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First DareDevil Review

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First DareDevil Review

Old 02-01-03, 05:29 PM
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First DareDevil Review

Dr. Hfuhruhurr Hates Ben Affleck... But He Loooooooves DAREDEVIL!!
Hey, everyone. "Moriarty" here with some Rumblings From The Lab.
I was curious to see how an avowed Ben Affleck hater might react to this film. As strange as it might seem to say that a superhero film contains an actor’s best work, that might be the case here, and so I’m eager to see how the anti-Affleck fanboys react to the movie.
This review, from our good friend and fellow Evil Genius Dr. Michael Hfuhruhurr, is the first indicator of how things might go, and if I were 20th Century Fox, I’d be cautiously optimistic. Check this out...
Greetings. Dr. Michael Hfuhruhurr here, returning after a long hiatus during which I had to perform my patented Cranial Screwtop Method upon my own head. I am happy to report everything went well, although some of you may doubt it when you here what I have to say about Daredevil.

Let me begin by saying this: I HATE BEN AFFLECK. And hate is not a word I'm fond of using or that I apply indiscriminately. My father smoked five packs of cigarettes a day and died from cancer. Yet I don't hate smoking. I caught my girlfriend in bed with my best friend. Yet I don't hate them. What do I hate? Taxes, religious fundamentalists and Ben Affleck.

Words can't begin to convey how much I loath this so-called actor. I despise him so much that every morning after taking my ritual ****, I look down in the bowl and name my turd "Ben" before flushing it.

Let me also say this: I LOVE THE DAREDEVIL COMICS. As a kid I was all about Spidey. When I got into high school, I was all about DD. I can rattle off all of the writers and artists and can recall storylines and cover art at will. I liked DD because he seemed to be the most real of all the superheroes. So real that it seems weird to call him a superhero. And he had a pretty ****ed up psyche.

I've been dying to see the film, yet I've been dreading it at the same time. I was pretty sure that Ben was going to ruin it. That he was going to be stiff, annoying and Mr. Magooing his way through all of his "look, ma, I'm blind" scenes.

Well, Mr. Affleck, having seen the film, I have this to say to you: there will be no turd named after you tomorrow morning. I know when I'm wrong and I'm man enough to admit it. And as embarrassed and loathe as I am to say this (and I know many of you won't believe it until you see it for yourself): Ben Affleck became Matt Murdock. Almost instantly. And he gave an amazing performance, the best performance of his career. I know that's not saying much, so let's say this: he gave the best performance of both his and Matt Damon's careers.

Okay. Start your talkback rants now. Believe me, if I had been reading this before seeing the film, I'd be going apeshit myself: Ben Affleck becomes Matt Murdock!? What, are you? Blind and stupid!? Do you work for him? Burn in hell Dr. H! I know it's going to be hard to swallow. So rail against me and rail against Affleck and AICN and Marvel and whoever else you want to rail against. Get it all out of your system and then... GET OFF YOUR ****ING ASS AND GO SEE DAREDEVIL!

This is the best comic book/superhero movie since Burton's original BATMAN (and it's without the flaws of that film). The comparisons will be easy to make: both heroes are relatively normal men driven to become vigilante crimefighters after their parents are murdered. Both are borderline psychos themselves. Both films are dark in tone. Yet Daredevil succeeds where Batman fails. DAREDEVIL'S darkness is real and the movie is all about the man behind the mask. The villains are not allowed to take over the movie asylum. In fact, this is the first superhero movie where you honestly feel what it is like to be the hero. If SUPERMAN made you believe that a man can fly, this one will make you believe that a man can hurt, both physically and in the depths of his soul.

But what about SPIDER-MAN? And X-MEN, you may ask. Loved them both. Spider-Man's first half blew me away. But I thought the film lost some steam and resonance in the second half. The script was pretty weak once Parker officially became the supersuited Spider-Man. I loved X-MEN too. But it wasn't a very personal film for me. I had never been into the comics and I couldn't emotionally latch onto any one character.

So I'm going with DAREDEVIL. It's solid on all fronts. It's relatable and it's real. And it's the first superhero film that really, truly let's you inside the heroes head and let's you know what it's like to be in the his boots.

