
  • Radley Teruel known as digital artist
  • Micole Toyloy known as digital artist
  • Tommy Tran known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Yuki Uehara known as visual effects
  • Dan A. Walker known as compositor: Furious FX
  • Chris Wood known as compositor: Furious FX (as Christopher Wood)
  • Dione Wood known as visual effects producer: Amalgamated Pixels
  • Xye known as tracking
  • Keith Yakouboff known as CG artist: Furious FX
  • Shuichi Yoshida known as digital artist
  • David Yrisarri known as visual effects producer
  • Christopher Nibley known as visual effects director of photography (uncredited)

Release Date:

  • Egypt 11 March 2009
  • Kuwait 12 March 2009
  • Malaysia 12 March 2009
  • United Arab Emirates 12 March 2009
  • Canada 13 March 2009
  • Latvia 13 March 2009
  • Philippines 13 March 2009
  • Singapore 13 March 2009
  • USA 13 March 2009
  • Greece 19 March 2009
  • Estonia 20 March 2009
  • Iceland 20 March 2009
  • Turkey 20 March 2009
  • Bolivia 26 March 2009
  • Hungary 26 March 2009
  • Kazakhstan 26 March 2009
  • Russia 26 March 2009
  • Mexico 27 March 2009
  • South Africa 27 March 2009
  • Hong Kong 2 April 2009
  • Israel 2 April 2009
  • Argentina 7 April 2009 (Buenos Aires) (premiere)
  • Sweden 8 April 2009
  • Argentina 9 April 2009
  • Australia 9 April 2009
  • Austria 9 April 2009
  • Chile 9 April 2009
  • Germany 9 April 2009
  • New Zealand 9 April 2009
  • Peru 9 April 2009
  • Thailand 9 April 2009
  • Ireland 10 April 2009
  • UK 10 April 2009
  • Indonesia 15 April 2009
  • Croatia 16 April 2009
  • Slovenia 16 April 2009
  • Brazil 17 April 2009
  • Lithuania 17 April 2009
  • Panama 17 April 2009
  • Spain 17 April 2009
  • Venezuela 24 April 2009
  • Poland 1 May 2009
  • Uruguay 8 May 2009
  • Italy 29 May 2009
  • Romania 26 June 2009
  • Japan 4 July 2009
  • Netherlands 8 September 2009 (DVD premiere)

MPAA: Rated PG for sequences of action and violence, frightening and dangerous situations, and some thematic elements



Filmography links and data courtesy of The Internet Movie Database

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Posted on March 30, 2012 by Harry in Movies | Tags: , , , , , , .


  1. DICK STEEL from Singapore
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    If aliens exist, and if they have access to the films made from Earth,they would likely make a mental note to remind themselves that shouldthey visit our planet on terms other than a hostile takeover orannihilation, to avoid landing in the USA at all costs. Hollywood hasenough dough to continuously churn out effects laden science-fictionmovies, and most of them are big budgeted action fests likeIndependence Day and Men In Black, which don't exactly paint a goodpicture of the extra-terrestrials. Aliens who have more benign intent,would be frightened by how trigger happy and violence prone the US istoward illegal aliens, even if popular culture meant the landing zonefor extra terrestrials is the USA and not other larger countries.

    Race to Witch Mountain being Disney fare means the toning down ofpractically everything to ensure that it is safe for the entire familyto experience together. Dwayne Johnson seems right at home in familyfriendly flicks like The Game Plan (also directed by Andy Fickman), andI guess his action days on screen will be few and far between,especially when he gets to flaunt his dramatic and comedic flair. Woeis the fan boy like me who have grown up with The Rock, but there's nomore people's eyebrow, and we should start to get used to seeing ouridol in a different light on celluloid.

