Saturday, December 27, 2008

602nd Post - He Who Hestitates Is ... Not Always Lost!

Well, we were going to see some movies over the holidays. Of particular interest to me at least, and vicariously for Patricia, was "The Spirit", Frank Miller's latest film.

I have been a fan of Miller since the late 1970's. Yes, he has been around that long. He was an acclaimed comic book artist, then writer, then writer/artist, for many years before he ventured into film. AFAIK, his first writing credit was Robocop 2, and if you don't remember that movie, or had forgotten that there was more than one Robocop film, then I do not think any less of you, because RC 2 was not very good at all. I still haven't seen RC 3.

I became less interested in Miller's work as the 1990's progressed. I found more and more of it self-indulgent and pedantic, and not terribly entertaining. I still have quite a few issues of his Sin City book that I have never read, so I will not comment on them, other than to say that I haven't read them and may never. If you want a deal...

I have always liked the work of Will Eisner, though. His Spirit work back in the 1940's was so seminal that he is still cited today as a major influence. I realize he had an awful lot of assistants working with him to produce those weekly 7-page comic stories, but even when he was off fighting WWII, Eisner's presence on the strip was always there.

Eisner produced quality work nearly until his death in 2005. I was and am a member of a Will Eisner mailing list. After I bought a book on parliamentary procedure containing Eisner illustrations explaining how to make a motion, an amendment, and so on, I asked Eisner why he had decided to do this book. He was kind enough to reply to me! He wrote that he knew that parliamentary procedure was a dry affair, and he wanted to, via his unique illustrations, try to make the process more interesting than it would be (and is!) otherwise. I always thought it was kind of him to reply to my e-mail.

Imagine, then, how I should feel to learn that Frank Miller would be directing a Spirit movie! I had high hopes and was looking forward to seeing the film, which was to be released on December 25th.

I'm glad we haven't seen it yet, because the reviews have been horrendous. Rotten Tomatoes Dot Com gives it a lousy 17% rating. Variety thinks it may become the latest cult film, ala The Rocky Horror Picture Show. I have yet to see a positive review.

I may yet see this movie, but will likely wait until it hits my movie channels, probably in a few weeks.

What movie have you been looking forward to seeing over the holidays?


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