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day permlink Sunday, 22 June 2003

permlink Daredevil review

Review: Watched Daredevil on the flight home. I was entertained a bit, but bugged by several little problems: plot holes, shortened timeframes, errors of logic.

It occurs to me now that some of the problems might have resulted from the fact that the movie had been edited to be showable on an airplane. For instance, Bullseye's "For my next trick..." line was followed up in the original comic by a gruesome stabbing; in the version I saw, they must have skipped that, so Elektra was suddenly acting wounded for no apparent reason. I guess they didn't want a small child to be watching the screen (with audio or not) and see that. I can understand that, but it made for a mighty odd scene.

Stan Lee's cameo was great; Affleck makes a surprisingly good Matt Murdock, Pantoliano's an okay Ben Urich, and Favreau was a fine, less-hapless-than-the-original Foggy Nelson.

Michael Clarke Duncan was a strong, menacing Kingpin, but I would have liked it if they'd stolen a note from Miller's early run where he isn't just a simple enemy of DD; I remember well the panels of Fisk saying "You and I are the power in this town." There's a lot of complexity and conflict they could explore (or even just hint at) there, but oh well. Also, reversing Miller's "A man without hope... is a man without fear" line made no sense at all.

[added later because I forgot:] Farrell as Bullseye was... forgettably over-the-top. The target scar on his forehead was just stupid. And the fight scene on the giant pipe organ? Straight out of Batman circa 1966.[/added]

Finally, as I said when it came out, Jennifer Garner doesn't automatically work for me as Elektra, and the script was certainly no help there: they wiped away all but the trivial outlines of her character, making her pretty ordinary. And what was up with the whirlwind romance? From pointedly ignoring Murdock to sleeping with him in three five-minute encounters? Shyeah. I don't remember how they got together in the comic; anybody remember it being that sudden?

Rating: 4 out of 10 if you haven't read the original comics, 6 out of 10 if (like me) you have. I'm sure that having the background to fill in the narrative holes made it more enjoyable for me. permlink     1 comment(s)  
I dunno...I was pretty disappointed with Daredevil (as I was with Hulk.) My biggest problem with it was the way they had the Kingpin go out at the end of the film. This is Wilson Fisk, for Pete's sake. Why not just save him for the next film rather than having Daredevil dispatch in him in 10 minutes of screen time? Very annoying. Plus, I thought Daredevil came off as entirely too superhuman with the jumping off buildings and such. The Man Without Fear came off like a Man Without Sense. Nor would Matt Murdoch be idiotic enough to openly threaten a guy in court that he's going to throw in front of a train. Save the vigilante stuff for the Punisher. At any rate, if non-comic readers are confused now, just wait until the Elektra movie comes out next summer. "Wait, didn't she die...?"
      ...posted by Kevin on June 22, 2003 8:03 PM
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