Wednesday, 25 August 2010
Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World has trouble adapting to film... it's lucky Michael Cera and Edgar Wright are at hand
It was an asset to have a director such as Wright at hand when making this film, as the story was clearly farcical, and had a tendancy to stray over the line between uncomfortable and unwatchable during the climax, even under Wright's watchful eye; it can easily be said that in less capable hands, this would have happened destructively more often. The story from Bryan Lee O'Malley was flawed from the beginning, a story that worked in graphic novel form wouldn't necessarily work as a film. The filmmakers made a good job of adapting the story, using original graphics from the series, and even seemed self-aware at times, which only added to the comedy of the end product. The team behind the film have to be commended on working the story into film, and when all is said about the fatalities involved with adapting the story to film, it's clear that Wright's move to Hollywood, and higher budgets, is a seemless transition. His input is defined, and the film is clearly his own, but allthewhile works perfectly with international names like Cera and 'Up In The Air' support Anna Kendrick.
Something else that let the film down when adapting it was the casting of Michael Cera. I don't think that he gave a bad performance by any means, but with such a history of films in his background, Cera is experienced at playing the nervous teen, and of course it shows; 'Superbad', 'Juno', 'Nick & Norah's Infinite Playlist' and 'Youth In Revolt', among others, range from 2007 to 2009, and in what feels already like a whole career, Cera has perfected mannerisms and characteristics that are trademark to him. There are scatterings of these within 'Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World', but at the same time as being the funniest lines in the film, they made it hard to see him as anything other than who he's been in films before. He just wasn't believable as a grunge guitarist who the seventeen-year-old character Knives looks up to.
In fact, Cera's performance was great in his own right, a fact that was not let down by the wrong decision to cast him, and this was equalled, if not overshadowed, by the inclusion of Mary Elizabeth Winstead in the role of Ramona, and I look forward to her roles in the future. Also making a welcomed appearance was Anna Kendrick, the award-winning supporting actress from 'Up In The Air', who is also a name from the set of the undeniably, and annoyingly, successful Twilight saga. For such a fatal story, the cast and whole team behind the film handle it in a way that has trouble translating to screen, but the personal touches from all involved makes it a film to note, and hopefully a step to bigger things for everyone.