Steen: Beautiful Creatures has little sophistication but comic moments
I love film about magic and sorcery so that’s why I took myself to see Beautiful Creatures, a film made from the novel of the same name‚. There may be more as there were actually four books in this series: Beautiful Creatures, Beautiful Darkness, Beautiful Chaos, Beautiful Redemption (do you see a theme here, or am I just imagining it).
This will definitely appeal to the Breaking Dawn folks as well as the Harry Potter group as there is the eternal battle of good versus evil as Lena Duchannes (played by Alice Englert) approaches her 16th birthday at which time she is either chosen for good or for evil.
With two little known actors in this show (Englert and Alden Ehenreich, who plays Ethan Wate, Lena’s love interest), there was a need perhaps to include more seasoned artists and they didn’t disappoint. Lena’s uncle, Macon Ravenwood is played by Jeremy Irons, Amma, the seer, is played by Viola Davis, a double role for Emma Thompson as Serafin and Mrs. Lincoln (no, not that one) add a richness and a few surprises. We are not used to Emma Thompson playing the bad one—believe me, she’s no Nanny McPhee in this one.
In this case, Lena’s family of Casters moves back to town. By definition, Casters are a race of supernatural beings, or (and this is my favourite) a person with the power to be her/himself regardless of what others think. Chaos ensues in this small (minded), no-Starbucks town, as Lena’s 16th birthday looms.
The filming was done in Louisiana and had to be stopped temporarily due to tornado warnings.
Jack O’Connell was originally cast as Ethan Wade but was replaced at the last minute. Alden Ehenrieich did a good job, in fact, the acting was good all around.
This is no sophisticated couple of hours, but it has charm with quite a number of comic lines and the old plantation house is awesome.
One quote I liked: “Anything’s better than a life standing still.”
I give Beautiful Creatures three reels. It’s a charming way to spend a couple of hours.
My pick for Best Picture at the Academy Awards is Lincoln.