Written by: Daniel Barnz based upon the novel by Alex Flinn
Directed by: Daniel Barnz
Released: March 4, 2011 by CBS Films
Summary: A modern-day take on the "Beauty and the Beast" tale where a New York teen is transformed into a hideous monster in order to find true love.
I hate Vanessa Hudgens as an actress; let me just say that right off the bat. I really don’t think that she has any talent and her role in this movie was just average. She always plays the same whiney, dippy character and it got old with the second Disney movie. That alone made me happy that I saw this movie on cheap night.
The movie itself was alright. It’s clear that Alex Pettyfer hadn’t done much as far as main roles went in big name pictures – his performance is whiney and reeking of a green actor – but he did a well enough job that the audience was able to believe him as a spoiled rich kid turned heinously ugly.
The makeup is amazing. I loved the effects with the tree tattoo – taking the place of the Disney rose – on his forearm and how his eyebrows mirrored his school campaign “Embrace the Suck”. It was the little details like that which really awed me. And though the makeup ran nowhere near how it was in the book, the film made the character of Kyle/Hunter its own in a way that didn’t seem to detract from the story.
This isn’t the best movie out there but it’s not the worst either. I’m happy that I saw it, but I could have easily waited until it was in the $5 bin at Wal-Mart too. In the end, I just don’t really care about the movie. Sure it had a few laughs (all Neil Patrick Harris) and a few sighs with the romance. Hell, even Mary Kate Olsen gave a pretty damn good performance as Kendra the witch, but the sum of the parts doesn’t equal the total. Sadly, I’m giving this one a 5/10. If you can, wait until it’s on DVD. Trust me, it’s probably going to be one of those movies that decreases in shelf price fairly quickly.
Looking back at my review of the novel, the Lindy (Vanessa Hudgens) character annoyed me even then...