Scot Pilgrim Versus the World review: It Rocks!
Have you ever had that feeling when watching a film, that it seems like it was made specifically with you in mind. I did, earlier today, when I went to watch Scott Pilgrim versus the world. It was amazing, really, really great.
Now I have to make a little bit of a confession here, I’m a bit of a nerd. Alas it’s true I really am. I have a passing understanding of the rules of “Advanced Dungeons and Dragons”, I know how the rank structure of the Federation in Star Trek works, and I am really really looking forward to categorising all my books and comics when I get round to putting my new book shelf together.
Knowing this, and having been a big fan of the source material having loved all six volumes of the Scott Pilgrim comic books. I must say I was a little concerned that the film might frankly have been a little bit nerdy for most people. Seeing the early numbers in terms of box office receipts that Scott Pilgrim has so far produced in America possibly seems to bear this out.
But, I don’t really think that that is a fair assessment of this film. There is a fair amount of nerdy stuff in the film, but this is more than outweighed by the super-cool hipness and trendiness that seeps out of every pore. Imagine if The Fonz, and Samuel L Jackson’s character from Pulp Fiction had a kid, and it had liquid nitrogen for blood, then it still would not be as cool as Scott Pilgrim. I can’t imagine anybody not enjoying this film and if anything I think it’s more likely that the coolness of the movie will put off us nerds, than the nerdiness will put off the normal people.
The plot is your basic boy meets girl, boy meets another girl he likes better, boy has to defeat the “seven evil exes” of the new girl in order to date her; that has been done so many millions of times before! But I have to say Edgar Wright manages to put a very interesting twist on this hackneyed old tale of fighting exes to win the girl!
Hipster cool films tend in some respects to live and die by their soundtrack, and Scott Pilgrim is a film in which bands and music go a long way to drive the plot (The eponymous main character is in a band called “Sex Bob-Om” in a Battle of the Bands competition). And Wright has absolutely nailed this aspect. I can’t remember how I imagined the various different bands in the comics sounding; but now I can’t imagine any of them sounding any different from the movie. I suspect the soundtrack has given me a staple in Spotify for me for quite some time to come. Put simply it ROCKs!!!! (well sometimes it beeps in the electronica bits).
The entire ensemble cast nails all of their respective roles. But in truth the real fun is had by those playing the evil exes, Chris Evans and Brandon Routh especially are fantastic and they are clearly having great fun, and especially Kieran Culkin as Wallace Wells who basically steals every scene he is in. But this does not detract from the principle leads who are excellent in the main roles. There was some debate as to whether or not Michael Cera was the right man to be Scott Pilgrim. There is no debate now he inhabits the role clearly being the same guy that is in the comics; but infusing the role with his own character which I think is exactly what anybody needs to do who is acting in an adaptation of written source material. Mary Elizabeth Winstead (who she?) was pretty much exactly as I had imagined Ramona Flowers having read the comics, and Ellen Wong was great as Knives Chau, giving the character rather more weight than in the comics I reckon.
I’d really urge everybody to go see this movie. It hasn’t done amazing work at the box office so far and I think it would be absolutely tragic if a film this different, inventive, adventurous, new, and frankly awesome was not a success. Some people may want to go and pay to see Die Hard 18, Saw 471 or a Jennifer Aniston movie (surely not, but they do keep making them). But personally I just Wanna see something fantastic, interesting and new. And in the summer where I’d absolutely raved about “Kick Ass”, and “Inception” I think Scott Pilgrim may have topped them both and be the best film I’ve seen this year.
Even if it’s not a success in the cinema I am sure, in common with every single review I’ve read so far, that the film is destined to be a cult hit that people will watch for ages. In some respects it’s just going to be great on DVD or Blu-ray, I look forward to seeing something like that “homage-ometer” from the “Spaced” DVD extras to see what loving references I didn’t pick up when watching the film, I bet there’s loads.
So it’s a class, entertaining, super-cool, sexy film which even has stuff like music from an 8 bit Zelda game, for a nerd like me. It is awesome, go to see it in the cinema what you can and then buy the DVD as well dagnamit!