It is always difficult to watch the movie of a book you have loved. Invariably they never meet up to the imaginary world you have created in your head while reading. The characters never look as you have imagined them, and then normally what happens is that some big-wig executive in Hollywood has decided to change the ending!
Susie Salmon, fourteen years-old, takes her usual shortcut home through a cornfield when she is trapped, raped, and murdered by her neighbour George Harvey. Harvey lives alone and builds doll houses. After Susie’s disappearance the police question him, but have no reason to take it further.
Susie’s family do not want to accept her death. Her father continues to search for her killer, her mother runs away, and her sister is left to deal with things. To help out her drinking, smoking, ‘tough-love’ Grandma, played by Susan Sarandon, moves in to help.
While all of this is happening Suzie is watching from a place between heaven and earth. It is a type of Dali landscape, both beautiful and strange, which morphs around her. She watched her family try to get on with their lives, but when Harvey starts to pay too much attention to her sister, she is able to affect things in the real world, trying to point her father in the right direction.
It was hard watching the part where Suzie is trapped in a underground bunker built beneath the cornfield and then murdered. I really wanted her to escape, but of course that would be impossible as it is the whole premise to the story!
Stanley Tucci, played George Harvey did some great acting. It must always be difficult for actors to play those kind of roles, but he really did it justice. And I loved the grandma, played by Susan Sarandon (exactly the type I grow up to be!)
I loved the novel of the same name, by Alice Seabold, so I was sceptical when my husband brought home the movie. However, I was pleasantly surprised. There were some parts in it where I thought, no stop doing that – namely the parts where Suzie was in the world in-between heaven and earth. Also, I didn’t really believe in Ray, the boyfriend Suzie had before she died. He was supposed to be English and his performance was stilted, and he had a really bad dress sense which was off putting! But generally it was an entertaining movie and certainly not as bad as I had thought it was going to be.
Something Wicked 6/10.