“Tell it to the cleaning lady on Monday.”
One of the benefits of doing a ‘top 25’ rather than a ‘top 10’ (or a ‘top any-number-lower-than-20’) is that I can attach a few stragglers on there whose inclusion I would have otherwise found hard to justify but which deserve honourable mentions nonetheless. Scott Pilgrim vs the World is one such example.
A flawed film in places for sure, and suffers from some dodgy pacing especially in its final third, but Edgar Wright’s slick comedy was still my favourite film of 2010 for its successful blending of video game-style action and comic book cutting. For me it’s the best movie at capturing the spirit of these other mediums, and it boasted some memorable acting performances as well, from Chris Evans and Brandon Routh in particular.
Based on the Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series by Bryan Lee O’Malley, the film follows its title character on a mission familiar to many teenage boys; winning the heart of a girl he suspects is ‘out of his league’. A failed objective in the majority of cases, Scott manages to succeed here because this is a movie in which he makes the rules; ranging from being the core bass player in a rock band to scoring unlikely victories in well choreographed fight sequences with guys twice his size and strength. These foes are the ‘7 evil exes’ of his love interest Ramona, and each encounter with them presents a set of ready-made set pieces that are, for the most part, executed with such style that most audiences are likely to find something they like in this movie.
Though it does require quite a suspension of disbelief (breaking all sorts of rules relating to physics and common sense), this is a large part of its strength. There have truly been few other recent Hollywood releases that I enjoyed as much as this one.