ABC Film Challenge – Sci-Fi – I – I Am Number Four (2011)
Director: D.J. Caruso
Writer: Alfred Gough, Miles Millar, Marti Noxon (Screenplay) Jobie Hughes, James Frey (Novel)
Starring: Alex Pettyfer, Timothy Olyphant, Teresa Palmer, Dianna Agron, Callan McAulife
Plot: Aliens and their Guardians are hiding on Earth from intergalactic bounty hunters. They can only be killed in numerical order, and Number Four is next on the list. This is his story.
Runtime: 1 Hour 51 Minutes
There may be spoilers in the rest of the review
Story: I Am Number Four starts as we meet John (Pettyfer) who is living with Henri (Olyphant) who to the outside world is his father. When in fact he is an assigned guardian from their home planet. That is preparing him and keeping him safe from the Mogadorians that are hunting down the children from the planet. That are destiny to help fight evils.
With John and Henri looking to start a new life. They know they are going to be the next target, being Number Four of the specialist skilled members. Now John just wants a normal life with the high school experience. But now he will need to step up and fight for his life and others around him.
Thoughts on I Am Number Four
John is meant to be keeping a low profile, with his life in danger, but also being key to fighting to protect the world in the future. One of the last remaining of his alien species that have been numbered with different abilities, with him being Number Four. The problem he faces is being a teenager that wants to experience the world. Make friends, struggling to keep his head down, he will need be prepared for the incoming battles.
Henri is the protector guardian of John, he has been hiding their footprint and preparing John for the battles. Knowing how important he will be for the future. Number 6 has been tracking down John, knowing that together they could be stronger. Though we don’t see much from this character.
Sarah and Sam are two outsiders that John befriends, that have their own reasons to help him. Sam having a connection to the bigger battle coming for John. We have the villains as the Mogadorians. That have been hunting for the super soldiers who having been hunting down and killing the different numbers. They are ruthless, but we don’t learn too much about them.
Alex Pettyfer does a solid enough job in the leading role, but he does always look to old for the high school role. Timothy Olyphant is good in the mentor role, where he gets to show how his calming presence is always in the film. Teresa Palmer does well, but doesn’t need to do too much, with the rest of the high school characters being performed well.
The story here follows a teenager from another planet that is trying to live a normal life on Earth. Where he is being hunted down by an enemy which is looking to destroy the Earth. Looking to take out the threat the teenager and other numbers could bring them.
This is easily being designed as the beginning of a franchise that we never got. It shows how the character John or Number Four is learning more about what is to come. With Number Six already in the battle. We do seem to spend more time with the high school politics over the bigger picture. But you would like to imagine that would have come from the later films in a franchise.
Action/Sci-Fi – The action is more focused for a bigger fight in the final act, which will play into the sci-fi styles of what the powers the characters have.
Settings – The film is set in a small Ohio town. Which is showing us how John and Henri are trying to stay off the map in a small town.
Special Effects – The effects are used well when it comes to the big fights. Even if they just turn into the big monsters fighting, which do feel lifeless at times.
Scene of the Movie – Final battle.
That Moment That Annoyed Me – Too much focus on the high school material.
Final Thoughts – I Am Number Four is everything a franchise starter wants to be, only it doesn’t seem to create a bigger enough villain that could carry on through the franchise, if we ever got a part two.