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Film Review – The Host

Director: Andrew Niccol
Screenplay: Stephanie Meyer (Novel), Andrew Niccol
Cast: Diane Kruger, Max Irons, Saoirse Ronan
Genre: Science/Fiction Romance
Rating: * and a half
Venue: Ster Kinekor Maerua Mall Cine 3

Hosting nothing but holes
Based on a science fiction novel by Stephanie Meyer, The Host is a futuristic movie in which mankind has been colonized by the ‘souls’, a parasitic alien race which inhabits human bodies and erases the original occupants leaving no trace of their former identities.
The film follows Melanie, one of the last free humans alive on her quest to take care of her family while she is stuck in the mind of a character named Wanderer (Saoirse Ronan). Wanderer still hears the voice of Melanie because she still has human tendencies and has memories of when she was a human. Those memories result in rebellion by Wanderer much to the disapproval of her fellow ‘Souls’. She then goes on the run.
This is when the film gets more confusing than entertaining. There is the alien voice of Wanderer and then that of Melanie both of which are voiced by Ronan. Wanderer has to kiss a boy that Melanie does not like, it is the battle of the voices when this happens. If this scene won’t give you a headache it will most definitely make you dizzy. It is hard to follow what it is that the writers and director are trying to do with this scene.
Fortunately all is not doom and gloom as Melanie meets Jared, another human, and the two fall in love. Melanie risks everything and is chased by a group of Souls whose mission is capturing rogue humans.
This is a terrible adaption of a novel, the idea behind it is great and so is the opening scenes of the film. I have grown up with my father bombarding my head with all this talk about how aliens will take over mankind but that aside, ‘The Host’ is a terrible movie. It’s the typical ‘I am a rebel princess warrior’, ‘boy meets girl’ type of film, only that it does nothing for those that have the ‘I am a rebel princess warrior’ spirit or the hopeless romantics like myself. The movie is slow, and dead.  I strongly doubt that this is what Stephanie Meyer hoped for when she thought of her novel on screen. After seeing ‘The Twilight Saga’ it is so hard to believe that the stories were written by the same author. The blame is not on her but on Niccol. The actor’s characters have no chemistry whatsoever despite the film having a good storyline. Diane Kruger’s character as ‘The Seeker’ lacks oomph!. She is tedious to watch. There is very little action, which makes the film a drag to sit through. The only highlights about this film are the good looking boys otherwise everything else is a flop. This should have just remained  a book. I am pretty sure our imaginings about the story would be better than the actual film.
I cannot count the number of times I cringed while watching ‘The Host’. The standard this movie sets, is so low, some of my heels are higher. Such a total waste of time and energy. The only thing ‘The Host’ is hosting is a truck load of disappointment and a cheesy love story.

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