Scott Pilgrim vs. The World Review

Director, Edgar Wright (Shaun of The Dead and Hot Fuzz) created a stunning visual piece of filmmaking, combining the elements of Video Games, Martial Arts, Anime, Comics, and Rock & Roll that Bryan Lee O’Malley’s trade is about. Which also included Bryan’s artwork appearing at key moments in the film, much differently then John Romita Jr.’s style in Kick Ass.

When Satya Bhabha as Matthew Patel, the first member of The League of Evil Exes shows up, the movie really gets rolling. A musical number with Demon Hipster Chicks (with eyes and fangs that reminded me of The Witch from Conan The Barbarian) throwing fireballs is only the tip of the over-the-top iceberg. Many memorable antics ensue as the film goes on.

Even though his screen time was short, Chris Evans was still hysterical as skateboarder-turned-action-star Lucas Lee (second member) with a Tom Cruise impression was really funny. Surprise appearances by Thomas Jane and Clifton Collins Jr. (who was the better-acted Romulan in last year’s Star Trek) as The Vegan Police was absolutely hilarious. Their high five at the end of the scene was a great exit.

The stand off between Sex Bob-Omb and The Katayangi Twins (Shota and Keita Saito) resulting in a physical manifestation of (pun intented) Double Dragons against a square shaped gorilla is spectacular. Also the cat fight between Romana Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) and her ex-girlfriend (fourth member), Roxanne Richter (Mae Whitman) was also pretty good. “Sledgehammer vs. Razor-Blade Belt”.

Out of the video game sound effects (the pixelated Universal Studios logo and theme in classic Nintendo fashion being an excellent way to start the movie) I heard Emperor Ming’s ring noise from Flash Gordon when the leader, Gideon Gordon Graves (Jason Schwartzman) enters the fray towards the end.

Unfortunately like in the trailer prior, the first act is so dull, I was marking time for the exes to show up. If you take the fantastic elements out, your left with another Michael Cera teen drama.

The supporting characters kept dragging the plot, especially emo ginger band drummer (the first ex), Kim Pine (Alison Pill) and Julie Powers (Audrey Plaza). Although he had two good supporting moments, Wallace Wells (Kieran Culkin) isn’t on the same level of friend/A-Hole as Randal Graves was for Dante Hicks in Clerks I & II.

And my major gripe with modern cinematography in general rears it’s ugly head again in the final battle…  Shaky Cam! I can’t follow what’s going on, though I’ll admit it wasn’t as dreadful as Quantum of Solace.

Overall, it entertains the targeted demographic and despite my qualms with it, it’s enjoyable ride (with several speed bumps along the way). The annoying side characters, Scott being a cheater, which made it hard to sympathize with him at points, the stunning visuals made up for it.

Rating: 9