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The Spirit


This should be a Skyfall review, but I delayed so long after seeing it that I’ve forgotten most of what I would’ve said. Essentially it boils down to this: Grade B/B+, if you like Bond movies, you’ll love Skyfall, and Javier Bardem should play every villain (especially Hannibal Lecter if they remake The Silence of the Lambs, and let’s be honest, they will). Instead, and most unfortunately, this review is about the abomination known as The Spirit.

Grade:

The Spirit is a butchered version of Sin City. The same visuals are attempted, with the overall black and white comic book theme made brighter and more striking with vivid color choices like a red tie (Spirit) or yellow face (Sin City). However, Spirit focuses on this, then drops the effect, then tries to reintegrate it, and finally gives up. It symbolizes the lack of effort that went into the structure and making of this film.

For background, police officer Denny Colt (Gabriel Macht) returns from the dead to protect Central City from crime, but he is obsessed with capturing the Octopus (Samuel L. Jackson). There is a subplot of Heracles’ blood and becoming a demi-god, but if it doesn’t make sense upon viewing it in full, it won’t make sense when I try parlaying the information. Lastly, there is a love interest that never gets fulfilled or even played out to the point of intrigue. Despite being completely normal in his first attempt at life, Denny is utterly susceptible to the feminine charms and can’t decide whom he loves.

Going further, the film takes a “subtlety be damned” approach and throws everything it can at you in an hour and forty minutes. The Octopus’ henchmen epitomize this war on subtlety by originally being named Pathos, Logos, and Ethos. Now, I’m not an expert on Aristotle’s teachings, but I am fairly certain these appeals should not be anthropomorphized into identical characters. By that I mean, these three supposedly separate identities representing the Octopus’ emotions (I think. It’s never explained) say literally the same thing. There is no distinction between their lines. The absurdity of it all is made ever more present by the replacement henchmen­—the others die—being named Huevos and Rancheros, to name a few. We even have a spontaneous Nazi doctor routine with the assist going to a French gypsy dancer. Seriously folks, there is nothing resembling common sense in this movie.

Shall we look for a positive? Scarlett Johansson is pretty, but her character is underutilized and practically useless except for plot explanations. Stana Katic, best known as Detective Kate Beckett from Castle, makes an appearance…as the most annoying rookie cop ever portrayed. And that’s about it because I am not a fan of Eva Mendes. If you are, then there’s your positive; her character is average.

I can admit outright with only mild reservations that if you admit to liking this movie for any reason other than “It’s good for turning your brain off and watching nonsensical violence,” I will judge you. Go watch Sin City instead.

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    • collecty
    • November 28th, 2012

    Reblogged this on Collecty.

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