Customer Reviews: The Host (Blu-ray + DVD + Digital Copy + UltraViolet)
Your Garage Summer Reading Amazon Fashion Learn more Discover it $5 Albums Fire TV Stick Sun Care Patriotic Picks Shop-by-Room Amazon Cash Back Offer roadies roadies roadies  Amazon Echo  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Echo Dot  Amazon Tap  Amazon Echo Starting at $49.99 All-New Kindle Oasis UniOrlando Segway miniPro

Format: Blu-ray|Change
Price:$14.87+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime
Your rating(Clear)Rate this item

There was a problem filtering reviews right now. Please try again later.

VINE VOICEon March 30, 2013
First, let me say, I'm not a "Twi-hard." I don't have any interest in sparkly vampires and ripped werewolves. And as a heterosexual male who is not a teenager, that's not too surprising. But I did really love the novel "the Host." For me, the concept is sort of like "Dances with Wolves" or "Avatar." But instead of having a human run off to live with giant blue smurfs, here we have a protagonist who is truly alien and learns to become human.

I think there are three problems with the film:

1. The thing that almost sunk the movie for me was the way the character of Melanie Stryder was manifested in Wanda's head. I didn't mind the use of voice-overs, but I did mind the way that "Melanie" came across...sometimes, she sounded like a petulant 14 year-old and not the 20 year-old woman she was in the story. When Saoirse Ronan was in Wanda mode, I found her mostly more convincing and otherworldly (although near the end, she started sounding like a typical human girl with weird contact lenses in her eyes instead of an alien being that had lived multiple lifetimes in different bodies over a thousand years).

I really do wonder if it would have been a smarter thing to have cast an older actress in the role (perhaps if Jennifer Lawrence had been free she could have done it better). I think Ronan is a beautiful woman and she's definitely talented as an actress but as I said, when she was in "jealous Melanie" mode, she came across as very young...and not particularly likeable.

It also would have been smart to minimize the internal dialogue as much as possible and convey a lot of it with just Ronan's expressions and flashbacks.

2. The length of the novel (600 pages) really was important to sell the development of the character of Wanda/Wanderer...specifically, how she comes to love being human more than being a Soul and how she developed feelings for the character of Ian and how she also came to love Jared. But the need to compress the story into something that is movie length (about two hours) resulted in a lot of the "depth" of the story falling by the wayside. For example, we see Ian and Wanda "fall in love" but it seems mechanical and formulaic in the movie as opposed to touching as it was in the book. Perhaps they should have split it into two films.


Even worse, when Wanda decides she wanted to give Melanie back her body and die, the movie will leave anyone who hasn't read the book scratching their heads as to why she would make a crazy decision like that. In the book, Meyer set the stage for that intention by showing how much Wanda blamed herself for the death of one of her human friends, Wes, and how guilty she felt over the Souls displacing the human race (which set up the death of another one of her friends, Walt, who is missing from the movie, who died an agonizing death in front of her due to cancer).

<end spoilers>

3. Another thing that fell by the wayside that was key to the book being so compelling is that it was told by Wanda using "first person narrative." You really got insight into how Wanda was becoming human and how she came to care for the humans she was prisoner of.

This said, the movie was worth seeing and some of the reasons why included:

1. Saoirse Ronan's "Wanda" most of the time did capture the "alien" nature of the personality that was in Melanie Stryder's body.

2. William Hurt did a good job playing Uncle Jeb. I was a little surprised that Hurt, who I best associate with "Children of a Lesser God" and "the Accidental Tourist" did so well playing the grizzled Jeb.

3. The "world building" (i.e. bringing the sort of strange post-apocalyptic world of the "Souls" to life) was pretty good and really did call to mind what I read in the book. The cave complex was particularly impressive.

4. Diane Krueger did a good job playing Wanda's pursuer.


5. Emily Browning seemed to be well-cast as the new "host" for Wanda's personae.

<end spoilers>

So to sum up, I thought "the Host" was worth seeing since I loved the novel so much. I know I will read any sequel Meyer writes, and I probably will watch the movie sequels sort of curiosity to see how they bring any future novels to life.

I figure at the very least, we won't see Saoirse Ronan arguing with herself in those films.
1313 comments|167 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on July 22, 2014
Last year, I got the movie and book for Warm Bodies, and planned to do the same for The Host, both being movie-book adaptations. Well I got the book but somehow missed out on being able to get the movie. Fast forward a year, and I saw The Host on Netflix. I decided to watch it there. When the movie first started out, the protagonist, Melanie, was really annoying. I was ready to write her off as being just as annoying and useless as Bella. I was almost glad I had missed out on getting the movie. I was tempted to just quit and watch something else, but I have OCD and didn't want to leave a movie half finished in my watched list. So I trudged through. By the time the movie had reached an hour in though I had become fully invested in the characters and my previous annoyances were gone. In fact, the developing bond between Melanie and her invader, combined with the struggle for acceptance and trust by the rest of the resistance really made me sympathetic for everyone involved.

