yearzerowriters

Green Hornet/Scott Pilgrim [SPOILER REVIEWS]

In Uncategorized on February 2, 2011 at 7:48 pm

green

 

I’m probably a little late with the Scott Pilgrim notes, but no one saw it at the cinema anyway so I might get away with it. Green Hornet is right now, so we’re good.

Actually, I’ve just checked and Green Hornet has been on release for a few weeks now. Fuck. And I’ve just based most of issue 8 of the mag all around that fucking film, and already it’s dated.

And now I’m writing notes on it. Does it matter?

I wonder what Seth Rogen thinks about all this?

[INSERT:

Seth Rogen sits alone in a cafe, slimmer than usual, and writes [in his Cheshire Cat notepad];

‘Outrun the backlash’…impossible?

Gotta make a plan…iron-tight plan…

Option 1: Flay Pineapple?

Could work…if people think I’m already down then they might let me stand back up? But…don’t they

kick when you’re down?

I don’t know, I think they might kick.

Expansion – Flay Pineapple and that other one…Jody’s film…no one really saw it, so bring it back up

in interviews and make them think i’m really down…like, on my knees down…begging like Haim…

Won’t they still kick?

He puts the pen in his mouth and looks around to see if anyone’s recognised him. Everyone seems busy,

distracted. One couple are complaining about Ryan Reynolds, the woman saying he’s treading water,

the man saying he shouldn’t be in the water in the first place.

The pen goes back down.

The fuckers always kick.

Don’t they know I’m trying here…?

Fuck it, they think they’re smart, but I’m smarter…I’ll show them some fucking brains…some fucking

brainwork…

I GUESS THERE’S NO REAL WAY TO KNOW.

I’ll write out some thoughts anyway.

Points:

Reality of films – There is no reality to Scott Pilgrim. There is a little more to Hornet.

Funniness – Pilgrim has good lines, but no normal ones. There’s no balance. When you expect funny lines, then things build and build until it’s not funny anymore. Hornet has balance. Some obvious lines, but most aren’t.

Actors – Cera is repeating himself. Chou is patchy. Rogen is repeating himself, but funnier than Cera.

Fight scenes – Pilgrim fight scenes are tedious. So much is going on, so many lights and graphics, but it’s dull. Hornet has some kind of panicked reality to its fight scenes.

Pacing of comedy – Hornet has balance, Pilgrim doesn’t. When Pilgrim slows down it seems painfully slow. When Hornet slows down, it’s okay.

Direction – Wright only has one style. He has no maturity, like he’s scared to let any drama seep out, or that the audience will run away. He is the maker of his own problems. Gondry is a mix of Gondrian and normal. He gets out of the way most of the time, which is the best way to play a superhero film.

The Reality of the films

Scott Pilgrim has no reality. It moves too fast. Why? I think it’s because of the writing and the direction and maybe the actors too.

Is there any way to analyse this?

I can’t remember the film scene for scene but I think I’ve got enough to give it a shot.

The first 25 minutes – Scott introduces all his friends and dates Knives Chau and meets Ramona Flowers and goes on a date with her and plays in his band and talks about Pacman…

This is too much too fast. You can’t do this. You can’t. Or you can, but you’re gonna have problems later when you’re trying to resolve things. Rule: You speed things up, you can’t slow them back down.

The fight scenes don’t mean anything

I guess there’s a concept or idea behind it, but it’s not exciting. I don’t wanna say it’s embarrassing, because the director tried something different and the writing’s good for what it is, but…

I wonder what Edgar Wright thought of it all, really…

[INSERT:

