$2.50 Reviews: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)

$2.50 Reviews

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a 2010 comedy film brought to us by director Edgar Wright, best known for the comedy films Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz. It follows the adventures of Scott Pilgrim trying to win the heart of Ramona Flowers. To do that he needs to defeat Ramona's seven evil exes, who have formed a league just to stop any potential dates that Ramona might get. Along the way, Scott starts to mature as a person, and begin to realize what it means to actually be a good human being.

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Kind of awkward. Just kind of

Scott Pilgrim himself does not begin the movie as that likeable a character. He's actually fairly annoying, and draws the crowd's ire right from the start. Scott begins the film dating someone in high school, despite the fact that he himself is in his early twenties. She is completely obsessed with him, and he shows signs of affection for her. Then, Scott has a dream involving a girl with pink hair, and eventually runs into her at the library, a party, and eventually his own house. He treats his current girlfriend poorly, and eventually dumps her mere moments after being told that she's in love with him. Now, with Ramona, Scott needs to defeat her exes in a way that roughly equates to boss battles in a video game.

Video game adaptations haven't had a good history in films. They very rarely are any good, and the ones that are the ones that go away from the story of their chosen game. However, movies based around video game concepts, those have typically worked out much better. Scott Pilgrim fits into the latter category, with it actually being based off of a graphic novel. It takes place in an alternate version of Toronto, where everyone seems to have superpowers, amazing skill with weapons, or both. Scott himself has the fighting skills of a black belt in an unspecified martial art.

Everyone having powers does lead to some pretty stunning fight scenes between Scott and the evil exes, but that isn't really what the film is about. It's really about Scott maturing as a person, with each evil ex being the visual representation of a barrier he needs to overcome. In fact, the city of Toronto might be normal, with Scott being the one applying the video game logic to the city. It reminds me a bit of Calvin and Hobbes, with the video game rules replacing Hobbes. Scott may very well be dreaming up the large scale boss fights that he takes part in, and once the fights end, Scott gains something more than just bonus points. He matures as an individual, and ends up being a more capable person for Ramona.

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Amazingly, this isn't the most interesting part of the movie.
Not by a long shot

The characters in Scott Pilgrim vs. the World are actually fleshed out far better than they likely needed to be. They all have a lot of emotional depth, and do a good job of portraying that on screen, even when the central focus is to be humorous. Scott begins as a whiny, self-centered brat, but it's kind of hard to dislike him after a while. He grows on you, and after being pummelled over and over again, you begin to wish to see him finish off his opponents right away, instead of facing the gruelling task that is usually required. Ramona has less depth, but begins the film being portrayed as too cool for Scott, but quickly ends up opening up to him. The rest of the cast also does a fairly good job, but is mostly there just for Scott Pilgrim to play off of, and make jokes about.

What really amazed me about the film was how funny it ended up being. The jokes are fairly fresh, and while they are usually situational humour, they were surprisingly memorable, and really funny in the moment. The film put a smile on my face from beginning to end, and stayed entertaining throughout. The amazing part is that the film actually gets worse when the "boss battles" take place. Sure, they are fun and change things up, but when you really get down to it, the film is about the relationships between the characters, and the maturation of Scott Pilgrim.

I didn't exactly go into the movie expecting the best. I'm not exactly fascinated with typical "nerd" culture, and I find Michael Cera to be one of the most annoying actors currently working. The movie ended up exceeding my expectations by a lot. This may have been helped out because I got to see Michael Cera get beaten up for a good portion of the film, but it was actually really enjoyable. It was engaging, action packed, and most surprisingly, funny. It was almost a coming-of-age story, in a sense. It showed the maturation of an annoying young adult, into a slightly less annoying young adult with more responsibilities.

Marter:
I find Michael Cera to be one of the most annoying actors currently working. The movie ended up exceeding my expectations by a lot. This may have been helped out because I got to see Michael Cera get beaten up for a good portion of the film.

That's.. Harsh.

Anyway, I'm glad you enjoyed it. I felt you could have talked more about how Scott matures and what that actually means, as I don't think him getting 'responsibilities' is the aspect of maturity that is really focused on. Responsibilities sounds like he's starting a family, getting a job and becoming a boring member of society, which I think isn't what it's about at all. He's still Scott, he's just willing to face the world and move on with life.

Apart from that, review was good as always.

FargoDog:
I don't think him getting 'responsibilities' is the aspect of maturity that is really focused on. Responsibilities sounds like he's starting a family, getting a job and becoming a boring member of society, which I think isn't what it's about at all. He's still Scott, he's just willing to face the world and move on with life.

By responsibilities, I more meant how he becomes aware of commitments in relationships and things like that. I guess I can see how you took it though.

Marter:

FargoDog:
I don't think him getting 'responsibilities' is the aspect of maturity that is really focused on. Responsibilities sounds like he's starting a family, getting a job and becoming a boring member of society, which I think isn't what it's about at all. He's still Scott, he's just willing to face the world and move on with life.

