Posts Tagged 'scott pilgrim vs. the world'

Wick-Quoting #32: How to Train Your Dragon

“You, sir, are playing a dangerous game! Keeping this much raw viking-ness contained! There will be consequences!”

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As mentioned in a previous post, animated movies for the past few years have all been pretty much the same thing: constantly regurgitating the same stories again and again.  However, How to Train Your Dragon (which will be referred to as HtTYD hence forth) is considered to be a Dratini amongst the plentiful Magikarp.  This is, of course, according to many ratings from different sources, including IMDb, which gave HtTYD an 8.2 (which is pretty high for IMDb).  Taking this into consideration, along with the good word from many movie goers, I was stoked to receive HtTYD in the mail from Netflix.  However, HtTYD has been one of the greater disappointments for me.  This only goes to show that you can’t trust reviews (other than mine, of course).

Don't let that cutie deceive you..

During the first 15 minutes of the movie, my eyes were wide open, and I was expecting to be thoroughly entertained for the next hour and a half.  The opening scene of different types of dragons attacking the village with the vikings fighting back is a unique clip to see.  The idea of having so many types of dragons reminded me of Pokemon, which left me with a nostalgic feeling.  But once the movie started to focus all its attention on its main character, Hiccup, I started to lose interest.  For starters, Hiccup is whiny, weak, and has a very annoying voice, sort of like the “protagonist” of Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (notice the quotes).  I found it difficult to side with such an uninteresting and bony character.

The other side characters are just sort of... there

Speaking of uninteresting characters, the side characters, which includes the other teenage vikings (which I forgot the names to), don’t have a great deal of character development at all in the film.  Astrid, the main female teenager, is the only one who really shows a complete 180 in personality, which is quite disappointing.  In the beginning, she hates Hiccup and dragons, but just after one ride on Hiccup’s dragon, Toothless, she automatically turns into Hiccup’s left hand bitch.  The change is quite unconvincing and does little to add Astrid as a strong, female character.  Hiccup should have just said, “One ride, and instead of hating me, you’re going to want to have my babies!”

They should fish for more unique plots

I don’t want to ruin the story, but let’s just say that Hiccup starts off as a loser and ends up as a hero in the end.  There is nothing creative or unique of how the story gets to point B.  But interestingly enough, despite my disappointment with the film, HtTYD has almost made almost 500 million worldwide and has very high ratings throughout the http://www.  Here’s the bottom line, besides having vikings and dragons, the movie really has nothing new to offer.  I guess watching it in 3D at the theaters did wonders to its quality, similar to Avatar.  Oh, Avatar

7.2

Quoted by MWP

Sawazz: 7.6

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Wick-Quoting #21: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

Movie of the summer with the highest hopes for: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

Movie of the summer that is the biggest letdown: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

The main problem with Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is how the story is sloppily put-together.  You can compare the movie to a messy peanut butter and jelly sandwich.  The humor is the peanut butter.  The special effects and crowd-pleasing action are the jelly.  The story, from beginning to end, are the bread slabs.  Basically, the movie has way too much peanut butter and jelly for the bread pieces to hold, making the sandwich really messy.  The film seems to try to focus on the yummy insides alone and neglect the story element, just as long as it holds.  What’s wrong with the story you ask?  There are two main problems.

Nuh uh, I'm not passing this film off that easy

1) The main character, Scott Pilgrim (no duh), comes off at the start of the story to be a greatly disliked character.  He has a history of treating girls with no respect, including the drummer, Kim.  He easily throws away his Asian girlfriend, Knives, after setting his eyes on Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead).  He also cheats on his Asian girlfriend in order to be with Ramona.  So right at the start, the protagonist is labeled as a douche.  Why would we as spectators want to root for a “hero” like that?  Just because he fights battles with Ramona’s exes?  Why would he even fight for Ramona in the first place when Ramona doesn’t even seem like that great of a girl anyways?  She does, after all, have a shitload of baggage.

It is only at the very end where Scott realizes that he’s a douche and apologizes to the girls that he fucked up.  It is only at the end where spectators are given the chance to see Scott in another light.  The end is too late for that.

Am I also a douche? Yes, yes you are

2) The movie pretty much appeals to the male, white audience.  The movie has a white protagonist with white supporting characters.  He dumps his Asian girlfriend in order to be with a white girl.  The Asian male characters (the Katayanagi twins) don’t have a big role and their fight is the lamest of them all.  Also, the twins don’t even have speaking parts, and they’re grouped as one opponent.  So the film makes it seem like it’s ok for Scott to cheat on and throw away Knives, just because she’s Asian.  Her being Asian makes it a little bit “ok.”  And Knives is ridiculously infatuated with Scott (despite how he treats her) and continues to go around stalking him.  She even goes so far as to fight for him at the end, with a typical dragon lady appearance.  If Knives was a real girl, she would say, “fuck you” and leave Scott to fend for himself.  But of course, Asian girls in Hollywood cinema are stupid and hopelessly in love with white, male leads.

And why do the twins in the film have to be Asian too?  The second most deprecating roles in the film are once again, filled in with Asian actors.  It’s almost like saying making the twins Asian supports the idea that Ramona being with them both at the same time makes it all the more easier to indulge.  Out of all the exes, they get the least amount of film time, they don’t talk at all, and the audience aren’t even made aware of what their names are, as if it doesn’t really matter (which it really doesn’t).  Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is definitely a film that is white, male dominated.

Oh, so that's what their names were

Putting the terrible protagonist and story aside, the graphics and comedy are the top of its genre.  The gay jokes, to the bitchy girl, to Michael Cera’s awkwardness all makes the questionable story less questionable.  The humor serves more than just a comic relief.  It serves as a story relief as well.  The video game references, the Zelda song, and the action captions are all nice touches, but the movie seems to be a bit overboard with those.

Am I the only one who found the idea of fighting for self respect a little corny and ridiculous?  At least fighting for love is generally accepted in mainstream society.  Fight for yourself rather than for the person you’re trying to save is a little bit off course.

This is not the sword of love.. but the sword of self respect!!

If you’re going to watch Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, don’t expect much story-wise.  Just go to see the witty references and humor.  Don’t even bother going to see the action sequences.  All the battles are won way to simply, with Scott taking so much damage, then at the end he just gives his enemies one hit and poof, they disappear.  The total opposite of a video game if you ask me.  Nice try, trying to make the movie video game-like.

The film is still worth a view just for the humor and references.

6.9

P.S. My review can be pretty much summed up with a comment I found on the internet by chavi00 in response to http://www.vanityfair.com/online/oscars/2010/08/go-and-pay-to-see-scott-pilgrim-right-now.html

Scott Pilgrim is pretty on the eyes and light on the substance. It is filled with secondary characters who are more interesting than the leads. The plot is weak and there is a supreme lack of emotional depth. Ultimately, there is absolutely nothing to care about in this movie.

True that brother.


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