“The Mortal Instruments: City of Bones” Review by Ashley Menzel

The Mortal InstrumentsThe Mortal Instruments: City of Bones features Lilly Collins as Clary, Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace, Kevin Zegers as Alec, Jemima West as Isabella, and Robert Sheenan as Simon. This movie has had a significant amount of buzz from certain communities because the books are very popular. Unfortunately, I have not had a chance to read the books, but I will start after seeing this movie.

The movie begins with Clary living her seemingly average  life and going about her business while living with her mother. She begins to draw a certain symbol and it is eluded that the symbol is very significant to the story-line, as her mother tries to hide the drawing she made on a post it note. Clary goes out with her friend Simon leaving her mom and her mom’s friend Luke. They stop at a club where Clary sees the symbol on a sign and it beckons her into the club.

Once inside the club, Clary sees Jace, a dark and mysterious person. Jace walks over to someone and stabs them with a sword, which prompts a normal response: a gut wrenching scream from Clary. Clary then realizes that no one can see Jace or what just happened but her. She leaves and goes home.

The next day she goes out and encounters Jace again at a coffee shop. Jace is explaining to Clary that here is a Shadow Hunter and there are demons in the world that he is set to kill and others can’t see him because they aren’t Shadow Hunters. During this time, she receives a frantic call from her mother telling her not to come home. She instead runs all the way home and is faced with one of the demons that was sent to get her mother. Jace comes in just in time to save her.

Jace takes Clary and Simon to the Institute for Shadow Hunters. They meet up with a few other Shadow Hunters, Isabella, Hodge and Alec. Clary learns that her mother was a Shadow Hunter who stole a cup from an evil corrupt Shadow Hunter named Valentine. Luke helped her mother and protected her.  The cup could create more Shadow Hunters. The people looking for the cup found her mother and that’s why the demons were at her house.

I will stop at that point in the plot because I do not want to give away the story for those of you who have not read the books.

My general opinion on the movie varies. I suspect that the movie up-ed the “Twilight factor” as I would like to call it, compared to the book. The movie was really entertaining and the action scenes were really good, but when it came to the scenes in which there was physical attraction or intended tender, emotional exchanges, it “Twilighted up” and became, in a way awkward and campy. This may have worked for some people, but for others, it was just painfully awkward.

The acting, in general was pretty great. Jamie Campbell Bower, whom I love for his role in Sweeney Todd, was perfect for this character. He was dark, mysterious, sexy, a real smart-ass and delivered his lines perfectly. I really enjoyed his performance in this movie. Lilly Collins’ performance in this movie, at most points, was pretty good, but the scenes in which there were close ups in slow motion or where she was to be viewed as sexy, were just plain awkward for me. The rest of the supporting cast was great, particularly Robert Sheenan as the gawky but sexy best friend.

Overall, Mortal Instruments: City of Bones really was a good entertaining movie with lots of action and a little something for everyone from campy love, to wise crack remarks, to pretty cool fighting and action scenes. It will certainly keep you entertained.

Overall Rating for Mortal Instruments: City of Bones: 7.5/10

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