April 06, 2005


lashings of the old ultraviolence

Two quick reviews of media of the extreme-violence category, passive and active respectively.

Sin City: There's a common theme to discussions about movies that arose out of comic book (graphic novels if you really must) sources--mainly, fanboys of the source material being variously outraged-to-mildly-cranky about all the liberties and changes to things. You know the sort, who're sad because the Green Goblin didn't kill Gwen Stacy, whoever the fuck she is. That sort of thing.

Discussions of Sin City I've seen have presented an interesting, and deeply amusing to me, twist on that factor--namely, fanboys of the source material who are mildly cranky because not enough liberties were taken in the film adaptation. Apparently, the movie's an almost direct translation of the Sin City comics, with the only changes being Hartigan's story being split to bookend the other two story arcs. These voices feel it would have worked better to intercut between all three stories or somesuch.

I think they're dumb. The movie works great as it is. Hartigan's story works great as a bookend device, so that's a change (if it is one, I've never read the original comics though that'll probably change) that I agree wholeheartedly with. It gives the film an overall structure of:
1: ordinary guy pushed to extraordinary extremes
2: superhuman antihero's story
3: lesser-but-still-debateably-superhuman antihero's story
4: closing out on ordinary guy in extremes.

...which works really well. Marv's story arc was my favorite to watch, but Hartigan's had the biggest emotional punch to it.

Extremely stylish and enjoyable. The quasi-black-and-white was used to particularly good effect in some of the gorier bits--dark figures bleeding bright white. Not deep symbolism by any means, but fun.

I'd like Robert Rodriguez and Frank Miller to team up someday to do a hyperkinetic 80-minute-tops translation of "Hard-Boiled."

God of War. I've really been enjoying this Playstation 2 title lately. It's a highly polished and extremely violent action game with occasional puzzle/platformy bits dashed in, and just does a lot of things perfectly right. In no particular order:

Basically, it's a joy to play. I'm apparently two-thirds or so of the way through now, and will post a follow-up if the whole experience just catastrophically falls apart at the end (as some games are known to do).

posted by Gar @ 8:08 AM
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