Dave Actually Watches: Scott Pilgrim vs the World

Yes, it’s not “Dave Finally Watches” but “Dave Actually Watches” because this time I for reals went to the movie theater and watched the movie! On opening night! Instead of waiting for DVD!

I love the Scott Pilgrim comics even though I guess it’s cool not to and although I don’t normally give much of a damn about movie versions of comics I like (in fact, me liking a comic is usually reason number one NOT to see a movie based on it) I thought the previews for this looked like a lot of fun. Saturday was my and Becky’s 17th anniversary, so as part of the celebrations we went out Friday night to see this.

The verdict? Yes indeed this is a blast. The treatment is spot on, with the effects enhancing the material to take it onto the screen while staying true to the comic. The cast, including Michael Cera (who I guess I’m supposed to hate now) all do a great job, with special props going to Ellen Wong (Knives Chau), Kieran Culkin (Wallace Wells), and Brandon Routh (Todd Ingram). In fact, the supporting cast is so on target that Scott and Ramona nearly come off as the least interesting characters here.

(I know there are a lot of folks out there who are Very Concerned about the fact that 22-year-old Scott starts out dating 17-year-old Knives. Rest assured that the movie present this as obviously pathetic and also makes sure you know they’ve barely even held hands. So you can all rest easy.)

Edgar Wright does a great job of delivering the oddball, videogame-inspired world the characters inhabit and sticking to it (although, strangely enough, I think it could have used more.) The fight scenes especially are a hoot, with each one throwing a little something different in the mix. The whole thing moves very nicely, and though it runs a little bit long, you can kind of say that about just about any movie these days.

I don’t think you have to have any knowledge of the comic to enjoy Scott Pilgrim. Everything you need is in the movie, and you can always go to the comic as a sort of “extended version” if you like (I held off on reading the final volume of the book until after the movie so that I wouldn’t know the ending in advance, and now plan to re-read the whole series. I will read vol 6 then, so if the ending is different from the movie shut up.)

Scott Pilgrim is a fun, funny, clever movie that should appeal to you if you like videogames, indie music, fighting, or joy.

(If you want me to speculate here on why the movie did so poorly at the box office, I’m sorry. I’m not any kind of Hollywood analyst and I’m kind of betting that neither are you.)

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3 Responses to Dave Actually Watches: Scott Pilgrim vs the World

  1. MichaelD says:

    I really enjoyed Scott Pilgrim, too. I especially liked Wallace, the cool gay roommate. And something very small, but that I enjoyed nonetheless – the 8-bit-with-MIDI-sound Universal logo at the beginning.

  2. Joe says:

    It took me about ten minutes to get into the movie — the movie “style” didn’t click with me right away, despite being a fan of the comic books — but once I did, I really (really) enjoyed it. So much so that everyone at work is already sick of hearing about it.

    Best part of the movie, though, was probably during the previews: We were shown the “Devil” preview, in which an elevator with six-ish people on gets stuck and one of them turns out to be a vampire or something like that. When the title card saying “From Director M. Night Shyamalan” came up, the ENTIRE AUDIENCE (otherwise perfectly respectful and not rambunctious) groaned simultaneously, and then started laughing so hard we collectively missed the rest of that preview and the first half of the next one. Yeah, that movie’s gonna do really well when it comes out.

  3. T. Derscheid says:

    Yeah, we went, in spite of my saying we wouldn’t (Lee found us a babysitter on a surprise night, had to go for it). My experience was exactly the same as Joe’s, right down to the total groan/laughfest at M. Night’s expense. Also we went to a Movie Tavern, so we got to eat an entire pizza and share a piece of chocolate cake a la mode for dessert.

    Reminded me a lot of how I didn’t understand, then totally loved, Kung Fu Hustle.