Sunday, August 29, 2010

Scott Pilgrim vs. Movie Audiences

We saw SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD last night, and had a great time. I wouldn't want every movie, or even every comic-book adaptation, to be like this; but as a stand-alone cinema experiment, it worked nicely.

The movie essentially handles the ups and downs of a relationship between two young people (and the others in their lives) as an exercise in video game reality. Thus Scott must do more than compete with his new girlfriend's memories of her various exes; he must actually battle and vanquish them. And, without explanation, they and he have the sort of superpowers, battle abilities, and resilience seen only in video games and superhero comics. That results in a quirky mixture of honest human interaction and over-the-top stylized violence, complete with jump-cut editing, written-out sound effects, and real-life manifestations of cartoon symbols for emotion (a girl literally has stars in her eyes; a face turns into an emoticon).

It's well-done and well-acted enough that it veers more toward entertainment than annoyance. I hope this film has a second life on video.

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