[If you don't want any spoilers, you can stop here. Although I promise not to give away any big ones.]

Writer/Director Mark Steven Johnson let's you know right away what kind of film he's making. When we first see Daredevil, he is battered, broken, clinging to a cross at the top of a cathedral, his blood dripping down over the religious imagery on a stained glass window.

He then takes us to the Hell's Kitchen of Matt's youth, to the moment when he loses his vision. And believe me, when young Matt wakes up in the hospital and discovers that he is blind and that his hearing has become supersensitive, you will know exactly what it is like. Johnson and his Effects team have devised a way for the audience to be inside Matt's head. To "see" what he sees and hear what he hears. Call it DeDeVision. It's amazing. One of the most breathtaking innovations you will ever experience on film. It's interactive. And it's mind blowing. And heartbreaking. Because as cool as it may be to experience it on the screen, you know that a life of "seeing" like this is a life lived in Hell.

This is a dark, dark film. It is probably one of the hardest PG-13 films you'll ever see. And as anyone who knows DD knows: that's the way it had to be made. Still, I am amazed that Johnson was allowed to make the film this way. From the opening scene until the very end, Johnson pulls no punches. People bleed, people die. When DD gets home from a night of fighting crime, he pops Vicadin like it's candy. (When you see this scene, you will not see Ben Affleck. You will see Matt Murdock. I promise.)

You will see Murdock taking out his anger and confusion on "the bad guys." There is no witty banter and no cool capture. There are moments where you'll squirm, hoping that DD pulls back a little. "Geez, DD, lighten up, he's had enough." But DD does not lighten up. And this becomes the thematic soul-searching core of the film. Is DD a bad guy? He's not even sure.

This is the UNFORGIVEN of superhero films. Conventions are turned on their head, twisted, questioned. After a jury sets a rapist free, DD chases him down that very night. Beats the **** out of him. The guys falls onto a subway track as a train approaches. Does DD give him a hand and turn him over to the police like every good superhero is supposed to do? Nope. He flashes the guy an evil grin and says: "See that light at the end of the tunnel? It's not heaven. It's the C-train." And then he watches almost gleefully as the train runs over the guy.

In almost every superhero film, there's another conventional scene where the villain has the hero cornered and helpless. Yet the villain never unmasks the hero. That scene drove me nuts in SPIDER-MAN. Goblin has Spidey against the ropes, helpless, yet doesn't seem to be the least bit curious as to who's under the mask. In DAREDEVIL, no one ever hesitates to unmask DD. That's what I mean by this being a film grounded in reality. People act real, do real things. Even if they are wearing silly costumes. (FYI: The costume kicks ass.)

There's another great superhero convention that gets redefined in DAREDEVIL. Matt and Elektra are on a date, having their first kiss. Then Matt hears someone in trouble in the distance. He says he has to leave. She tells him to stay. He hesitates. Then stays. he ****ing stays! How ****ing cool is that!!??? This is as real as it gets.

Joe Pantoliano also has a small part in a very conventional role: the noisy reporter trying to uncover Daredevil's true identity. He's the Robert Wohl character from BATMAN. And he does uncover the truth. What he does with that info... well, I'm not telling. But it's not the conventional thing.

And now that we're on the subject of supporting players...

Jennifer Garner as Elektra. She's hot, she's sexy, she kicks ass. What more could you ask for? A lot. And she delivers it. This is not the token "hot babe/love interest" thrown into the mix. Her relationship with Matt is the heart and soul of the story, and her place in the unfolding plot is crucial.

Jon Favreau as Foggy. The perfect sidekick or the "Plus 1" as he calls himself. He provides the right amount of comic relief to bring as back from the Dark Place just when we need it.

Michael Clarke Duncan as Kingpin. Yeah, he was great. But most of all he was subtle. This could easily have become a scenery-chewing role. But Duncan's cool, collected understatement made Kingpin as intimidating and frightening as he has ever been in the comic books. Less is indeed more. However, I still object to the PC-casting. I think that long-standing fictional characters should be treated like real historic figures. Because they are a real part of our history. You wouldn't want a black guy to play Abe Lincoln and you wouldn't want a white guy to play Martin Luther King. Kingpin's a fat white dude. Cast one.

