March 9, 2011
I initially resisted to watch this film because of the bad reviews. However, curiosity and the expectation that this is the first film of a franchise prevailed, so I finally caved in and watched.
Our hero is teenager John Smith. He is Number Four of the nine powerful aliens from a destroyed planet Lorien who have been transported to Earth. These nine are now being hunted one by one in order by their enemies, the Mogadorians. When Number Three was killed, John knows he will be next. He and his guardian Henri move to the quiet town of Paradise, Ohio.
John is advised to keep a low profile, but of course with his striking looks and awesome skills, he simply could not help but stand out. He hooks up with Sarah, who just so happened to be the ex-girlfriend of the quarterback jock. He also conveniently makes friends with Sam, the school science nerd who claims his dad was abducted by aliens. As the Mogadorians close in on John, all hell breaks loose in Paradise. Any guesses who will win this fight?
The bad reviews prepared me to moderate my expectations so I was not too disappointed. The whole thing was pretty predictable. The abilities of John have all been seen before in other alien or mutant films, like the X-Men. There were few stunts that have not yet been seen before. The CG of the alien monsters were not too good.
As a whole, the film was just OK. It was directed to the teen crowd, as was the source book. Alex Pettyfer and Glee's Dianna Agron both look good and play John and Sarah with chemistry. I guess since this is the first book of a series, maybe it is saddled with having to establish the premise and introduce characters, making it slow in exposition yet with an unsatisfying story. If the story of Number Five ever makes it to the big screen in the future, the audience would really expect the action factor to step up.