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Sci-Fi And Kissing
billygoat10713 April 2013
The Host has an intriguing conceit. It is about a post-apocalypse where aliens take control on every human body then the remaining unpossessed humans fear them despite that these aliens only want peace. The story might have an idea that the humans could be the real enemy here or it's just both of them. The Sci-Fi bits are pretty interesting but it doesn't end there. It's based on a young adult novel so definitely there will be teenage hormones scattered around the context. It has romance that is suppose to save their world and change their lives, but once again just like any other young adult film, the romance is nothing more than a bunch of good looking people falling in love and doing romantic cliché stuff. Love may not be a problem to these stories but this romance is terribly empty. They're just making out and saying ridiculously cheesy lines. It would have been a fascinating idea but it just can't get away from its typical teen angst.

It is kind of similar to the recent young adult novel based film, Warm Bodies, except the antagonists in The Host are virtuous beings instead of ravenous monsters. It seems that both stories have the same morality. Humans are not the most peaceful beings either and maybe the order and mentality of both sides are the reason why they couldn't get along. When it goes to the romance, it says that Melanie and Wanda's love between the boys might revolt their world's condition. But it strays from its plot giving us a lousily told story and romance. Mostly the romance. It is noticeable that most of their "love" only rely on their lips. Which means they kiss a lot. We do not get to know much about why they care for each other, other than being one of the last normal human beings of their age. It is also filled with plot holes because of course it wants to appeal teens for the endless love that didn't even work. It is directed by Andrew Niccol who is somewhat a Sci-Fi expert but it looks like he's afraid that too much Sci-Fi than romance might disappoint these children. He could have been more indulgent.

The film has a solid cast but not all of them standout. Saoirse Ronan plays two roles here and she fills enough heart on both characters. Diane Kruger looks like she is enjoying playing the film's villain. The roles of Max Irons and Jake Abel seems to be only designed for kissing, slapping, and sometimes strangling, leaving William Hurt being the only likable gentleman of the picture.

The script explains some points of the concept which is fine in that way in spite of the plot holes but it gets terrible on the romance. There are dialogues that may get way out of hand, ends up being laughable. Even more laughable is one scene when the protagonist tries to wake up her subconscious by kissing her boyfriend. I don't know if I should blame anyone about it. I mean what choice does she have? Still, it's ridiculous. The film is at least stunning. It gets to explore something magnificent around. The exteriors serves a lot of intrigue to its world. It features shiny cars and choppers. Most of the action are well shot even though the action itself isn't really that interesting but everything in the film looks good.

The Host is not interesting enough. It thematically talks about peace and stuff. Well, you can make peace out of love but the film only shows kissing and I think there is more in love than just making out. Hormonally, this could be a perfect escapism for teens. An apocalyptic world about relationships of these good looking couples with fast awesome cars crashing on the road. But the story seems to offer more. Again, they are unable to show it because the only fan service for adaptations of teen books is to follow every single sequence from the book because they love comparing. Too bad, they could have also shown what's behind the words as well. The Host is another victim of a generic young adult film adaptation that doesn't understand much of the meaning of the story, and throw away the most bland of all romances.
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A great opening is drowned by the next two hours of slow, boring torture.
The_Film_Cricket29 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
"The Host" (from Chockstone Pictures) opens and closes with two scenes that contain elements of great science fiction. The problem is that what comes in the middle is one of the longest, chunks of torpor you'll ever experience. This movie is so slow that after a while you fear that the movie will go in reverse. Some movies dare you to look at the screen. This one dares you to stay in your seat.

To be sure, the movie has a fantastic premise. Imagine what might happen to Earth after "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" ended. Aliens from another world, called "souls," have come to Earth, taken over our bodies, flushed out both our personalities and our emotions and replaced them with their own. Imagine what happens if one operation doesn't go quite right. What might happen if the human personality was still inside a mind that had been replaced? That is the problem facing an alien host named Wanderer (Saoirse Ronan). She hears a voice in her head, the human voice of the person who previously occupied the body she has been given. The girl inside her mind is named Melanie, who still has memories of her human occupation. Soon those memories are being shared with Wanderer. She keeps this information from her betters and goes on the run. You can already guess their response.

This means we get to sit through a long series of laughable scenes in which actress Saoirse Ronan is forced to spend a lot of time talking to herself. We hear the alien speaking, and then we hear the human voice in her head. This works when she thinks she is about to die, but when Wanderer kisses a guy that Melanie can't stand, it becomes ridiculous. Ronan is a fine actress who has been better elsewhere. Watch her sometime in "Hanna" and her Oscar nominated performance in "Atonement." Here she's a real trooper, pulling off dialogue that is – to put it nicely – utterly ridiculous.

What develops from this plot isn't as ingenious as one might hope. Instead of exploring the possibly of this bizarre situation, "The Host" becomes one of those old familiar last-hope-for-humanity stories in which characters stand around talking about the situation in long, boring scenes of dialogue that should have remained on the cutting room floor. It opens with an effectively creepy leisure pace but then never picks up any steam. More on the plot will not be revealed here, suffice to say that after that great opening, the rest of the movie just kind of coasts.

