Movie review – Not the right love spell
The battle to claim the teen movie-going market continues with Beautiful Creatures.
Based on the book by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl, it does for witches what Stephenie Meyer did for vampires and Amanda Hocking did for trolls.
The protagonist, Lena (Alice Englert) is a caster – they don’t like to be called witches. She is the niece of “old man Ravenwood” (Jeremy Irons), a recluse likened to Boo Radley from To Kill A Mockingbird.
Lena’s story is told through the voice of Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich), who dreams of her before he meets her and they, of course, discover their fates are entwined through the ages.
There’s something unnerving and disempowering about the fact that on her 16th birthday, Lena will be claimed for the dark or the light, with no say in the matter.
Irons is joined in the adult corner by Emma Thompson and Viola Davis, and the three have a blast. It’s a shame the teen leads – both relative newcomers – are so insipid.
Directed and written by Richard LaGravenese, much like his films P.S. I Love You and Water For Elephants, it doesn’t hit the timeless love story mark.