After a string of success in his young career, Jonah Hill was due for a stinker; especially after turning in such a stellar performance in "Moneyball".


but sitting through "The Sitter" his latest comedy, I felt like I was watching "Adventures in Babysitting" part two. Clearly this was on the minds of the creatives behind the film - director David Gordon and writers Brian Gatewood and Alessandro Tanaka. They were all about 12 or 13 years old when they saw Elizabeth Shue's only significant film with her as the lead. My guess is they had some pubescent crush on her and it stuck in the back of their minds until now. That's my psych 101 analysis of the reasoning behind "The Sitter"


Hill's reason for taking the part? Money and nothing to lose. With "Moneyball" still abuzz, his fan base is big enough to handle a blah comedy featuring him doing what he does best.

Hill plays Noah Griffith, a young man who (tell if you've heard this before) is a disappointment to his parents. His father left him and his mother after nailing the babysitter and getting her preggers with a kid he preferred. His mother loves him but see's him as a burden and wasting his life.


Like most of Hill's roles... he is a nerd in search of some sex. He does have a girlfriend who allows him to give her oral sex, but not vice versa. And definitely no intercourse!


On a night when his mother hopes to meet another man, Hill gets pulled into babysitting for his mother's hot friend's children - of which she has three. The three kids are: Slater (Max Records) who is a self-confessed confused kid whom all the girls are hot for but has anxiety issues; Blither (Landry Bender) a precocious little girl who plays twenty years older than her pre-teen age; and Julio (Kevin Hernandez) an adopted refugee who likes explosives and running away.


They are, of course a nightmare and looking forward to torturing Noah.

But Noah has other things on his mind when his girlfriend calls and asks him to come to a party with her to have sex; oh and pick up some cocaine on the way. Noah jumps at the chance being responsible enough to bring his charges with him.


Well, you can pretty much guess the rest. There is the obligatory car wrecking, the obigatory mixing with the criminal element (this time drug dealers), the obligatory kids helping him out, the obligatory police scene and...


Yeah, you've seen this trick before. If you saw "Adventure's in Babysitting" you saw a better version of it. If you saw Jackie Chan's "The Spy Next Door" you saw yet another version of the same story.


To their credits, the kids are fun and Hill makes the best of a poor role. He could have tanked it.


"The Sitter" is one of those films that is filler while the serious films duke it out. I laughed six times, but only once wholeheartedly. This one is a case of a worn out story and poor writing.


"The Sitter" is a case of been-there-done-that with a talent that has nothing to lose and has considerable marketing power. Still, he'll never replace Elizabeth Shue.   -- GEOFF BURTON