A Review of “The Host”

SC Staff Writer

From the world of Stephanie Meyer comes yet another action romance story. While this one is set in the future and steers clear of any vampires, The Host still features supernatural beings.

An alien species has invaded earth and plagues the minds of their human victims they enter. In a desperate attempt to lead these intruders, called seekers, away from her family, 20-year- old Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Rose) engages in combat with these hosts, and then voluntarily throws herself from a top story window in order to give her family the chance to escape, and keep herself from becoming body-snatched. The hosts carry Melanie’s body to a lab where she is determined still alive, and is implanted with a member of this alien race, Wanderer (Wanda), in order to search her memories for where the last of the human resistance is. As the hosts try to extract this information, Wanda realizes that unlike many others, Melanie still has control of her mind and body. Melanie manages to convince Wanda to leave the lab, and the two embark on a journey to find her family and fulfill the promise to her loved ones that she will return.

The Host is an excellent concept, told by a terrible writer. After the first scene, which lasted approximately four minutes, there is very little action to carry the story apart from a few gun shots. The movie leaves the excitement behind as it becomes more of a love story toward finding Melanie’s old boyfriend, Jared (Max Irons), who she became separated from the night of the invasion. Throughout the entire movie, Melanie and Wanda talk to each other in the same voice, which is quite comical considering they inhabit the same body. Melanie’s voiceover should have at least been done by another speaker. When Melanie and Wanda reach their destination, the resistance is at first skeptical, and assumes she has come to turn them in. In her seconds upon arriving, Jared, who doesn’t know whether to love or accept this creature, backhands her in the face, and later on, one member even tries to kill her. After that, the humans realize that Wanda is a kind hearted soul, and becomes the love interest of human member, Ian (Jake Abel). It is soon revealed that Melanie is present within her, and Jared’s feelings are restored. This presents just another awkward Meyer-love-triangle with silly dialogue and jealousy as the two men are both in love with the same body controlled by two different minds.

While all of this is going on, head seeker (Diane Kruger), mercilessly flies around in a helicopter searching for Wanda and the rest of the human survivors. This is where the movie could get interesting with a full-on attack and battle between the hosts and the rest of the humans and Wanda, but sadly this does not happen, and instead, Meyer disappoints us with an avoided battle scene. There is no climax, and The Host proves to be less of a science fiction story, and more of just another romance for teenagers.

Based on the 2008 novel, The Host has a lot of potential, but would have served as a better story if written by a darker writer.

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