Colin Farrell as Bullseye. Um, did I say less is more a few sentences back? Well, Colin didn't get the memo. This is the over-the-top, scenery-chewing role in the film. But that's okay in this case because Bullseye's personality IS over-the-top. And if you really, really like his performance then don't forget to stay through the credits. Nuff Said.

Notable fanboy cameos: Frank Miller as a corpse. Kevin Smith as a morgue attendant. Stan Lee as Man Standing on Corner reading Variety. And the names of damn near every artist and writer who has ever worked on Daredevil.

Anything I didn't like? Yeah. There were three instances where cheesy WB-TV style pop songs played over what should have been some pretty emotional scenes. The melodramatic songs completely undercut the moment. They belong in TV shows like SMALLVILLE and FELICITY but not in a feature film. And especially not in a dark film like DD. Really, really out-of-place. But, hey, that's nit-picking. Nothing to lose sleep over or get worked up over.

Well, folks, it looks like Marvel has done it again. They've got this whole superhero game figured out. Rule Number One: Find a passionate filmmakers who loves and respect the material. You will actually see and feel Mark Steven Johnson's passion and love in every single frame of this movie.

Rule Number Two: Stay close to the origins and source material. There's a reason the comic's worked and endured decade after decade. Because they got it right! Why, oh, why can't the folks at Warner Brothers/DC accept this simple premise??? The end result is box office gold. And it looks like DAREDEVIL will prove it once more.

Last night’s Pasadena screening was the first time the film was shown for an audience, but I know they’re screening it again tonight. I expect we’ll see more reviews cropping up in the days ahead, and I look forward to running them when they arrive. Until then...
"Moriarty" out.

http://aintitcoolnews.com/display.cgi?id=14349


Sounds good
Old 02-01-03, 05:41 PM
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Notable fanboy cameos: Frank Miller as a corpse. Kevin Smith as a morgue attendant. Stan Lee as Man Standing on Corner reading Variety.
Cool.
Can't wait to see it.
Old 02-01-03, 06:21 PM
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Re: First DareDevil Review

Originally posted by Blaster1
Michael Clarke Duncan as Kingpin. Yeah, he was great. But most of all he was subtle. This could easily have become a scenery-chewing role. But Duncan's cool, collected understatement made Kingpin as intimidating and frightening as he has ever been in the comic books. Less is indeed more. However, I still object to the PC-casting. I think that long-standing fictional characters should be treated like real historic figures. Because they are a real part of our history. You wouldn't want a black guy to play Abe Lincoln and you wouldn't want a white guy to play Martin Luther King. Kingpin's a fat white dude. Cast one.

Hopefully this holds true for other reviews. The problem I have is that if this guy is such a huge fan like he says, then he would know that Kingpin is a muscular white dude, not a fat one. If I had to make a choice between white and fat or black and muscular, I would take muscular since that is more true to the story. Bottom line is that they couldn't find a big strong white guy that could act like Duncan. Anyway, this debate belongs in the other thread. I just have to wonder about this review with the above statement. Likely he just got caught up in the moment and misspoke, but maybe he is just a plant that tried to throw in a negative to make the review look a little more believable.
Old 02-01-03, 06:23 PM
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Actually, in the books, he's fat...it's just said that it's all muscle. He is referred to as "the Fat Man".
Old 02-01-03, 06:45 PM
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If this review was a plant, I doubt the highly positive one up on AICN written by Moriarty himself is.