By responsibilities, I more meant how he becomes aware of commitments in relationships and things like that. I guess I can see how you took it though.

Well, I guess it says a lot about the film how two people can go in and come out with two different, yet similar ways of looking at the ending and how the characters evolved.

Micheal Cera is the only man in the world who could have done this great of a job as Scott.

Skullkid4187:
Micheal Cera is the only man in the world who could have done this great of a job as Scott.

Well, I certainly enjoyed watching him get the snot beaten out of him for a good portion of the film.

I thought it was good, but I didn't come out of it going "THAT WAS AWESOME!", sadly.
But, it was interesting and I'm glad I heard a Zelda tune in a movie.

It was a good film.

I feel it really needed to be longer though. It could have done with 2+ hours.

I thought the whole subspace highway thing was a joke until I found out online that the subspace highway is an actual thing in Scott Pilgrim.

And yeah the second half did feel quite rushed, they left the slow pace of characterization in between boss battle to just plain boss battles.

But the fight scenes were glorious...

I loved it. I thought it was one of the films of the year, and that's saying something with competition from Toy Story 3 and Inception. It was a lot of fun, and I really loved the subtle character growth, which wasn't forced or anything. I was really on their side by the end of it.

I actually really loved this film. It's by far the best thing Michael Cera has done and is definitely one of the best films of the year.

Mezmer:
I actually really loved this film. It's by far the best thing Michael Cera has done and is definitely one of the best films of the year.

I have to agree. This is definitely Cera's best role so far.

I'm pretty sure I'm the only one who didn't go into the film hating Cera :P

Good review, but I kinda disagree - I thought that the Boss Battles were by far the best parts. But then, that's just a matter of taste - you didn't like the action scenes in Hot Fuzz, I loved them. Same with this.

Marter:

Mezmer:
I actually really loved this film. It's by far the best thing Michael Cera has done and is definitely one of the best films of the year.

I have to agree. This is definitely Cera's best role so far.

Wait, I haven't seen the movie yet (I will though) but, "Cera's best role so far"? Better than Arrested Development? I find that hard to believe.

i thought the boss battles were hilarious :) best bits of the whole film :D

Great movie, I thought it was true to the spirit of the books.

While I don't like Michael Cera much myself, you can't hold his previous work against him with material like this. That is unless it's being used as contrast.

Marter:

Skullkid4187:
Micheal Cera is the only man in the world who could have done this great of a job as Scott.

Well, I certainly enjoyed watching him get the snot beaten out of him for a good portion of the film.

I can understand what you mean when you say Cera can be annoying, but I find him endearing in a way. But, if you ever need a skinny, awkward boy, then he's your man. You can't blame actors for playing to a type that they compliment well, but I can understand your frustration.

Brilliant review, it captured all of the key-points without becoming too.. what would be a good word? Theoretical.

I went to see this film not knowing anything about it other than needing to fight evil exes. I found it to be an utterly ridiculous movie. In this ridiculous referring to just the sheer amount of STUFF going on the screen at one time. I think they really did crunch a whole lot of fights in one movie and because they had to, there was less time spent on some of the characters.

I agree that Ramona is quite a shallow character. There doesn't seem to be any reason to WANT to fight for her, especially when you hear about her relationships with all these exes.

Although on the other hand, you could argue that Scott is pretty much a douche in this movie, not caring about other people's feelings until he's forced to. In this respect, Ramona and Scott are perfect for each other: both don't mind hurting others if something else/better comes along.

I suppose you could argue that at the end of the movie, it's a chance for the two characters to actually try to have a functional relationship now that they're both mature. Do they succeed? I guess that's up to the viewer.

All the side characters in the movie are much more interesting. Especially Wallace and whoever that girl was that could block out her own cursing.

Does anyone else think Michael Cera would look like less of a character from Peanuts if he would just get a haircut and put on a little weight? I mean for the love of Christ his head always looks massive.

I dunno, but I think a lot of people are taking this movie way too seriously...I think it kind of plays a joke on the audience in that respect. It's really just kind of about the fuck-all but stupidly earnest (and a touch surreal) spirit of video games, I think, and it's it likes to laugh at itself for all the fake-meaningful crap it throws in. Like a video game.

Having bought and read all six volumes of the graphic novels before watching the film, I enjoy it. The film was about half accurate to the novels but still I wasn't bother by the changes since I'm the type who see the reason to why they change the content most of the time.
I also love the soundtrack to it so much (I like the Sex Bob-Omb song and other one called Black Sheep) that I even bought the soundtrack ablum which is a first.
I do find it annoying that some people take it way too seriously like eg make a fuss that fact that he was dating a high school girl. People should watch it with their logic switch turn off and just let it sink in to the comedy and action.

Watched this movie yesterday. bloody brilliant! Loved it.

 

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