Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (2010) - Can't Stop the Movies
Can't Stop the Movies
15Aug/100

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (2010)

Danny no longer writes for Can't Stop the Movies, and can be reached at his fantastic site Pre-Code.com

Danny LIKE"An epic tale of epic epicness" warns the tagline for Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. Well, I'll give it at least one of those.

Based on the meandering graphic novel/pseudo-manga series from Bryan Lee O'Malley, the movie stars Michael Cera as the titular hero, a directionless hipster loser in a no-luck band. Still devastated from a break-up from over a year ago, the story begins when Pilgrim begins to date a seventeen-year-old Chinese girl named Knives. Everything between them seems rosy until a mysterious girl starts popping up in his dreams.

This is Ramona.

Ramona is a delivery girl for Amazon, and does her job by traveling through dreams; now you know what that overnight shipping charge is for. This is one of the first of many fantastical elements that enliven the film, as we soon find Scott's world filled with points systems, extra lives, and dueling monsters.

It's a gorgeous film that is almost vibrates from the visual possibilities it dabbles in. Use of onomatopoeias litter the screen and Scott Pilgrim is packed with background gags, slick animation, and videogame references. Director Edgar Wright wields his editors like a weapon, eagerly keeping even the most addled attentions bemused by his roving camera.

Of course, such spastic movements have their drawbacks, which may be why the film feels about twice as long as it's two-hour running time denotes. Even worse is when the movie stops for romantic overtures which are such an abrupt change of pace that it's akin to a punch in the gut.

Wright agrees, apparently, since the romantic plot becomes nothing but declarations and listless looks in the second half of the film. While this helps the tempo, it kills the rather delicate love story at the middle of it all, but more on that in a moment.

The plot involves Pilgrim being forced to fight Ramona's seven evil exes, all of whom have gathered to form a league. There's barely a logical reason behind this but it brings the relationship's baggage to the forefront in an engaging way; however this makes Ramona feel, though, is barely touched upon with most of the second half of the film relegating her to the status of a non-entity.

Pilgrim steps up and saves the day in a rather nice way and along the way his own personal baggage is finally lifted. This is satisfying, as it's meant to be. But considering that the underlined and bolded moral of Scott Pilgrim is in the idea of developing self respect, having Ramona never being given the chance to do the same is unsatisfying at best.

Regardless, even if the lead romance fizzles a bit, the film still keeps things breezy with a likeable cast, some amazing fight scenes, and a general atmosphere of goofy charm. I won't say that Scott won in his bout with the world, but, surprisingly, he kept it gloriously on the ropes.

Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (2010)

This film is currently playing in theaters.

Directed by Edgar Wright
Starring Michael Cera

Posted by Danny

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