"The Host" was written and directed by Andrew Niccol who has a talent for creating smart, inventive stories about people trapped by their circumstances. He wrote the great "Gattaca" (1997) about a natural-born man trapped in a world of synthetic humans. He wrote "The Truman Show" (1998), about a man trapped in his own reality show. He made "Lord of War" (2005), about a man who confronts the moral implications of the international arms deals that he puts into motion.

Niccol has some of those inspirations here but he is at the mercy of a script based on a book by Stephanie Meyers the popular writer of the "Twilight" series. This film, as with that series, is tilted toward something meaningful he can't seem to get the movie out of first gear. All of the characters look alike, talk alike, sound alike. They stand around and have long boring conversations about the same thing over and over and over and over. It's like the movie had a great launch and then spent the rest of its time driving around in a circle.
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Saoirse Ronan Shines Through a Mediocre Movie
freemantle_uk31 March 2013
Outside of The Twilight Saga, The Host is Stephanie Meyer's biggest novel and since the success of her supernatural series, her sci-fi novel has been adapted. There is a stronger cast and director for The Host, than the Twilight Saga, but how does it fare on its own terms? In the near future, Earth has been conquered by a parasitic alien race known as The Souls, who implant themselves into human bodies. Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) is a member of the human resistance who gets captured when she tries to protect her younger brother, Jamie (Chandler Canterbury). Melanie gets implanted with a Soul, called Wanderer, with the aliens planning to use Melanie's memories in order to find the human resistance. As Wanderer explores Melanie's memories, she finds out about Melanie's lover, Jared (Max Irons) and the pair plan an escape to the desert to find the resistance camp. Within the camp, Wanderer falls for another human, Ian (Jake Abel), causing problems for all of them.

Let's get the comparisons with Twilight out the way; yes there is a is love triangle (or should that be a love square?), The Host has a much better lead actress with Ronan then Kirsten Stewart and has a stronger supporting cast, with the likes of William Hurt and Diane Kruger. Andrew Niccol also gives the film more creditability behind the camera, acting as both the writer and director. The Host has interesting ideas that had many potential avenues to explore: but unfortunately it focuses more on the love story instead of all of the other aspects that could have lead to a much more meaningful film.

Ronan does rise above the material and gives very strong performance, as you would expect from her. This is even more remarkable that she has to argue and talk with herself, like Homer Simpson arguing with his own brain. Whilst there was the potential for themes of locked in syndrome as Melanie is trapped inside her own head, fighting to control her own body or going through a more literal, internal conflict. But it turns really silly when she argues with herself over two men, as opposed of having a much more difficult time of having a stronger conflict within her character. Ronan gets battered and beaten throughout the film as she gets hit, verbally abused and discriminated against and yet, still persevere through everything she's up against.

Whilst Ronan does a good job, the two men she is meant to be conflicted about are blank stales. Neither actor has much of a personality or character and they are very indistinguishable from each other. Ronan has no choice but to carry the film, considering that there was nothing going for the main love interests. At least Hurt and Kruger looked like they were having fun with their roles and were highly professional with their performances.

The idea of some sort of insider for an oppressive regime having an awakening, usually because a love interest and ends up turning against their own side has been used before. We have seen it in novels like Nineteen-Eighty Four, Fahrenheit 451 and We and films such as Metropolis and THX-1138. The Host does twist this age old idea in sci-fi, even if the execution was lacking.

The Host had a really strong premise with opportunities to explore multiple themes. They could have been themes about identity, the battle within the mind, split personalities, trust and how humans would survive after this invasion. But like Twilight, the film only touches on these concepts and puts all of its focus in the wrong places.

Much like Twilight, The Host has been criticised for its dialogue and being unintentionally funny. It is true that the film has some bad dialogue, but with some of the moments that were comical that had be intentional, with some of its moments of cultural clash and the bickering between Wanderer and Melanie. There are also some dark moments and there were really refreshing when they do come around.

Niccol is known for being an excellent writer director, making Gattaca and Lord of War and was nominated for an Academy Awards for his screenplay for The Truman Show. The Host is his first adaptation and it felt very rigidly close to the source material. What it results to is a bland experience that has episodic nature, having mini-plots with some developments, instead of a larger overarching story. Looks wise, the film is pretty flat and dull, using nothing but silver chrome for the alien technology, concrete and glass for the buildings and the humans are based in an empty desert environment. The cinematography and the special effects were solid but, Niccol was coasting and he is much more capable then this.

Currently on Rotten Tomatoes, The Host has an 12% rating and seemingly on course to be considered one of the worst films of 2013. Whilst it is hard to argue that The Host is a good movie, it is certainly not terrible: its crime is merely being mediocre, dull and forgettable.

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Wrong Marketing for a Pleasant Romance
claudio_carvalho20 July 2013
In the future, Earth has been invaded by aliens that take over the human bodies with their souls to live a perfect life in a world without crime, violence or war and with the environment restored. However, a few humans still resist to the invaders and they are chased by The Seekers.

When the teenager Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) that belongs to the resistance is captured by the leader of The Seekers (Diane Kruger), the alien Wanderer takes over her body expecting to find where the humans are hidden. But Melanie is still in her body and resists to the Wanderer and asks her to not tell to The Seeker what she has learned to protect her brother Jamie (Chandler Canterbury), her boyfriend Jared Howe (Max Irons) and her friends. Wanderer feels empathy for her and keeps the secret but The Seeker decides to put Wanderer in another body and take her body. Melanie asks Wanderer to flee to meet her friends in the middle of the desert.

