it's a great life, if you don't weaken (matociquala) wrote,
it's a great life, if you don't weaken
matociquala

Daredevil (some very mild spoilers)

Is a *much* better movie than you think it's going to be. No, really. Worth full price, in fact, which is not something I say often.

There were a few minor problems with it--dorky voiceover (not Affleck's fault--almost ALL voiceovers are dorky. Just ask Harrison Ford. :-) ) and the CGI was erratic--some of it was lovely, realistic, *weighty* movement with things breaking under characters' feet as they vaulted and spun. Some of it was unfortunately Spidey-esque.

The real strength of this movie, however, is its density. It's got a nice, shattered-safety-glass grit and realism to it, from Matt Murdock's broken tooth to his sleeping arrangements, silencing a world that's always just a little too loud, a little too close.

The pacing lags occasionally, but the movie makes up for it with engaging characterizations and a scriptwriter/director who obviously gets what drives the character--so much like Bruce Wayne, for example, but so much closer to the blood and despair of the streets. I happen to think Daredevil is one of the better comic book characters on concept-level, (although often poorly used) but I've always had a weakness for characters like the Batman, Green Arrow, and so forth....

They've downpowered him a bit. Made his blindness an actual handicap rather than a minor inconvenience--which, I might add, I *loved.* Upped the prices he pays for what he does, physical, moral, and emotional. Nice design job on the costume: he could have looked very, very silly. Instead, he looks very intimidating--Zorro in clotted crimson leather.

Beautiful use of colour and nice reversals of heaven and hell symbolism, questions of good and evil and appearances. Look especially for blue and silver opposed to black and red. Michael Clarke Duncan (the sexiest voice this side of James Earl Jones) is gorgeous and powerful as Kingpin.

And the best part?

Grin.

It's Batman. Batman as it *should* have been, on an 80K budget, without the star power and stunt casting; Batman without the stupid camp jokes and the slapstick humor of penguins wearing rocket launchers.

I have to assume the parallels are intentional: the structure is so very close in so many ways to the first two Burton Batmen, and we even borrow a couple of classic Dark Knight tricks.

Oh, and the cookies. I won't give it away, too much, but look for Frank Miller to prove that those who live by the pen will die by the pen, and I suspect diehard fans (and even dilettantes like moi) will recognize the names of the redshirt characters.

It's a lovely little movie, on structural, acting, editing, and design levels. Not perfect by any means. But a worthy addition to the Superhero Genre Movie Renaissance currently underway.
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