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The Spirit (2008)

Film review: The Spirit (2008), directed by Frank Miller

A film we were going to watch at the cinema but never got around to. It’s another one of those “based on a graphic novel” films, with a screenplay written by Frank Miller (the guy who wrote the Sin City graphic novel … turned film), although this one was originally created by Will Eisner.

It’s about a city, Central City, and a super-human being called “the Spirit” (Gabriel Macht) who catches bad guys when he’s not busy charming the ladies. His nemesis is the biggest baddie of all, the Octopus (Samuel L Jackson). There are a couple of murderous ladies as well (Scarlett Johansson and Eva Mendes) and a bunch of dimwitted clones.

It’s a bizarre movie, to say the least. I loved Sarah Paulson ever since I saw her in Jack & Jill, but if she’s a doctor, she really can’t recognise her old flame just because he has a tiny mask around his eyes? We knew Lois Lane was fooled by a pair of glasses and a tie, but I mean, come on! The sidekick clones were funny at first but got annoying ever so quickly. Sand’s “diamonds are a girl’s best friend” attitude was grating, the rookie cop too silly … etc. The Octopus was a downright psycho as a character (still not sure if I enjoyed that or not), but Johansson was refreshing as the “I’m a woman, but I’m not his woman”.

The film itself seemed very strangely paced. It was slow and just got boring. The only redeeming quality was that it was visually stunning. Like a graphic novel come to life, which of course it is. While the only reason I had some form of enjoyment out of the over-the-top violent Sin City was because it too looked spectacular. Every shot, every angle, just stunning. However, if that’s all you’ve got, it doesn’t make a very good movie. Even if it does have a cute tabby cat passing by on screen every now and again.

1.5 out of 5 vigilantes.


An easily distracted Swedish introvert residing in Robin Hood Country (Nottingham, UK) with a husband and two cats. She's an eager participant in tabletop and play-by-post roleplaying, woodworking, photography and European travel, when there's not a plague on.

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