Thursday, May 26, 2011

I Am Number Four

***DISCLAIMER*** The following review is entirely my opinion. If you comment (which I encourage you to do) be respectful. If you don't agree with my opinion, that's fine. To each their own. I am just sharing my opinions and perspective. Finally, the reviews are given on a scale of 1-5. 1, of course, being terrible. 2, being not great. 3, being okay. 4, being good and 5, being epic!

I Am Number Four - 2 out of 5

You know your Sci-fi action film is in trouble when the action is saved for the last fifteen minutes and feels more like a rip-off of Superman and X-men combined together in an unholy offspring that should have been cast off the cliffs of Sparta than released into theaters.

Based on a popular book series (although after watching this movie, I can't understand why with its generic story) I Am Number Four is about some wayward alien children sent to Earth after their native race is killed. As these children get older, powers start to develop but they find themselves hunted by a rival group of aliens. The film centers around Number Four at the time his powers start to manifest but the fact that one of his powers is the ability to use his hands as flashlights throws up another warning flag that this is going to be a shitty ride. However, the film doesn't end up becoming a shitty ride...just a boring one.

It seems the filmmakers forgot to add action to their action film as they spend more time having boring and dragging scenes that showed our hero sitting and staring while horrible acoustic wimp rock plays in the background. Which brings me to our hero...it was very difficult--impossible, actually--to take this film's hero seriously as he looks like he just came out of an Ambercrombie and Fitch store rocking Nickelback on his iPod while throwing on his white-framed sunglasses, popping the collar on his pink polo shirt and reeking of Axe body spray. Why am I cheering on this seemingly douche bag who probably calls his friends "brah" when the camera turns off and instructs them to "crush it" when they're about to do something like hit on women? Add to the fact his acting was terribly lifeless and you have absolutely no reason to care about this character. Come to think of it, NO ONE in this film delivered in the acting department. Okay, so we have a douche bag for a hero, can the movie at least give us some bad guys that are badass? Not in I Am Number Four. Nope, the bad guys actually come off quite silly and it's just as hard to take them seriously as it is our hero.

After watching this film, I began to wonder how exactly did this book series (and ultimately the movie) get made because it is the most generic and re-hashed Superhero storyline I've ever seen. There's nothing unique going on here and nothing we haven't already seen a million times over in movies and comic books. Maybe that's why this movie is so insulting to the intelligence. It's quite obvious from the script that the filmmakers didn't take their audience seriously and believed that just because there's superpowers and aliens, geeks will automatically flock to the theaters to see this. And I'll be honest, being a geek, I sought this movie out but man do I regret it. The film and the characters lack depth and the story and all its elements have no motivation to go from scene to scene. For example, the powers these characters have contain no rhyme or reason other than to move the plot along. Apparently, Number Four--along with his booklight palms and telekinesis--can start cars when the plot needs him too. All this did was show how the writers were lazy but maybe that's another power Number Four has: breaking the fourth wall and showcasing the lack of talent behind the scenes. But seriously, Flashlight Palms? Who thought of that and thought it was cool? A power like that will get you a mega-wedgie from Colossus in Xavier's School for Gifted Youngsters.

The only reason I gave this movie a 2 out of 5 and not a more deserving 1 is the fact that Timothy Olyphant is in it and is the only person able to act. Honestly, his talent was wasted on this film and I constantly found myself saying that he should have dialed it back because all he did was showcase how bad the other actors were. Maybe if they cast someone other than Olyphant, they might have had more money for their special effects. The CGI in this film runs the spectrum of being passable and "Seriously? That's the effect you're going with?" In the end, I Am Number Four is just a boring film that lacks skills and imagination.

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