Think about it, Boo Radley to the extreme. Cue the usual Radley behavior of being the loner, old man neighbor who comes out once a week to mow the lawn, but add in psycho child/female mass murderer and meet Mr. Harvey (Stanley Tucci – “Julie & Julia” and “The Devil Wears Prada”). You would never guess that our beloved Nigel from “Devil Wears Prada” would, first-have hair and second-turn around and be a bad ass at playing the evil bad guy.
The film centers on a young girl, Susie Salmon (Saiorse Ronan) who is murdered and ends up in the “inbetween” while her family is torn apart. Her father Jack Salmon (Mark Wahlberg) becomes obsessive compulsive with trying to assist the detectives in finding her killer while her mother, Abigail Salmon (Rachel Weisz), leaves to work in an orchard in California because she can’t cope with her daughter’s tragic death.
Cue Susan Sarandon as Susie’s grandma who is called by Jack to take care of the children as the family falls apart. She is a chain smoking, booze-as-water, 50 year old saying she’s 35 and she’s fabulous. It must be hard on such a legendary actor to be playing the grandma roles, but I forsee Sarandon being put on the pedastool with Meryl Streep and Diane Keaton, amazing and better with age.
So, Susie’s sister Lindsay (Rose McIver) decides to take matters into her own hands, causing jaws to drop and the audience to crawl more tightly into a ball in their seats as she’s almost caught in Mr. Harvey’s house getting evidence to prove he killed her sister. She’s one floorboard creak away from being another victim of Boo….uh Harvey.
Amanda Michalka (from Aly and AJ) makes a cameo in the film as Susie’s kinda slutty friend whose boyfriend beats the crap out of her father when he follows Harvey into the corn fields. Oh yeah, P.S., you might/will be scared of cornfields after this film…if you weren’t already.
Ronan was great as Susie, but she needs to grow up a little and get some more mature characteristics to her look before she starts landing any more lead roles. Her face looks to young, yes, making her perfect for this film, but I’m finding it hard to place her in another film or genre except teeny-bop-Disney films, but look where Demi Lovato is with Disney, but she has a more mature look.
Anyway, 4.5 out of 5 stars for great acting, unique plot and casting choices/ensemble work. Worth paying the $$$ to see it in theater.