Film Review: Beautiful Creatures

Beautiful Creatures – you may have heard a lot about it over the past month – it’s been plastered across the media incessantly. Teenage girls have been going nuts for this brand new series of films that is said to take over from the worldwide obsession that is Twilight. So, in regular fashion, I’d decided to check this out for myself. Unlike so many, I hadn’t read these acclaimed books, so when I entered the cinema with my friends (who had read the books) I had no idea what to expect – I was not very excited at all, if I’m honest. I’d been dragged along, just like I had been to Twilight, and I didn’t expect much from it; nothing that would leave a long-lasting impression on me. And yet, I couldn’t have been more wrong.

This story really is spellbinding. When Lena Duchannes arrives at the small, dead-end, American town of Gatlin, she quickly captures Ethan Wate’s attention, who’s tracked on leaving his boring birthplace. He quickly learns that Lena has powers beyond anything he could ever begin to imagine, forever leaving her outcast’d from a normal “mortal’s” life. Forbidden romance brings the pair together, but is always threatened by the dangers of her dark-caster family – upon Lena’s 16th birthday she will be claimed, against her will, to either the light or the dark. Danger, fantasy and romance grip the audience to their seat, as they watch on upon their romance. Ethan and Lena go against all of the rules for their love, and put each other in great danger. But, with the claiming of Lena’s power gradually approaching, they’re really put to the test; will they give up their love for the safety of Lena’s future?

The chemistry between the two leads is enchanting – Alden Ehrenreich and Alice Englebert have proved their worth greatly and I’m sure that they’ll be names that we’ll be hearing a lot more of from here on out. I’d not recognised them at all, so it was refreshing to have new faces to warm to, rather than a recycled Twilight cast. The acting was convincing, the accents were fabulous and their love proved almost real! In fact, all of the acting was fairly fantastic. I was being drawn in so quickly, and so against my will.

Another interesting aspect to this film that really had me getting excited was constant references to literature – To Kill A Mockingbird, Slaughterhouse 5, Naked Lunch and The Catcher In The Rye – Ethan had a great love for books, and I had a great love for the person who decided this – whether it be the authors of the books or something the screenplay writer decided to include. It helped the audience to relate this time to something real, like how muggles  serve as a grounder in Harry Potter, it’s a reminder that this whole story is happening within our world, right under our noses.

Although the film was just over 2 hours, I felt I’d been their for only half and hour and could have easily put up with at least another 2 hours. I was reluctant to leave the story and the characters behind, to get up from my seat and leave. Beautiful Creatures has really hooked me, and I can’t wait to watch the next instalment Beautiful Darkness. Now all I can do is wait until Amazon delivers the book! My advice: if you want to get hooked onto the next big fantasy series, watch this film. Now I have something else to split my time over as well as The Hunger Games! Fantastic!

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