free analytics for godaddy

GTBP CONNECT


                             
Wholesale Home Audio & Video
This area does not yet contain any content.
« Movie Review - 'Bedtime Stories' | Main | Movie Review - 'The Curious Case of Benjamin Button' »
Monday
Dec222008

Movie Review - 'The Spirit'

The Spirit

Starring Gabriel Macht, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, and Eva Mendes
Directed by Frank Miller
Rated PG-13



thespirit_galleryposter1.jpgSpending 100 minutes with The Spirit is like going on a blind date with a beautiful, vapid woman.

At first, you're mesmerized by her looks, and for a while, you buy into the theory that she might have a bit of an attitude. You can deal with that; you've dealt with it before.

But the longer she keeps yappin', the easier it is to realize why she was set up on a blind date with you: She's an idiot.

Frank Miller was bitten by the movie bug with Sin City a few years ago. At least that's when it bit him professionally. You can tell by watching The Spirit that he's studied some aspects of filmmaking before. But his real background is in comic books. The titles movie fans will know him for are Sin City and 300, but he has a long history in the form. The Spirit is not one of his comic books, however; it was created by the late Will Eisner over 60 years ago.

Fans of the original Spirit might wonder why this movie looks more like a new beat cop assigned to Sin City, though. The color palette is identical, which is truly one of the film's failings. If Miller had proven he could do more than black, white, and red, this might be allowable. But when he tries to throw in a new color - there's a hint of blue with one of the female characters - it doesn't fit at all. It would be like adding a baby blue pocket silk on your blind date with that beautiful, vapid woman if you were wearing, say, a black suit and, of course, a red tie.

But it must be said that, for the most part, the look of The Spirit is incredibly compelling. Many of the costumes and the way Miller incorporates digital backgrounds really come to life and fill the scenes. This movie is never boring. Now if it would just shut up.

The major disappointment with The Spirit isn't just that Miller's characters have nothing to say, but also that they have nothing to do. The story is incredibly simplistic: Bad guy (The Octopus, played by Samuel L. Jackson) wants to kill good guy (Gabriel Macht as The Spirit) so that bad guy becomes the only human being alive with superhuman recuperative powers. How do both men have it? The Octopus is a bit of a mad scientist, and he created a drug that he tried on deceased cop Denny Colt before injecting himself. Denny Colt dug out of his own grave and began fighting crime anew. So even though he has The Octopus to thank for his second life, he's duty-bound to stop him.

To get a leg up on his competition, The Octopus has sought the Blood of Heracles for years, thinking it would hold the key to immortality. And the Blood is mistaken for another treasured item, pursued by Sand Serif (Eva Mendes), a woman who has some history with The Spirit.

It's not as convoluted as it may sound, but it's still more than this movie needs. We're treated to a horde of beautiful women - Mendes, Paz Vega, Scarlett Johansson, Jaime King, Sarah Paulson, and Stana Katic - which is its own kind of overkill. The trouble is, the more actors/beautiful women Miller carts out for us, the more obvious the bad writing becomes. With only a couple of exceptions, every performance in The Spirit is a bad one. Paulson is good enough, but  she's spared the silly dialogue. Mendes is probably the highlight, because it's a completely vampy role.

Johansson and Jackson, who operate as a kind of tag team here, both give their worst performances in a while, and as the hero, you can't even root for Gabriel Macht, who is simply never convincing unless he's in a fight.

Because there are so many characters, The Spirit feels episodic, as if there will be more of them. That could be triggered by the story's roots in the comic book arena. But let's hope this is a one and done.

Share/Save/Bookmark

Reader Comments (5)

Didn't get the comics and have the same problem with some of these movies. A lot of effort put into them, but the whole comic book movie thing is not working for me.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterindependent filmmaking

so it's sin city PG-13?

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 | Unregistered CommenterPsyko Tek

It's not remotely as interesting as Sin City.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008 | Registered CommenterGet The Big Picture

I CANT BELIEVE THIS MOVIE! IT WAS THE WORST 10 DOLLARS I HAVE SPENT IN A VERY VERY LONG TIME!! IT WAS CORNY, AND WAY TOO SLOW!!!! I AM SO DISSAPOINTED!! BEST MOVIE OF THE YEAR MY ASS! THE ONLY GOOD THING ABOUT THIS MOVIE WAS EVA MENDEZ, SHES BEAUTIFUL!........ ANYWAY YOU JUST LOST A FAN........

Monday, December 29, 2008 | Unregistered Commenterflower

I CANT BELIEVE THIS MOVIE! IT WAS THE BEST 17 DOLLARS I HAVE SPENT IN A VERY VERY LONG TIME!! IT WAS AWESUM, AND ACTION PACKED !!!! I WASN'T EXPECTING SUCK A KICK ASS MOVIE!! TOTALLY THE BEST MOVIE OF THE YEAR! MOREOVER, THIS MOVIE HAD EVA MENDEZ, SHES BEAUTIFUL!........SO, WOW CONSIDER ME A NEW DEVOUT FAN.

Monday, January 5, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMe

PostPost a New Comment

Enter your information below to add a new comment.

My response is on my own website »
Author Email (optional):
Author URL (optional):
Post:
 
Some HTML allowed: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <code> <em> <i> <strike> <strong>