I need to edit this more. Faster. To the point. Where’s Simon? Shit, no more coffee. Where’s the-…nice tits. She’s tall. Taller than me? I don’t think so. Don’t stand up, you’ll find out. Shit, still no coffee. It’s kinda dark in here. Can they turn up the lights? How do you say that? Turn up? Increase? Where’s she going? That guy’s with her. Fuck it. This table’s too big. What kind of paper is this? Do people still write with pens? I really need to use my Mac. Mac and Me. It wasn’t that bad. Better than Paul. Is it? Gotta see first cut. It would’ve been better with me. Man, aliens. I don’t believe in them. If they’re really there then-…shit, no coffee. Probably better for my body. The script. Focus. It’s moving too fast. Can’t slow down. Do we need to slow down? There’s no assistants. No Thelma schoomacker for me. I don’t need help. I have vision. Auteur. It makes sense. I always cut fast. Backlash. It’ll happen. How to stop it? Less press? Turn into Pynchon. I’m no Pynchon. I do film. Directors get ass. I haven’t fucked anyone for a while. Who’s good? Mary? Can’t, too tall. Ellen? Too small. Michael? I’m not gay. Am I? The script has a gay. Do I relate to him? Not sure. Page 57. What’s happening here? Can’t remember? Hang on. What’s this film again? What’s Michael called? Michael? Shit, no coffee. Where’s Simon?

 …

I’ve decided not to follow the order of my original points. I will skip ahead to…

Pacing of comedy and Direction

Wright only has one style. He has no maturity, like he’s scared to let any drama seep out, or that the audience will run away. He is the maker of his own problems. Gondry is a mix of Gondrian and normal. He gets out of the way most of the time, which is the best way to play a superhero film.

I think I said that already.

Okay, let’s analyse.

Throughout Pilgrim it is clear that every line has been created. Does that make sense? I think it does. Because…

If you are fed clever line after clever line after clever line…if no one ever stops and says something simple or real, like ‘What are you doing?’ or ‘Hey, I don’t know what to have for dinner?’…then there will be no drama. You will be surprised by nothing. And if the lines aren’t clever enough then they will be embarrassing instead.

Scott Pilgrim is so tightly writtten. It’s so sharp. Like the scene where Scott orders something on amazon then sits in front of the door and waits for it to be delivered. That’s funny, I think.

There are a lot of good moments.

But you can’t sustain that for a whole film, can you?

I think I wrote something about Gondry too.

Yup. I did. And the expansion…there are about four scenes in Green Hornet which you can tell have been directed by someone like him.

1- The scene in the garage where Rogen fucks the women on all the different cars.

2 – The scene where the seven green people are killed, and it goes split screen.

3 – The scene where…

Okay, maybe there are only two.

But this is good. Gondry doesn’t force himself on the picture. He lets the actors and the script work it’s way through.

And the thing about pacing…

The Green Hornet is much better paced than Scott Pilgrim. There is balance. Rogen says two funny things, then one serious thing. It’s like a real conversation, only a little bit funnier.

[INSERT:

Hay un studio en Madrid, y dos personas esta hablando sobre ‘The Green Hornet.’

Esta el scripto:

UNO PERSONA: No esta funny.

DOS PERSONA: Esta funny

PRESENTO: Pienso que Rogen esta muy cansado…muy muy cansado…

UNO PERSONA: No esta funny.

DOS PERSONA: Esta funny.

PRESENTO: Esta muy cansado. Hay una backlasho!

Una persona toca una sip de agua.

UNA PERSONA: No esta funny.

DOS PERSONA: Esta funny.

UNA PERSONA: No.

DOS PERSONA: Si.

PRESENTO: Queremos una backlasho, no?

 …

I’m lost…where were we?

FIGHT SCENES!

Scott Pilgrim has tedious fight scenes. Example:

‘Jason Schwartzman attacks Scott Pilgrim and they go through the moves they were told to go through with no kind of realistic damage or excitement. It’s almost worse than the Star Wars Prequels.’

The only salvation is that some of the fights end in different ways. But in general, they’re still tedious.

The Green Hornet has funny fight scenes. Example:

Rogen tries to beat up Kato. He gets thrown around the place and his best attack is using the mini football table on Kato’s face.

See, this is in character. Rogen can’t fight, and his moves are all over the place. Kato isn’t superhuman, and does take a few hits.

I like the Hornet fight scenes more.

But I’d be dishonest if I didn’t say they weren’t realistic. They’re not. Especially the end scene, with the half car. That’s a bit dumb. But mostly they’re funny.

