Movie Review: Beastly (2011)

Posted: November 26, 2011 in Drama

Kyle (Alex Pettyfer) is superficial, rich and handsome, and he thinks his good looks hold the key to his success.  But Kyle crosses a witch named Kendra (Mary Kate Olsen) and Kendra puts a spell on Kyle that robs him of his good looks, the spell states that Kyle must find love in a year’s time or spend the rest of his life doomed to be ugly.  Kyle’s anchorman father, Rob (Peter Krause) banishes Kyle to a penthouse in New York with Rob’s housekeeper, Zola (Lisa Gay Hamilton and a tutor named Will. (Neil Patrick Harris) From his new perch, Kyle starts to follow Lindy (Vanessa Hudgens) around as she goes through her daily routine.  Kyle then breaks up a drug buy gone bad, involving Lindy’s father, and then Kyle blackmails Lindy’s father into sending Lindy to stay with Kyle, his maid and his tutor.  Kyle then works on winning Lindy’s heart, does he succeed?

This is a vomit inducing teen flick.  Not only is it based on two overused clichés, namely that beauty is only skin deep, and love conquers all, but it features horrible writing.  Kyle’s father buys him a penthouse and is never seen again.  Kyle’s tutor is blind, but helps Kyle build a greenhouse.  Huh? Kyle’s housekeeper stays with Kyle, despite being insulted.  Kyle blackmails Lindy’s father to begin her relationship with Lindy.  Kyle tries to win Lindy over on his own merits, but he lives in a penthouse and has a maid, is that winning Lindy over on his own merits?  Is Kyle truly banished?  He’s living in a penthouse with a maid, hitting golf balls with his blind tutor what a rough life he has.  And the dialogue is ipecac for anyone who needs it:  For example, Kyle says: “I don’t feel ugly when I’m with you.” Someone get me an air sick bag.  The acting is worse than the dialogue.  Pettyfer is as wooden as he was in I Am Number Four. Vanessa Hudgens’ character should be a shy, bookish type, but any sense of that characterization ends as soon as she opens her mouth, she sounds like a Valley Girl Wanna Be instead of an outsider looking in.  Despite trying mightily to inject some humor into the film, Neil Patrick Harris fails to make this movie worth watching.  When Mary Kate Olsen turns in the movie’s best performance, the movie must be bad. It is.

Beastly.  A movie that lives down to its name.

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