The romance aspect was well done too, and with deep psychological and moral values at play, this was indeed a true romance movie, not a chick flick. If you wish to look for it, there are some deep issues this movie poses. If you're not a philosopher type and just want to kill time watching a romance with your significant other (or alone), the movie can be watched that way too. Either way, the casting and acting was very well done, the CGI could have been better for a sci-fi, but its not weak enough to detract from the experience, and the ending is very well set up to allow the movie to just end here, or, if Stephanie Meyer continues the trend that most authors do, set up for a sequel.

Of course if you don't enjoy romance movies, or are looking for a sci-fi with a bit more...fighting, then it would be wise to steer clear of this one.
0Comment|10 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on April 25, 2013
I really enjoyed this movie. It had all the ups and downs I like to see when I watch a movie. It was entertaining and interesting. No movie is ever just like the book so I don't know why we even try to compare. Your imagination is always better than the movie. I will buy this movie because I enjoyed it that much. I do enjoy science fiction and I think this movie will fit right in with my DVD collection.
0Comment|62 people found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on March 15, 2016
I bought this movie for my girlfriend because she is a book nerd and has to read the book before she sees the movie so it makes sense. She doesn't always say the book was better. Sometimes she likes the movie better. In this case, she thought they complemented each other. The movie follows the book closely. It has to condense some for time allowed, that why so many movies are cut up in two parts these days. The YA genre is full of paranormal romance. This story was a refreshing spin off the usual formula of teen angst with supernatural/futuristic elements. I have to say, that I watched it too and while I wasn't as engrossed in it as my girlfriend was, it was easy to follow, well-written, and had a strong leading player. I recommend this movie whether you have read the book or not. Adapted from Stephenie Meyer's novel of the same name, the Host is a sci-fi film with a vague premise that asks viewers to imagine our world after an alien invasion. On a grand scale, this film had the potential to ask "what if?" questions, especially if you have seen any or all versions of Invasion Of The Body Snatchers. But once you get past the opening act, it won't be long before you realize that at the core, this film is a silly romance for high school co-eds and sorority sisters. Written and directed by Andrew Niccol, the plot is set in the future where a vast majority of the human population are hosts to an alien species called "Souls". These are alien entities residing in human bodies but stripping the human hosts of emotions and memories. We don't get to see the initial invasion or the part where I presume NASA decodes an intergalactic message that reads 'we come in peace' just before calling the Whitehouse and stating the cinematically overdone "We have a problem". But in keeping with Meyer's tendency for bloodless melodrama, Niccol skips forward and begins the narrative where Earth is virtually pristine — no wars, no famine, no pollution, no disease, no lies and no corruption. As good as this sounds, a tiny band of human resistance exists somewhere in the Utah dessert with no intention of being 'turned'. The Seeker (Diane Kruger), an authoritative alien in human form knows this. So when Melanie Stryder (Saoirse Ronan) is captured, surgically induced with an alien parasite and renamed Wanderer, Seeker expects to learn where the surviving bands of humans are hiding. Yet, somehow, Melanie doesn't let go even as Wanderer tries to take control. Inevitably, Melanie and Wanderer become BFFs (best-friends-forever), before leading Seeker to a near-extinct volcano ingenuously improvised for self-sustenance. This is where Melanie's family resides but also much of the film's melodramatic romance, watered down action and huge deficiencies in logic. Just when you start to question how intelligent or powerful the alien race really is, Meyer's signature love triangle takes center stage; only this time you get two love triangles for the price of one! Although unintentionally humorous, this somehow works in Niccol's favor. There is a lot of contradictory cross-talk between Melanie and Wanderer (who is re-christened Wanda) when it comes to ogling hunks at the volcano but this doesn't help the narrative from steadily descending into a lumbering snooze fest. There is a little bit of action involving all manner of chrome gilded vehicles and I suspect this is how Niccol preferred to depict the luminous nature of this particular alien race, but that's about it. If sci-fi action is what you dig, you are best suited for 2013's share of alien invasion movies like Oblivion or Pacific Rim. On the upside, The Host is marginally better than the brazen Twilight franchise and thanks to Niccol and Ronan, Stephanie Meyer's Melanie has more soul (excuse the pun) when compared to Kristen Stewart's Bella Swan. No doubt there. However, there is a lot lacking given the director's panache in depicting the innate values of a human being's individuality and identity in society (think Gattaca and The Truman Show).
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on February 12, 2016
This film is Twilight for science fiction fans. It is based on a bestseller and the film is very high quality and New Agey. People are being possessed by aliens on a mass scale worldwide and humans are now forming resistance parties but the war has only begun. Experiments on how to remove the parasites begin but with disastrous results. One young girl, possessed but not fully controlled, fights to maintain her love for one man but her alter ego, an alien/demon, is in love with that man's friend. Thus, this film could be classified as both a romance and a science fiction thriller. Can this girl be trusted? After she shows them how to safely remove the alien/demon from a possessed body, they also learn that a dead body can be re-animated by these aliens/demons through the same possession technique. Now, the tide has turned. No more spoliers! This film has DEFINITE religious tones with possession and a futuristic, New Age feel to it. Nobody starts turning blue or vomiting pea soup; this is not a horror movie. However, if you know your Bible or your Necronomicon, you know that this film could actually happen and a LOT of true believers say that it is already happening. That adds some spookiness, I guess. The movie is rated PG-13 for violence and minor sensuality. Demons beware; we are aware of you is this film's concept which is also true to life in most believers mind's. Scary but true.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on September 20, 2015
I really like this movie.
The critics hated it, and in some ways I can see their point. It took a really interesting young adult style science fiction book and turned it into a "romance" type movie with a great actress but only so-so directing. Much of the cast seemed mis-cast.
I think Saoirse Ronan rose well above the script (and directing) to really shine. Her portrayal of a character who has fallen into an impossible trap (alien host occupying her mind) is well done. The alien, in many ways, seems more human throughout the movie than the girl who is possessed. Some have criticized the movie for turning the human personality into a "brat" or "whiner". I guess they miss the point that anyone who has their mind and body yanked out from under them will undoubtedly be less-than-pleasant to their occupying entity.....
The special effects are spotty - the "eyes" are amazing - I don't know how they achieved the ring-in-the-eye effect, but it is at times sinister and at times just fades into the background.
It's an interesting movie, great for an afternoon or evening of diversion, and as usual Ms. Ronan is stellar.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on November 12, 2015
Save your money and read the book. The movie is not good. I mean, its not a horrible movie, not in the way you would think I mean by giving it a one-star rating. I hated it not because of the acting, the characters, nor the plot. All are service-able. Its just NOT a story you can tell on screen in real life. The Host is the perfect example of a book that should just STAY a book. It does not translate well. The concepts that are explored in the book lose alot in the translation. I mean, you have one character falling in love with a foreign consciousness that is living in a human body...and not the body or the native person that is STILL living in there as well. No actor or actress in the world could portray this. Its just impossible...I mean, it was even a little weird in the book. Italics usage is for thoughts, flashbacks or emphasis on a single word. But for the book it was kinda hard because, you had two separate thoughts (living in the same body) that had to be voiced. At times it was difficult to tell which italics were for what entity/person.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 7, 2016
First of al this is a very fine young cast. Second, I have never read the book so I'm going at this as a complete novice. Jake Abel and Max irons are the male leads and do a terrific job as does the female lead of Saoirse Ronan. They were all very believable and seemed very competent in the parts. We have been invaded by small life forms that are not quite symbiotic more of virus that takes over its host form and thoughts so that the host no longer exists. Saoirse gets an alien put in her called the Wanderer and they strike up a relationship and they are both in control. There are the "bad" aliens who have constructed a society that is quiet and there are of course hunters to collect what humans aren't part of the whole. I did enjoy it but be warned some spots are veeeerrrryyyy slow. I loved the resolution for a change. Definitely worth a look see.
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on August 15, 2014
Amazon isn't saying whether this is for the book or the movie, but I loved both of them. If you've read the book and worry that the movie will be too short to do justice to the 600+ page novel, I think the writers did an amazing job of packing a lot of story into a couple of hours.
0Comment|One person found this helpful. Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse
on January 5, 2015
The Host is one of my favorite sci-fi films of the past several years. I expected it to be maybe a little creepy and a little cool but I was pleasantly surprised and moved by this beautiful story.

