NIM'S ISLAND (Mark Levin, Jennifer Flackett). 96 minutes. Opens Friday (April 4). Rating: NNNN
Nim's Island belongs to Abigail Breslin, who brings the big-time cute as a young girl left alone when her scientist father (Gerard Butler) goes missing at sea off the remote island they share.
Breslin's Nim is a resourceful heroine, particularly when she enlists her animal friends to help her drive a boatload of obnoxious tourists away from their secret paradise. But she's also frightened enough to send an e-mail SOS to an agoraphobic adventure writer (Jodie Foster, having fun playing against her tough screen persona) who bickers aloud with the imaginary hero of her own novels (Butler again).
Based on the book by Wendy Orr, Nim's Island strikes an ideal family film balance, delivering action that's thrilling but not scary and a face-your-fears theme that challenges kids without going over their heads.