I haven’t read the comics, so this is my opinion on the movie only.
I’m not a fan of Michael Cera. I’m sorry, I’m just not. So I was a bit skeptical about seeing this movie. The only reason I decided to go see it is because the stylized fights reminded me a lot of Kick-Ass, my favorite movie so far this year.
Aside from the 8-bit video game-esque graphics that humorously popped up from time to time (combos, points, and even a pee bar), the movie had a very indie feel to it, like most films Cera has been in. I especially liked the dream sequences, and the snow softly falling on a cold Toronto night reminded me of Sin City, for some reason.
I was actually getting pretty engrossed in the story about Scott, his band, and his crush on pink-haired Ramona Flowers, until Ramona’s first evil ex-boyfriend, Matthew Patel, literally crashed the party and my mood. The way he broke through the wall was so sudden and a bit anti-climatic; it kinda reminded me of the Kool-Aid guy. Patel starts fighting Scott and doing all these weird dance moves, and the audience in the theater was probably just as confused as Scott was. No need to fret, though, because Scott starts throwing kicks and punching as if he has been fighting all his life. Where did he learn all those moves? I have no idea… But hey, it’s just a movie, and Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is meant to be crazy and ridiculous like that.
My friend and I agreed that Cera’s acting was improved in this movie. But that doesn’t mean I didn’t get annoyed every once in a while. I assume Cera’s favorite word is “What?” because in every movie he’s in, he says that almost every time someone tells him something. And it gets old pretty quickly. Doesn’t Scot Pilgrim have a mind of his own? Why did his friends have to explain every little detail to him?
Cera, despite being a bit annoying at times, was surprisingly tolerable for me not particularly liking him. In the end, what hurt the movie the most was not Cera, but a ton of dumb jokes. The worst joke in the movie (and perhaps one of the worst bits of movie dialogue ever) was when one of the ex-boyfriends mockingly told Scott something about meeting the cleaning lady on Monday (because she doesn’t work on Saturday), since he was going to turn Scott into dust, and the cleaning lady cleans up dust. Ya… I mean I KNOW that the jokes were purposefully MEANT to be stupid, but they just dragged on for way too long. It’s like that one guy who tries to tell a witty joke, but you know he should’ve talked talking like 3 minutes ago. This kind of dim-witted dialogue comes mostly from Ramona’s evil ex-boyfriends…and remember, there are 7 of them.
Okay, but enough of the bad. Let’s get to the good. Despite taking place in what I assume to be the “real world”, there is a lot of videogame lingo going on here. Even from the opening sequence, you know this movie was made with gamers in mind. As a Nintendo fan, I was pretty geeked to hear the Zelda medley not once, but twice in the first 10 minutes or so. As I mentioned before, there are tiny 8-bit graphics that popped up from time to time, which was pretty sweet. Even sweeter was that whenever Scott defeated an enemy they burst into coins –– not game tokens –– real Canadian money! Damn, I wish I was that lucky.
I didn’t really understand how the videogames were related to the real world, but who really cares. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is amazing visual (and audio) candy. My favorite fight was the one with the twins.
Overall, it was an okay movie. It was better than I expected, and yet not quite as awesome as the trailer.
Of course, anyone who sees this movie will be able to enjoy it, but those who will get the most chuckles out of it will be those who frequently play games. If you have a girlfriend who plays games to go see this movie with, even better. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is one of those feel-good type of movies that you want to see when you’re not in a thinking kind of mood (if you prefer something more debonair, go see Inception). It’s best to check it out on a Friday night with a bunch of your buddies.
To be continued?