    Johnson plays a Las Vegas cab driver Jack Bruno who has a colourfulpast that he tries to bury, in order to earn an honest living to buyhis dream Mustang featured in the Steve McQueen movie Bullit. In aconfluence of the stars he picks up a scientist who specializes inextra terrestrials, before chancing onto two of them when they boardedhis cab without his knowledge. The brother and ssister aliens – Sara(AnnaSophia Robb) and Seth (Alenxander Ludwig) – are here on a noblemission, and are in hot pursuit by the shady government agents led byHenry Burke (Ciaran Hinds) as well as something like a Terminator frommany light years away.

    This naturally gives rise to your standard set action sequences wherewe get to see the alien twins exercise their rather innocent demeanour("they're only kids!") to their advantage, behind which hides theimmense powers they possess such as Telepathy and Density manipulation,which I thought was a very cool power to have. Imagine being able topass through walls, yet having tremendous strength in the form of aroad block, literally. AnnaSophia Robb whom I felt did a fantastic jobin The Bridge to Terabithia, stars as the female child, and because ofher character's ability, she brings forth a more trusting, andempathetic character, in direct contrast to the other alien Seth (TheSeeker from The Dark is Rising is all grown up now), who's more direct,commanding, aloof and untrusting of humans in general, no doubt theirinitial experience was in having their space ship confiscated to WitchMountain, and being chased for the conduct of experiments.

    Carla Gugino, last seen as the aged Silk Spectre in Watchmen, gotactive only in the last third of the show, which was somewhat of a pitybecause she shared great chemistry with the rest of the cast, and gotinvolved quite late into the thick of things. But of course if there'sany consolation, like how the bits during the end credits wouldsuggest, and depending on the box office results, there might be roomfor more in a sequel, if it comes.

    There are references galore in the film given that there's ascience-fiction convention event featured in the movie, and you can'thelp but also think about the potential for theme park rides with theyellow cab being pursued and pretty banged up. In fact I was wonderingeach time the cab got put through an action sequence, that it wouldmake for a great 4D ride in Disneyland. You can't help it because itwas quite in your face, with the sequences designed in that manner,deliberately or otherwise.

    Despite some glaring plot loopholes, Race to Witch Mountain has all theingredients for a great family outing. The story doesn't try to be moreintellectual than it can handle, and doesn't let the special effectsrun wild and take over everything else. For being such a sentimentalfool, the ending also got some brownie points from me, as it's toughnot to shed a tear or two given the trials and tribulations from whicha solid bond is formed amongst all the characters. Recommended for afamily outing, but don't go expecting something out of this world (punnot intended), as everything's pretty formula.

  2. artzau from Sacramento, CA
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    Hey, don't believe the downers trashing this movie. It's fun.Non-action stop from beginning to the end. Dwayne Johnson, who finallyshed his former wrestling nom de lutre, is a much better actor thanpeople are willing to concede. He has a mobile face and uses his bigbody well with a lot more expression and ability than some of the othershoot'em up and knock-about action heroes. This film, a remake of theold Disney classics with a CGI uptake and story rewrite, isentertaining, engaging and full of witty little pieces for the watchfulviewer. When the alien bad guy gets knocked for a loop and everyoneducks for cover and the 2 UFO-Trekkie-types rejoice, (Wow. Bestconvention ever!) and the one I liked best, one of the nerd bad guysnamed Analyst D. Pleasance, for the veteran character actor, DonPleasance who played the bad guy in the Disney originals. Also, Irishactor, Ciaran Hinds makes a superb Man in Black Suit bureaucrat villainand lovable Cheech Marin as the sleepy mechanic gets his licks in too,albeit in a bit part. The beautiful Carla Gugino comes across as theUFO seeking academic and Director Garry Marshall as the nut caseUFOligist makes for good comic relief. The two kids add the mixturewith AnnaSophia Robb reminding me of one of my granddaughters andAlexander Ludwigs serious facial expression adding to the fun. I foundthis film fun from the get-go and recommend it highly.

