Didn’t rock my world, didn’t suck. 7 out of the 9 nerds I went to see it with liked it, so I’ve been wondering why it didn’t grab me by the reproductive organs like everyone else I was with. The conclusions:
1) The video game nerdery belonged to another time. It’s a movie about teenagers, presumably for teenagers, but all the video game references are only really going to be accessible to older gamers of the heady mid 90s’ SNES/Megadrive variety. The universal logo at the top (which I though was hilarious) is the case in point – anyone who hasn’t played 8-bit (and who the fuck would nowadays, given the current options in video games) just ain’t gonna get it.
2) Ramona was a bitch. She was cute, had funky hair. So what? She’s a snob. She’s laden with baggage. I would fight seven evil super-powered exes for this girl why? Because she’ll strip down to her underwear and then tell me “I’m not going to sleep with you”? Nahhhhhh….
3) The music. I hate Beck tunes. Like, with the ‘fury of a thousand suns’ brand hatred. Way too many musical numbers during the flick, of a flavor that I particularly despise. Every time Sex Bob-omb started playing, I was torn out of the moment and found myself flinching in my chair like a PTSD sufferer. Why not get Billy Corgan to write the tunes? The costume dept sure thought he was the duck’s nuts, given the amount of Pumpkins merch splashed about the set.
4) Micheal Cera. I just don’t dig him. I didn’t like Arrested Development, or at least, the parts I did like had nothing to do with Cera. I didn’t get what all the fuss was about in Juno. I find him him whiny and weak and affected, and he pretty much plays the same character in everything I’ve seen him in. Sure, this is probably the fault of typecasting and directors and whatnot, still doesn’t make me enjoy watching him on-screen. Thus, any flick where he’s playing the lead is probably gonna be pushing shit uphill for me.
5) I felt like I’d seen the film already. Entirely the fault of the marketing dept, but if you watched all of the SPvstW trailers prior to seeing the film (which I did) you’ve seen most of the funny lines and best parts. The trailers were actually edited a little better in some scenes and funnier as a result (the scene where Lucas Lee curbstomps Scott, then turns to Ramona and says “How’s life? (nod to Scott) He seems nice…” made me giggle in the trailer, but I didn’t blink in the actual flick). The big fight scenes, the one-liners, the video game gags, I’d seen 90% of it before I ever set foot in the theatre. Symptomatic of a wider problem with movie trailers in general, I know, but SP really suffered for it in my eyes.
All that said, it was a brave film, and could have been all over the shop. Plot was coherent, action scenes were neat, and the gags were funny (the first time I saw them at least). It’s a shame the box office was so poor, because , for all its faults, SPvstW certainly broke the mould.