I enjoyed this movie far more than I thought I would, considering I’m not really the intended audience. The thing that I most enjoyed about Scott Pilgrim is the fact that director Edgar Wright (Shaun of the Dead and Hot Fuzz) is utterly relentless in his direction. You’ll often see blurbs in movie previews about how “over-the-top” a movie is or how consistently action packed it is throughout. The vast majority of the time however the movie this amounts to either hyperbole or the fact that from a statistical stand point there are more action set ups in the movies. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World on the other hand never stops. As far as (North since the whole Canada thing but American distributor and British director) American summer release movies go, only The Wachowskis with their Matrix Trilogy and Speed Racer are comparably with how uncompromising in style this movie is. It is in the most literal definition, a video game movie come to life. Not a video game movie in the sense that people who don’t play video games call movies that they think are like video games “video game” movies, but a video game movie in the essence that this is something that would have in all likely been made had it not been first a comic book and then a movie. Portions of this movie look straight out of No More Heroes.
[Note there is actual a video game based on the comic now out for PSN/XBLA]
I couldn’t love the movie however, for a couple of reasons, not all the adaptation’s fault. The most outstanding offense the movie has is that all the characters are a one-dimensional throughout the vast majority of the film. Which wouldn’t be a problem, consider them being static characters doesn’t automatically make them bad, but everyone towards the end has a contrived turn of events after Scott makes a personal revelation and literally gives three of the most frequent cast members, his fellow band members, one single sentence and now all is forgiven. If they had spaced out the internal conflicts within the band, as well as his conflicts with his ex and current girlfriend, it would have been meaningful. Granted that would have padded the movie with probably an extra 30 min running time and would have killed the kinetic energy that is constantly flowing. Also, it would have hindered the main issue of fighting the 7 evil exs. The other larger problem I had with the movie is that fact that the first three fights are so much more satisfying, and hilarious, than the later three fights that occur during the movie.
So, all in all, I just have to accept the fact that I wouldn’t have gotten this movie that I readily enjoyed over more developed characters without compromising the things I adored about this version. Like great product placement, this movie has made me want to read the comic books that inspired the movie to spend more time with the characters and for the ending to become meaningful. And the soundtrack is pretty pretty good, even if a bit repetitive.