REVIEW: 'Mortal Instruments' deserves a quick death
Published: Tuesday, September 10, 2013
Updated: Monday, September 30, 2013 22:09
Clary (Lily Collins) seems to be a typical teenage girl. She has friends and likes to take some risks, such as sneaking into a club with her best friend, Simon (Robert Sheehan). There she sees a small group of people grab and kill a shady individual, but nobody in the club seem to notice. Clary makes eye contact with one the guys in the group and then leaves.
The next day, while hanging out with Simon, Clary runs into the same guy she saw the night before. Simon can’t see him, so Clary steps into an alley with the guy, who introduces himself as Jace (Jamie Campbell Bower), a shadowhunter.
I don’t want to say any more in fear you’ll recognize the plot. The whole movie seems to come from a cookie cutter, including the twists and turns. It’s too predictable to develop an attachment to any of the characters.
“The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones” joins the wave of interest in modern teenage-drama romance-fantasy movies. It can sit on the shelf and collect dust with “Twilight” and “Beautiful Creatures” for all I care. Within two years of the last “Mortal Instruments” movie, the films will be long forgotten.
I’ve never read “The Mortal Instruments” books, so I didn’t know how the movie was supposed to go. Apparently director Harald Zward and screenplay writer Jessica Postigo decided to make a few changes that may frustrate fans, as I heard from a group of teenagers behind me during and after the film.
There were plenty of holes in the movie. For example, it was mentioned once and in passing there are three mortal instruments. I assume that’s important, but apparently not.
Shadowhunters are half angel and half human, and they kill demons. With that in mind, it surprised me how much the shadowhunters would ask, “What the hell?” It’s a contradiction, and it’s not a good enough contradiction to be funny.
There were too many elements pulled from “Twilight” to offset any potential originality. There were vampires and werewolves who fought each other. The main male attraction had a brooding personality. He could also play the piano. Admittedly, the piano fits quite well into the story as a whole, but why not choose another instrument?
A welcome, albeit brief, feature in the film was the vampires were actually vulnerable to sunlight. No sparkly vampires in this movie!
I must have rolled my eyes a dozen times during the excessive teenage drama. Every element, from the friends to the assumptions to the boyfriend-or-not situations, was ridiculous. Even the family relationships were dramatized in an adolescent way. The family tree was more complicated than the Skywalkers’.