Reviewed by

Christopher Armstead

After watching Hollywood Picture’s ‘The Invisible’ and thinking that this was not a very good movie, it came to my attention that five years ago this very same film was made in Sweden and went by the title of ‘Den Osynlige’ which I am going to assume also means The Invisible in that particular language, and by all accounts is a film of some note. I’ve lamented this and lamented this and lamented this. In a nation of over 300 million people in which 200 million of these citizens claim to be screenwriters, why oh why do our powers in charge insist on not only remaking the original ideas of films from other countries (we won’t even go into sequels, TV shows, video games movies, and theme park ride movies) as opposed to sifting through some of the 8-billion screenplays that these cats receive daily and making something of our own. I know it’s always about the greenback. I know that 10 people in Sweden went to see ‘Den Osynlige’ thus in theory 100 million in the U.S. will go to see ‘The Invisible’. Now I have to burn 90 to 100 minutes of my precious time to track down and watch ‘Den Osynlige’ to see ‘truly’ how badly Hollywood and them screwed this picture up.

It’s not easy being young and misunderstood, just ask high school senior Nick Powell (Justin Chatwin) who on the outside may seem to have it all with the looks, a hot and willing girlfriend, the respect of his classmates, an idyllic suburban lifestyle and a devoted mother, but Nick’s life generally sucks because his mommy won’t let him go to Europe and be a writer. Bitch. But as crappy as Nick’s life is his classmate Annie Newton (Margarita Levieta) has it even worse with a dad with a crappy job, a lazy step mom, they all live in a crappy apartment, and she has a boyfriend with a record as long his left arm. Annie is head of the suburban mob at her school providing hot items to classmates and turning all Tony Soprano on us when they don’t pay up quick enough, as Nick’s good buddy Pete (Chris Marquette) discovers when Annie and her goons hold Pete down and nick his finger with knife. Sons of bitches. Nick thinks that’s not cool and confronts Annie, who in a fit of rage tries to kick Nick’s ass. Annie is crazy.

Anyway, Annie and her boyfriend Marcus (Alex O’Laughlin) are out one night breaking the law and against Marcus’ better judgment Annie smash and grabs a jewelry display and then laughs at Marcus when he demands the goods. Marcus makes her pay by calling the police anonymously using his cell phone (!) to tell the cops that Annie is hiding the stuff in her school locker. Annie gets busted and thinks Pete is the one who turned her in. Under severe duress Pete INEXPLICABLY blames Nick (!). Annie and her goons find Nick later that night, and with his BEST FRIEND PETE along for the ride, Annie kills Nick (Or so they think) and throw his body down a well. Next day Nick is wandering around town and soon realizes he’s dead (or so he thinks). Actually he’s about to die unless someone finds his body real soon and the one person who can hear him and the one person who can help save his life is same person who did all she could to end it. Annie! Bitch.

I understand that a lot of the invisible in fantastical and you’re supposed to suspend belief to believe a lot of what is going on but come on director David S. Goyer, Homeboy from Ann Arbor who also gave us 'Blade Trinity', give me SOMETHING! Make something up… give me some fake Star Trek like scientific talk as to why Nick is wandering around touching things, but not touching things and why is his spirit is floating around, and why can Annie hear and understand him. You know, some fake ass ‘White Noise’ type explanation. I’m totally cool with that. I guess I should have known I had nothing coming when the cop investigating Nick’s disappearance goes to see Annie’s dad and the two men obviously know each other. The cops partner asks about their relationship to which the other cop responds ‘He used to be a cop - It’s a long story’. And that was the end of that. I suppose we don't have time for ‘stories’ in ‘movies’. But we do have time for and endless barrage of modern pop song knockoffs during every fourth minute of this damn thing.

The acting in ‘The Invisible’ is fine I suppose as most of these young actors can do young, cute, white and misunderstood pretty well, but lovely Margarita Levieva just didn’t quite cut it as a brutal thug. I’m not saying that being 5’2", weighing 105 pounds with perfect facial bone structure and long flowing curly red hair excludes one from being an out out-of-control gun wielding, car stealing, smash and grabbing, student cutting, step mom hating psychopath… but it sure doesn’t lend itself well to the illusion. I just wanted to pinch the kids cheek and ship her off to modeling school.

‘The Invisible’ isn’t the worst movie, but it is a cliché ridden, pop song laden, teen angst laden melodrama that I’m sure the original it’s based on, which itself is based on a novel, is much better. Unless you’re like a huge Justin Chatwin and Margarita Levieva fan, you may want to skip this one.

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