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1/16/12

THE LOVELY BONES - REVIEW


The trailers for Peter Jackson's latest may not have boasted any truly fascinating plot points but at least it looked good and had a decent enough cast, so how bad could it be? Turns out very. Very very bad indeed.

In many ways this is a film which was doomed from the start. When the director is miscast, the best you can hope for is a clunky but honorable attempt. After all, this is the guy who brought us horror classics such as Bad Taste and Braindead, fun comedy The Frighteners and of course the epic Lord of the Rings trilogy. The Lovely Bones is by far the director's worst hour: a complete disaster from start to finish with some of the worst acting I've seen in a long time. 



Films like The Wolfman or Precious may have been overall uneven and clumsy affairs but at least they had some redeeming features about them. This, however, misses the mark on all accounts. The script is loathsome in that it adapts a novel in the dullest, most nonsensical way humanely possible, with dialogs so cringe-worthy they prompt nervous laughter and shame. Dumbass lines like "Salmon, like the fish" or "Of course it's beautiful: it's Heaven!" just make you wonder if a human being actually wrote the film or left his or her dog to do the work instead. 

None of the characters feel real or convincing in any way and Mark Wahlberg concludes his trilogy of terrible dramatic performances (The HappeningMax Payne) with another eye-popping stinker. Rachel Weisz somehow manages to find herself in another turkey and Susan Sarandon is wasted as a frankly useless and out-of-sync character. Stanley Tucci does his best to add some ACTING to the proceedings and for the most part does quite well (at least he comes off as genuinely creepy) but the fake teeth, silly hairdo and moustache makes it ridiculously blatant that this weirdo is a perv. He might have well have worn a sign around his neck saying "PAEDO". Newcomer Saoirse Ronan also gives a decent enough performance for a child actor but when you're surrounded by complete ineptitude, it's normal to falter and suffer by the end of the picture, leaving her to become an annoying, whiny, goody-goody, irrelevant entity. Giving her a "paradise sidekick" who CAN'T ACT didn't help either.

Overall, Peter Jackson has fallen from very hgh and one can't help but feel nervous and unsettled at the idea of him directing a Tintin film. My fingers will be crossed for a miracle but after this turkey, I have lost a lot of hope.  




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