Tuesday, August 18, 2015

Scott Pilgrim VS the World (2010)

Scott Pilgrim piggybacks off of his roommate Wallace (Kiernan Cullen) while dating Knives (Ellen Wong), a young seventeen year old girl. Jobless, he sorta has one goal in life as a bassist for Sex Bo-ombs, which struggles landing a record deal let alone fans (except for Knives). Inconsiderate and a bit selfish, his limited dreams change when he meets an elusive and intriguing Ramona Flowers (Mary-Elizabeth Winstead) at a party.

Like all dream girls there's something more to Flowers than meets the eye. She's had a rough past falling in love with all the wrong people. No one has moved through life without carrying a little emotional baggage. No matter how much we think we may have moved on from an ex, some part of history boils onto the next chapter of our lives. Every character in this world deals with rejection at some point. The major problem here is that Flowers' exes return to haunt her and challenge any guy who steps up to the plate.

Only their brawls aren't down and dirty back-alley fist fights. Instead, video games serves as the unique backdrop of their duels. Player One is Scott Pilgrim. And, Player Two, is one of Ramona's exes. Each one has special super-heroic abilities. To name a few, Matthew Patel (Satya Bhabha) has the ability to levitate and throw fireballs, and Lucas Lee (Chris Evans) is a mega action movie star with super strength. Each smackdown is more epic than the last, dueling each other until the other one is defeated. Pilgrim must defeat them all in order to win over Ramona - that's a given. A surprise twist to the blockbuster physicality is that his wins also brings Flowers and Pilgrim face to face with their own paths as a couple and individualky.

Based on Bryan Lee O'Malley graphic novels, Scott Pilgrim versus the World delivers an epic mash-up of comedy, action, and romance. Director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the DeadHot Fuzz) tremendously lays out the comic book with absolute tenacity. Working on the script for five years, his passion for the story pays off. For a film filled with so much technical intensity and pop culture nerdiness, he packs it with action, emotional sincerity, and humor. The video games styled assaults are massively entertaining. Sex Bo-ombs music may not be popular but the movie's soundtrack kicks ass. There's a little bit of everything, and the story stays balanced and well-choreographed. With the exception of few other graphic novel adaptations, I've never quite seen a "young adult" movie with so much firepower and creativity

A dramatic dose of flash with the video game sequences and killer soundtrack ups the style of the film, which is visually stunning. But the films' energetic style of each duel also grounds as endearing backdrops to the characters - each are dealing with insecurities. With the right cast behind Wright, Michael Cera, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, and a host of equally-deserved-of being named supporting players, endear their characters as they explore the complications of being and falling in love.

In 2010, when the film originally was released into theaters, it became an underground online hit among movie bloggers. Those who didn't see the movie was doing powerful, original small budget productions a huge disservice. Stepping up to watch it five years later, my thoughts are a no-brainer: this one's a knock-out.

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