Tales of the Rampant Coyote

Adventures in Indie Gaming!

Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World: Scott Pilgim Wins!

Posted by Rampant Coyote on August 15, 2010

I knew nothing of this film until two days ago. So “Scott Pilgrim Vs. the World” was a total surprise to me.

But I’m in love, now…

This is one hell of a weird movie, but it totally rocked. Starting with the Universal logo rendered as an 8-bit video game image accompanied by the theme music that sounded as if it had been arranged on the Commodore 64 SID chip or original NES, the show is a love-letter to the gaming-and-comic-book set.

Imagine a romantic comedy with martial arts, thrown into a world that works much like a late 80’s / early 90s video game. With a plot that makes about as much sense as the average video game plot of that time period. It’s based on a small comic book series I’ve never read, so perhaps there were some additional references I didn’t catch. But if so, I didn’t miss ’em.

It’s wildly experimental and stylized, but FUN. It uses the language of shortcuts and video games (and comics) to help tell the story, so I imagine someone who has never played a game of Mario or Street Fighter in their life, or read an action comic book will be utterly confused. But for a gamer like me, I was delighted. Defeated enemies explode in neon glowing score values and a torrent of coins. Average, awkward 20-somethings shuffle and mill about until the fight scene begins, at which point they become expert martial artists. Sound effects are scribbled on the screen just like a comic book (or the old Batman TV show). Scenes are framed in comic-book style, often breaking out multiple images into comic-style panels on the screen at once. The villains posture and monologue, and their super-powers are acknowledged and accepted with the briefest of explanations. And the main character decides to “get a life” by grabbing a floating “1-up” icon out of the air.

Besides this, the show is full of humor, from subtle to deadpan to broad and slapstick. The humor doesn’t always hit its mark, but the shotgun approach had me laughing through most of the show.

It may prove too weird even for some gamers. But for people like me who grew up in the arcades, or spent who spent much of their youth with a game controller in their hand, this movie is for us.

Filed Under: Movies - Comments: Read the First Comment

  • Simon Dufour said,

    I agree with you. It’s a really entertaining movie. Just make sure you go see it with people you know would appreciate the mindless video-game humour. I took my parents to see it since it had good reviews and all. They hated it. They found it ridiculous and stupid. Me, I like it but all the trashtalk after the movie made me hate my choice.

    Go see it! Just don’t bring your date there unless she’s into video-games.