I knew about The Spirit before I started studying how to make sequential art (AKA comic books), but the crime-fighter’s creator, Will Eisner, is well-known in the industry as setting the standard for that kind of storytelling. I haven’t read too much of The Spirit, but what I have read was quite charming and fun.
Hold on for a sec. In my comments on my Iron Man review, I got called on giving Superman Returns two more stars (out of 10) than I gave Iron Man. I admit that Superman Returns had a lot of imperfections, including a let-down ending. And as I said in the comments, I am a lot more forgiving to films that I consider to have “a good heart.”
It’s hard to explain what that means. Part of it is the general message of the story. In a book by Peter “The Hulk” David on writing, he (Mr. David not The Hulk) says that although Spider-Man plots the adventures of a superpowered teen with spider powers, what it is about is “with great power comes great responsibility.” It seemed to me that Iron Man was about “the answer to guns is more guns,” but maybe that’s just me. That was only part of the problem I had with the movie, but like I say, if it had a better heart, I would have rated it better, like I did with Superman Returns even though as pointed out there were a lot of weak points in the telling. Despite those flaws I think that Singer’s “does the world need Superman?” vision was somewhat redeeming.
The stories of The Spirit, noir crime-fighter from the 1940’s, seems from what I’ve been exposed to have a good heart – full of humour and pathos and everyday white collar earnestness. But now I learn that it’s being made into a movie written and directed by Frank “Sin City” Miller. In case you don’t know what I think about Frank Miller, completely apart from his ability to draw comics, let me put it to you with this quote of his:
“9/11 did change everything: the West is confronted with a fascist, misogynist, homophobic, genocidal blood enemy that is dedicated to the annihilation of everything civilization has achieved in three millennia. At the very least, my idea of what makes a true villain has changed. An existential threat to everything in the world that’s worth a damn clarifies the mind…Look at the world. Almost half my country equates flushing a Koran down a toilet with sawing the head off an innocent contractor, or using airplanes those barbarians could never have invented to slaughter thousands of my neighbors.”
As if he’s one to talk about misogyny and homophobia (re: 300).
I intend to be extremely faithful to the heart and soul of the material, but it wont be nostalgic. It will be much scarier than people expect, Miller told Variety.
Well, I am scared.
ps: the quote I used is in reference to a Batman comic Miller is working on called “Holy Terror, Batman!” a propaganda piece where Batman fights Al-Qaeda.