‘Jack the Giant Slayer’: Or, What Happens When You Go See a Movie For the Sake of a Single Actor


Image property of Warner Bros.

You’re probably thinking, “How could they make a blockbuster movie out of ‘Jack and the Beanstalk’?” The question you should be asking is not “how?” but “why?” To be fair, if they can make a movie out of the board game Battleship, then you can make a movie out of anything. And let’s not forget that Pirates of the Caribbean was based on an amusement park ride. Never judge a movie by its source material. That being said, Jack the Giant Slayer is inoffensively mediocre, lacking the groundbreaking success of Pirates, or the abysmally bad stench of Battleship. At worst, Jack the Giant Slayer is absurd, and at best it’s a fun, effects-laden romp through fairytale land. If you’re someone who appreciates the humor of watching Stanley Tucci—an Oscar-nominated actor—climbing a CGI beanstalk with Ewan McGregor, then it’s worth seeing. Jack the Giant Slayer gets by on sheer ridiculousness alone. Just look at Ewan McGregor’s anachronistic but extremely well-coiffed hair. With his stylish (and possibly beadazzled) black suit of armor, he looks like he might be an extra in a Ziggy Stardust music video.

Let’s be honest: there’s exactly one reason why I saw Jack the Giant Slayer, and it wasn’t Ewan McGregor’s hair. (Although, that was certainly an added bonus.) His name is Nicholas Hoult, and he plays the titular Jack, a farm boy who stumbles his way into hero-dom with the help of some magic beans (don’t laugh). You may know Hoult from the British TV series Skins, or more recently, the zombie rom-com (is that a genre?) Warm Bodies (which was excellent, by the way…please judge him based on that, and not this). Hoult brings a quirky charm and cheeky humor to the film…and speaking of cheeks, his angelic cheekbones could cut glass. And did I mention his piercing blue eyes? Anyway, I think you can see why a girl would pay to spend two hours of her life watching Nicholas Hoult gallivant around, planting beans and occasionally slaying giants.

Am I going to recommend this movie to everyone I know? Unlikely. Am I glad I saw it? Sure. I went into it with low expectations, and I achieved my goal: I was entertained. On the spectrum of unnecessary big-screen fairytale updates, I’d say Jack falls somewhere between the cleverer, funnier, and more self-aware Mirror Mirror (last year’s tongue-in-cheek adaptation of Snow White), and the gory, stylized abomination that was Hansel & Gretel: Witch Hunters. Let’s all just hope they don’t try to make a movie out of “Little Miss Muffet” anytime soon. Although, if Nicholas Hoult was in it, I’d still see it.



Posted on March 1, 2013, in Film and tagged , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: