HOLLYWOOD—At first glance, many moviegoers may perceive the sci-fi action flick “I Am Number Four” to be reminiscent of the mutants from the popular comic book series “X-Men,” but that’s not the case. The trailer had me excited to see this film. It looked like something fresh and entertaining, but if you’re looking for a high-octane extravaganza look elsewhere. “I Am Number Four” stars Alex Pettyfer as John Smith, who is on the run from a group of mercenaries out to eliminate him.

While he looks like everyone else on the outside, John is actually from another planet. He has incredible powers that many of us wish we had on any given day, but he’s not able to explore those abilities because he fears he will blow his cover. Taking over duties as John’s guardian is Henri (Timothy Olyphant) in a role that sutures him well. He channels that father figure and isn’t afraid to put up a fight when needed. John is tired of being secluded from the outside world, so he chooses against Henri’s wishes to enroll in school; that’s where he meets Sarah (Dianna Agron). She’s likable, unique and develops a relationship with John that blossoms.

The movie plays with the typical cliché of high school: the popular kids, the geeks, the loners and so on. There is a remarkable scene in the film where John stands up for loner Sam (Callan McAuliffe) by throwing a football, full force at a bully. Amidst the high school drama, John discovers it is difficult to conceal his super powers and his identity to those surrounding him. The impending threat of danger from locals and mercenaries out to destroy him, forces John to realize he must fight for his survival along with his new friends.

The primary issue with the film is that there are so many dull moments.  Does the audience need to see the interaction between Sam and his stepfather?  Why is the film so focused on highlighting the high school bully who just annoys the audience more and more each time he appears on screen?  If those moments were taken out this movie would be completely satisfying. There were several occasions where I found myself aloof to what was going on because things became so tedious. “Where are the fight sequences, the action and the explosions?” I kept asking myself.

When the film reaches its climax, as a viewer you’re completely hooked.  It has your undivided attention and doesn’t let go.  When Number Six (Teresa Palmer) shows up, she kicks butt, provides that comic relief and instantly controls the film in my opinion. I wish we had more of her throughout the film to keep the momentum going.

While “I Am Number Four” is pegged as an action film, it’s more like a sci-fi romance. I’m all for romance, it’s great, but if I come into an action film I expect a bit more action. The chemistry between Pettyfer and Agron is amazing; they work well on the screen.  If the movie had a balance between the romance and action it would be a superior film, but it doesn’t and that mishap creates a ripple in the plot.  “I Am Number Four” isn’t a terrible movie, but if you go into the film with certain expectations you may be disappointed.