When Melanie's uncle Jeb (William Hurt) finds her dehydrated in the desert, he brings Melanie to his hideout and calls her Wanda. He also protects her from a group led by Ian O'Shea (Jake Abel) but along the days, Ian falls in love with Wanda. Meanwhile The Seeker is obsessed hunting Wanda down in the desert.

"The Host" is a movie with wrong marketing that misguide the viewers that expect to see a tense or full of action sci-fi in the style of "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" and find a pleasant romance. The plot is developed in low pace disappointing a great number of viewers. But the story is actually beautiful despite the flaws.

The beginning is too rushed and there is a poor development of Melanie. It does not make sense why Jeb's group wants to kill Melanie when they find her in the desert if Doc is trying to save the humans removing the alien "souls" from them. If the aliens are so peaceful, why is The Seeker so evil? My vote is seven.

Title (Brazil): "A Hospedeira" ("The Host")

Note: On 12 March 2023, I saw this film again.
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Unexpectedly great
MoovyDawg20 March 2013
I was invited to "The Host" premiere last night and was very impressed by the film. I'm not a Twilight fan and have not read the book; If anything I was very suspect of this film and for whatever reason even felt negatively towards it (in an eye-rolling manner).

That said, I found myself walking out of the theater quite surprised. And yes, I still have my manhood and haven't transformed into "A Hoster" or a "Hostling" or whatever they may call the new breed. Honestly, I thought it had a wonderfully intriguing plot, good acting, and I was completely engaged. Yes, there was a bit of "romantic cheesiness" but it seemed to handle itself well and even poked fun of itself at times for this fact. I think if it wasn't for the excellent work of Niccol and Saoirse it might have easily slipped into laughable cheese, but amicably doesn't. Plenty of sophisticated action as well as thought-provoking concepts of love, loyalty, perseverance. A well rounded film overall. I especially enjoyed William Hurt but all the acting was on par.

Perhaps the Twilights were focused on teenagers but as a 30something guy I really liked it. I would definitely recommend giving this movie a chance to all. I'm just in the market now for a shiny silver Lotus.
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A decent sci-fi film for chicks
Laakbaar31 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
The current score on IMDb is too low. This is a fairly good film. It's worth about a 7.5. To see the true IMDb score, click the link for the number of users and look at the bell graph. Eliminate the 1s and 10s, and you'll see that what you're left with is a solid 7.

Saoirse Ronan was perfectly cast for this role as the sensitive, conflicted alien slowly gaining the trust of the human survivor group. Diane Kruger and William Hurt were also good. (Once again, I'm struck how so many Hollywood movies lately have non-American actors playing Americans. What's that all about?)

"The Host" is part of a new genre I would call "sci fi for chicks". If it bothers you to see a "soft" science-fiction film with love-sick young people, noble suicides, impossibly handsome young men, aliens with emotions, etc., don't go see this one. It's the old male v. female dilemma: Should we kill the hated aliens or coax them out and make friends with them?

There was not enough exposition at the start about the horrors of the alien invasion. The writers and producers seem to have assumed that moviegoers would understand why the characters want to "remain human" and why they would refer to a human-hosted alien as "it". Perhaps it was better explained in the book.

The device of Melinda's consciousness remaining fully alert, and Wanda and Melinda actually talking to each other for our benefit, might put some moviegoers off. (I'm not sure. I haven't read the other reviews.) However, once I suspended my disbelief, I was able to go with the flow.

They threw the male viewers a bone: Kruger and Ronan, to start. there were a few car and motorcycle chases (involving futuristic-looking chrome vehicles), and shoot outs. Hey, this is a Hollywood movie, after all.

The theme of humans hosting aliens is not original, but they took the concept in a different direction. The movie is slick and well made, but there were a few clichés and many, many aspects of the story that were glossed over, left unexplained or just not realistic. The survivors here were mostly young Hollywood pretty boys, not a ragged group of tough survivors (like on "Walking Dead", for example.)

Still, I appreciated some of the details of the "good alien" theme, like a society of honest and trustworthy aliens that doesn't need cash to function, or where they will simply give you their car if you need it, or where everyone drives at the speed limit. (God forbid we should have a society like that! Kill them!)

And I liked the part where the other seekers looked at the evil seeker (played by Kruger) and pointed out that she was getting a little too obsessed. After all the aliens saw themselves as the good guys. There are many species that coexist in symbiosis. It's interesting to think that maybe it would do our species good. This is actually a very old theme. There's not much difference between "her body has been taken over by an alien" and "she is filled with the Holy Spirit", or even "she is possessed by a demon".
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Better than the Twilight Films
stevendbeard16 April 2013
Warning: Spoilers
This is based on a book written by Stephenie Meyer -if her name sounds familiar , she wrote the 'Twilight' books . The story takes place after an alien invasion has occurred . The aliens are called 'Souls' and they take over a human's body-kind of like in 'The Invasion of the Body Snatchers' . Most of the planet has been taken over but there are a few survivors left in hiding . Saoirse is taken over at the beginning of the story but she puts up a fight- when she is talking out loud , it's the alien and when it's just the voice in her head it's Saoirse . Diane plays a Seeker-kind of like a policeman for the aliens- that is after Saoirse . William plays Saoirse's uncle . Max and Jake play the love interest for Saoirse. Max likes the human part and Jake goes for the alien side . I can see this becoming a new franchise for Stephenie . It's rated "PG-13" for sexuality-no nudity- and violence and has a running time of 2 hours & 5 minutes . I liked it and would buy it on DVD .
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Hit or Miss
cnazcona31 March 2013
This movie you will either enjoy or hate to be honest. If you want something that is action-packed and filled with cool sci-fi moments do not see this movie. Yes the movie is sci-fi but it's more about romance. It also is a tad slower.

