Saturday, January 30, 2010

The Lovely Bones: Review

The Lovely Bones! The latest love child from the man who brought us Heavenly Creatures, The LOTR series and King muthafuckin Kong ya'll! To bad this movie was shitty. Wait, WHAT? Peter Jackson made a shitty movie? Yes he did people! Yes he did!
Based on the Alice Sebold novel, Lovely Bones is about Susy Salmon, played by Saoirse Ronan  who was brutally murdered by her neighbor and is now trapped in a fantasy world between heaven and Earth. From this wonderland she watches over her family as they grieve and her killer as he attempts to hide all traces of the murder.
Interesting story, no? Really the premise is really creative here, so what the hell went wrong?
All the stunning visual effects in Susy's fantasy world served no purpose to the story and really threw off the whole focus of the film which is the family drama post-Susy's death. Just when the build up of this story of a family trying to stay together after the death of a loved one and the story of the murderer trying to stay under the radar gets good, the film cuts off to show some effects shot of Saoirse Ronan running around in the fantasy world.
And it would have been nice if the sequences in the fantasy world and the sequences in the real world connected with each other but it didn't. You'd think Susy might try to reach out from the afterlife to try and contact her family like in any other ghost movie but it never happens. Which really begs the question of why we are even seeing the whole fantasy world sequence at all. So great visuals, but ultimately served no purpose whatsoever.
Mark Whalberg who plays the dad should stick to playing foul mouthed characters like in The Departed cause he was really really annoying here. He overplayed his role by a long stretch. It was like he was talking to a baby throughout the whole movie. You know.. what with the goo goo ga ga tone and all. And when the story goes to when his character has a nervous breakdown following his daughters death, he was kinda one note pulling it off. But then again the mediocre script really didn't give him much to work with.
I liked Rachel Weisz and damn she's smoking hot. But she disappears through half the movie and almost with no reason at all. 
My absolute favorite performance from Lovely Bones was Stanley Tucci as the creepy rapist neighbor. This man plays the very definition of a psychotic serial killer. What sold his performance to me was his eyes. On the outside, his character is incredibly silent and composed but when you look into his eyes it just sends a chill down you're spine. I can't really describe what I saw in them but there's just something off about them. If you saw his character in real life, you'd really feel unsafe around that person, that's how great his acting was.
So am I saying that Lovely Bones was a complete mess? No not really. I just wasn't satisfied with it coming from someone as great as Peter Jackson. There were some parts I liked a lot. Susan Sarandon gives great comic relief, parts of the Salmon family beginning to suspect their neighbor as the murderer were very well done and I loved the performances from Stanley Tucci and Saorise Ronan.
I blame it completely on the fantasy world sequence. It took me out of the really interesting parts of Lovely Bones just so that it can show me some nice effects, which are great eye candy but completely unnecessary. I thought they should have just stuck with the story of the family and the murderer with Saoirse Ronan's narration. Overall, nice idea.. poor execution. Please don't fuck up The Hobbit, Peter Jackson.

RATING: 4/10

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