Monday, October 10, 2011

I am Number Four

This is a pretty cool twist on the usual alien invasion story.  Hiding out on earth, trying to avoid the pursuit of interplanetary bounty hunters, "John Smith" makes every effort to blend in as a typical American teenager.  He is Number Four; the bounty hunters systematically hunt down his kind, killing them in order.  Number Three has just been killed, so he and his guardian take off for another part of the country, assuming new names and identities and covering their tracks as best they can.
Seems like the guys with the super powers get all the cute girls.
I couldn't help but wonder why they bothered enrolling John in high school.  He looks old enough to be out of school; just get him a job where he can be more anonymous than he can in the high school environment.  Or, for that matter, why get him a job at all?  In any case, he falls in love with a human, meets another student whose dad researched aliens and knows much about John's people, and eventually is found by the hunters.  I especially liked Number Six, who comes around to help Number Four against the hunters.

I am Number Four is good fun, and, even though it's a Disney-distributed product, it's produced by Michael Bay, who directed the Transformers movies and others, and directed by D. J. Caruso, who also directed Eagle Eye and Disturbia, both decent thrillers.  The effects and action meet up to their standards, and the story surpasses the teen angst and romance to move along to a satisfying, but possibly sequel-yielding, conclusion.

Bottom line, 2 1/2 stars.

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