Sunday, 2 January 2011
The Spirit, or Why Films Don't Have to Be Like This
Should comic book films really look like this? A drawing is stylish by necessity, a film can feature real things. Look at The Dark Knight, at Watchmen - style and substance and nobody's overdoing it. There's no need for so many fireworks. Ten minutes is fine, but then you get bored and annoyed and start looking at your watch. Even as a piece of character mythology, The Spirit falls way short. It's all half explained points and tangled backstory. The hero is a ladies man who loves his city. We know this because that's all he does. Kisses girls and talks about the city. The villain is doing something with clones and vases, but I honestly couldn't tell you what. And I was paying attention. I have no idea about the original work, but if it's any good at all, this film has badly let it down.
To Frank Miller and everyone else involved, stop it. Films do not have to be like this. Films should be about things. People and places and words being spoken properly. Style is what comes second. There was no need for this. If it serves any purpose, it's to remind us why films shouldn't be this way. Sin City was a novelty. This is taking the joke too far.