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The Host (2013)

  PG-13 HD Closed Captioning

Andrew Niccol

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Plot Summary

From Stephenie Meyer, the creator of the worldwide phenomenon The Twilight Saga, comes this daring and romantic thriller based on The New York Times #1 bestselling novel. When an unseen enemy threatens mankind by taking over humans’ bodies and erasing their minds, Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) risks everything to protect the people she cares about most, proving that love can conquer all in a dangerous new world. The Host is a passionate and powerful epic love story co-starring Diane Kruger, Jake Abel, Frances Fisher, Max Irons and William Hurt.

Rotten Tomatoes Movie Reviews

TOMATOMETER

8%
  • Reviews Counted: 118
  • Fresh: 10
  • Rotten: 108
  • Average Rating: 3.6/10

Top Critics' Reviews

Rotten: Dopey, derivative and dull, "The Host" is a brazen combination of unoriginal science-fiction themes, young-adult pandering and bottom-line calculation. – Manohla Dargis, New York Times, Mar 28, 2013

Rotten: [A] bizarre Saturday Night Live sketch about a girl with a bratty alien inside her. – Owen Gleiberman, Entertainment Weekly, Mar 29, 2013

Rotten: Pick up the book. It does a far better job of breathing life into this monochromatic new world than the film. – Betsy Sharkey, Los Angeles Times, Mar 28, 2013

Rotten: This is pretty silly stuff, Twi-lite if you will, but played with maximum solemnity, no discernible humor and minimal excitement. – Tom Charity, CNN.com, Mar 29, 2013

Read More About This Movie On Rotten Tomatoes

Customer Reviews

A TERRIBLE, TEDIOUS MESS OF A MOVIE

Once the "Twilight" film franchise finally ended its run, I hoped that was the last we would ever hear from Stephenie Meyer. But then I saw the trailer for "The Host," yet another young adult novel written by the bestselling author. I didn't think much of it, since I had never even heard of the book, but my curiosity was piqued enough to the point where I decided to see it with a few of my friends for some laughs, hoping it'd at least contain the same unintentional hilarity and soulless acting as the "Twilight" films. Surprisingly enough, it ended up being much less the laughably terrible experience I was initially expecting and more a painfully idiotic, drawn-out bore with no satisfying payoff. While the premise is admittedly a bit interesting (souls from other planets and lifetimes inhabiting human bodies), the execution is superficially lackluster and shoddy. In the "near future," a young woman named Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) becomes a host to an alien soul known as Wanderer (Wanda, for short) who takes over her body and part of her mind after she tries escaping from captivity with her brother (Chandler Canterbury) and boyfriend (Max Irons). Soon, a seeker (Diane Kruger) assigns Melanie's new soul the job of identifying and searching for other humans who have resisted conversion and are in hiding. Here begins our protagonist's seemingly endless internal conflict with her new body inhabited by Wanda. The result is cringeworthy and makes you constantly keep looking at your watch. The biggest problem with the film is its amateur treatment. Kruger's character is arguably the weakest link and has no reason or consistent logic to her search for Wanda and the other humans. Why is she chasing humans and converting them in the first place? How do they even pose a big-enough threat to her species? There are countless other loose ends that are never explained in this already frail plot. But the most annoying part of the movie, by far, is the unbearably irritating internal conversations between Melanie and Wanda that get on your nerves. Not only are we subjected to some atrociously bad writing and acting, but we also get a lazily uninspired romantic subplot involving our two main characters (in the same body) and their different love interests, Jared (Max Irons) and Ian (Jake Abel), that only makes this entire flick even less engaging than it already is. While the overall art direction is aesthetically pleasing and the grey optical lenses that separate the aliens from the humans look pretty cool, most of the visual and special effects here have nothing new or special to offer. As for Saoirse Ronan, the star of the film, she tries to make the best of a near-hopeless situation by juggling two roles at the same time. And although she gives it her best shot and stays solidly committed to both roles the whole time, she's never able to rise above the begrudgingly mediocre script she's stuck with. Meanwhile, her supporting cast is constantly paralyzed by clichéd dialogues and bland conversations that never seem to end and don't blend in with the film's sci-fi genre. At the end of the day, "The Host" is a bizarre, unfocused, awkwardly paced mess of a futuristic thriller that fails to keep us interested in its increasingly confusing narrative and just gives up about halfway through. The character development is practically dead on arrival, the conflict of the plot is completely inconsistent, and the flick's lackluster attempt at dramatic tension is so silly and over-the-top, it can't be taken seriously in the slightest. There are a few scenes of unintentional hilarity at times, but even those moments tend to outstay their welcome. Simply put, this movie is a disaster in nearly every way. It's an obnoxiously overlong teen romance that feels more like a bad parody of the "Twilight" films than anything. Even if you're a big fan of Meyer's novels and you've read the book based on this film, "The Host" just isn't worth your time or anyone else's. At the very least, wait until it comes on cable.

Don't listen to the critics!

I saw this movie twice in the theaters and have read the book 3 times. I thought it was a very good adaptation of the book though we all know the books are always better. I am no teenager but I enjoyed the young actors and thought they did a really good job. My husband had never read the book but really liked the movie. He had no problem following it and said he didn't understand what the critics were thinking. Can't wait to add this to my library.

Great excellant movie

I liked the movie before i ever read the book!!

The Host (2013)
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  • $14.99
  • Genre: Thriller
  • Released: 2013

Customer Ratings