Today’s guest post is another review from our resident film guru, Yalin. Thanks Yalin!
Jackson’s latest outing The Lovely Bones is definitely not an epic film, which has been his forte. By contrast, it is a decidedly small drama with an ensemble cast that’s as good as it gets. On top of that, Jackson’s signature is obvious in the editing, the attention to detail and the special effects. However, the film doesn’t necessarily bring anything fresh.
I’m not sure what attracted Jackson to this material. If he got attached to the project so he could project his version of purgatory and heaven, I must say I wasn’t impressed. I have seen many fields of corn and Sound-of-Music-esque mountain ranges depicted as heaven before many times. His rendition also sometimes takes away from the drama that’s unfolding. The story is quite powerful and emotional, but the special effects take over, which distances the viewer slightly.
Getting past its shortcomings though, The Lovely Bones features a superb ensemble cast. Stanley Tucci deserves his Oscar nomination as one of the most realistic and dreadful villains I have seen. Susan Sarandon is a breath of comedy in this dark tale and much appreciated indeed. Rachel Weisz also performs admirably as the mother who needs to cope with her loss while trying to keep her marriage together.
Finally, I must give credit to Jackson as a master at building tension. He has several scenes in the film that are so well directed, shot and edited, that I was at the edge of my seat. I must reveal that none of these scenes included any heaven shots though.