Image copyright © by Marcus Trahan

The Lovely Bones


I really liked the book. The movie, not so much. I often think that some books simply should not be made into movies, and this is one of them. Our narrator, a 14-year-old girl, tells us up front that she’s been murdered, and she is in some sort of limbo Heaven. In a book you can imagine this. In a movie, you see somebody else’s vision, and of course the SFX are amazing and beautiful, but there’s entirely too much of it, they take over the picture. That, and the fact that Peter Jackson and his co-screenwriters chose to eliminate some critical plot and character elements, and then to ramp up the tension so it looks more like a teenager-in-peril thriller than the odd, fascinating exploration of life after death and the horrible effect such a murder has on a family that the book was. It’s a shame, too, because Stanley Tucci does an amazing performance with the little he has to work with, and Saoirse Ronan is great, too, just as she was in Atonement.