I have no clue why people are getting bent out of shape and falling back on the "how PC!" complaint about Duncan as Kingpin. Eliminating his skin color as a factor, which it really shouldn't be in the first place, the man was born to play the Kingpin. Name another nearly 7-foot tall actor with the bulk and presence -- AND an Academy Award nomination to his credit. I think it's great that he got the role.
Old 02-01-03, 07:41 PM
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Originally posted by Sierra Disc
I have no clue why people are getting bent out of shape and falling back on the "how PC!" complaint about Duncan as Kingpin. Eliminating his skin color as a factor, which it really shouldn't be in the first place, the man was born to play the Kingpin. Name another nearly 7-foot tall actor with the bulk and presence -- AND an Academy Award nomination to his credit. I think it's great that he got the role.
I don't know if you ever read and/or were a fan of the Daredevil comics, but fanboys are sticklers for authenticity when it comes to make movies out of comic book characters. I think you might understand it better if say for the next Superman film they cast Denzel Washington to play Superman. If that were to happen I am sure all hell would break lose and thousands of people would be pitching a fit saying "That's just not right. Supermans white." I agree with the comparison of casting a white man as MLK or a black man as Lincoln.
Old 02-01-03, 07:41 PM
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Re: First DareDevil Review

Originally posted by Blaster1

There's another great superhero convention that gets redefined in DAREDEVIL. Matt and Elektra are on a date, having their first kiss. Then Matt hears someone in trouble in the distance. He says he has to leave. She tells him to stay. He hesitates. Then stays. he ****ing stays! How ****ing cool is that!!??? This is as real as it gets.

http://aintitcoolnews.com/display.cgi?id=14349

Sounds good
Lets see. Stay with Elektra -> Nice dinner date -> Kiss jennifer Gardner -> Get to do the nasty with Jennifer Gardner

Go towards voice -> some drunk bum -> TV dinner -> sleep alone with Toby the daschund

Well, easy choice wouldn't you say?
Old 02-01-03, 08:09 PM
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Originally posted by WWE Jedi
I don't know if you ever read and/or were a fan of the Daredevil comics, but fanboys are sticklers for authenticity when it comes to make movies out of comic book characters.
I bought my first Daredevil comic in 1982. Have read it on and off ever since. I own about a dozen Daredevil trade paperbacks. I bought Frank Miller's first run on the book in its original comic presentation, think Kevin Smith's take on him was really overwrought, the "black armored costume" era was hideous, Ann Nocenti was the second-best writer after Miller of the character, and that Bendis is going in interesting directions on it these days. So I'm a fanboy, too.

And unlike the majority of comic fans out there, I could care less about the nitpicking fanboy b.s. and more about whether a movie gets the TONE right. I didn't mind at all that they made Spider-Man's webshooters organic instead of mechanical, because Raimi understood the essence of the character so well. I wasn't too bothered by Wolverine not being 5' 3" in the movie because Hugh Jackman's great performance made up for it. Didn't bother me that none of them wore spandex, either.

And while I haven't seen Daredevil and haven't passed judgment on it yet, I just don't have a problem with Duncan being a black Kingpin. It's far more plausible than the almost exclusively white gangster world that often exists in Daredevil's comic book world. Comparing the Kingpin, a character few non-comics fans know of, to Superman is kind of ridiculous, isn't it?

I've got no problem with other people's hangups on this, really, because it doesn't affect my impression of the movie one bit. But I just think it's a shame too many "fanboys" are hung up on details to enjoy a movie for what it is, rather than what it isn't.

Last edited by The Antipodean; 02-01-03 at 08:12 PM.
Old 02-01-03, 11:08 PM
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I still don't know why comic fans get so bent out of shape about Duncan(and I'm a big comic fan) directors and writers take liberties with Shakespeare all the time, and most Shakespeare fans I know don't get all that upset about it. The original work is still there, enjoy that. It's not like the work of Stan Lee, Bill Everett, Frank Miller and Kevin Smith is on par with the bard.

And The Kingpin is all muscle, he just looks fat. They call him "Fat Man" do to his look, and definitly not too his face.
Old 02-01-03, 11:19 PM
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Originally posted by Tarantino
Actually, in the books, he's fat...it's just said that it's all muscle. He is referred to as "the Fat Man".
This has already been stated but here is a quote from one of the numerous Dardevil fan sites:

