5 Young Adult Series That Deserved (Way) Better Cinematic Introductions
5. I Am Number Four (2011)
In all honesty, I Am Number Four is actually a pretty decent stand-alone film. Does it stick to the book? Not entirely. But, the characters were fairly close to what I imagined when I read the first book, and the film itself was enjoyable (plus, Timothy Olyphant had a nice chunk of screen time). The biggest problem with this film adaptation though, from my perception, was that it was made too early.
When you look at novels that have successfully made the transition to the big screen, the one thing they seem to have in common – besides either being supernatural (which I Am Number Four satisfies) or set in a dystopian society – is that they are all completed works. You can run to the bookstore (yes, that’s still a thing!) and pick up the books in their entirety, and find out how things are supposed to go (unlike series which are adapted for television and are only loosely based on the original books). The I Am Number Four series is still being written and that may very well have been its downfall – not enough time to establish a sufficient fan-base.
Aside from that, the variations from the source material only acted to enhance it for a cinematic audience and make it flow more smoothly. There easily could have been a second film based on where the first one ended, and maybe one day when the novels are all written, someone will try again.