  3. ladystorm282001 from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    I don't see why some people say that they don't like this movie. Ithought it was a very good family oriented movie. It had a great blendof comedy and action and I found it very refreshing.

    I love the Rock and I think he does very well in these types of movies.I love the old Witch Mountain movies and wasn't sure at first aboutthis one but it was different enough to be well liked by those who havewatched the old ones and enough action to get the younger crowd. I alsolove Ciran Hinds and even though he was playing the bad guy in thismovie it was nice to see him in a role that had him in most of themovie instead of bit parts, he is a great actor and I hope he gets somelarger roles in the future.

    Over all a nice family movie.

  4. Geoff from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    Despite a good amount of bad reviews, people are flocking to see thisfilm! I wonder if it's the picky old men that don't find a kids filmdecent enough for a proper work that disappoint me. I mean, who worseto judge a kid's movie than an adult? At least a teenager has still gotthe perspective of a child…

    The film really brought me back to good times at the theaters. I wasn'taround for the original so, I can't compare the two, and went in notknowing what to expect.

    Initially, you could go in and see all the things structurally oraesthetically incorrect and unpleasing about the story film-wise.However, if you take the movie for what it is, you'll see that it'struly the beautifully crafted action-adventure every kid longs toexperience and captured within the mysticism and excitement of a goodspace story using just enough cgi to compliment the film, withoutoverpowering it's actors as so many movies do today. It promises asimple story with inspiring ideals and experiences woven into itsheart.

    So, I couldn't help but put myself in the story for this one, andbecame completely immersed in the race. The great plot, uniquecharacters, and pulse-racing adventure will keep you at the edge ofyour seat until the end!

  5. mia_marauder from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    This is and is not a remake of the original Witch Mountain movie. It'smore follows the guidelines and then takes off on its own in a moremodern twist. If you liked the old one, you will probably still likethis one too.

    The actors did a pretty good job all the way around. The main badsecret agent guy was a really flat character, while everyone else wasmore dynamic. Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson was great in this movie. Hereally keeps it going for the audience and is really funny. The kidsare good as well. All the others did an alright job.

    The plot has good twists to it and has multiple sides that are allcrashing in together at the same time. The flow of the movie is alittle jerky in a couple spots, but overall is an action packed ride.

    The CGI effects are well done and believable. I enjoyed getting to seethat aspect come to life, where the original Witch Mountain could onlydream of seeing such cool stuff! Overall it is a good movie. Your kidswill really like it and you will enjoy it as well. I recommend goingand seeing it to anybody!

  6. dtucker86 from Germany
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    I think its nice that Kim Richards and Ike Eisenmann have cameos in thefilm as a waitress and sheriff, they were the kids in the 1975original. I remember my mother taking me to see it when I was seven.This is an all right film but the original was so much better. DwayneJohnson (formally known as the Rock)takes over Eddie Albert's part asthe earthman who befriends the two young aliens, the difference is thatEddie Albert could act a lot better! One thing I have to say about thisfilm is that its certainly not boring! I would have loved to have seenthe special effects budget. It has enough explosions and car chases forthree films.

  7. jmelvin1-1 from New York State, US
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    First of all, it's not great. Second, any of the reviewers who talkabout the original being a classic, I was 11 in 1975. Give me a break.It was typical of the Disney crap released at this time. Finally, whenI say close to great, I mean in an ET/Iron Giant way. Instead, it'smore along the lines of Cocoon.

    This is a good movie, and at times, it IS great. But as a whole, itfalls short. Much of the film is typical. You know, Aliens are good,men in black are bad, action, chase, environment message, yada yada.Here's where it's better than your typical sci-fi action family film.

    1. Everyone except Carla Gugino (Dr. Alex Freidman) is excellent intheir rolls. Even she isn't particularly bad, just not as good. Thereare some good cameos. Gary Marshall is great.

