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The Lovely Bones (2009)

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Centers on a young girl who has been murdered and watches over her family - and her killer - from purgatory. She must weigh her desire for vengeance against her desire for her family to heal.



(screenplay), (screenplay) | 2 more credits »
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Saoirse Ronan Through the Years

Take a look back at Saoirse Ronan's movie career in photos.

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Nominated for 1 Oscar. Another 10 wins & 45 nominations. See more awards »



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Cast overview, first billed only:
Carolyn Dando ...
Ruth Connors
Holly (as Nikki Soohoo)
Samuel Heckler
Brian Nelson
Principal Caden


A 14-year-old girl in suburban 1970's Pennsylvania is murdered by her neighbor. She tells the story from the place between Heaven and Earth, showing the lives of the people around her and how they have changed all while attempting to get someone to find her lost body. Written by Anonymous

Plot Summary | Plot Synopsis


The story of a life and everything that came after...

Motion Picture Rating (MPAA)

Rated PG-13 for mature thematic material involving disturbing violent content and images, and some language | See all certifications »

Parents Guide:




| |


Release Date:

15 January 2010 (USA)  »

Also Known As:

Desde mi cielo  »


Box Office


$65,000,000 (estimated)

Opening Weekend USA:

$116,616, 13 December 2009, Limited Release

Gross USA:

$43,818,839, 7 March 2010

Cumulative Worldwide Gross:

$93,621,340, 5 January 2013
See more on IMDbPro »

Company Credits

Production Co:

, ,  »
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Technical Specs


Sound Mix:

| |


Aspect Ratio:

2.35 : 1
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Did You Know?


The record Ray Singh holds in his hands when Ruth shouts at him, when she sees George Harvey, is the self-titled Black Sabbath debut LP. See more »


George Harvey had to have dug out a rather large amount of earth to build the underground room where he murdered Susie. When we see him luring Susie into the room there is no pile of dirt anywhere in view. He would have also had to use the dirt to fill in the hole after dismantling the room. Where did all of that dirt go? Additionally, he digs this deep underground room in one night, in the middle of winter, using only a shovel. This is impossible since, in Pennsylvania, the ground is typically frozen solid throughout the winter, and deep digging cannot be done without special equipment, such as a steam shovel. See more »


[first lines]
Susie Salmon: [voiceover] I remember being really small; too small to see over the edge of a table. There was a snow globe, and I remember the penguin who lived inside the globe. He was all alone in there, and I worried for him.
See more »


Featured in Troldspejlet: Troldspejlet julespecial (2013) See more »


First Light
Written by Brian Eno and Harold Budd
Performed by Brian Eno and Harold Budd
Courtesy of Virgin Records Ltd.
Under license from EMI Film & Television Music
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Frequently Asked Questions

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User Reviews

A lovely mess.
31 December 2009 | by See all my reviews

Director Peter Jackson's incoherent and ultimately pointless adaptation of the bestseller is just an intolerable mess from start to finish. Jackson manages to take a wonderful story about tragedy and grief and turn it to a carnival of incompetence and stupidity. Gone is the strong characterization that define each of the characters in the book and in its place is a sad spectacle of incompetence, with heavy handed CGI and bad scriptwriting that makes this film a real eye sore to sit through.

I don't blame any of the actors involved in the movie because you can see how badly this film was edited in post production, making certain characters look foolish with out any reason and certain scenes that don't make any sense what so ever. You can see that the actors are really trying to their best and for the most part, they are able to succeed but its manly due to their professionalism than what they are working with, which is not much. Stanley Tucci gives an ounce of humanity to his character but that's mostly because he's a great actor, not because of the role which he had to work with. His character is so badly written in this film that he comes more across as a cartoon bad guy than the monster that was in the book. Stanley Tucci manages to give the viewer glimpses of heavy psychoses with his character but he's left out there by himself with no support from his director or the script which fails him every step of the way. Rachel Weisz struggles hard with her role, which was short changed by the director in the editing room in post production because he could not handle the plot line that her character has. A plot line which gave the original book a sense of reality and made the reader look into themselves as human beings and question their own selves on how far their grief can go. Unfortunately Jackson proves that he's not a mature enough filmmaker to answer those questions and Weisz and the viewer are left with little to related to. Rachel Weisz does manage to convey her character's dilemma quite well despite Jackson's immaturity (Which of course is more about Weisz being a great actress than the material and director she is working with), and by doing this, Weisz manages to give the viewer a glimpse of how good this film could have been if you had a director who was mature enough to handle the realities that the book presented to its readers. Saoirse Roan is left with really nothing to do other than run wild in a computerize playground that is supposed to be limbo. She tries her best, she really does but one gets the sense that most of her dramatic scenes were left on the editing room floor during post production as well. We can't connect with this little girl and that's the biggest crime of all because she's the murder victim. The book give you a complete picture of who this little girl is and it give you a real human being to care for, too bad the script for the movie does not. Susan Sarandon is left with a shallow version of her character, who was quite no nonsense and soulful in the book but is reduced to becoming a sad and awkward comic relief device thanks to Jackson, who left almost all of her dramatic scenes with the family on the cutting room floor. Susan still makes her character soulful but again, that's because she's a great actress, not from any help from the director or the script. Mark Wahlberg struggles very hard as well with what he has to work with and he does make a great effort, unfortunately, his character comes across more befuddled than assuring and the heavy editing and lackluster script leaves him out to dried as well along with the rest of the cast in this movie.

No book can be faithfully adapted but they can at least have someone who care about its truthfulness to its core. Unfortunately," The Lovely Bones" does not have that and despite the game effort by all the actors involved, its the director who ultimately sabotages this movie with his unwillingness to face its hard truths and we are left with a film that is shallow to its core.

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