However, the cast was fantastic and the script was beautiful. There were cheesy moments but it was still really sweet and well done. Basically what I am saying, is if you like romance with a twist go and see it! If you are expecting something like Gattaca, you will be disappointed.

I really loved the movie and felt it held up to the book. I usually hate movie versions of books but this was really good! If you like the book chances are you are going to like the movie. There are tweaks of course, but I thought they were mainly well done and helped get the same message across.
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A good movie, an okay book adaptation
I have read the book before the movie came out, but ill give a movie review separate from my book ideals of what it should have been.

As a movie on its own, its good. Not great. They have a little bit of action, and when i say little, i do mean little (under 5 minutes). There are some chrome vehicles, modern looking bland clothing etc. This movie is really about what makes us human. With a love triangle. Not nearly as dominant as it was in twilight. A very interesting premise for a movie. The acting was great, I really loved Jake Abel as Ian O'Shea. Dian kruger added some depth to her seeker attitude. Max Irons I found to be the weakest actor of the bunch, some of his lines were delivered poorly ("so help me"), but what really ties the cast in is William Hurt.He ties them all together, and ads some charm to his cliché lines that makes him very likable. Other noticeable actors were Scot Lawrence (Doc) and Francis Fisher (Maggie), but neither were given the screen time needed to develop any sort of charter, although it would have been ve3ry interesting to see. Nice scenery, and nice shots. The music (and some scene lacking) was great and added a indie touch to it.

Now, based off the book this movie kinda blew it. it was extremely different, cutting out characters and adding things that never were. I personally felt that by making all the Aliens dress the same, drive the same vehicles took away from the depth of the battle between the resistance and aliens. They were supposed to be creative, and find individualism in human hosts, which was very lacking. Instead the movie went in the direction of aliens turning humans into one mass of boring un unique sheep. I also wish they had kept a few of Wanda's experiences from other worlds in the movie, even as flash backs etc. This movie lacked as a sci-fi, as all we see are humans with contacts. It lacked as a romance as her love interest was gone for most of it.

If anything its a good movie about : "what is considered human? a and how shall we react that makes us human".

Not bad, i enjoyed it anyways, and my husband actually stuck around to watch it too lol./
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Better than most "blockbuster" movies out there.
kristina-baylon28 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I read The Host book when it came out and it became one of my favourites. Say what you will about Meyer's writing for Twilight, but The Host is different. For one, Wanderer is a very likable heroine.

I only heard about the movie version a week before it opened here. Didn't have high hopes for it, as I thought it would face the same fate as the Twilight series.. But I needed to see it to make the call...

And I was pleasantly surprised! It stayed true to the book - of course they had to cut out some scenes, otherwise it would've been very long - but I never felt like the cuts ruined the story.

One thing I will really praise is the acting. Unlike most movies today I thought The Host had a great cast and never did the acting seem unnatural. Even the cheesy lines were delivered well. Props to the kid who played Jamie, he made me cry! And Saoirse was brilliant in playing two personalities.

Anyway, I wrote this review (my first ever IMDb review ever) because I felt it was unfair that the movie was getting too much flak just for its relation to Meyer or Twilight. There are worse movies out there, just relying on special effects and pomp to cover up the lack of plot and characterisation. See the movie or read the book first before you judge this one.
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Mark-12930 March 2013
After years of low budget monster movies produced for cable, The Host is pretty refreshing. While the casual viewer might find the pacing slow and uneventful, character driven drama is the goal here.The story involves the aftermath of an alien invasion where parasitic beings take over the bodies and minds of their human 'hosts' The invasion is nearly complete when Melanie, one of the few remaking free humans is captured arnd given to an alien called Wanderer as a host. Melanie remains conscience and begins to fight her domination. This is an interesting, thoughtful film. Performances are top notch with the only problem being the physical similarity of three of the male leads. As noted elsewhere, this ads confusion on who is who in certain scenes. While there are no vast battles and the setup of the resolution is slightly confusing, I still greatly enjoyed this thoughtful film.
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Not at all what I was expecting...
willx-robinson9 October 2020
I'll be up front and say that I've not read the book and I knew there'd be a 'lovey-dovey' element to it but the plot intrigued me no end.

It's been nagging away at my mind since it came out but I'd put off watching it because I'd foolishly pre-decided I'd hate it based on the fact that I expected it to be more of a (go easy now) 'chick-flick'.

Now I'm more than happy to admit when I'm wrong and I'm equally happy to say that I was very, very wrong about this.

Admittedly the pace is a little slow-going but I have a media player that let's me watch stuff at 2x the normal speed so it seemed perfectly adequate for me and I loved it immensely.

So, I highly recommend it if you're able to speed it up if you find the going a bit slow.

