Clary: “Is this the part where you start tearing off strips of your shirt to bind my wounds?”
Jace: “If you wanted me to rip my clothes off, you should have just asked.”
A good couple of years ago before The Mortal Instruments was slated to become a movie series, I read the books. The series is one of my favourite and I really enjoyed the first 3 books.
I fell in love with the world of the Shadowhunters and their heritage. I also fell in love with Jace Wayland, the cheeky, blond bad-boy whose witty tongue and charming smile made me want one.
What it’s about:
When teen, Clary Fray heads out to the Pandemonium Club in New York City with her best friend Simon, she hardly expects to witness a murder – much less a murder committed by three teenagers covered with strange tattoos and brandishing bizarre weapons – a murder only she sees. It’s also hard to do anything about it when the body disappears into thin air. Then when Clary finds herself seeing the sexy mystery boy who killed the man everywhere, she starts to panic. But Jace Wayland is more than just a normal boy.
When Clary’s mom is attacked and disappears, Clary discovers that she’s just like Jace, she’s a shadowhunter – a half human, half angel race that fights demons. Her mom hid something that everything evil wants and Clary will have to embrace her Shadowhunter blood to help save more than just her mother.
What I thought:
Like I said I loved the books, and when I say ‘the books’ I mean the first 3: City of Bones, City of Ashes and City of Glass. For me the books that have come after those 3 are almost forced, like Clare decided to write more because the books were successful, not because there was more to the story – but I digress.
The movie was release recently and on Sunday I ran, quite enthusiastically, in to the cinema to see it. I had heard mixed reviews of the movie and some were quite bad, but that didn’t stop my excitement in seeing one of my favourite worlds brought to life – so in I went.
From the start I was happy about the casting… all except the choice of Jamie Campbell Bower as Jace. He just doesn’t fit the character in my head and to be honest I couldn’t stand Camelot, but in the end he grew on me. He brought in the quirky nature of Jace and I found the romance and chemistry between him and Lily Collins (Clary) really amazing. The character of Simon is also a very key character in the book and I think Robert Sheehan really did a great job. He managed to bring in the innocence and strength of Simon’s character very well and I’m looking forward to seeing the character grow and how Sheehan interprets it. Jonathan Rhys Meyers takes on the role of Valentine and I have to say, he’s pretty damn good at it. And then one of the most integral characters, Magnus Bane is played by Godfrey Gao. You don’t get to see much of him in this movie but his character becomes one that features in all the books and I think Gao, from the small bit I saw of him, is well cast for the part. The rest of the characters were well cast and I loved Jemima West as Isabelle, she really pulls off the bad-ass chick thing really well.
With books like this it’s easy to screw things up when adapting them for film, because the books are so descriptive and the worlds are so elaborate that readers expect something really amazing. For me, this series lives in one of the best fictional worlds, and I was so excited to see how they brought it to life. My verdict? I think they did a pretty decent job, the demons had that gross factor but were not overly done and the crossover between the worlds was subtle like in the books. The one thing they did leave out though was an explanation of the Shadowhunder weapons, from the perspective of the movie I guess it’s not too important but when nothing but that sword kills demons, it’s kinda worth the 2 second explanation.
I’m not going to say too much about the storyline because it’s the same as the books and I’ve already ranted about how much I loved them. I will say that, like most YA fantasy book adaptations, there’s a lot that people who haven’t read the book miss. My fiance said it was entertaining but a bit boring at times and I can totally see how he sees it that way. I know what’s happening because I’ve lived in this world before… many times. And I know what’s going on before it even happens. With that in mind I really do think this movie will be better enjoyed by people who have read the books, but if you haven’t, and your a sucker for awesome other worlds like me, I’d definitely recommend it.