Thursday, December 10, 2009

The Spirit

I watched Frank Miller's "The Spirit" a couple of weeks ago on DVD. I had heard terrible, horrible things about it, and that led me to avoid it in theatres, but I scored a cheap copy at Blockbuster, so I figured, why not.

It was pretty bad.

The longer I thought about it, in the days since seeing it, the more I disliked it.

Frank Miller wrote Sin City. He wrote the Dark Knight Returns. He wrote some of the greatest Daredevil comics ever.

But he also wrote Robocop 2. Worse, he wrote Robocop 3. The Spirit's script is far closer to his Robocop stuff than his great comics. The Spirit is a comically dumb movie, with no drama, over the top fight scenes, and things played for yuks at every possible turn. Mix that in with his directorial vision to make this movie and noir as possible visually, and you end up with a film that is disconcerting to watch and not involving in the slightest.

Now, if this was just any old movie Miller had thrown together, I could sort of get behind it. I could see it as campy fun, a lovable loser of a movie. But The Spirit is Will Eisner's signature creation, and Frank Miller should feel shame for what he did to the franchise. Actual shame. Frank Miller should blush and get evasive if people ask him about this movie, and get all dodgy and try to direct the conversation to Batman or Marv. Frank Miller should feel awkward if he even sees a guy in a blue suit with a red tie.

Is anyone reading this friendly with Frank Miller? Can you tell me if he has any, like, conversations with people? Because the dialogue was terrible in this movie. I mean, seriously, Does he not go outside ever, even just to the grocery store or bus station, just to listen to people and learn how they talk to one another.

The Spirit is a movie that is just to east to rant about and critique all over. But I'm comforted that I am not alone. Rotten Tomatoes and Metacritic pooped all over it too, and it takned in the box office too:
Budget $53,000,000
Gross revenue $39,031,337
Being a comic geek is one thing, but I'm also "the" comic geek in my social circles, so when a movie based on a comic comes out, it is often that I will get asked about it by friends and coworkers. This movie made me feel dirty, and like I should have to make excuses for liking comics as a genre.


Fanboy Wife said...

I'm so glad I didn't have to watch this one!

Quoizel Lighting said...

I actually liked The Spirit, but hey I liked Robocop 2 & 3 also. Guess I just have a soft spot for cheesey cinema.