I saw “I am Number Four” today. I have always been fond of fantasy story, of stories of epic power and epic battles. Mostly, my interest was strictly of the sort of fantasy involving medieval times in both Europe and Japan. Of powers earned through training and study, and of lands far from the current times. Though, in this movie, there was a twist I wasn’t expecting before I saw it. If you don’t want to see a spoiler, look away now!
The movie is a narrative, and is told from the point-of-view of Number 4. However, the story opens with a pair of individuals in a jungle hut, hunted down by a large beast-like creature, and a group of individuals with bald heads, funny markings on their head, and what looks like gills next to their nose… The younger of the pair is Number 3, and he is killed, as is his bodyguard. The story then moves to Number 4, who is still young, and in high school. He is at a beach, and he feels it when Number 3 dies by receiving a mark on his leg that burns into his skin and glows. Those around him instantly think of him as a freak. He flees the beach, to run into his own Bodyguard who takes him, packs up their things, and moves on. Their possessions are burnt, and they flee. In a later scene, a girl digs through the area for any scrap of evidence, but finds none. She turns the gas stove on, and throws a match into the house as she leaves. It erupts like a bomb, but due to some bluish shield around her body, the flame never touches her.
In a new ‘foreclosed’ home in Paradise, Ohio, Number 4 and his bodyguard take up residence, with the Bodyguard posing as his father. They delete every photo they can find across the internet that could prove his existence elsewhere. He is given a new name, John Smith, and begins to attend a new high school in Paradise (despite his protector’s protests). In the school, he meets a boy named Sam, who is your typical Science geek picked up by the sports jock clique. Sam is the son of a man who considered himself an Anthropologist, but really worked at a Mill. It was cover, for he was a man entrusted by the Nine and their Bodyguards to unite them, so they could fight back against their hunters. The hunters were another alien race (whose name I cannot remember, but were often referred to by a shortened version of the name, Mogs). The Nine survivors of their race all had special abilities they called Legacies. Each were powerful alone, but together they would be even stronger. Number 4 first discovers these powers when in class one day, his hands begin to emit a bright blue light. He closes his hands into fists to try and hide it, but eventually runs from class to keep it unnoticed. He later finds out people saw it, and excuses it as a bad prank using a flash light. Number 4 recalls his past, where he received burn markings on his body when Numbers 1 and 2 died, then finally, Number 3.
Number 4 attempts to keep himself low key, while in classes, so he doesn’t get his image plastered across the internet again, however, he attracts the attention of a girl named Sarah, who is avid about photography, and plans to go to college to become a photographer. She captures many photos of John, and posts them on her own website. The two share moments together, which attracts the jealous attention of one of the sports jock clique, who is Sarah’s ex-boyfriend. While on a Haunted Hay-ride, the ex-boyfriend and some of his friends ambush the two, and separates them from eachother. In the darkness of the woods, John mistakes them for Mogs, and uses his Legacy to fight them off, and goes after Sarah. In his rage, he nearly brakes the ex-boyfriends throwing arm, but through Sarah’s pleading, John lets him go.
Sam was in the area, and saw John use these powers, and sends John a text message to tell him they need to meet and talk. Sam says he has photo evidence of John using his powers, However, John’s bodyguard, Henri, has already managed to wipe those photos out of existence, and all that remains on Sam’s phone, are photos of Sarah, and John’s dog. Sam promises to never speak a word of what he saw. However, the next day, on a website called ‘They Live Among Us’, there is a footage capture from John’s event in his old town, where the glowing on his leg in the water was seen. Henri goes to Warsaw, Illinois to get this taken care of, while John is given a day to say his goodbyes to Sarah, for they must relocate again.
John doesn’t wish to run this time, however, as he has fallen for Sarah. John’s species “unlike humans” as Henri put it, fall in love once, and for their whole lives. John receives a phone call from the guy who runs the “They Live Among Us” website, and lures John out to the same place. John, with the help of Sam, rushes off to rescue Henri, however, it was all a trap set up by the Mogs. They manage to escape, but Henri is killed in the process. Sam and John go back to Paradise, but by now, the police there (having seen all the surveillance equipment at his house) come to the conclusion that Henri and John are criminals or some kind of terrorists, and are out to get him. John explains himself to Sarah, and ends up running off with her to get away from the police. They run to the school, and are followed by the Mogs. The place comes under attack by the Mogs, and their large beasts are again released. John’s dog reveals itself for what it really is, a large beast as well. While defending themselves, John and Sarah are overrun. To the rescue, comes a girl. The same girl that blew up John’s old house. She is Number 6, and has a southern belle accent. Her legacy (which in my opinion makes her look like Nightcrawler from X-Men) helps her take out three Mogs in supreme style and grace. The two, along with Sarah and Sam, attempt to find their way out of the school now, but can’t do so without fighting. Sam and Sarah are told to head for an underground tunnel that leads to the stadium. However, just as they arrive, John and Number 6 (a.k.a Jane Doe), wind up there anyway due to their fight against the Mogs. John’s dog, a chimera fights off the Mogs’ flying beast, while John and Jane team their legacy powers together to kill off the Mogs at the school.
Amidst John’s journeys, Henri finds some information on Sam’s father. There are a pair of rocks (that looks like Blue Quartz) that can hone in on the energies of the Nine. In the end, John and Jane use these stones, which destroys them in the process, but subliminally lets them know where Numbers 5, 7, 8, and 9 are. At the end of the movie, Sarah is left behind with the promise that John will return to her one day. John, Jane, and Sam then drive off to locate their last companions, to put an end to the Mog’s hunt for their lives.
I assume they hope to make a sequel based on the popularity of this movie, but even if that isn’t their hope and intent, I certainly hope they do, because I would love to see what happens next in rounding up the rest of their kind. In the end, this movie is sort of like a Superman story, with a group survival theme. John states at the end of the movie, that the planet he was from was called Lorian, but his home is now Earth.