Sunday, September 08, 2013

The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

Set in contemporary New York City, a seemingly ordinary teenager, Clary Fray (Lily Collins), discovers she is the descendant of a line of Shadowhunters, a secret cadre of young half-angel warriors locked in an ancient battle to protect our world from demons. After the disappearance of her mother (Lena Headey), Clary must join forces with a group of Shadowhunters, who introduce her to a dangerous alternate New York called Downworld, filled with demons, warlocks, vampires, werewolves and other deadly creatures. Based on the worldwide best-selling book series.

Review and Thoughts

 The premise of the movie is simple, 3 races interlocked in a war since time immemorial:
  • mundanes humans that know absolutely nothing about the 'hidden' world around them
  • shadowhunters who are an odd mix of angel and human, supposedly to protect the world and mundanes from...
  • demons, vampires werewolves and other deadly creatures

The protagonists (and target audience) are teenagers, so it does have some reference and similarities to the already popular Twilight and Harry Potter series (with the magic-stuff, backdrops, fantasy and antagonists). Some may say that it lacks originality and is cliché with its teen angst (while saving the world), nothing new. But I think with more movies coming, people tend to forget that movies are just that - nothing but recycled plots and storylines with different actors playing characters that have long been played before. What else is new?

The cinematography for The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones is acceptable enough and the action scenes packed with enough action. Of course, if you are not into teenage fantasy, angst and romance (with action to boot), you might want to give this movie a miss. Otherwise I think that it makes a pretty entertaining movie, it may not be that fresh but at least it has its appeal.

The actors that have taken up the characters do a pretty good job. I was surprised that Godfrey Gao was actually cast as Magnus Bane, but he did a decent job (and he looks much better than in the dramas he's acted previously; must be the Hollywood effect).

Jamie Campbell does a decent job being Jace, a "bad" boy (shadowhunter) with angst and a mouth to match the attitude (which does serve up some dry humor throughout the movie). 

The other characters did a pretty good job portraying their characters as well. Though Kevin Zegers as Alec seemed to have been overshadowed by the other actors, it was like his presence was not 'felt' and could have been done without. Of course, from a storyline perspective his character does have a role.

Fans of the book will find the movie a delight, while those who want an enjoyable movie of youth, hope and action (with a slight willingness to see past some of the similarities) will enjoy it just the same. The ending definitely makes way for a sequel which is in the works and one that I would definitely want to watch! ^^

Rating: 3/5


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