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Sunday, February 20, 2011

MOVIES I JUST WATCHED: I AM NUMBER FOUR - A review by Joseph Michael Sciola

            I Am Number Four, based on the novel of the same name is a movie I have been looking forward to for quite some time. We covered the trailer in Episode 6. I picked the book up on a whim, and read a few chapters before getting sidetracked. I have yet to finish it (in fact, I really need to find the book) but from what I have read, I really enjoyed, and was thoroughly surprised to discover it was being made into a movie so soon after its release.
            From what I remember reading, it followed the book relatively well. There were a few changes, but that is really to be expected for the book to movie transition, and honestly, I didn’t really mind the changes. The movie has a relatively young cast which includes Alex Pettyfier as Number Four/ John Smith, Teresa Palmer as Number Six, Dianna Argon as Sarah, Callan McAuliffe as Sam, and Jake Able as Mark. The cast is rounded off with Justified’s Timothy Olyphant as Henri, John’s guardian and protector, and Kevin Durand as the unnamed Mogadorian Commander.
            Acting wise, the more experienced Olyphant and Durand were the highlights of the movie. At times, saying more with simple looks than any line of dialogue. The rest of the cast was far from horrible, but they were just outclassed in this.
            As far as villains go, the Mogadorians were good ones with a significantly creepy design and just an overall eerie presence to them. They had a few rather comedic moments as well, such as one of them going shopping and waving at a little kid as he walked past, and another bearing his fangs at a car that car they were passing, scaring the hell out of a kid inside, but don’t let these two small moments fool you. They were portrayed as serious threats from the very beginning, and remained so until the very end.
            The final fights towards the end of the movie were nothing short of incredible with a great mix of chorography and CGI. The end result of the big battle left the school’s football stadium a smoldering crater and that is just awesome. My only complaint about the fights is that they were so fast paced, and I would have liked to see them have gone on for a little longer, but they are fortunately not on the same level as the knife fight in Faster which lasted about ten seconds.
            The book was planned as the first book in a series of six. The Power of Six, the second book in the series is expected to be out this August. I know I plan on picking that up, and hopefully the movie does well enough to continue adaptations of those books, because as I see it, I Am Number Four was a perfect ten.

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