Based on the novel of the same name by Lauren Kate, selling more than 10 million copies since its initial release in 2009 and has been translated into more than 30 different languages, Fallen is adapted to the screen after a hiatus of YA novel adaptations. There must have been a crowd somewhere pining for this…
Arriving at Sword & Cross Reform School, teenager Lucinda’s troubled past follows her as she battles bullies, studies, an inexplicable adoration for an unusual boy named Daniel and the odd group of populars whose peculiar state may or may not add up to the focus of religion, reincarnation and fallen angels in the classroom.
Stephanie Meyer’s phenomenon would be rolling in the dirt if it ever came across Kate’s supernatural romance novel with ultimately the same premise. With every character progression there’s a Twilight similarity; with every brooding, intense gaze from boy to girl there’s a reminiscent moment from Edward and Bella that, reaching the halfway point, you beginning to admit the unbelievable: Twilight was genuinely an okay, or somewhat decent, YA adaptation…in comparison, of course.
Actress Addison Timlin’s pursed lips, moody demure and complete ability to disappear within a scene often resembles that of the days of Kirsten Stewart’s intense disability as leading lady whose relative saving grace is that of a sense of enthusiasm, though falls completely splat when paired with potential love interest(s) — another love triangle, colour us shocked — whom range from bad lad with rocker-styled ponytail and flighty, melancholic mystery lad. Both sounding painfully desirable, of course, and for our troubled leading miss causes a mass hysteria of poorly written dramatics and a true testament of how much an audience can truly withstand.
Amidst lines of “you are the soul that fits into mine” and “I will always catch you when you fall”, it’s a deplorable and intensely dissatisfying romance which fails to capture or merely tease any hope of a future twinkle in our eye. Even amongst a narrative which teases a battle between good and evil, those fallen angels and those working for Lucifer himself, it’s a meddlesome, battering effort in painstakingly pissy edits and a story written by a novelist so tied to creating a spectacle which is so sorely absent of genuine character development and a cohesive structure to warrant the inclusion of such a plot.
Dir: Scott Hicks
Scr: Michael Arlen Ross, Kathryn Price
Cast: Addison Timlin, Jeremy Irvine, Joely Richardson
Prd: Claudia Bluemhuber, Mark Ciardi, Gordon Gray
Music: Mark Isham
DOP: Alar Kivilo
Runtime: 88 minutes