Parents' Guide to

Beautiful Creatures

By Sandie Angulo Chen, Common Sense Media Reviewer

age 13+

Lush book adaptation mixes romance, fantasy, some violence.

Movie PG-13 2013 124 minutes
Beautiful Creatures Poster Image

A Lot or a Little?

What you will—and won't—find in this movie.

Community Reviews

age 12+

Based on 15 parent reviews

age 11+

Entertaining young adult adaptation

I liked this movie a lot better than other young adult movie adaptations. The romance is just fine but the plot itself is engaging. There is one scene in a church that might prompt a discussion with younger kids and a couple of morally gray characters or plain evil. As to the two main characters, they're pretty bland. I would recommend for teens and mature tweens.
age 12+

Great movie for teenagers

I thought this was a great little movie about love and choices with some fantasy thrown in. No problems with sex in this movie. Overall a great choice for teenagers.

This title has:

Great messages
Great role models

Is It Any Good?

Our review:
Parents say (15):
Kids say (29):

The leads are both appealing, and their romance is refreshingly sweet and tender -- as opposed to obsessive and controlling, as is so common in the genre. Although the Romeo and Juliet-like romance between young Ethan and Lena is the heart of Beautiful Creatures, this is a movie in which the grown-up characters have all the fun. Unlike Twilight or The Hunger Games, where the adults stay in the background, Irons, Viola Davis (Ammah, the town librarian), and Emma Thompson (town bigot Mrs. Lincoln) are enough reason for parents to accompany their teen daughters to the theater. Thompson and Irons are deliciously campy as they chew up the scenery, while Davis -- as always -- plays a sage and morally infallible mentor.

That said, devoted book fans hoping for a super-faithful adaptation are out of luck; writer-director Richard LaGravenese has taken considerable liberties to streamline the nearly 600-page novel into a two-hour film that leaves you wondering what will happen next. But he's kept the overall themes and (most) major characters -- including the lush, Southern setting with its oppressive heat and even more oppressive attitudes. The end doesn't provide a satisfying closure, so if another great cast could be summoned, a sequel wouldn't be unwelcome.

Movie Details

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