Year: 2013 | Directed by: Richard LaGravenese | Roundup Rating: C+
I don't need to expound on my love for things magical because I've been writing about it every now and then. Beautiful Creatures has a cool concept, and I'm glad in terms of its visual effects and production it has an excellent treatment. Very Tim Burton-esque if you ask me. I love the flashback sequence during the Civil War, Lena Duchannes making the moon disappear, and the closing credits. But apart from that there is nothing much to love about this movie. I love the cinema and it pains me so when I have to write negative comments about it.
The main characters Lena and Ethan, and their respective actors, are very two dimensional. The earlier scenes caught my interest. I thought this was going to be different from Twilight. But all of my presumptions were flushed down to the drain when they fell in love. I hate Ethan's sickening teenage spirit, his pathetic discourse on the power of love. His actions and dialogues are so generic, like some lines written off from a cheap romance pocketbook. Their push and pull, "we can't be together because of some age old curse" is pretty much an excuse or a vehicle for them to start making out. The best thing that happened for the two of them is when Lena sacrificed their happiness in order for Ethan to live. I think that was more romantic and realistic. I would prefer if they separate for some time and get back together when they're older.
Bringing in fresh talents to the screen is a good platform for the industry because it means there is always a space for growth and opportunities for everyone. But if Rooney Mara wasn't the A-lister that we know now I would have prefer her playing the role of Lena Duchannes as I think she is an embodiment of both light and dark. What save this movie from being a complete disaster is the superb acting performances by Jeremy Irons, Viola Davis, Emma Thompson and Emmy Rossum. Despite of the story's far-fetched ideas these actors are obvious pros who have ample knowledge about their craft. Even if their screen time is limited they shine on their roles not because of their popularity but due to their tried and tested abilities.
If you enjoy watching movies for the sake of special effects and its gorgeous visual feast then go ahead and see this one. But if well-written stories is your thing then your time would be better spent by watching something else.