I AM NUMBER FOUR Review

I AM NUMBER FOUR 2011

“You have no idea what you’re capable of, “ says Henri to John in a pivotal scene of “I AM NUMBER FOUR.” After all the two had been through together, that moment rings true. The two of them are from another world. John is a teenager. Henri is his guardian. They don’t get along too well and yet John knows he can count on Henri to keep him safe from another race of aliens who are out to kill him and what remains of his kind. That’s where the title comes in. John is “Number Four.” The Mogadorians have already killed the numbers leading up to four and plan to eventually make there way through what remains of the Loreans who have fled to Earth.

Mixing teen and family themes with sci fi, “I am Number Four” finds its place within the mellow trend set by “Twilight” where you have supernatural characters, particularly teens, figuring out their place in the world while engaged in numerous action-packed fight scenes. This movie, at its heart, it is about the struggles of being a teen. It doesn’t matter if you’re the nerd or the jock, no one in high school has all the answers. And that holds true especially if you’re an alien fleeing for his life. Alex Pettyfer (“Beastly”) is totally in tune with being the kid struggling to fit in. To make matters far worse, he must also confront the supernatural changes to his body. When he least expects it, a new burning scar will appear on his leg or lights will beam out of his palms.

Lucky for John, his guardian, Henri (Timothy Olyphant, TV’s “Justified”) has moved the two of them to an idyllic small town in Ohio named, Paradise. After John meets Sarah (Dianna Agron, TV’s “Glee”) it is easy for him to feel he has found his home in Paradise. Much in the way that director D.J. Caruso set up the chemistry between the characters played by Shia LaBeouf and Sarah Roemer in “Disturbia,” it is the budding relationship between John and Sarah that lifts up the movie. Also providing more meaning to the movie is the friendship between John and Sam (Callan McAuliffe, “Flipped”), the self-proclaimed “science nerd” who is being tormented by a seriously disturbed jock, Mark (Jake Abel, “Percy Jackson”). John steps in to confront Mark, who happens to be obsessed with Sarah, and you’ve all most of the pieces to this story in play.

One big piece to this story is the villain played to perfection by Kevin Durand (“Lost”). As the Mogadorian commander, Durand takes things to a higher level with his psychotic killer. He easily has the best lines in the movie like when he confronts Mark. “You like to watch a lot of television, don’t you?” he mockingly asks him to which Mark vigorously nods. Durand does wonderful work behind all the make up and prosthetics making us believe he really does breathe through slits across his face. The tone of his voice is always menacing whether he is speaking in his own language or elevating his voice when speaking in English to the humans in town he toys with.

In the third act to this movie, Number Six (Teresa Palmer, “The Sorcerer’s Apprentice”) steps in with guns blazing and adding quite a lot to the action. By the time she is done blowing things up, we realize that there is still a whole lot more that lies ahead and it’s going to take more than one movie to fit it all in. Based on the first book of the young adult novel series by Pittacus Lore, “I am Number Four” has a bright future as a series of movies.

Starting May 24,“I am Number Four” is available as a Blu-Ray Combo Pack, DVD, Movie Download and ON-Demand.

 
More on Geekweek

Comments

Sign in to comment with your TypePad, Twitter, Facebook, Google, Yahoo or OpenID.