Now that the final "Twilight" installment has come and proven its box office powers, it remains to be seen whether any of a host of other supernatural romance YA sensations can cast the same spell on moviegoers. "Beautiful Creatures" (February 3), based on "The Caster Chronicles" and starring Alice Englert and Alden Ehrenrich as curse-crossed young lovers, is certainly trying to hook those feeling Bella-and-Edward withdrawal. Trailer below.
The film is adapted from the first novel of the NY Times bestselling book series by Kami Garcia and Margaret Stohl. It follows small-town Southern girl and outcast Lena (Englert, who is Aussie director Jane Campion's daughter and can also be seen in "Ginger & Rosa") as she approaches her 16th birthday, unsure of how her family's dark curse will manifest. Her cousin, Ridley (Emmy Rossum), has some sirenized eyes to show for her 16th birthday. Meanwhile, Lena falls in love with Ethan (Ehrenrich, best known from "Tetro"), who tries to protect her as the curse grows near. Viola Davis, Jeremy Irons and Annette Benning also star.
Visually the film owes something to Tim Burton's "Dark Shadows," with plenty of kooky-Goth manse interiors, minus the '70s satirizing. The romantic angle in "Beautiful Creatures" is tapping "Twilight," but so much of the latter's success was owed to audience's rapture with the three leads. Whether Englert and Ehrenrich will set the world on fire, as the Stewart-Pattinson-Lautner trifecta did, is a major question.