"While people often refer to the Kingpin as the "fat man", he isn't. He is solid as they come, and deceptively fast for his size. He tends to scatter the best fighters as if they were bowling pins. However, as far as I'm aware he has no "super powers". "



http://daredevil.dreamhost.com/main.htm
Old 02-01-03, 11:59 PM
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Ah, Internet geeks ... comparing Kingpin to Lincoln.
Old 02-02-03, 12:51 AM
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Wow, after seeing the preview I can't wait to see Spiderman. I mean...Spiderman. D'oh. I mean....Spiderman.
Old 02-02-03, 11:46 AM
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Can't wait for the film, it can only mean good things.
Old 02-02-03, 06:14 PM
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Never read the Daredevil comics in my youth (had plenty of X-Men and Spiderman though)
Quick question for the readers of the comic............
Was Daredevil that much of a violent, for lack of a better word, vigilante? In the above review he mentions the guy falling on the subway tracks and DD not being overwhelmed by concience and such and pulling him out. Is this true to the comics? If so, I was missing out on some pretty dark stuff.
Thanks in advance for the enlightenment.
Old 02-02-03, 06:16 PM
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There has also been a real positive review of DareDevil put up at Superhero Hype. I highly doubt that the reviews on AICN and Superhero Hype are plants. Here is an idea for everybody that does believe the reviews are plants: maybe they are not plants afterall and the movie is actually good. What a thought. I can't wait till the 14th to see this. Here is a link to the review:

http://www.superherohype.com/article...evilreview.php
Old 02-03-03, 12:40 PM
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Originally posted by rexinnih

Was Daredevil that much of a violent, for lack of a better word, vigilante? In the above review he mentions the guy falling on the subway tracks and DD not being overwhelmed by concience and such and pulling him out. Is this true to the comics? If so, I was missing out on some pretty dark stuff.
Thanks in advance for the enlightenment.
Yeah, Daredevil comics have been pretty dark since the Frank Miller days, he's not a killer in the comics, but we have seen him play russian roulette with a paralyzed bullseye, and he can get pretty intense if he's trying to beat information out of someone if they won't give it up.
Old 02-03-03, 01:19 PM
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Reviewers loved X-men and Spider-Man also, yet I thought both of those was some of the worst super-hero movies I ever seen. However, once again, I'll bite the bullet and go see this when it comes out..

*mumbles*
Old 02-03-03, 01:58 PM
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Never read the comics but I've always been interested to see this since the teaser. Being an Alias fan kinda helped too.
Old 02-03-03, 05:53 PM
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Originally posted by Kal Jedi
Never read the comics but I've always been interested to see this since the teaser. Being an Alias fan kinda helped too.
That's the thing, even though there are a lot of fans of the Daredevil comic who will go see the movie, I think a lot of business will come from people who watch Alias and want to see Jennifer Garner. And I think the studio relaizes that, since they aired a mostly Jennifer Garner Daredevil trailer last night during Alias.
Old 02-03-03, 06:15 PM
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Originally posted by majorjoe23
Yeah, Daredevil comics have been pretty dark since the Frank Miller days, he's not a killer in the comics, but we have seen him play russian roulette with a paralyzed bullseye, and he can get pretty intense if he's trying to beat information out of someone if they won't give it up.
Thanks majorjoe.
Old 02-03-03, 07:54 PM
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I hope this guy isn't a plant byt 20th Century Fox.
Old 02-03-03, 09:57 PM
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When I go, plan to yell out "Yeah man, thats what I'm talking about" durring ben and jens "love scene"
Old 02-03-03, 10:19 PM
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Originally posted by Dr. DVD
I hope this guy isn't a plant byt 20th Century Fox.
Who, Moriarity?
I haven't seen much in the way of him shillin' for anybody in his tenure. He's the most well reasoned and rational person at AICN, so even if he loves it, its not for some hair brained (or personal attachment) reason like the rest of the bunch over there.
Old 02-03-03, 10:32 PM
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Originally posted by Rypro 525
When I go, plan to yell out "Yeah man, thats what I'm talking about" durring ben and jens "love scene"

Plan on me kicking your arse if you do that at my screening.
Old 02-04-03, 02:18 AM
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It's funny that he talks about Ben haters because everyone I have asked to go see this with me has said no because they "Dont like Ben."

I'll check it out for Garner because the previews dont look as good as say Spiderman or the Hulk.

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