    2. The action: while this is PG, it doesn't shy away from violence orguns. But the catch is when Dwayne Johnson and the teen-Aliens arerunning from an Alien Bounty hunter early on, the teens look scared.Anna Sophia Robb's eyes really deliver a sense of vulnerability. Ifound this as effective as the Train Tunnel chase.

    3. It is rather dark for a PG film. The men in black are a culvertgroup from our federal government, who point their loaded weaponsconstantly at innocent US citizens. The film briefly makes the parallelto the Alien Bounty Hunter, who is a military agent from the teen-aliens' planet. Washington is mentioned behind the men in black. Theywant to kill our beloved Alien teens.

    4. As with most great Sci-Fi, it relates to our times. Our protagonistteens have no rights because they are illegal aliens. The Men In Blackare out of control. Granted, this would work better if Bush was stillpresident, but still, it directly plays on the reality that theexecutive branch of our government has unchecked power.

    5. Two sections of the movie takes place around a sci-fi convention.This allows for plenty of gags that remind us that the film makersdidn't take this movie too seriously.

    Now, if this isn't your kind of film, don't be tempted to see it. Butfor family action, yes. For Sci Fi, it's a must see. For a Sci fiaction flick, it does everything well, except the ending. And that'sits fault. It is the typical corn ball alien ending (al-la Cocoon, orSplash). After the first two acts being so strong, it's too bad.

    Let's compare this to Bolt, since both are PG family Disney fare. Aftera poor second act, Bolt delivered with a rather emotion resolution.With Race to Witch Mountain, Act 3 becomes a Ron Howard formula.Strange, as Act 1 and Act 2 were almost good enough to be a must seefor everyone.

    How could this film have delivered better in the end? First of all,play up the teen-aliens sacrificing themselves to save our world.Environment, so it reminds us of "This Island Earth". And Sarah diesmaking this sacrifice. Now, Seth and Jack stay strong until the end,when they finally let loose with the tears. Sarah's innocence was veryeffective in this movie, and this would be just emotionallydevastating. But in the sequel we discover that Sarah's body has beenreproduced, and her soul was stored in Jack Bruno's brain (think StarTrek 2 and 3). So he has a sudden fetish for female teen accents and astrange fascination with Hannah Montana. Would you pay to see DwaneJohnson air singing with a Hannah Montana wig, earrings, and a bow inhis hair? I think so. So, Disney may have missed the boat on this. Bigtime

    So close.

  8. HRoss007 from Iowa
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    I'm glad I saw this movie before reading any of the other Comments hereon IMDb! As a 63 yr old man, I see at least 4 good movies per week, anda few bad ones.

    I was drawn to this movie by AnnaSophia Robb, and hope to continue tosee everything she does. As one who fell in love with her in "Bridge toTerabithia", and thrilled with her acting but not so much her brattyCharacter in "Sleepwalking", I wanted to see her alive and well andthriving. Hey, in this movie she is all that and more, she even hasadorable Superpowers! (I went to theater to see her in "Jumper" butshe's only in the first few minutes.) This is the first movie I've seenwith Alexander Ludwig, playing Brother, Seth to AnnaSophia's Sara. Hewas brilliant in the part, and I hope to see him again, with or withouthis superpowers.

    It was a pleasant surprise to see, even if in a minor role for ChrisMarquette as Pope. Chris played Adam in the "Joan of Arcadia" TVSeries. He played slightly flawed but ever lovable character, and notthat different here as a Government Rookie. I'm always pleased tofollow any of the cast from that show.

    I was not drawn to see Dwayne Johnson, but as Jack Bruno, he brings astrong balance to the young players. Garry Marshall, Carla Gugino, andothers bring a wealth of credits to the table and are a credit to theirparts. And Why is Cheech Marin as the Reluctant Mechanic Uncredited?

    I have to mention the amusing and entertaining irony of having our realSpace Aliens at a UFO Convention full of crazy looking caricatures ofother favorite Sci-Fi Movies and UFO Psychos! I didn't care if this wasa remake, or copies of other characters, or whether the special effectswere perfect or believable. After a steady diet of heavy Academy Awardnominated movies for the last 6 weeks, I gave this movie a 10 for pureabsorbing entertainment and a fabulous showcase for the developingyoung talent.

