Review: THE HOST (2013) | Casey's Movie Mania | Movie Reviews, Features & Others

Thursday, 4 April 2013

Review: THE HOST (2013)

 Please kill me already. This movie sucks so bad I can barely breathe...
Awfully slow-moving, badly scripted and visually mundane, Andrew Niccol's THE HOST is a lifeless sci-fi/teen romance drama that goes nowhere.

After hitting an unexpectedly all-time low in 2011's IN TIME, acclaimed visionary director Andrew Niccol (GATTACA) continues his career slump in a dull big-screen adaptation of Stephenie Meyer's THE HOST (yup, the same author who wrote the enormously popular TWILIGHT series).


The movie centers on Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan), one of the last remaining human beings in the Earth after the world has been invaded by an alien parasite that looks like some sort of a jellyfish (think INVASION OF THE BODY SNATCHERS). After a failed escape attempt, Melanie is captured by a group of Seekers, lead by Diane Kruger, and forced her to become host to an alien parasite. Soon Melanie is known as Wanderer (Wanda, in short). The Seeker begins to interrogate her about the possible whereabouts for the rest of the human outcasts. But Melanie's mind is very much alive inside Wanda's head, and more than often, the two struggle against each other. Eventually, Melanie manages to talk Wanda into escaping out and seeking her boyfriend Jared (Max Irons) and her brother Jamie (Chandler Canterbury) somewhere in the desert. Meanwhile, the Seeker and the rest of her group are out to track down Wanda's whereabout at all cost.

THE HOST is especially successful for helping insomniacs.


It's kind of baffling to see once a reputable director like Andrew Niccol would end up adapting THE HOST. The story is ponderous with such minimal payoff, while the pacing is so lifeless that the 125-minute length of this movie feels like an eternity. As a movie with a sci-fi element, there are little fascinating values to be found here. Even the so-called teen romance undertones between Saoirse Ronan and Max Irons feels bland.

Poor Saoirse Ronan. She's a good young actress in movies like ATONEMENT and HANNA. But she is wasted here in a dual role as Melanie/Wanda. Problem is, it's hard to take her acting seriously especially her Melanie character (inner voice, that is) comes across like an unintentional comic relief. The rest of the cast is equally forgettable, and it's shame to see a veteran actor like William Hurt is obviously phoning in for an easy paycheck. As for Max Irons (yup, that's Jeremy Irons' son), he's certainly looks physically appealing but little else (say, acting) matters.


Hello? Is your mental institution still has vacancy available?

THE HOST is certainly one of the worst movies of the year. So bad that the TWILIGHT series are far more interesting.

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