Movie Review – The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones

Posted February 4, 2014 by Emz Chang in review / 1 Comment

DIRECTOR: Harald Zwart
STARRING: Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower, Robert Sheehan, Kevin Zegers, Jemima West, and more.
RUN TIME: 2 hours, 10 minutes
RATED: PG-13
ADAPTED FROM: City of Bones by Cassandra Clare

SYNOPSIS: 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: To be frank, I was not extremely impressed with this movie. It left out / changed a lot of what I considered important scenes from the book. Not to mention some of my favorite ones. I also felt like some of the characteristics of some of the characters were missing as well as some of the time. I felt like there were many time skips in the middle of the movie that just happened with no explanation. In addition, I felt like the casting was a bit… off for some of the characters. That being said, the movie was okay. Depending on whose perspective you were viewing it from.

From the eyes of a reader, someone who has read the book the movie was based on, I was more concerned about the movie straying away from the book. The whole time I was going “No, that isn’t right. It doesn’t happen like that!” Yes, I understand for a movie to sell and do well in the box office, some things need to be changed, but I felt that some of the changes made were a bit unnecessary. Also, I felt like the movie didn’t explore the mythology behind the book the way it should have. It barely explained things to the audience and the only way I knew and understood what was going on was because I read the book. If there was an explanation, it was brief and left things to be understood. For instance, Jace only tells Clary that she is a Shadowhunter, but he doesn’t really explain to her what a Shadowhunter is. The movie is really fast paced and things are constantly happening right after one another. It barely gives you time to register important information or details – they are just thrown at you.

I watched the movie with my mom and my brother. My mom didn’t read the book at all, while my brother had “skimmed” it, so he says… They kept asking me questions during the whole movie, (and I kept telling them to shut up and that I would explain everything later). It was all very annoying. It also told me that from through eyes of someone who has not read the book, the movie doesn’t do a good job explaining the story. That is my main problem with the movie. You obviously cannot please anyone. But I was upset with the movie because they changed soooo many things. My mom was frustrated because she had no idea what was going on. Everyone lost. We were all unhappy. I just wish they had stuck closer to the book, instead of trying to change it to please moviegoers, which didn’t really work out anyways.

Overall, the movie was okay. It wasn’t terrible like Percy Jackson. But it wasn’t good either like Harry Potter. It was just… disappointing. I thought the authors did a pretty good job. (Some more than others, but I have never really been someone good at telling if others are good at acting….). The stunt work and the special effects were pretty cool too. But there were just so many things that didn’t quite add up. At. All. Even I was confused at some of the things. Like why all the main characters appeared to have British accents. I get why the Shadowhunters had one (I only know why because I followed the release on of the movie. Neither my mom or my brother could figure it out by themselves), but why Simon? Shouldn’t he have a New York one if any at all? All in all, will I recommend this movie? Nope. Will I see it again? Not if it was my choice. Will I join the campaign for City of Ashes? Probably not. Will I watch it if it does get turned into a movie? Sure. I just won’t do it with my brother or my mom…



RATING: MELTING

2 Snowflakes

Emz Chang

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