What would you do if you could turn invisible? …and were a director of campy sexual psycho-dramas? Well, now we can find out as Paul Verhoeven tells the tale of Sebastian Caine (Kevin Bacon), the “Hollow Man”. Caine leads a research team in Washington D.C. that includes pal Max Kensington (Josh Brolin) and ex-girlfriend Linda Foster (Elisabeth Shue). From a secret underground laboratory, Caine has invented a serum that will render the recipient invisible (or phase-shifted, or some kind of bullshit like that). Soon, he seems to have developed another serum that will make you visible again as well. What are chances he’ll try this serum on himself? Hmmm?
One of Verhoeven’s biggest problems is that he always seems to be Brian DePalma stuck at the camp level of “Raising Cain”. Thankfully, those shenanigans, while present, don’t overwhelm the sheer creepiness of Caine’s behavior after he goes transparent. While the fantastic special effects will be what draws in most audiences, it’s the story of what happens to one guy who truly loses everything that sucked in the director. There is more sexual weirdness here than in all of “Basic Instinct” and “Showgirls” combined as Sebastian decides he should be a little more pro-active about his desires. The ending, unfortunately, gets a little over the top. For a while before that, though, this movie can definitely not be mistaken for “Shallow Man”.