Illusion is a FIlm so intent on doing no harm—so eager to inspire and yet far too cowardly to inspire any real thought—that it bores you beyond tears and burns itself, as all wretched art does, deep within your gray matter like the memory of passing a kidney stone. And I'm being kind; Illusion is actually far, far worse than all that.

Unless, of course, you are one of those faithful souls the film has squarely in its sights, in which case the spectacle of recovering stroke victim Kirk Douglas writhing on a bed for 106 minutes may be appealing. The premise is certainly geared toward those gazing heavenward: On his death bed, forgotten film director Donal Baines (Douglas) receives a ghostly visit from one of his former editors, who transports the dying man to a classic movie theater in order to teach him a lesson via God's own celluloid. Years ago, Baines abandoned his son Christopher (Michael A. Goorjian, pulling double-duty as both director and actor).

As the film clips demonstrate, Christopher has had a troubled life, mainly due to the fact that he's obsessed with Isabelle (Karen Tucker), a girl from the right side of the tracks whose iceberg of a soul is in need of a serious thaw—but not before Christopher gets bounced behind bars a couple times after trying to woo her. Cruel reality, it seems, likes to kill true love. The message of Illusion is meant to be one of forgiveness and redemption—of never giving up on your true love, be it some rich hussy or the Almighty Himself. Unfortunately, the lesson the film provides instead is that heavy saccharine, even in the name of God, never helps uninspired medicine go down.