Saoirse Ronan really hits it out of the park as the main character (well actually, "characters" :-) in this film. What an amazing, mature actress for her age.

The caveat is, it didn't do super well in the movie theaters and thus a good number of people didn't like it as much as I did. I happen to like this particular director's directing style, for one. I also liked the spiritual aspect of this story that leans in the direction of the idea of the soul itself not BEING a body but operating one.

This same director (Andrew Niccol) directed 2 Other (very different) films that I also loved: "Gattaca" which is a futuristic story dealing with cloning, DNA manipulation, etc. and "In Time," possibly my favorite sci-fi film (other than Guardians of the Galaxy directed by James Gunn) over the past 10 years!! In Time deals with an alternate reality where the time left on one's body clock is used instead of currency.

There is a sense of style that really speaks to me that Mr. Niccol conveyed In both The Host and In Time as well as to some degree, Gattaca. Very smooth, purposeful and sexy. That's the best way I could describe his style of directing :-)

Not everyone will love The Host… But anyone who likes it a bit may end up loving it a lot by the end.

I'll close this review by saying, the music is absolutely amazing and the piece "Soul Outside" is one of my favorite pieces of music ever (was happy to find that I could buy it on iTunes ... and I suppose it may be available on Amazon(?) – since I'm leaving this review on Amazon I definitely need to include that :-)
0Comment|Was this review helpful to you?YesNoReport abuse

Send us feedback

How can we make Amazon Customer Reviews better for you?
Let us know here.