I was curious to see what Peter Jackson would do with The Lovely Bones.  While I’m ambivalent about The Lord of Rings, I always rather liked Jackson’s 1994 film Heavenly Creatures and thought that if anyone had a chance to take Alice Sebold’s finely crafted novel and turn it into a film that is as effective on its own terms, Jackson might be that someone.

I have read both of Sebold’s novels and the memoir of her own rape as a first year college student, and hers is a dark vision.  The Lovely Bones details the rape and murder of a 14-year-old who then watches her family struggle and her murderer elude detection before she moves on to heaven.

Film is not a medium that handles the metaphysical very well, especially when the tone is dramatic.  How can a filmmaker show something as literal that is hard to even put into words?  The movie is a disappointment.  The opening half hour and ending half hour work better than the (seemingly) endless middle hour.

The other thing that bothers me about this film is the PG-13 rating.  There were many children in the audience at my screening, several audibly upset.  This is most definitely not a film for children.  There are better ways to convince them not to crawl into holes in the ground with creepy neighbors.


One Response to THE LOVELY BONES

  1. Cheryl says:

    Hmmm….was not a huge fan of the novel, and so this probably won’t convince me to see the movie.

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