  9. DarkVulcan29 (DarkVulcan29@aol.com) from United States
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    I liked the idea, that this is not a remake of the Disney classicEscape to Witch Mountain(1975), it's more of a rebooted version. Someremakes try to be carbon copies of the original, like Pyscho(1998), andThe Bad News Bears(2005). This films premise is sort of the same butothers ways different.

    The story begins in Las Vegas, where Jack Bruno(Dwayne Johnson) is acab driver, and is really not a people person. But one day thingschange, when two siblings named Seth(Alexander Ludwig) andSara(Annasophia Robb) enter his cab ask him to drive to a certainlocation, and they give him large sums of money. Jack is hesitant, butdoes it anyway. But then things are not so simply, when the governmentstarts chasing them. Turns out these kids are aliens with specialpowers, that need to get to a certain location called Witch Mountain inhopes to prevent an alien invasion that could destroy earth. And afamed scientist(Carla Gugino) comes along for the ride.

    Now the moments between Dwayne and the kids are memorable. But the restof the film kind of falls on itself. The action and effects wherealright but nothing you'd call spectacular. Carla Gugino I felt bywatching that she was written in at the last minute,cause they wanted abeautiful actress for Dwayne play off of, but Dwayne and Carla have nochemistry. And she does not look like she is having any fun doing this,she is just in it to cash a paycheck. And so was the rest of the cast,besides Dwayne and the kids. I didn't know when too laugh at times, Imean there times it was funny, other I couldn't tell at times if theywhere trying to be funny or serious for some scenes.

  10. Claudio Carvalho from Rio de Janeiro, Brazil
    30 Mar 2012, 3:40 am

    In Las Vegas, the regenerated ex-con Jack Bruno (Dwayne "The Rock"Johnson) works as taxi driver. During an UFO Convention at PlanetHollywood, the skeptical Jack picks up Dr. Alex Friedman (CarlaGugino), who will present a scientific lecture in the event. Then he ispressed by two henchmen of his former boss, the criminal Wolff, thatwants to talk to him, but Jack does not want to return to the crimelife. Jack fights and gets rid of them; out of the blue, he finds twoteenagers on the backseat of his cab. They tell that they are siblings,Sara (AnnaSophia Robb) and Seth (Alexander Ludwig), and they need totravel to a location outside Las Vegas in the middle of nowhere.Meanwhile the government finds a spacecraft that crashed nearby LasVegas and is chasing the two aliens; after the investigation of the menof Henry Burke (Ciaran Hinds), they discover that the two siblings arethe aliens. Jack Bruno, Sara and Seth are chased by Henry Burke's teamand by the "Syphon", a killer from outer space that has been sent tokill them by the military of their planet that want to invade Earth.Sara and Seth explain that they traveled to Earth to collect scientificdata of an experiment and save Earth from invasion, but they need toreturn immediately to their planet. Jack teams up with Dr. Alex toretrieve their spacecraft in a secret base in the Witch Mountain.

    "Race to Witch Mountain" is a typical movie from Disney, i.e., adelightful family entertainment. The story is predictable and uses theusual clichés of the genre, with the heart-warming hero; the despicablevillain; the chase and the car race; the corny conclusion after thefirst contact; despite of that, I liked "Race to Witch Mountain" a lot.The pleasant cast performs enjoyable characters, and I particularlylike The Rock, AnnaSophia Robb and Carla Gugino very much; only the boyAlexander Ludwig is unknown for me. I do not understand why somemasochistic viewers that do not like this type of movie waste theirtime watching them and then write bad reviews; what would they expect?My vote is seven.

    Title (Brazil): "A Montanha Enfeitiçada" ("The Bewitched Mountain")

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