I AM NUMBER FOUR
Small Town Values and Sci-Fi Action
Release Date: February 18, 2011
Starring: Alex Pettyfer, Timothy
Olyphant, Dianna Agron, Teresa
Palmer, Jake Abel, Callan
Genre: Science Fiction/Teenage Drama
Audience: Teenagers and adults
Runtime: 104 minutes
Pictures/Walt Disney Company
Director: D.J. Caruso
Executive Producer: Chris Bender, J.C. Spink,
Steven Spielberg, David Valdes
Producer: Michael Bay
Writer: Albert Gough, Miles Millar,
Address Comments To:Robert Iger, President/CEO
The Walt Disney Company (Walt Disney Pictures, Touchstone Pictures, Hollywood Pictures)
Rich Ross, Chairman, Walt Disney Studios
500 South Buena Vista Street
Burbank, CA 91521
Phone: (818) 560-1000
The story follows an alien who resembles a human and uses the name John Smith while hiding on earth. He is the fourth of nine specially-gifted creatures from another planet, who have been sent to Earth to hide from an evil ruling class of enemy aliens called Mogs. The Mogs want to utterly vanquish and pillage Number Four’s planet, and Mog warriors are out to kill each of the nine specially-gifted young aliens in numerical order, as part of a plan to wipe out their race and prevent them from re-taking their planet.
On earth, Number Four is protected by Henri, a fellow humanoid alien who pretends to be his father. The two are on the run from the evil aliens. They are nearly killed in Florida and wind up relocating to a small town called Paradise, Ohio. There, Henri wants to meet up with a UFO researcher who has mysteriously disappeared, in the hopes of finding quicker contact with the other remaining members of the nine heroic aliens. But, the researcher has disappeared, leaving his son Sam (McAuliffe) to be raised by a bullying stepfather and harassed by school bullies.
Number Four befriends Sam and falls in love with Sarah, a sweet girl with a happy family who used to date the school bully. As Number Four experiences true love for the first time, he must fight off the bully and, more importantly, the evil aliens who have once again found his new town and are prepared to kill him at any time.
I AM NUMBER FOUR jumps between its science fiction plot and high school romance and drama. This sometimes leaves an awkward mix in which action scenes seem to come crashing in out of nowhere. Yet, the action is fun and the effects are impressive. More importantly, this is the rare case of a sci-fi action movie in which the human elements are actually better drawn. Thus, the teenage characters are positive, mostly clean-mouthed and engage in genuine romance rather than being portrayed as sex-obsessed.
While the movie suffers from a deus ex machina aspect to its climactic battle, the movie sets itself up for a sequel that will likely be hitting multiplexes a couple years down the line.
All told, I AM NUBER FOUR is fun entertainment for teenagers and anyone who doesn’t over think the plot holes, while being morally sound enough for most viewers. The biggest objection is the action violence and frightening appearance of the evil aliens and their animals. Even so, overall, despite some intense action and brief foul language, I AM NUMBER FOUR could be fun for many media-wise moviegoers seeking effective popcorn fare.
I AM NUMBER FOUR jumps between science fiction, teenage romance and drama. This is sometimes awkward, with action scenes coming out of nowhere. Yet, the action is fun, and the effects are impressive. More importantly, the teenage characters are positive, mostly clean-mouthed and engage in genuine romance rather than lewd activity. All told, despite some intense action and brief foul language, I AM NUMBER FOUR could be fun for older media-wise moviegoers.