‘Liar Liar’: So Is That Kid The Antichrist Or What?
Back when Jim Carrey was known for his broad comedic film performances rather than his satirical paintings and cringey celebrity stalker videos, he made a little movie called Liar Liar, all about a high-priced lawyer who loses the ability to bend the truth – which somehow immediately results in him shouting his horned-up fantasies to a sexy stranger. Reminder: a lot of us watched this movie with our families back in 1997.
Of course, the reason why Carrey’s character, Fletcher Reede, was cursed with this affliction in the first place is that he skipped out on his son Max’s birthday party in order to have sex with his boss – which resulted in the 5-year-old wishing that his old man couldn’t lie anymore for a whole day.
Clearly, some sort of dark magic is afoot in this story, as evidenced by how the wish is seemingly activated by a gentle breeze, which blows the birthday candle smoke to a nearby clock, transferring the curse to the clock at Fletcher’s office. The whole sequence is like a David Lynch movie (albeit one that makes way less sense).
Weirdly, Fletcher quickly pieces together that it was Max’s wish that had a staggeringly God-like impact on the universe. Rather than dismiss the idea as improbably, nay impossible, Fletcher easily accepts it – but somehow, he doesn’t succumb to abject terror over the existential implications of his son’s otherworldly abilities.
Fletcher doesn’t even seem all that curious about how all of humankind’s preconceptions of reality have just been shattered by his son. Instead, he just simply buys Max a new cake and tries to reverse-engineer the magic so he can continue to be a lawyer that afternoon.
We’ve seen other movies and TV shows before in which a small child has freakish, unexplained powers that can control others – but they’re usually horror stories. There’s the classic Twilight Zone episode “It’s a Good Life,” and more appropriately, The Omen, the classic film about a small kid who turns out to be the spawn of Satan – which, incidentally, also features a storyline where a child's birthday party goes awry thanks to his ability to control others.
So doesn't it then seem conceivable that Max … is the Antichrist? It’s not like anyone else’s birthday wishes are spontaneously coming true, so frankly, this seems like as good an explanation as any.
Even by the end of the film, Max’s parents don’t seem all that concerned about investigating the supernatural cause of these disturbing events. And there’s no reason to think that Max’s powers will be contained to that one incident. At the end of the movie, we see Fletcher and his ex-wife kissing on Max’s 6th birthday – forcing them to immediately question whether or not the moment of passion was their own conscious choice or one of their son’s free will-defiling wishes.
Which, even regardless of these significant theological suggestions we’ve discussed, is just a scary way to live your life. Imagine never knowing whether or not your actions were made freely or were willed into being by your kid. Sure, it turns out that he’s just wishing for some rollerblades, but wait until he gets older; like, does anyone want to see what horrors a 16-year-old with these powers could unleash on the world?
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Top Image: Universal Pictures