Yes, there's love interests involved but it's so well written and filmed that it doesn't detract from the overall theme and it would be a shallow film without.
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Boring boring boring!!
rickang29 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
4 of us went along to this movie yesterday after thinking it looked action packed from the trailer. The only action scenes were the ones you saw in the trailer!!!

All the back and forth talking between Mel and Wanderer drove us nuts!! It felt like we were listening to a couple of young teenagers arguing whether to kiss or not to kiss the boy! Shiny silver cars, bikes and helicopters did nothing to excite us as there was no exciting car chases!! It was just a big dull teenage aimed romance!!

Im so glad we had free passes to see this movie or we would have all asked for our money back!
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So many problems
SnoopyStyle25 September 2013
An alien race of parasites have conquered the world. They took over the bodies of most humans with just a few who has escaped joining. Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) is captured and an alien called Wanderer is put into her body. Only Melanie's mind survives, and the two coexist as they search for the last pure humans. Diane Kruger plays the Seeker who wants to root out the last human resistance.

The concept is problematic at best. It seems unlikely that the humans could survive or that the aliens wouldn't be able to root them out. And it's ridiculous to have so much screen time worrying about who loves Melanie and who loves the Wanderer when the world has been conquered. Also it seems so ridiculously simple to fool the aliens. And the tension in the movie is drained away when the aliens declare that they aren't going to look for those free humans. The whole thing just can't hold. And I haven't even discussed how slow this was.
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Immature & unentertaining
drael6412 April 2013
Warning: Spoilers
I wish I wad watched virtually anything else. The acting was largely very poor, the script/plot itself was largely simply a love quandrangle with a sci-fi basis (alien possession/parasites). Which might have still been okay, if the emotional energy, acting, and plot weren't so very childish.

It's basically more teen romance, it carries a tone, such that it may have been written by a teenage girl.

If your a teenage girl, maybe around 13 you might love this movie. Otherwise, don't waste your time.

I am not entirely sure what else to say. I guess if this movie where the only plot lined story on at 3am in the middle of the night, when you have insomnia, then it might be worth watching, if your quite bored and have little else to do. The special effects are good enough. The setting is semi-absurd.

The aliens themselves lack character, culture, definition, and the human characters equally lack emotional depth, character definition.

There seems to be little in the way of character development either, and the "conflict" that normally drives the storyline was pretty inconsistent, and basically non-existent, same goes for the resolution and climax of the story.
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"The Host" Is Half-Baked Hokum!!!
zardoz-1330 March 2013
Warning: Spoilers
For the record, I enjoyed the "Twilight" film franchise and even read the first novel. Author Stephanie Meyer's vampires versus giant wolves epics amused, excited, and delighted with surprises galore. My favorite was "Eclipse," but I loved all those lightweight but memorable horror chillers. Unfortunately, Meyer's doesn't deliver much of anything with her latest bestseller "The Host" that she produced with writer & director Andrew Niccol of "The Truman Show" fame. Ostensibly, "The Host" synthesizes the "Invasion of the Body Snatchers" movies with aliens who have luminous eyes like the urchins in "Children of the Damned." Worse, Niccol provides little in the way of actual conflict in this pursuit of the human with an alien inside her who has no control over her host. The action occurs after Earth has been dominated by an alien race known as 'the Souls.' The Souls emerge as benevolent compared with the usual malignant alien marauders lurking in other cinematic galaxies. Indeed, these intelligent aliens don't pose much of a threat to Earthlings. Instead of wanting to wipe out mankind as the aliens in the green-themed aliens in the Keanu Reeves' "Day the Earth Stood Still," the Souls intervened because they felt humans were too violent for our own good. Consequently, they subject humanity to a form of house arrest, except they occupy our bodies and erase our memories. Moreover, they are hopelessly polite and immaculate in their white uniforms. They patrol the planet in chrome plated Lotus sports cars, hover overhead in Bell Jet Ranger helicopters, and straddle shiny motorcycles. They don't lie, and they have eradicated the obstacles to a long and prosperous life. Wars are no longer waged, diseases afflict nobody, and everything is for the better, except that these aliens subjugate each human with one of their own Souls. Since I haven't read "The Host," I cannot fill in the holes about how Earth succumbed to these friendly enemies. The problem with this unique but hilarious science fiction saga is that the Soul we see the most of is naive to the point of idiotic.

Our heroine is Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan of "The Lovely Bones"), and she struggles to protect her little brother Jamie (Chandler Canterbury of "Repo Men") from the Souls who are tracking both of them. She leaves her younger sibling concealed under a desk and resorts to diversion. Scrambling away in another direction, this fleet-footed twentysomething leads the aliens away from Jamie. She doesn't get as far as she would have liked. Instead, she crashes headlong through a window and plunges to what should have been her demise. Miraculously, despite smashing every bone and rupturing every organ, Melanie survives and the Souls heal her with their technology that resembles containers of chic personal body deodorant. They introduce one of their own parasites into Melanie's body to learn where the last pockets of resistance on planet Earth remain. The mind control that the Souls have perfected, however, is dealt a setback with Melanie. She refuses to kowtow to the alien inserted in her body known to us as 'the Wanderer.' Inexplicably, after the Wanderer has exposed most of Melanie's memories, she decides to obey Melanie when the latter insists that she flee from her comrades. Apparently, the Wanderer is not too enamored of her own race so she helps Melanie commandeer a car without hurting the vehicle's owner. The owner willingly gives up his car and assures Melanie and the Wanderer that it will transport them for many miles. Our heroine escapes and later crashes the car on a deserted stretch of highway crossing the desert. Eventually, they trudge through the desert until she finds the last known humans. Of course, when Melanie finds her family, everybody regards her with downright suspicion because she has those eyes.

