A BigPopa review: The Spirit

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For those of you that know me, I am a huge fan of the noir genre of films and books.  Granted, I haven’t watched as many films as my good friend king3vbo, but whenever a new release comes out that gives that dark, 20’s, 30’s or 40’s feel with a good monologues, I’m all for it.  Hence, I loved Frank Miller’s Sin City.  The setting, the dialogue, the art, everything about that movie I loved.  So of course when I heard that Frank was directing a new movie adapted from a similar style of comic book, I was interested.  Enter The Spirit.  It looked enough like Sin City to draw me in and to drag a friend with me.  My impressions?  Hit the link to find out.

First of all, a little back story.  The Spirit is the work of Will Eisner, a writer/artist of the 1940’s that appeared in the Sunday newspapers.  It was a weekly strip that told the story of The Spirit, a masked vigilante that fought crime in Central City with the blessing of the commissioner, Dolan.  The comic itself had a wide variety of styles, ranging from noir to adventure to mystery, horror, comedy and more. It was a popular comic from 1940 till 1952 and appeared in 20 newspapers during that time.

Second, to the fans of comic book movies, if you go to watch this film, go into it with the mindset of watching a entertaining film that REALLY doesn’t take itself too seriously.  And I mean it.  There were some parts of the movie that had me turning to my friend and just saying, “What the fuck?!?”  And there were other parts that had me laughing.

Samuel L. gave one of his best performances to date.  He stole the show from most of the other actors.  His interactions with Scarlett Johansson were a lot of fun to watch as was his cloned sidekicks with names that apparently came from whatever words popped into The Octopus’ head.  When you have henchmen named Huevos and Rancheros, you know you are in for a different type of film.

I steal the show, mother fucker!

The rest of the actors did there part but never really stood out to me as worthy of mention.  Besides getting to see Eva Mendes oh so fine ass, that is.


Another thing I thought interesting was that half the time during one of The Spirit’s monologues, the audience would see him talking, as if he’s speaking to someone right off camera.  In Sin City, 90% of the monologues were internal, but this movie took a different route.  Most of the time it felt awkward, except during the Dental Nazi scene which was, without a doubt, the best scene of the movie.  I am still chuckling about some of the things I saw during those 10 minutes.

I think if you enjoy comic book movies, you will enjoy this one.  It isn’t as serious as The Dark Knight nor as ground-breaking as Sin City was, but it’s a fun romp through Frank Miller’s twisted and, often entertaining, mind.  Take it for what it is, a campy comic book movie not meant to be taken too seriously.

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