Starring: Alden Ehrenreich, Alice Englert, Jeremy Irons, Viola Davis, Emmy Rossum, Thomas Mann, Emma Thompson
Directed by Richard LaGravenese
Run Time: 124 mins
Genre: Drama/ Fantasy/ Romance
Opens February 14th
By Lisa Minzey of The Reel Critic.com
Have you ever had a dream or nightmare that after you woke up and thought, “Well that was really weird!”? Then the same dream kept reoccurring night after night until you met the person in the dream? Not everyone is as lucky (or unlucky, perhaps?) as Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich) as he has met the girl of his dreams in the new girl in his sophomore class, Lena Duchannes (Alice Englert). For months he has been having his bizarre dream of a girl whose face he can’t see because a storm is blowing his hair into her face and when he realizes that the girl is Lena, he can’t stay away from her. Perhaps it's mere curiosity that he can’t stay away, as Lena is the niece of the town recluse, Macon Ravenwood (Jeremy Irons). People whisper in hushed tones about Mr. Ravenwood, claiming that he and his family are cursed, or are devil worshipers or even worse, witches.
Ethan finds out the hard was that with all the gossip that swirls around the halls usually the truth is mixed up in with all the lies. When Lena is bullied by some of the girls in her class, a freak accident happens where all the windows in the classroom explode. Lena, based on pure speculation, is suspended from school until the school authorities can investigate the matter. Ethan discovers that Lena did, in fact, cause the incident, but she is on the cusp of coming into her full power as a “caster” (a.k.a. witch). The legends say that when a witch turns 16, she comes into full power as a caster and the powers that be reveal her true nature; if she is of light or the dark powers. Macon, Ethan and most of Lena’s family believe that she is full of the good, light power, but Lena’s estranged mother Sarafine (Emma Thompson) believes otherwise. Sarafine enlists Lena’s older cousin Ridley Emmy Rossum) to help convince Lena she’s going to the dark side, but something more powerful may be able to help Lena stay in the light – Ethan.
If Ethan can help Lena discover how to break a curse before her ascension into caster-dom, they may still stand a chance as a couple. If not, and Lena goes to the dark, there is no guarantee that Ethan’s life will be safe.
If you take the wit, sarcasm, humor and charm from a John Hughes film mix it with the supernatural flavoring of Harry Potter series and a touch of the romance from the Twilight series, you have something pretty impressive which is called Beautiful Creatures. The characters are engaging; the story is fresh and compelling and the special effects in this film are believable enough to engage viewers ensnaring them in the fantasy world the filmmakers have created. Since the ending of Twilight, Harry Potter and in-between Hunger Games films, this could be the next hot series for that prime tween/ young adult audience to anticipate. Even as an adult, the story captures your interest from how much humor is wrapped into the dialogue and film making it an entertaining two hours in a theater. There are slight differences from the book to what actually made it into the film, but the film stays pretty close to the written page which should make the fan boys and fan girls of the series happy. Be sure to check out “Beautiful Creatures” when it opens in theaters starting Thursday February 14, 2013.