Is The Lovely Bones based on a true story?

The lovely bones is a film that spans multiple genres including supernatural, horror, mystery and drama. The main character Susie Salmon (Saoirse Ronan) is a fourteen year old girl who was murdered. After being asked out by her crush, she is lured in by a neighbor, George Harvey (Stanley Tucci), who sexually abuses and murders her. She doesn’t realize at first that she’s dead, but when she does, she knows exactly who’s to blame. She exists between heaven and earthShe watches over her family, awaits justice and longs for her crush. Along the way, she encounters other girls that Harvey has murdered and even learns who his next target is.

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Although another girl, Holly (Nikki SooHoo), begs her to move on, Susie still has unfinished business. She finds a way to inhibit a classmate’s body and only kiss her crush once before she can move on. Meanwhile, her sister Lindsey (Rose McIver) breaks into Harvey’s home and collects evidence that he killed her sister. He flees, but dies a tragic and karmic death before the end of the film by falling off a cliff after being hit by an icicle.

Susie watches over her family and sees their healing as “the beautiful bones” that have grown around them. Eventually she goes to heaven, where she finds peace and says, “My name is Salmon, like the fish; First name Susie. I was 14 years old when I was murdered on December 6, 1973. I was here for a moment and then I was gone. I wish you all a long and happy life.”

Let’s find out if the tragic story is based on a true story.

The Lovely Bones is based on a personal experience

The lovely bones
Paramount Pictures

This movie is very supernatural as it’s about a dead girl tying up loose threads before she can cross over so surely it can’t be based on a true story, can it? Incorrect. The lovely bones is inspired by a true story, and also more than a true story. The novel, the lovely bones, based on Alice Sebold’s memoirs, Happy, where she tells the story of a sexual assault during her freshman year. Just as Susie was walking home, Sebold was on his way back to her dorm when it happened, but luckily Sebold survived to share her story and the truth of many other women who weren’t so lucky.

Related: The Best Lesser-Known Saoirse Ronan Roles

The film is also based on the assault and murder of a young girl in the 1970s. This girl lived in Norristown, Pennsylvania and, just like Susie, was brutally separated from her parents by a predator. Having experienced sexual assault herself, Sebold wanted to tell the story of this young girl from the perspective of this young girl who lost her life.

The Lovely Bones represents many stories

The lovely bones
Paramount Pictures

The supernatural part of the story was added as an element for this young girl to tell her own story, but The lovely bones is a story that is heartbreakingly true for many women around the world. Susie was an ordinary girl who did nothing wrong and lost her life brutally and pointlessly.

Related: The Cast of Lovely Bones: Where They Are Today

Perhaps another reason for adding the supernatural element is to create distance between this film and its inspiration. The creators of the story and the film didn’t really want to show what happened after Susie followed her neighbor. it almost makes the movie even scarier Because without the vivid depiction of their torture and murder, not even the ghosts are the scariest part of the story, but the universally true fear and sometimes reality for women every day.

Saoirse Ronan’s performance earned her a BAFTA nomination and a Critics’ Choice Award for Best Newcomer Performance, securing her career in Hollywood. Ronan was the same age as Susie when she starred in this emotional role.

The lovely bones can be streamed on YouTube and Paramount+.

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