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Beautiful Creatures (quick review)

Discussion in 'Movies' started by mattCR, Feb 14, 2013.

  1. mattCR

    mattCR Well-Known Member
    HW Reviewer

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    When I saw the trailer for Beautiful Creatures I thought: interesting cast, and supposedly well thought of books. That was in December. So, following that and using Audible to assist, I managed to get through the first three books. Not fantastic stuff, but not bad. A very unique storyline where music and serious themes kind of define the characters. I must say, I completely wasted an effort in reading the books as the movie pays almost NO attention to them. Events in the movie are at times nothing like the books and tend to "dumb down" book events to the point that they really don't make any sense. Major events from the book come alive, but the connecting tissue that goes around it lays on the ground like a rug in a film that left several people in my row at the theater saying "I don't understand what the heck ?" It wasn't that they were giant fans of the books - it was just that the film literally made no sense at all. Characters weren't defined in any real way, they popped in and popped out. Other characters from the book were completely eliminated or altered in ways that changed the trajectory of the film. Most damning though is that the young leads in this film delivered a performance so wooden that I kept thinking of the Star Wars prequels. It's rare that I see dialog delivered that poorly on a big screen production. I just don't know what to say. I've now seen a few films in a row that were terrible. This isn't quite as bad as Identity Theft, but definitely a stinker. D, or One Star.
     
  2. Colin Jacobson

    Colin Jacobson Well-Known Member

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    I plan to stay away from this one. It looks bad and I've heard nothing to change that preconceived notion.
    BTW, it's "Identity Thief". This board seems to want to change its title!
     
  3. Johnny Angell

    Johnny Angell Played With Dinosaurs Member

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    Sometimes you just get a bad vibe from the previews and that's what I get for this film. I get the feeling its a thinly produced cgi fest. No interest in seeing this before reading your review and now I have less than no interest. I hope the wife doesn't want to see this.
     
  4. Cameron Yee

    Cameron Yee Well-Known Member
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    Actually, it's fairly slim on heavy CGI, outside of the finale.

    As Matt said, the main problem is the two leads' performance, which dominates the film. Emma Thompson and Jeremy Irons really ham it up, but at least they're having a good time and that trickles down to the audience.

    I'm somewhat curious about the books now, but doubt I'll read them. :P
     
  5. Malcolm R

    Malcolm R Well-Known Member

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    Sounds like the studio was more interested in quickly cashing in on the YA adapatation craze (Harry Potter; Twilight; The Hunger Games) than actually making a decent film.
     
  6. Adam Lenhardt

    Adam Lenhardt Well-Known Member

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    Just Redboxed the Blu-Ray for this one. The book series is seriously flawed with a very haphazard mythology so I went into the movie totally willing to accept changes.That being said the character development in the first book was well-handled, and very little of it makes it to the movie. The book does a much better job of emphasizing both the danger of the forbidden romance and the unique power of these two people. Ethan and Lena each inadvertently reveal themselves to each other as different before they've really met each other. The shared dreams are much more prominent in the book, and more importantly they're literally in each other's heads the whole book. One of my favorite scenes in the book is the scene where Lena blows out the window. Ethan can hear her thoughts, but she doesn't know he can hear her thoughts and then they reach a point where they have an entire heated discussion inside each other's heads. By taking away the telepathic element and some of the other impossible things Ethan does, the result is that his character ends up much more passive throughout the story.I thought the girl who played Lena wasn't traditionally pretty, but very much tracked with the Lena in my head when I read the book. I also thought Jeremy Irons was terrific as Macon, even though he was in full scenery-chewing mode.I think the first book could have been the basis for a great TV series, one that really dived into this forgotten bastion of the deep South, and the town beneath the town.
     

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