Critics have been quick to denounce the latest YA fantasy movie as just another 'Twilight' rehash.
Mortal Instruments: City of Bones has not been treated kindly by critics. The movie adaptation of author Cassandra Clare's six-part young adult fantasy series has been found to have too many similarities to Stephenie Meyer's vampire novels, too soon after Twilight.
The Young Castt Assemble In The Supernatural Action Adventure.
The trailer itself is laden with plotlines that have become clichéd in the fantasy drama. A young girl named Clary (Lily Collins) reaches the end of her teens without finding out she's not a "Mundane" (yep, this one has words for "normal" humans too). In fact, unbeknownst to the wide-eyed yet determined female protagonist, she has the powers of a 'Shadowhunter' - angelic beings whose job it is to rid the world of demons.
It's the dashing Jace (Jamie Campbell Bower) who lets Clary know she's one of them and she is able to enter into the dangerous alternate New York, named Downworld. Fantasy fiction wouldn't be complete without the central character having their heart pulled two ways. Jace and Simon (Robert Sheehan) - Clary's "mundane" bestie - compete for Clary's attention. After her mother is abducted, Clary joins forces with her fellow Shadowhunters and embarks on a rescue mission in a strange new world filled with vampires, werewolves and demons.
In reaction to some of the more splattering reviews and murmurs of Twilight copycatism in the undercurrent, the cast have banded together to fight their corner and explain why Mortal Instruments needs to be judged on its own merits. Speaking in an interview via The Hollywood Reporter, Lily, Jamie, Kevin Zegers and director Harald Zwart promoted their film as distinct from all predecessors.
"It's not," says Campbell Bower quickly when asked what he'd say to those who are sceptical that Mortal Instruments was another Twilight, explaining "The werewolves and the vampires - we're not trying to re-create an image of that. That's not what this world is about. Whereas with Twilight, the world was about vampires. This is not about vampires."
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Collins stepped in to describe how the film was attractive to male and female audiences: "I'm not choosing to become something that I'm not. I'm already a Shadowhunter and it's just my journey into figuring out who I am. I'm not defined by romance. Yes there's a love cube but [the story] is very action oriented[...]It's not just a story about a girl in between two guys."
Though it is acknowledged that the movie employs the tried and tested formula of several guys chasing one girl, Collins explains this is helpful in defining the heroine on her journey of self-discovery: "You find the qualities in different people and it's kind of like this journey of self-discovery that she's going on, not knowing what's right, what's wrong, what she likes, what she doesn't like."
"So having the two guys represents the qualities that she likes in somebody, and it's kind of pulling her in both ways but it's how she deals with them and gets through them that defines who she is."
The Team Unite In Their Quest: Save Clary's Mother & Battle Some Demons.
The director concurs that action takes more prominence in Mortal Instruments and that he was inspired by the "amazingly visual" worlds of Harry Potter and The Exorcist "where you just get really scared."