"The Host" spends most of its time with Melanie and the Wanderer competing for supremacy of the brain. When the Wanderer kisses and/or allows her old boyfriend Jared (Max Irons of "Dorian Gray") kiss her, Melanie reacts with considerable rage and jealousy. She forces the Wanderer to slap Jared. Jared feels better now because he knows some visage of Melanie has survived the possession. Later, Ian (Jake Abel of "I Am Number Four") falls in love with Wanda and doesn't want to see any harm come to her. At this point, "The Host" degenerates into a third-rate, unintentionally asinine comedy. The one-thousand year old alien inside Melanie's body doesn't understand the strong emotions that humans display. Basically, what we have in a triangle romance. Two guys and one gal who suffers from a dual-identity complex constitute this ridiculous romance. One dude interrupts the Wanderer to smooch and then Melanie pulls the strings so she can put a lip-lock on her squeeze. This is almost as funny as one of the real-life Siamese twins in the 1930 movie "Freaks" turning her nose up to her other half's boyfriend. Presumably, "The Host" was designed for girls attending junior high because our heroine doesn't let anybody get her hot and bothered. Meantime, the Seeker (Diane Kruger of "National Treasure") and her crew are doggedly searching for the Wanderer/Melanie. Not surprisingly, the Seeker discovers the humans who harvest grain in a hollow mountain with the use of gigantic mirrors. Like the survivors in the television series "Falling Skies," the last humans on Earth scavenge for anything they need until they kill themselves rather than be taken alive and has a parasite slipped into their heads.

Mind you, as bad as "The Host" remains, this is one of the few sci-fi films where the future doesn't seem as dystopian as it generally is. Ultimately, "The Host" amounts to half-baked hokum.
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one of the best movies i seen as far as story
siiixbox13 May 2013
its so weird that movies that get great review i usually dislike or just find meh, this is an other example, i watched yesterday "the host", in my opinion one of the best movies in the last year, yet it got terrible reviews, its been over a day and the movie is still in my head.. sure its not as flashy then oblivion, but those movies i watch and an hour later completely forget about it, $100000000 special effects are great, but no money can make up for a great story.. now sure maybe the book is better, but a book is ALWAYS better, get over it ;) its not a book, its a movie. the host became one of my favorite movies of all times
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Worst Film Ever
abdelgulabkhan31 March 2013
Wow this film is so bad in every department OK so we got a budget of £1000 so lets just make aliens have blue circle contact lenses and give a girl 2 minds The effects in this film are so cheap The story is rubbish Aliens driving around in Chrome plated Lotus Elise why would aliens choose Lotus Elise??? Aliens who want peace wiping out mankind?? This film is flawed in every department People were walking out of the cinema in Disgust waste of my money and time Why did a director try to make this load of rubbish another romance story that fails in all areas copying twilight the romance is rubbish there is no passion just boring I really hate this film Rotten tomato all the way At least have a good script and good story. This film was just boring all the way Hardly any action at all Better to just watch the trailer it is more entertaining than the film
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A Nutshell Review: The Host
DICK STEEL31 March 2013
This is Stephenie Meyer's other book outside of her Twilight series, and what makes it a tad interesting is the science fictional element which is a spin out of Invasion of the Body Snatchers, combined with romance that only Meyer knows how to get through its convoluted best with love triangles, or rectangles now. It's a fairly troubled film project with directors coming and going, until Andrew Niccol, famed for Gattaca and In Time, came to seal the deal at the helm. Having responsibility to adapt Meyer's story for the screen, this and Saoirse Ronan's participation as the lead, will pique interest, at least at first.

What gave this film a leg up, is its science fiction premise. The resources of Earth are now being used wisely and perfectly, and voilà, the planet is thriving once again, reversing the pollution and muck that us humans have been responsible for. Homo-sapiens are still around though, but now our consciousness have been replaced by "Souls", alien lifeforms who thrive by co-opting the bodies of the planetary hosts, and given that they're peace loving, and scientifically more advanced with a penchant for all things chrome, and for standardization to cut waste - all cars are ferraris and bikes are ducatis - they are now rulers of the planet, with all that's left is to eradicate the remaining human beings.

Wait a minute, peace loving, and yet annihilation (through pain free means no doubt) going hand in hand? Yes, something's basically wrong here, but the narrative doesn't dwell too much on this. The aliens come with different roles and names that suit their functions, so it's left to Seekers (Diane Kruger) to weed out the remaining pockets of resistance, and in doing so we begin with the capture of Melanie (Ronan), whose almost dying body in a desperate suicide attempt meant the assimilation of the Wanderer/Wanda Soul into her body, only for Melanie to prove to have a stronger mind that first though, and so two minds inhabit the same body, leading to, well, as much clichés as possible.

