Oh, Beautiful Creatures, I think the best way to be good to you is to tell the complete truth.
I Wikipedia’d this movie right before leaving for Comic-Con. The flick was sort-of paired with ‘The Conjuring’ and I had no idea what it was. I can’t say that I was thrilled to learn that it is a teenage supernatural romance film in the vein of ‘Twilight,’ which is to say – based on Young Adult fiction with a sheen of fangirl on it.
I showed up, I got out my Flip Cam and was completely ready to let my eyes glaze over and never think about this move again. Meredith Woerner from i09 and I even decided to tag-team the interviews to keep everything moving and to shield the talent from having to define their movie to to possibly-apathetic audiences twice in a row.
Here’s the surprising part: I GOT TOTALLY SOLD ON SEEING THIS SOUTHERN GOTHIC ROMANCE. I know, it surprised the crap out of me too.
The story is about a sad boy living in a town when a mysterious girl shows up and sad boy discovers mysterious girl is a “Caster” (basically a witch) who is fearing her upcoming 16th birthday. On that day it will be revealed if she is Light or Dark (Good or Evil) and she’s unsure what her future holds. Begin love story with special effects, et cetera.
I can’t say the panel went well in the IGN Theater as some people got bogged down in defining Casters (one person even asked if Elemental Casters have the same powers as Aang and Korra from the Avatar animated series), while the stuff that interested me was coming from director Richard LaGravenese (Murder For Elephants…wait, ‘WATER for Elephants’) who kept trying to say that he made a story about being a teenager NOT part one in a franchise and NOT (really) a story about being a witch.
Supernatural Romance has been given a bad name by ‘Twilight,’ a book that wasn’t good to begin with turned into a series of increasingly more intelligence-insulting films. At first I painted ‘Beautiful Creatures’ with this brush, but the more I talked to the people involved, the more I started to be sold on this film as a movie about growing up, just set against a witch background (like Back To The Future is about accepting your parents against a time travel background).
Call me crazy, but of the four films I covered at NYCC, ‘Beautiful Creatures’ made the biggest play for my eyeballs and it worked just shy of ‘Evil Dead,’ for serious.
‘Beautiful Creatures’ comes out February 13th 2013.