Sunday, 10 July 2011

I Am Number Four (2011) Movie Review


Extraordinary teen John Smith (Pettyfer) is a fugitive on the run from ruthless enemies sent to destroy him. Changing his identity, moving from town to town with his guardian Henri (Olyphant), John is always the new kid with no ties to his past. In the small Ohio town he now calls home, John encounters unexpected, life-changing events-his first love (Agron), powerful new abilities and a connection to the others who share his incredible destiny.

Three Cheers for 'Number Four'!
I didn't expect to like "I Am Number Four". It looked like your average action/thriller shoot-em-up bang-bang but I was sorely mistaken.

Based on the novel by Jobie Hughes and James Frey (the writers used the pen name Pittacus Lore) and adapted by Alfred Gough and Miles Millar (the team behind such hits as TV's Smallville, "Spider Man 2" and the Jackie Chan/Owen Wilson "Shanghai Noon/Knights" movies), "I Am Number Four" tells us the story of John Smith (Pettyfer) and his "father" Henri (Olyphant). We don't get too much back story (and that's a good thing) when the story starts -- it's nice to keep your audience on the edge of their seat, who doesn't like a little bit of mystery? John and Henri flee Florida after an "incident" happens which almost exposes them and seek solitude in a town called Paradise in Ohio. Here is where the action slows down a little bit to introduce us to the characters. John is given orders by Henri to blend in and be invisible but that doesn't exactly go down as planned. He overhears the principal scolding Sarah (Agron, best known for playing Quinn on TV's Glee) about privacy issues, he befriends the class nerd, Sam (McAuliffe) and attracts the attention of the school's quarterback/bully, Mark (Abel). Not bad for a first day, so much for being anonymous.

The high school drama portion of "I Am Number Four" is your typical teenage fair. Boy meets girl, they start to fall, old boyfriend wants girl back, threats are made, confrontations are had and oh yeah.... one is developing some pretty cool superpowers. That's what makes this movie different. Even John doesn't know what he's capable of doing and not to mention there are bad guys (with even badder teeth) and one pretty hot chick (Palmer) that are hell-bent on finding John and Henri. I don't mind that action takes a backseat in order to flesh out the characters... let us get to know them, they need to be likable so that we can root and cheer for them later on down the road.

The final reel of the film certainly does not disappoint. I'm sure all you action fans will love it. The movie has a good story, good acting, great special effects and it certainly has heart.

Directed by
D.J. Caruso 
Writing credits
Alfred Gough (screenplay) &
Miles Millar (screenplay) and
Marti Noxon (screenplay)
Jobie Hughes (novel) (as Pittacus Lore) &
James Frey (novel) (as Pittacus Lore)
Cast (in credits order)
Alex Pettyfer ... John
Timothy Olyphant ... Henri
Teresa Palmer ... Number 6
Dianna Agron ... Sarah
Callan McAuliffe ... Sam
Kevin Durand ... Mogadorian Commander
Jake Abel ... Mark
Jeff Hochendoner ... Sheriff James
Patrick Sebes ... Kevin
Greg Townley ... Number 3
Reuben Langdon ... Number 3's Guardian
Emily Wickersham ... Nicole
Molly McGinnis ... Receptionist
Brian Howe ... Frank
Andy Owen ... Bret
Sophia Caruso ... Girl on Street
Charles Carroll ... Sam's Stepdad
L. Derek Leonidoff ... Mr. Berhman
Garrett M. Brown ... Mr. Simms
Sabrina de Matteo ... Physics Teacher
Cooper Thornton ... Sarah's Dad
Judith Hoag ... Sarah's Mom
Jack Walz ... Sarah's Brother
Bill Laing ... Demented Farmer
Beau Mirchoff ... Drew
Cody Johns ... Kern
Isabella Robbins ... Teen At Party

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