Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Noah
The Grand Budapest Hotel
Divergent
Gloria
Bad Words
Veronica Mars
Non-Stop
The Past (Le Passé)
The Act of Killing
Winter’s Tale
The Monuments Men
The Great Beauty (La grande bellezza)
The Square (Al Midan)
Ride Along
Lone Survivor
Her
August: Osage County
Mainstream Chick’s 2013 Year in Review
Inside Llewyn Davis
The Wolf of Wall Street
The Secret Life of Walter Mitty
American Hustle
Nebraska

Beautiful Creatures

Beautiful Creatures is based on a popular novel for the ‘YA’ (young adult) crowd. And while I pride myself on being hip to such trends (Twilight, The Hunger Games, Harry Potter, etc.), I’d never actually heard of it. So I went into the movie with zero expectations. And in the end – I thought it was okay. Nothing extraordinary. But it didn’t suck. I actually found it more interesting and romantically engaging than that other popular-novel-turned-movie released for Valentine’s Day, Safe Haven. Both movies feature a supernatural element, but Beautiful Creatures takes it to the max. If you hear pop culture rumblings about “being claimed” – Beautiful Creatures is to blame.

Alice Englert plays Lena, a teenage witch (a.k.a caster) with both a “light” and a “dark” side. In keeping with cultural tradition, she will be fully ‘claimed’ by the light or the dark on her upcoming 16th birthday. The question is: Does she have any control over her fate? And how will it impact her budding romance with mortal teenager Ethan (Alden Ehrenreich), a good kid with some twisted family history of his own?

The movie is sort of Twilight meets Harry Potter meets Mean Girls meets Beetlejuice. Lena has some crazy scary relatives – including a mysterious uncle played by Jeremy Irons and a psycho momma played by Emma Thompson (in a dual role). They are both particularly fun to watch. Viola Davis also adds star-power to the cast as Amma, Ethan’s pseudo-godmother. She’s also a librarian who happens to maintain a secret collection of ‘caster’ literature. Shhhhhh.

Bottom line: Beautiful Creatures is a coming-of-age fantasy flick that is definitely strange but also kinda sweet and moderately entertaining. For the YAs among ya.

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