Friday 25 February 2011

I am Number Four Movie Review

If you have not read the book
be warned that there may be spoilers in this review.

So as you may know, I recently read and reviewed I am Number Four by Pittacus Lore (the pseudonym for James Frey and Jobie Hughes) here. I really wanted to read the book before the movie came out so I could compare the two. Thanks to The Book People, I won two tickets to a preview screening on 21st February at my local cinema. To say I was excited would be an understatement, I was really looking forward to it until I realised I was on night shifts and unable to go. Thanks to my very understanding manager, I got to see the movie. I took the boyfriend along as I figured this was one movie he wouldn’t mind being dragged along to and as he hadn’t read the book first, I was wondering what his reaction would be like.

On the whole, I enjoyed the movie. I always enjoy seeing how books translate onto screen and what parts they will include or miss out. BUT, they missed out A LOT which is fair enough as some of it wouldn’t translate well visually and they only have a limited amount of time to get the story across. The problem with this however is that I felt I didn’t care about the characters like I did when I was reading the book. I cried when I read the book but I wasn’t even upset watching the movie.

I have to say that the special effects were amazing and there were a couple of outstanding scenes towards the end of the film but some of the one liners were especially cheesy. One from Number Six in particular was cringeworthy.

Also, am I the only girl in the world who doesn’t fancy Alex Pettyfer? Yes I can see that he’s quite pretty but I actually prefer him in the clips I’ve seen of BEASTLY (released in March) but I wonder if that has to do with the personality of his character or his bad boy appearance? I think Alex did a great job as Number Four but I’m REALLY interested to see how he does in Beastly.

Obviously the little dog actor (is that what they call them?!) was fantastic but I was surprised at the casting for Henri. They completely eradicated the idea of his French accent but I’d had that in my head (from reading the book) and pictured Jean Reno as a better actor for the role.

So overall, I enjoyed watching the movie but I also came away feeling disappointed and I think this was because I'd read the book first. The boyfriend said he enjoyed it so I have to wonder if my reaction would have been different had I not read the book. I didn’t read Twilight before watching the movie and I enjoyed it HOWEVER I did read the first three Harry Potter films before watching the movies and absolutely loved them. So, I’m still not sure what the verdict is with regards to reading or not reading the book before watching the film. I think personally, I’m going to go with reading the book. It makes me nervous though for the amount of YA books that have sold film rights – books like The Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins, Delirium by Lauren Oliver and Shiver by Maggie Stiefvater, to name but a few. These are some of my favourite books and I just hope that the directors of the movies do justice to the books.

I would really love to hear people’s thoughts on whether you should read the book before watching the movie. Have you seen this yet or read the book? The sequel to I am Number Four, entitled “The Power of Six” is published in August. If the first film is successful financially then no doubt they will make the next one and I'll be reading and watching that one too :)


  1. I'm on the fence with this issue as well, book vs movie, read the book before or after? I'm the same way, if I have read the book and then watch the movie, I'm usually disappointed. If I see the movie before reading the book I like the movie and enjoy the book even more. I compare way to much when I know about the movie before hand. The only movies that I like more then the books because of the slight twist they put on them are Percy Jackson and the Lightening Theif, they made him into the 16 year old boy and I always thought 12 was way too young to be doing all the things he was.
    Howl's Moving Castle, I love the little love scenes they put in there, with the book I really didn't feel the love developing between the two.

    Like you I don't know what to do with movies and books. I have read Beastly and I just with the previews I have already noticed minor/major changes. I now want to read I am number Four to get more detail about the book.
    I guess if I want to like/enjoy the movie I should wait to read the book till after I see the movie.

    It is rather annoying how many books are being made into movie, can they not come out with anything new? Probably not, why when it is so easy to already snag the book followers would they want to start from scratch.

    Have you heard how many books will be in the I am Number Four series?

    I did like the movie a lot and now I do want to read it.

  2. I normally read a book before watching the movie. With I Am Number Four, I read it before I knew about the SCANDAL associated with it. (FYI I feel like SCANDAL is a word that needs capitalization!!) I'm not sure how I feel about the movie or going to see it. I likely will just wait until it comes out on Netflix, as I rarely go to the cinema anymore, the last one I saw in theaters was Avatar, lol.

    That said, I'm glad your boyfriend enjoyed it, at least.

    I like that YA books are coming out in movie form, because that creates a lot of possible book sales for the author from people who enjoyed the movie.

  3. I don't like Alex either. Just not my type at all. I can't wait to see the dog they chose. I am really excited about this film. I always read the books first.

  4. Although we thought the film was fun, we realise it's nothing special but we couldn't help but feel the story draws on so many references from other popular teen sci-fi films and TV that it lacks anything that feels original. Our full take can be read on our blog

  5. So I hesitate on commenting on a site that has soo much pink on it but I think I'll move past that for this :).

    First off, I read the book because I couldn't stand not knowing and having the book there was just a giant tease... "read me read me I can tell you what the whole mystery is about number four" it seem to whisper to me lol.

    So I read the book and then took my fiancee to see the movie last night. She loved it...and the manly nature inside of me that likes mindless action flicks and YA movies was satiated. However, the rest of me that actually READ the book....made me want to search the internet for every review site and warn every person that has read the book.

    I think in the future I really need to be patient and watch the movie first. I did that with harry potter for the first four movies and reading the books was like getting a "behind the scenes" to everything I missed and allowed me to enjoy both the book and the movie in their own way.

    Id just like to be clear though. This movie was NOTHING like the book. The things they changed didn't need to be changed. They explicitly MESSED UP the legacies. They didnt even give the right ones to the right people. They never opened the box at all. There were even some things in there that I think might have been spoilers for the next book!! (i hope so...either that or the director just took WAY too much leniency). For example, in the book the only reason that four's dad was investigating his friend was because of the comments he made at the fair about the mogodoriens. This whole business about his dad having another piece of a "locator stone" and all that? WHERE DID THAT COME FROM?! Lumen powering up six? WHAT?! I'm trying to keep these comments as spoiler free as possible but the movie just hacked the book to pieces. It would be like Edward being a werewolf / Jacob being a vampire and Bella choosing George the midget librarian instead of either one of them. Sigh.

    My two cents.

  6. FYI the list of things that were different then the book would probably take half a book just to note. I didn't put most of them up here for spoilers sake. However if you want to message me on facebook and talk back and forth about it...feel free :).

  7. In this movie are enough twists and turns to make this story very interesting and intriguing without being over-complicated. The characters are well-played, especially the main ones. So, i cant wait this kind of film. Watch Movies Online Free