Review: I Am Number Four




I Am Number Four is the latest in a series of teenage supernatural thrillers, as Hollywood production companies continue their attempt to cash in on the popularity of the Twilight franchise. Based on the science fiction novel of the same name written by Pittacus Lore, the film stars Burberry model Alex Pettyfer as an alien from the planet Lorien living a nomadic lifestyle under the false identity of John Smith. He is not the only one of his kind however, as there are eight other Lorien descendance on earth, each with their own impressive skill-set and power. These nine are protected by a spell that only allows them to be killed in a specific set order, but this defense is proven susceptible, as Numbers 1, 2, and 3 are soon tracked down and killed by the Mogadorians, another race of aliens committed to eliminating the remaining Loriens from the planet. With the first three in the sequence now out of the picture, the vicious Mogadorians shift their hunt on to the forth, and as the title of the film indicates, Pettyfer’s John Smith is Number 4.

Although the Twilight franchise has set the bar for performances reasonably low, the attractive cast of I Am Number Four can’t really come close to clearing it. The budding high school romance between John and Sarah (played by Glee’s Dianna Agron) has its cutesy moments but really provides nothing that hasn’t been done several times over.

The film does offers up a few admirable scares, mostly at the hands of the shear visual appearance of the Mogadorians; think a combination of Darth Maul and Lord Voldemort in appearance with an eerie presence of the Strangers from Knowing. However, when I Am Number Four transforms into one giant mess of poorly staged fight scenes and explosions with the Mogadorians and their lazer guns and some gigantic flying wombat creature, their screen presence and the scares that came along with them earlier in the film are easily forgotten.

While the original score composed for the film leaves much to be desired, the film’s music selection of popular tracks from The Kings of Leon, XX, and Adele were an effective touch and probably the strongest aspect of the film. But, when a film’s choice of music is its strong suit, there’s a problem and I Am Number Four is most definitely evidence of this.

The film begins with a bang and its open-end conclusion, which reeks of impending sequels leaves us strangely wanting more; but both are surely not enough to make us forget about the lousy moments that came in between.

[notification type=”star”]29/100 - When a film’s choice of music is its strong suit, there’s a problem and I Am Number Four is most definitely evidence of this.[/notification]


About Author

I've always loved movies, but it wasn't until under the tutelage of Professor Garry Leonard at the University of Toronto that my passion for the industry became an understanding of an art form. With a specific fascination in both the western genre and Asian cinema in general, I am of the view that good movies are either enlightening or entertaining, and if you are truly lucky they are both.