The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones is a supernatural action fantasy film based on the first book of the The Mortal Instruments series by author Cassandra Clare. The film follows Clary Fray as she discovers her true identity as a shadowhunter, a warrior who hunts demons hidden on Earth. The film stars Lily Collins, Jamie Campbell Bower, Robert Sheehan, Kevin Zegers, Jemima West, Lena Headey, Jonathan Rhys Meyers and many more. A word of caution! This review may contain spoilers.
Let me start by saying that I love this movie. I was a bit skeptical at first but after watching it in the cinema, I can pretty much say that I'm a fan. I'm even inspired to pick up the book that this movie is based on. So what about the movie that made me love it? First, lets look at the plot. Surprisingly, the plot is deeper than I thought it would be. It is very unfair to compare this movie to the successful Twilight movie series because whereas Twilight is front and foremost a love story, City of Bones is not. In fact, it is more of an action / adventure film with supernatural and fantasy elements thrown in. And the love story in the movie was just a part of it, like any other movie would have. I love how the story blend the vampires, werewolves, witches and all those supernatural creatures into the modern setting, and it works in making me believe the world they are living in. And the interesting conflicts between the characters help to bring more depth into the film's plot. To be honest, I was a bit surprised to found out about the more mature themes of the movie but I think the studio played it well to make it more accessible to the younger audiences.
Another high point for the movie is the visual effects. For a new movie trying to launch itself into a franchise, it is good to see the studio spent their money well to make the movie visually stunning to match with its story. The movie also has that dark look which suits the theme of the movie as well. Since the movie deals with supernatural elements, it is crucial for the special effects to make it believable and movie-worthy, and I feel the movie succeeds in that.
But as any other movie, this film also has its flaws. One of the flaw is the editing. There is a moment in the movie where I felt that a line from a character didn't match with the scene afterwards, and I feel this is because of poor editing of the movie. But it is just a small mistake, so I think we could just ignore that. Another problem with the movie is the length which I think is longer than it should have been, and this is partly due to the extended fighting scenes in the final part of the movie, which I feel had been dragged too long. It would have been better for the movie has the final fighting scenes been cut short. Last but not least, I had to mention the complexity of the plot which can be a bit hard to follow at times. Its funny how the movie spend its time on the fight scenes a bit too much but lacking in explaining the details of its plot, where it should have been the other way around.
To sum it up, The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones is a surpise treat for me, as I didn't expect I would have enjoyed it as much as I did. With a good plot, interesting twists, great casts and amazing special effects, I certainly had a good time watching it, and I would recommend it to those who are skeptical of the movie to give it a try, as it is not a generic movie with predictable plot as many movies of this genre often associated with. Although with a few flaws, this film is totally movie-worthy.
A solid 4 stars out of 5 from me for The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones.
Images from Wikipedia and Yahoo! Movies.