The Spirit (2008)

Film review: The Spirit (2008), directed by Frank Miller

thespiritA movie we were going to watch at the cinema but never got around to. It’s another one of those graphic-novels-turned-movie movies, whose screenplay was written by Frank Miller (the guy who wrote the Sin City graphic novel… turned film), although this one was originally created by Will Eisner.

It’s about a city, Central City, and a super-human being called “the Spirit” (Gabriel Macht) who catches bad guys when he’s not busy charming the ladies. His nemesis is the biggest baddie of all, the Octopus (Samuel L Jackson). There are a couple of murderous ladies as well (Scarlett Johansson and Eva Mendes) and a bunch of dimwitted clones.

It’s a bizarre movie, to say the least. I loved Sarah Paulson ever since I saw her in Jack & Jill, but if she’s a doctor, she really can’t recognise her old flame just hecause he has a tiny mask around his eyes? We knew Lois Lane was fooled by a pair of glasses and a tie, but I mean, come on! The sidekick clones were funny at first but got annoying ever so quickly. Sand’s “diamonds are a girl’s best friend” attitude was grating, the rookie cop too silly… The Octopus was a downright psycho as a character (still not sure if I enjoyed that or not), but Johansson was refreshing as the “I’m a woman, but I’m not his woman”.

And what was with the names? Octopus and Spirit, fine. But names like Silken Floss? Plaster of Paris? WTH? Are we supposed to take them seriously?

The film itself seemed very strangely paced. It was slow and just got boring. The only redeeming quality was that it was visually stunning. Like a graphic novel come to life, which of course it is. While the only reason I had some form of enjoyment out of the over-the-top violent Sin City was because it too looked spectacular. Every shot, every angle, just stunning. However, if that’s all you’ve got… it doesn’t make a very good movie. Even if it does have a cute tabby cat passing by on screen every now and again.

1.5 out of 5 vigilantes.

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