Insight News

Feb 10th

'The Host' fails to excite

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thehost 1sht dm wip21 rgbThe words of Stephanie Meyer are back gracing the silver screen with an adaptation of her post "Twilight" series novel entitled "The Host."

The film is set in the future where our world is now inhabited by alien parasites that hunt humans to invade their bodies and turn them into "hosts." We begin our journey in this film when Melanie, a human, is captured by a seeker and forced to become a host for an alien parasite named Wanderer (or Wanda as she's called throughout the film). Melanie, who is one of the last humans left in the world is as stubborn as her alien invader, whose personal politics on the wrong in taking over earth, are interfering with her ability to do her job.

Wanda had been tasked with tracking Melanie's memories and uncovering where all of the other human beings are hiding, but she unfortunately succumbs to Melanie's will and refusal to give up her friends, causing this parasite and her host to suffer the arduous task of sharing the same mind and body with two very different agendas.

Are you still following?

This mental issue leads the two through a tug of war of survival, trust, and love, that is bookend by two men who split Melanie apart when one falls in love with Melanie and the other falls in love with Wanda. Love can't get anymore complicated then this.

What "Twilight" was to the vampire and werewolf brood, "The Host," is its complete opposite wherein it falls into the category of pure science fiction. Although the surface elements are different, the romantic theme in the film is in fact merely identical to its predecessor flicks – love triangles, impossible romances, unattainable goals, and a yearning for an out of this world romance that only exists in books and films – definitely not the world any of us know as mere humans.

thehost 00855 rgbThe film was adapted for the screen and directed by Andrew Niccol, and stars newcomer Saoirse Ronan as Melanie/Wanda, Max Irons as Jared, Jake Abel as Ian, and William Hurt as Jeb. As an unapologetic superfan of Stephanie Meyer's work as a creator of characters and enchanting storylines, I must admit that this film, although quipped with what should have been an awesome plot structure, lacked the same essence and finesse that both the book and its cousin flick the "Twilight Saga" brought to the table. It's understood that "The Host" is an entity all its own and shouldn't have to suffer the comparison, however with the film version being so similar in plot to "Twilight," you can't help but be blinded by the differences and notice where the pulse of the film starts and stops repeatedly. Whether it was poor execution, or possibly a lag in the performance of the actors, something about "The Host," falls short, and doesn't tug at the heartstrings like I was anticipating it would. The story, in a sense felt a bit disjointed, and by the time I got into it, the film was just about over.The good news is, there's enough of what it is needed to get the teens/tweens to come out to the movie theater and support another installment of Stephanie Meyer's journey through film. If you're merely interested in seeing something fun, check this one out, but I wouldn't go expecting to feel the same way you did when your heart crossed paths with that one enchanting vampire or that one loveable werewolf. Some fairytales just can't be repeated.

Grade: C

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