This one's worth skipping.

This one’s worth skipping.

Jeremy Irons scolding not-Page and not-DiCaprio.

Jeremy Irons scolding not-Page and not-DiCaprio.

Dull; I've seen better

Dull; I’ve seen better

The reason I felt like I had to go see Beautiful Creatures is an interesting one. It looked like such a bland and generic Twilight-wannabe (just replace the vampire with a “witch”) that I just had to see how bland and generic it was going to be, so last night, I went to the local theatre to investigate, and even though it’s certainly not on Twilight‘s level, my speculations were more or less right.

I mean, when you hear that they’ve made a fantasy movie based on a romance novel the target audience of which is teenagers, that movie can pretty much turn out only one way and in the case of Beautiful Creatures, well, let’s just say it doesn’t break any of the traditional rules.

So, the plot. In the small, boring town of Gatlin, we get to know a young man who looks like Leonardo DiCaprio (the actor’s actually named Alden Ehrenreich) as he encounters a mysterious new classmate, a girl who looks like Ellen Page (this actor’s real name is Alice Englert). As he tries to get to know this loner of a person, he soon finds out that she’s not just any mortal after all. She is in fact a Caster (a magical being of sorts) and she is about to turn sixteen, which is when she will be “claimed” by the rest of her family and end up being either good or evil for the rest of her existence. This doesn’t really leave time for a romance but that doesn’t stop not-Page and not-DiCaprio from getting it on after two days of knowing each other’s names. But they’ve dreamed about each other for months, so it’s fine.

With the help of a mystic played by Viola Davis, the two young lovers have to defend their love from not-Page’s strict uncle Macon (Jeremy Irons), her bitchy cousin Ridley (Emmy Rossum) and her very evil and very powerful mother Sarafine (Emma Thompson) before they all find a way to convert her to the dark side and use her extraordinary powers to serve evil and vanquish any mortal that stands in her way, even if it’s her sweetheart, not-DiCaprio. It’s not that exciting, to be honest.

Thomas Mann of Project X-fame also appears, playing a character who may or may not share a name with a video game character.

beautiful creature snore

Like I said earlier, the film is at least no Twilight. It has better characters, more likable performances, more interesting visuals and a somewhat better chemistry between our two romantic leads. Somewhat.

But for the most part, Beautiful Creatures is actually quite a snore-fest. As the film’s climax was approaching and the stakes were supposedly at their highest, I found myself not caring at all about what happened to not-Page and whether she would get to keep not-DiCaprio in her life or not. I guess I enjoyed them as characters but there was something about them that made their appeal wear off as the movie progressed. I was more invested when the focus was on Jeremy Irons and Emma Thompson and, well, the rest of the crazy family of Castors.

Yet even then I feel like we’ve seen much of this stuff before. The visuals, though sometimes very fascinating, are very Tim Burton-esque and even the family of Castors made me think of Dark Shadows or maybe The Addams Family. There’s even a short fight scene at their dinner table that only reminded me of The Incredibles. Despite the good and genuinely entertaining aspects of it, so many things in the film feel clichéd and been-done. I’m a little bit torn as to what to think.

Ultimately, though, I’ll have to point my thumb downwards. Slightly downwards. It’s practically horizontal, but mostly downwards. Beautiful Creatures has its occasional moment and isn’t a horrible movie, but the plot stops being interesting after a while, the lead characters become somewhat boring, there are Fantasy concepts that I felt were explained rather poorly and at some points the film takes a chance to ham it up. People might enjoy it but to me, the good things in the movie aren’t worth it.

Now if you’ll excuse me, I need to go whine relentlessly on Tumblr about how not-DiCaprio has never won a not-Oscar.

2.5/5 whatever

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