Ronan probably have her work cut out for her, and she excels in her role of split personality really well. It's like Gollum talking to himself, except that here we're reliant on voice overs and her deadpan expression when Melanie becomes the one who's talking/thinking/directing the body's actions. Adversary is set up with The Seeker wanting Wanderer to dig deep into the recesses of Melanie's memory to fish out the hiding place of her rebel friends and family, while Melanie plays hard ball in trying to block those images out. As it progresses, having two minds sharing the same body meant something going to give, and in this case, it's basically schizophrenia as the two ladies for quite the perfect sisterhood in due course.

But to get there, here's where Meyer brings out the gravy train for her Twilight fan base. It's not enough to have two hot guys falling in love with one girl now, but having two hot guys falling in love with one girl possessing two minds. The conundrum here is of course the sharing of one single body, and like Siamese Twins, you really can't separate one consciousness from the other when things get a little bit frisky. While this may be a little bit of a situation to handle both emotionally and physically, how it played out tend to be unintentionally comedic, and this meant losing impact to the entire relationship between the characters, whom you won't feel much for, and only made worse.

The strengths of the film lay in its premise, but unfortunately that wasn't exploited much to build up the world that it's now is. Its focus on romance was inevitable, but this became the lowest denominator without real depth, and hankered much of the plot with cheesy dialogue and situations that bordered on the absurd, sometimes conveniently writing out the Melanie consciousness without any attempt at explanation, sort of like a light switch that can be turned on or off, with the switch controls being lip locks and plenty of caressing to elicit a response.

If only the same can be said of the film's less interesting bits. Max Irons and Jake Abel as the male lovers now become the rare flower vase whose presence were really rote and as superficial as can be, while Emily Browning's uncredited star appearance only pointed to the promise of a sequel if this could make decent amounts at the box office should Meyer's fan base turn up for the party. Even if Andrew Niccol was at his best, which he was not, couldn't have saved this one.
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In theory, this should have been a hit....
A_Different_Drummer17 January 2014
Warning: Spoilers
... but in theory bumblebees should not be able to fly, so forget theory. Written and directed by one-hit wonder Andrew Niccol (Truman Show) this was an easy pitch to a producer NOT so much because of the oh-so-clever concept but (this reviewer suspects) because there is no serious violence, nudity or foul language ... which meant a guaranteed cable and ancillary sale. Again -- this is the point of the review -- the idea of host still alive after "alien possession" AND STILL TALKING INCESSENTLY (ad nauseam) to the parasitic invader must have seemed really brilliant on paper, but, on film, it gets old really fast. (Speaking of old, nice to see William Hurt, formerly one of the hottest stars of his generation, working, and not too badly at that). The actress upon whose shoulders the fate of this production was placed -- Saoirse Ronan -- is a very interesting personality. Having seen more films that I care to recount, it is indeed rare to find an actress who, even by the end of the film, you cannot decide whether you feel empathy towards -- or not. That quality alone -- call it an "anti-quality" if you like - is rare, and could actually help her career. And here is a final shout-out to Bausch and Lomb (assuming they read IMDb) - start mass producing those "I AM AN ALIEN" contacts like, yesterday, because you will sell millions. They are hot!
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Wow! This movie was UNIMAGINABLY AWFUL! (Save your money!)
discard00130 March 2013
First of all... I'm not some high-brow snooty movie critic type: I enjoyed "Olympus has Fallen" which was pure escapist action/violence/nonsense. I can also 'do' camp: I enjoyed "I am Number Four" and I'm pretty sure there won't be an "I am Number Five" (even though I WOULD go to see it). And I love (and essentially live for) science fiction. So it was because of the Sci-Fi angle that I had SOME hope of at least an enjoyable time.

I'm posting this review TRULY and ONLY to warn you.

This was one of those movies where the director also did the screen writing, which is rarely a good idea. It turned out that the "dialog" in this atrocity was nearly beyond tolerance: NOTHING left to the imagination, nothing left unsaid, nothing implied. The actors might as well have been faceless walking sticks. Who needs to act when you're saying everything you want the audience to feel and understand and think? The special effects were okay, and acting was okay.

If I had anything else that I might have done (I already finished my taxes and don't need any dental work) I would have left part way through the "event". And because I really didn't want to ruin any one else's experience, I was a bit uncomfortable that my and my girlfriend's audible groans throughout the movie might have been doing that. (Other's may have been thinking... why don't those two just leave?) And we should have. But you know how sometimes a train wreck is morbidly fascinating? You get the idea. Really. DON'T LET ANYONE TALK YOU INTO SEEING THIS! You've been warned.

