Scott Pilgrim

So, I blew off stuff I should’ve been doing, and went to see a matinee of the Scott Pilgrim movie this morning (it’s very much not Kate’s sort of thing, and I would feel guilty ditching her with SteelyKid to see it during the evening or on a weekend). Actually, first I went to Borders for half an hour to read the last volume of the comic, so I could compare the two endings– I should probably buy these, because I really like the story, but I balk at shelling out that much money for something that I can read in half an hour in a bookstore.

I liked it a lot, but then, I’m a sucker for this sort of story– both the “doofy guy makes good” and the “highly self-referential ironic storytelling” thing. My mental image of the character was always a little more manic than Michael Cera is capable of (a cross between Michael Cera and one of our former Physics majors would come closer), but he did a good job, and it gets the feel of the comics very well. They managed to get all seven evil exes in without the story dragging, which I was dubious about, and while the details of the ending are different, it’s the same spirit.

It occurs to me that there’s something kind of ironic about the dramatic advances in CGI technology and other film techniques being used to very carefully mimic comic techniques on screen. After all, people have spent decades getting computer graphics to the point where they can do almost-photo-realistic images, and here all that fancy technology is being deployed to do very deliberately artificial things. Kind of weird, really.

Anyway, since I’m only half a week or so behind the release, for a change, I figured I’d throw this out there. Comments, criticisms, expressions of incredulity?

Comments

  1. #1 Andrew S
    August 17, 2010

    Loved it, saw it twice. I think you’re swell, Chad, and seeing that you like Scott Pilgrim makes you even sweller. ;)

    I am disappointed that the box office was so low (although I wasn’t expecting anything ridiculous from such a niche release, I didn’t expect single-screen showings to be mostly empty opening weekend.)

  2. #2 Mike Kozlowski
    August 17, 2010

    Those books are like $7 at Amazon, which is probably what you paid for coffee while reading them at the B&N library, you cheapskate.

  3. #3 David G
    August 17, 2010

    I guess not everyone considers those comics works of art worhty of keeping around as I do. :(

    And I don’t care how well he did, Michael Cera was absolutely wrong for this role.

  4. #4 Eric
    August 17, 2010

    I loved the comics, but the movie wasn’t quite as good. It was definitely fun and visually and stylistically great, but the film as a whole felt a little empty.

    I can understand that the comics were too long to adequately address the same character development in film, but they removed Scott’s development into being less of a jerk, essentially swapping it out for “self respect.” He was perhaps a little more sympathetic in the movie, perhaps, since he didn’t have a lot of time to act that badly, but he still had the whole cheating thing going on, as well as the objectification of Ramona with his battles against the evil exes. I just think the filmmakers should have embraced the changes to the story more completely by making Scott a different character with different problems and different deficiencies.

  5. #5 AnonymousCoward
    August 18, 2010

    After all, people have spent decades getting computer graphics to the point where they can do almost-photo-realistic images, and here all that fancy technology is being deployed to do very deliberately artificial things.

    I think they said the same thing about the Impressionists…

  6. #6 Johan Larson
    August 21, 2010

    Much of the film’s appeal seemed to consist of the writer’s use of video-game and comics cliches as shout-outs to gamer and comics geeks. Video-games and comics aren’t really my thing, so it seemed a little strange. Pilgrim is this loser-boy twenty-something without much of a life, but he also has superpowers? That doesn’t fit. And he has to defeat a string of other supers to get the girl. Why do they even care? They’re ex-es!

    Somehow I think it would have worked better if the superpowers stuff had been made explicitly imaginary, and the movie had been about a mope trying to improve his life by overcoming various mundane challenges — challenges he tended to visualize as comic-book villains.

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