Is there anything left to say?

STARS

Both Michael Cera and Seth Rogen are repeating characters.

But only one of them is still funny. Because Rogen has a character that is in some small way realistic and based on flaw. Or flaws.

Michael Cera is just awkward. He delivers his lines amazingly because he’s been delivering the same lines for the last seventy years. Some are funny, most aren’t.

I wonder what Seth Rogen thinks of his own repetition…

[INSERT:

Conversation overheard between Seth Rogen [movi-star] and his writing partner:

They don’t rate me, man.”

I’m sure it’s not that.”

I can see it in their eyes. They don’t rate me.”

That’s crazy.”

Why don’t they rate me?”

They do.”

Maybe it was Pineapple?”

Pineapple was a great film.”

They don’t think I’m funny.”

Ridiculous.”

They think I’m fat.”

You’re not-…”

Yeah, too fat to play a superhero. Too fat to play Green…whatever his name is.”

Hornet.”

I’m not fat.”

I know, man.”

But they think I am.”

There’s no evidence to-…”

They think I’m dishing out the same shit…”

The same shit?”

Every film, same shit…”

Not every film is-…”

But there are changes, man. Subtle, but there are changes.”

Yes, changes…”

I don’t repeat myself.”

No one really said you did.”

I would never repeat myself.”

I know…”

I’d be the first to know it too, man. Cos I self-censor, I self regulate myself.”

And that kind of self-awareness is precious, especially in this-…”

Fuck it.”

Yup.”

I’m gonna last forever.”

Eternal you.”

I ain’t never gonna die.”

Never.”

What about Jay Chou?

His English is bad. If he’s gonna use colloquialisms then he should be able to say them convincingly.

But at last, an Asian man in Hollywood is given some kind of humanness…he can fight, sure, but he’s also got a sexual interest in Cameron Diaz. Even if he fails to get her, it doesn’t matter because Rogen fails too. They’re both as immature as each other.

The bad guy [Christoph Waltz]?

Divisive. I guess he’s having some kind of mental breakdown for most of the film. And thinking about it, it’s well set up. Example:

The first scene, where James Franco calls him old and tired and obsolete, he says that, hey, I’ve been working hard for twenty-five years and now I’m the Lord of all crime in LA.

The key is he’s been working hard. But now he is old, and people aren’t scared of him, even though he’s a killer.

His mental collapse isn’t really funny until the final chase scene.

I’m un-gasable!” He shouts, wearing his new outfit [a gas mask and blood red jacket]

Cameron Diaz?

It’s pointless to have her in the role, but there’s a great bit where Rogen calls her old. She’s got a sense of humour at least.

Tom Wilkinson?

He gets stung by a bee. But not really. Reads his lines okay. Hasn’t aged in ten years.

You can’t really do much in two scenes, I guess.

And if we switch to Scott Pilgrim…

Chris Evans [ex-boyfriend no. 2]?

He has the best character out of all the exes. A movie star. Shame he’s second on the list, as he’s the toughest, and he bows out in a bizarre way. I still don’t really understand how he dies.

Brandon Routh [Ex no.3]?

Man, he really needed this role. Does some good delivery with the “chicken’s vegan, right?” line.

Mary Elizabeth Winstead?

Was shite in Death Proof and Die Hard 4. Very good in this. How much was from her, and how much was pulled out of her by Wright?

Note of caution: She’s aging quite badly. In five years she might look like Dawn French.

Kieran Culkin?

Flustered by nothing. Confident and actively gay.

Jason Scwarzman [final ex]?

A midget. Official stats put him at 5′ 4”, so how the fuck did they get him up to Cera’s eyebrows?

Un-threatening. Tedious. Awful “Do you know how long it took me to get contact details for all the exes? Two hours. Two hours!” line.

Needs to put a sack over Wes Anderson’s head and pull Rushmore 2 out of him asap.

Lesbian ex?

Fuck ugly. Boring. Worst ex of the bunch.

Summary:

Green Hornet very good. Scott Pilgrim watchable.

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