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Review The Kid Detective (2020): Pleasantly surprised!

genre: comedy, drama, mystery

The title might give you the idea that this is a story about some kid solving some kiddie mystery. But make no mistake. The film is about a former kid detective trying to regain the glory and respect he once had. There is nothing childish about it. 

The Kid Detective could almost be seen as an allegory for many adults who might not have reached their full potential or perhaps feel they have failed their dream. Abe Applebaum basically is you and me at a certain age. It points out that no matter what, how badly you screw up, there is always a path to redemption and success. All of this is projected at you through a truly compelling murder mystery where nothing is what it seems. Abe is at the brink of giving up. Then he gets hired to do his first real adult case and his fire gets ignited again. It's a real joy to see Abe develop but what really was surprising that despite the lighter and comedic tone the film never spares you. Some events truly are dark and gut wrenching. Especially at the end I found myself feeling for Abe and all the things he had gone through. Because like I said, Abe is you and me. You can't help but root for him all the way. Even when he makes a lot of mistakes. Although that can be explained by the fact that Abe still has retained his innocence and it's always painful to see someone lose it. 

I also have to applaud the murder mystery itself. It's full of neat little twists and turns you won't see coming. They avoid the usual trappings of predictability. Granted you aren't given a full perspective on events so that it's really possible to predict the outcome. Then again since this film is not really about the murder mystery it's not problematic in the slightest. 

All of the cast members are excellent. The kids and the adults. Especially the parents deserve a special mention. They might not fully understand what Abe is going through but they are there for him. It's very sweet and endearing. One could argue that perhaps they are a little to accommodating. Then again they probably are doing him right by letting him learn life lessons all on his own.

The Kid Detective is a must watch for sure. And I personally wouldn't mind this becoming a franchise!

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