/Steve. (@SGgrc)
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This Stephanie Meyer Adaptation is a Passionless, Thoughtless, and Unintentionally Hilarious Science-Fiction Romance
generationfilm29 March 2013
Stephanie Meyer, a writer who stretches the generosity of the term novelist, has found her niche of success in the literature world aiding in the devolving quality of stories that are incredibly shallow and involve characters that are far beyond pedestrian. The Twilight series as it stands is not only an abomination of literary indulgence but also a lackluster film series that has lowered the standard for young adult entertainment and through its popularity has infected decision making to give us more of the same ruined formula. It's difficult to imagine that Stephanie Meyer could produce something even duller than her pinnacle of absurdity in Twilight but she has succeeded tenfold with her sloppy blend of romance and science-fiction in The Host. Adapted for the screen and directed by Andrew Niccol, The Host is an extraordinarily obtuse romance that teeters between youthful ignorance and unintentional hilarity on a pendulum of silliness. There is absolutely zero depth to be found in this ridiculous teenage romp disguised as an alien-invasion film as it strains your patience for stupidity and your exposure to shallow adolescent thinking. While The Host could have been an intriguing contemplation on the clash between utopia and freedom, with a touch of romance to give it a little edge, it's a wasted opportunity and an insult to the thought provoking nature of the science-fiction genre. Even the romance aspect of the film fails to inspire the minutest of emotions due to its disordered and passionless execution as though it was a love story told from the perspective of an actual alien who never had genuine contact with human emotion. It's less of an Invasion of the Body Snatchers and more of an Invasion of the Emotion Snatchers in more ways than the intended purpose. Adapting a Stephanie Meyer book is already an uphill battle with intelligence and reason but when you add in the laughable talents of director Andrew Niccol the result is a mixture of a painfully languid dispassionate romance with an unsuspenseful and moronic science-fiction film containing dialogue so bad it's already ripe for continuous parody.

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Shouldn't This One Be Re-Titled "The Hostess"? (The Hostess Twinkie, that is)
strong-122-47888528 July 2014
Warning: Spoilers
From my perspective, The Host played out very much like a standard Made-For-TV movie. I think that this rather sloppy, Sci-Fi, soap opera actually might have benefited some from commercial breaks in order to help alleviate all of the insufferable monotony that prevailed throughout the whole clichéd ordeal.

This film (in a roundabout sort of way) was just a very silly and mega-shallow Romeo & Juliet story where, this time around, dear-Juliet had the advantage of a split-personality disorder. And this, of course, conveniently allowed her to juggle 2 pretty-boy Romeos without the baggage of guilt or the stigma of being looked upon as a two-timing slut.

If nothing else, The Host's most damaging mistake was to take all of its meaningless drivel way-way too seriously. This, in turn, caused the story's mighty solemn tone to backfire upon itself, thus rendering many of its straight-faced situations as being just laughable parodies of themselves.

The Alien-Souls (with their blind belief in their practise of kindness & love by all) were definitely one of this film's biggest and most hypocritical jokes of all.

As we all soon find out, these deluded ones were certainly just as prone to violence and murder as were the humans (not to mention that they were still polluting the environment with the continued use of motor vehicles).

And speaking about "stupid" aliens - It made no sense to me why these "Souls" chose to assimilate into Earth's most dominant species of all - us humans. For all of the endless troubles and treachery we humans have caused over these many centuries, wouldn't assimilating into cats or dogs have been a helluva lot wiser and sensible choice, in the long run.

About the only thing that truly impressed me about The Host was its undeniably awesome setting in New Mexico's vast desert wasteland.

P.S. - It really killed me when Wanda, so admiringly, told Melanie "You are the purest soul I've ever met." (Ha! Spare me!)
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A film that can be as good as you want it to be
lauluisa5 May 2013
I haven't read the Twilight books or this one. I'm over forty after all. I have seen the Twilight movies, though. As for Andrew Niccol - Gattaca is one of the most beautiful movies I have ever seen. And The Host rates way, way higher than those Twilights in my mind. There's none of the teenie-weenie chit-chat and bickering that really repulsed me in Twilight. And my question of why would a centuries old vampire prefer teenage girls was not answered there. This movie is different, it has none of the hole-filling that Twilight is filled with. Yes, the guys of the Love Triangle are pretty one-sided, but in a world with no education system intact one cannot expect everyone to be as well-read as Ethan is in Beautiful Creatures. I delayed watching The Host for a few weeks, as I was gathering my strength to suffer through yet another Twilight, but there was no such suffering - instead it was a very well-balanced film, that used minimalist - and Gattaca-like - visuals to describe a new world where body snatching has become mainstream. And it got me thinking: how old was Paul Atreides when he became The Emperor? OK, slightly older. But his son, Leto, when he took on The Golden Path? About the same age as our characters here. Oh, and what about Alexander The Great - how old was he when he had already taken most of the - then - known land as his real estate? Invasion of the Body Snatchers might be a benchmark to judge other similarly-themed movies by, but The Host rates quite high on my scale there. As for the casting, Saoirse Ronan was wonderfully present in my opinion and William Hurt is simply one of my favourite actors. Overall, The Host is about the "little things" like relationships and, as such, it is a film about us all.
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Great deception.
thierry_motion17 April 2013
I came to see this film because of Andrew Niccol (Gattaca is my favorite movie),a bit afraid of Stephanie Meyer's work but still open minded to a quite good SF plot with some romance. But I found myself in front of a terrible teen-movie. And not the good kind like we used to see in the 90's. Artistic work is completely absent. The world shown in this film is interesting but not described sufficiently.

I found that the narrative form was quite ineffective and the dialogs were so dull that not a single piece of "philosophy" can be extracted.

On the top of all that, the love story is foretold and occupies the 3/4 of the scenes. And the acting (even Saoirse Ronan that already did very good job in other movies) was so lame, you can't relate to the characters.

In my opinion, this film lacks of an audacious directing to be good. There was material but it has been spoiled.

If you're over 15, I don't recommend this film. If you're under, well I don't recommend it neither, but I'll understand if you find some pleasure to see it.
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