Comic gold. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World is a comic book adaptation through and through. Whole shots are panels lifted from the comic book. Even text and onomatopoeia makes it onto the screen. Its effects range from hilarious; to heartbreaking; to informative; to cringe. Like many elements of the film, there is no subtlety to the comic references. While I understand and appreciate the faithfulness to the comic, not everything translates well from the page to the screen. The constraints of the comic medium, however, are transcended in the film. I loved the soundtrack (Ft. Beck, much to Kanye’s dislike) which supplemented the film’s energetic pace and tone.
“Kick her in the balls!” I have always praised The World’s End (Edgar Wright) for combining action and comedy. Many action-comedy films have tense fights and hilarious dialogue. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World has tense and hilarious fights. Peppered with video game references and quips; the fights are hilariously over the top. There are seven major fights in the film, each with their own special dressing (one is Bollywood themed). I absolutely love the fights. They’re clear, fast-paced, clever, dynamic, off the wall and a few other things I’m sure. Not only that, but the fights develop the characters, deal with exposition and moves the plot along really well. Most (mediocre) action films seem to have action just to break up dialogue or just because they feel obligated to do so because of their ‘action’ label. Here the fighting is motivated (despite its ridiculous reasoning) and consistently creative.
High Performance. I couldn’t finish this without mentioning the fantastic comedy and dramatic performances. While many of the supporting characters hit their comedic beats note for note, Michael Cera and Mary Elizabeth Winstead give standout emotional performances. Not to mention that their comedy performances are top notch too. Michael Cera gives his now perfected, socially awkward teen performance, while Mary Elizabeth Winstead is hilariously deadpan and disinterested.