How I Live Now

From the desk of The Movie Snob.

How I Live Now  (B-).  What is the deal with this movie?  It stars up-and-coming actress Saoirse Ronan, who has talent to spare (her recent appearance in The Host notwithstanding).  It’s based on a supposedly-young-adult novel that won some awards and was presumably somewhat popular.  Yet, I never saw a preview for it, and it opened in only two theaters in the Dallas area.  And, in fact, I was the only person in the movie theater when I saw it!  Anyhoo, it is an odd movie, and its R rating is well earned.  Ronan plays Daisy, a Goth girl with some serious anger issues.  Her mother is dead, and her father has shipped her from America to England to stay with some step-relatives.  (It is important that they be step-relatives, because one of them is Edmond, a brooding hunk to whom Daisy is instantly drawn.)  But this is a strange England, with tons of army guys everywhere on alert for some nameless threat.  And suddenly, England is at war and apparently being invaded, and Daisy and her step-cousins are cut off and isolated in their little English farmhouse.  After that, the movie gets surprisingly violent and ugly, and I emerged from the theater feeling a little shaken and brutalized.  I cannot really recommend the movie in good conscience, but Ronan gives a good performance.

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