I can feel the pain of millions of teen boys across the world as they
hear their teen girlfriends say this is the movie they want to see this
Valentine's Day. And, that is the moment these boys become men,
because, like generations of men before them, they realize they are
willing to do lots of stupid, crazy, painful, embarrassing stuff to woo
the women in their lives. We are all brothers in that way.
Alden Ehrenreich stars as Ethan - a high school junior who more than
anything in the world wants to get out of his small little southern
town. All summer long, he has been dreaming of a mysterious, unknown
young lady, especially after finding some strange locket-type necklace
that dates all the way back to 1864.
Once school starts, he meets that young lady, Lena (Alice Englert).
She's a bit strange, doesn't quite fit in, and lives in what many in
this small town think is a haunted mansion. Of course, Ethan falls
madly for Lena (the forbidden fruit always tastes the sweetest), but
this puts them both in danger, because Lena is some sort of
supernatural being known as a Caster (think cooler, more powerful, more
emo witch), and, on her upcoming 16th birthday, she will either become
good or evil depending on her true nature.
Can puppy love prevail?
Will Lena be good or evil?
Creatures is another in the long
line of books, movies and TV shows so desperately trying to capitalize
on the Twilight
phenomenon. Plus, it throws in a heaping helping of teen angst, growing
pains and other supposedly meaningful themes that end up lost in the
shuffle of endless, pointless dialogue and attempts to use some
mysterious supernatural elements to excite our imaginations. I just
hope your imagination comes up with something better than Beautiful
The only reason I know Beautiful
Creatures is all about female
empowerment, dealing with your crazy family and not letting your past
dictate your future is because I have seen all of the movie’s
actors telling me this during interviews. If you don’t pick
up on this while watching the movie (and you won’t),
doesn’t this make these story themes into marketing ploys and
talking points instead?
Writer/director Richard LaGravenese (based on the novel by Kami Garcia
and Margaret Stohl) has created a movie severely lacking in maturity.
Sure, it is supposed to appeal to teen fantasies, but it
doesn’t need to feel like it was written by a teen. Dialogue
ends up becoming babble as they try to build this world and explain all
of the elements (maybe this is how people feel when I talk about Star
Trek or Fantasy Football) and
the love story is the kind you have seen over and over and over again,
but feels completely new to each 12-year old as they think they have
And, what the heck are Jeremy Irons, Viola Davis and Emma Thompson
doing in this movie? Beautiful
Creatures has a campiness that
doesn’t fit with the supposedly weightier story and character
arcs, while it drags and gets duller by the scene. All three of these
actors have an Oscar nomination. They don’t need to
desperately grab onto this thing with the hope it might become popular
and lucrative for them in the future. Every Oscar nominee should be
shown this movie to scare them into avoiding the temptation of starring
in some movie because they think it will make them famous, cool, hip
and more appealing to a “younger audience.” Would
40-year old you ever think you must do everything possible to impress
14-year old you? See what I mean?
Creatures is rated PG-13 for violence, scary images and some sexual