The movie had potential because the visual elements of the movie were great. The scenery and cinematography was great. This movie felt like it never quite lived up to its potential. It was filled with beautiful symbolism of light and goodness and love but never really reached that point that it was trying to get.
The beginning of the movie opens with Peter Lake (Colin Farrell) running away from Pearly Soames (Russell Crowe) and his group of cronies. Peter is then saved by a horse who he refers to in the entire movie as Horse.
Originality – 0 Banality – 1.
Anyway, Peter Lake is a criminal and he comes to a house where he intends to steal goods and other things. He meets a girl, who is dying from consumption, Beverly Penn (Jessica Brown Findlay). They quickly and awkwardly banter back and forth and Peter is smitten. When he comes back to check on her and see her, she is being accosted by Pearly and his boys. Peter swiftly rides up on Horse (sigh) and whisks her off to the magical house by the river that her family is vacationing. Pearly can’t venture to the house because SOMEHOW we are supposed to pick up that he is a demon of some sort. This whole plot line isn’t explained very well and it is just there. It plays a more significant role in the story, so I don’t understand why it isn’t addressed much or very well.
Peter and Beverly continue to fall in love and they go dancing on New Years. Meanwhile, Pearly finds an angel that is now on Earth and gets him to poison Beverly at the party. She is poisoned and has no symptoms. Her and Peter go back to the house and make love where she proceeds to die. DIE. After making love. I can’t even illustrate how awkward that scene was. It wasn’t even emotional but rather really creepy and awkward.
After Beverly dies, Peter takes her to the magical garden bed her little sister had set up for Peter to kiss her and save Beverly’s life. Needless to say, nothing happens and you are seriously depressed for the rest of the movie. After Beverly’s funeral, Peter goes and gets caught by Pearly who throws him into the river and we presume, he dies. Before he is thrown off the bridge, the Horse flies away. Miraculously, Peter is alive and drags himself to shore, but he is now in modern day New York City. He is lost and has no memory. Pearly begs Lucifer (Will Smith) to make him human so he can fight Peter Lake and Lucifer agrees and makes him human.
Peter meets Virginia (Jennifer Connelly) and Abby Gamely on his search to find out who he is. Pearly follows him and decides that he needs to stop Peter because he killed the wrong red head. Abby is the one that Peter is meant to save, not Beverly. Virignia believes that Peter can save Abby and they ride on Horse up to the house to escape Pearly.
Peter thinks that Pearly can’t follow them to the house but now because he is human, he can. Horse returns and kills all the bad men by breaking the ice and having them fall through it. Pearly is unharmed. Duh. There has to be a major fight scene.
Pearly and Peter fight, Pearly dies and Peter races with Abby to the magical garden. He kisses her and she wakes up, magically saved from cancer. Peter then says goodbye and they show him at Beverly’s grave site. He then flies off and joins the stars.
Like I said, there is a bunch of symbolism that has the potential to be really beautiful and deep, but the movie really just skims over it and what we are left with is a beautiful movie visually but it is lacking in all other departments. I am interested to see if the book is any better at explaining things than the movie.