Review by Lucia Santiago Dantes.
Just when we thought we were done with vampires, werewolves and all that supernatural love, Beautiful Creatures shows up to the nearest theater on Valentine’s Day!
Beautiful Creatures is the first installment of the Caster Chronicles book series. Although I have no idea if it will be as succesful as the Twilight Saga, I’m pretty sure it will somehow fill that need of supernatural love story as Beautiful Creatures is less complicated and deals more with Courtly love rather than a story where all these fantastic creatures take over the story. Of course the fantastic elements are there, but not with the intensity of the twilight books.
In Beautiful Creatures the story is told by the point of view of Ethan Wate (Alden Ehrenreich) a 16 years old boy who lives in the small southern town of Gatlin. Ethan has constantly been dreaming about this mysterious girl he’s in love with but he hasn’t even met yet. Even Ethan knows that’s crazy. At the same time a new girl named Lena Duchannes (Alice Englert, Daughter of Jane Campion, writer/director of The Piano) arrives to the school and as you can predict, they both fall in love and that’s when troubles start. Lane comes from a long line of witches or “casters” with special magical powers that they will not fully blown until she reaches her 16th birthday. Although they are in love, there’s people that’s not happy about this relationship; like ex girlfriend Emily Asher (Zoey Deutch, better known for playing Sarah Michelle Gellar’s stepdaughter in the TV series Ringer) who will do anything in her power to make the entire town of Gatlin hate and fear Lena. Not to mention Lena’s family, like uncle Macon Ravenwood (Jeremy Irons) whose like the rest of the family disapproves her relationship with a human. Now the reason why Lena is kept away from the others before her sixteenth birthday is because on that day a caster not only receives its power but also is taken by light or darkness (aka they become good or evil casters) this curse in her family makes all women be taken by darkness like her cousin Ridley Duchannes (Emmy Rossum) who became a siren after receiving her powers, she has the power of make men become infatuated with her, entrap their minds, take information and control them. Ethan somehow protects her from her powers and the evil trying to take over her.
The story besides being kind of predictable is delightful, as any Hollywood production the flick has beautiful set decoration an impeccable production design, some oldies but goodies camera tricks combined with CGI like any film nowadays; with Emma Thompson as Sarafine Duchannes and Mrs Lincoln. Beautiful Creatures reaffirms the ideal of “love conquers everything” that we all need to hear once in a while.
As I said at the beginning, this is the first book of a series written by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl which are:
1. Beautiful Creatures (published in 2009)
2. Beautiful Darkness ( 2010)
3. Beautiful Chaos (2011)
4. Beautiful Redemption (Released October 23, 2013).
Watch the trailer: