Movie Review: Beautiful Creatures
Oscar® nominee Richard LaGravenese ("The Fisher King,""P.S. I Love You") directs the supernatural love story "Beautiful Creatures" from his adaptation of the first novel in the best-selling series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl.Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich), 17, has had the same recurring dream for months. A mysterious young girl is waiting for him on a Civil War battlefield. Ethan desperately wants to be with her, but there is an unknown danger-and each time a lightning bolt cracks like a gunshot, killing Ethan before he ever reaches the girl.The danger of this strange dream world, however, is preferable to Ethan's waking existence in Gatlin, South Carolina, a small, conservative Southern town that hasn't caught up to the 21st century, where nothing ever changes and nothing ever happens. Trapped at home with a father who has completely withdrawn since the sudden death of Ethan's mother, Ethan yearns for a life he can only read about in books.But Ethan's mundane world is shaken up with the arrival of Lena Duchannes (Alice Englert), the beautiful and enigmatic niece of Macon Ravenwood (Jeremy Irons), the reclusive owner of gothic Ravenwood Manor. Ethan finds himself immediately drawn to Lena, even though destruction seems to inexplicably follow her and it becomes apparent that she is a Caster, with powers beyond her control. The town, led by conservative Mrs. Lincoln (Emma Thompson), wants her banished. Even Gatlin's all-knowing librarian, Amma (Viola Davis), is afraid history may repeat itself-a history of family secrets and a curse that looms for Lena as she approaches her 16th birthday. It is that time when a Caster is chosen by the forces of either the Light or the Dark.But Lena's fate may already be sealed by the curse that draws both her and Ethan into a tangled web of spells and peril from which there may be no escape.The film stars Alden Ehrenreich ("Tetro"), Alice Englert ("Ginger & Rosa"), Academy Award® winner Jeremy Irons ("Reversal of Fortune") Oscar® nominee Viola Davis ("The Help," "Doubt"), Emmy Rossum (TV's "Shameless"), Thomas Mann ("Project X") and Academy Award® winner Emma Thompson ("Howard's End," "Sense and Sensibility"). Rounding out the cast are Eileen Atkins, Margo Martindale, Zoey Deutch, Tiffany Boone, Rachel Brosnahan, Kyle Gallner, Pruitt Taylor Vince and Sam Gilroy.
I didn’t like it nor hate it. It was just another movie based on a book granted I haven’t read the book before watching Beautiful Creatures. However, take note that when I read thebook after watching the movie and compared it with the film, then I could actually say that they changed things a bit. As usual. It was not faithful, yes, but the changes did not also enhance the story of the book which I’d rate three out of five apples.
What kept it from being as boring as hell was the humor. Ethan was very funny and almost his entire dialogue could be quoted and used in situations begging for a little sarcasm and reference to something that your audience would not know about. They would not know what hit them like those crazy, religious, fanatic girls in the movie.
The effects were also worth noting but I’m going to take it as a given because of the leaps in SFX technology we've had in the last ten years.
Despite the fantastic casting (Sybil Trelawney, Rodrigo Borgia, Christine Daae and Aibileen Clark) and fabulous acting from them (as usual), as well as from, surprisingly, the leads, it does not change the fact that I only rate this movie a three out of five apples.
I love the score.