I never read the books but from seeing this movie I can tell you the book is probably better. We follow Ethan(Alden Ehrenreich) who just lost his mother but is about to start up high school again. We keep getting told he is “jock” but the guy seems like a secluded geek to me, he reads a lot and day dreams about escaping the Southern town of Gatlin. The jokes he makes about the town are actually really funny. The first ten minutes of the movie we mainly follow him and it’s great. Ehrenreich is straight up charming as Ethan. His world is rocked when he meets Lena Duchannes(Alice Englert), she’s new to school and the niece of local crazy man Macon Ravenwood(Jeremy Irons), so of course everyone hates her and calls her a Satan worshiper. Ethan quickly falls for the girl. Sadly though he finds out she’s a witch, and on her sixteenth birthday she will either turn good or evil. So that kind of put a road bump in the relationship.
I understand how many want to simply write this off as a Twilight rip off but to me it’s way better. The entire concept is cooler than anything Twilight tossed at us. Also unlike the Twilight movies the two leads are amazingly good and have strong chemistry together. Where the movie fails in basically in every other department. The graphics are below average and frankly in a movie dealing with mystical powers and good and evil, we don’t really see that much magic happen. The big bag villain is mainly in the back ground and once you finish the movie you realize the bad guy didn’t really do anything. The films big issue was it obviously tried to pack way too many things into one movie. Jeremy Irons character Macon Ravenwood had an interesting back story, he turned dark but choose to be a good guy. Why he did this is never really explained or used which is a waste.
The stand out here is Emmy Rossum who plays Lena’s evil cousin. It doesn’t hurt that she’s gorgeous, also she obviously had fun playing the nasty character. Still the flashback scene of when she turns evil is hands down the best part of the movie. We watch as she essentially makes a young drunk man walk straight into a moving train.
So the acting was great in my opinion, it had potential plot wise but instead of focusing in and using some of the elements that were set up, the movie just moves slowly along. At many moments you’ll find yourself bored and if it wasn’t for the leads this movie could have been terrible. What also bugged me beyond belief was the ending, I won’t spoil anything but the movie could have ended epically, would have changed my opinion on it fully, instead they blinked and ended it in a way that I found very bland and unoriginal. It’s a shame because the pieces were there, so in many ways it fails to live up to what it could have been. Maybe instead of Beautiful Creatures they should change the title to Average Creatures.
Rating: 5 out of 10