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Jim's Review | Nathan's Review
B.J. Martinez's Review | Jose Lopez's Review
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Daredevil – A Worthy Movie Adaptation
2/14/2003 5:00 PM
Cinemark at Provo, Provo Utah
I'm pleased to announce that Marvel fans can rest easy. Daredevil “the movie” is a worthy adaptation of the comic book character.
Marvel is officially on a roll. This is their 3rd home run movie in a row, which guarantees that Hollywood will want to delve deeper into the Marvel universe, AND shell out the cash to do so—which is key in getting the good times to continue on. Of course, Hollywood rarely captures exactly what each of us hardcore comics fans have envisioned, but I gotta hand it to them, this movie DD is damn close.
But before I go and ooze happy, happy, joy, joy, I must give obeisance to my geek side. Now you have to understand, I'm a comics purest. When the Spider-man movie changed the origin story from… Peter Parker gets his powers from a dying, accidentally “irradiated” spider, to… Peter Parker gets his powers from a “genetically enhanced” spider; I forgave that major deviation from the original genesis because I figured they were trying to explain why THIS Spider-man could make his own webs. This is fine, but I was all over the fact that after getting bitten by this incredibly amazing spider, Peter DIDN'T step on it, thus leaving open the possibility that OTHER Spider-men might be created from more enhanced spider attacks. Or heaven forbid, that the “scientists” in-charge of this incredibly useless genetic experiment might actually figure out that they can create spider-men. See the problems? Of course, as I said, I'm a bit of a comics purest and I'm sure most of the moviegoers didn't have any problems with it at all.
Back to Daredevil. My tirade above in no way means that there was a lot wrong with the Daredevil movie. In fact, this movie has less of a deviation than I just took. Daredevil is true to his roots in that he's a Lawyer by day and a vigilante by night. As everyone knows, Daredevil was Marvel's response to Batman, and I think the moviemakers were influenced by DD's Batman-esque qualities. You can definitely see this influence when DD takes out a bad guy without any thought. So, if your introduction to Daredevil was like mine, during the Daredevil vs. The Punisher days, be aware. For those of you that don't understand what I'm talking about, in that continuity DD didn't act as executioner to the bad guys, like the hardcore Batman used to, and was in fact all over the Punisher because of his murderous take on what “justice” really meant. The only other problems I had were a couple of amazing leaps that both Daredevil and Elektra made. After all, neither of them are supposed to be superhuman in the strength department. And finally, the use of painkillers by DD after a night on the town seemed unnecessary. I understand that the Director said he wanted to show that DD was still only “human”, well fine, but then how the hell could he make those leaps?
So, now that the criticisms are out of the way, here's what's good:
The costume was good - Although, the eyepieces seemed a little wide apart, praise to Hollywood for keeping a semblance of the original DD that we all love. I read another piece where Hollywood “know-it-alls” were trying to talk the Director out of the suit, or at least the mask. Their argument was, “we're paying Ben Affleck to be the star, why cover his face?” The retort to that question was rightfully coined by Kevin Smith who said something to the effect, “then why make a Daredevil movie at all?” Damn straight Kev! Since the X-men movie, there has been a trend away from the comic's spandex, and Batman's rubber. All the cool superheroes wear leather now, and DD's looked all right. I do wish they would've gotten Bullseye into something more flashy, although from the sounds of it, I don't think Colin Farrell would've done the deal if he had to wear the get-up from the comic books, and since I loved Colin in the role, I was fine with it. All in all it worked.
The actors were good - Ben was the right man for the part, Colin too, and they couldn't have picked a better Elektra. Jennifer Garner was hot, and born for the role. Mike Duncan was all right as the Kingpin, but lets face it, the guy is never going to win an Oscar, and I got the feeling that Hollywood moguls just wanted to see some color in the flick. He did OK, but it was a stretch to make the Kingpin, who WAS a big fat white guy that heralded back to the mob days of NYC, into Mike Duncan. I mean really, I can't hate the big cuddly lug from The Green Mile. It's just too big of a change for me to swallow. I would've been more accepting of it if they would've updated the whole Kingpin character to be somewhat of a black gangsta, bling-iddy-bling type that controlled crime in the city—kinda like Wesley Snipes in New Jack City. That would've been better in my opinion. Then they could've updated that whole business attire and corporate mobster thing.
The Soundtrack was good – It ran seamlessly throughout and added credibility that all major motion pictures need to be called great! A sucky and poor quality soundtrack is a shoe-in to a “B” movie budget. And thank goodness that it looks like those days are long gone for Marvel movies! Daredevil's soundtrack is one of the best things about it. I encourage everyone to get it. You won't be disappointed.
The fight scenes and action was good –well choreographed and fun—especially the mock “kissy-fighting” that Matt and Elektra get into just after they meet. The action is awesome, and there's plenty of it. They chose a good script, and got enough elements of the comics in there to make us geeks happy. We all love those cameos by Stan “excelsior” Lee, the creator. The young Matt stops him from walking into a busy street.
The special effects were as good as Spider-man's, which means they were darn near invisible. They only lose a couple points for the two times that it makes DD and Elektra a little MORE than human, like I mentioned above.
Analysis- Other than the fact that Spider-man is better known, I don't see why this Daredevil movie couldn't do as well. It's everything comics and movies fans could hope for - definitely sequel material. I give it 5 stars and 3 thumbs up!
Jim Littler: ComicBookMovie.com
2/14/2003 12:00 PM (First Showing)
Jordan Commons Megaplex 17, Sandy Utah
In one word? AWESOME! If you liked Spider-Man, you'll love Daredevil. Daredevil beats Spider-Man hands down. Twice the action with better acting, better looks and all the fun!
I was somewhat dissapointed when we showed up an hour early, and there were only 2 people in the whole theatre ... I'm willing to let this slide due to the fact that it was the first showing, and most responsible people were probably still at work and school. I'm sure everything in the evening was sold out.
I'll try to keep this somewhat vague for those of you who didn't see it opening day ... I have to honestly say that I was somewhat worried with the choice of Ben Affleck to play Daredevil. Rest assured, his performance rocked! He did very well as DD, and even better as Matt Murdock!
Jennifer Garner? I'm not going to go there. It will just get me in more trouble with my wife :) Let's just say she did very well.
Michael Clarke Duncan and Colin Farrell also did great as Kingpin and Bullseye, although Bullseye definately needed his own costume though.
The action and special effects were great. There were a few parts that were a stretch, but it's based on a comic book! They did a great job visualizing the way Daredevil "sees" things, and the fight scenes were great!
Make Sure you stick around for at least part of the credits to see how messed up Bullseye gets!
Last, but not least, was the soundtrack. Sometimes a soundtrack sounds great by itself (as the Daredevil soundtrack does. But it was also worked into the movie very well! I'm particular to Evanescene's tracks ... There's just something about them that hits me "Right Here", if you know what I mean. If you haven't heard it yet, check out our Soundtrack Page to listen to some of the tracks. This is definately one that is worth picking up!
And rest assured, Hollywood has left Daredevil open to at least one sequel! If all of the movie adaptations of our favorite comic books are done this well, we'll be in for a great 2003 summer!
Don't be surprised when you see me in line for the second and third times for this one!
Nate Best: ComicBookMovie.com
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B.J. Martinez's Review
First off, if you stepped into Daredevil thinking it be another Spider-Man, you're actually half-right and half-wrong. Daredevil has the basic comic book movie elements for it to be a hit. For you "half-right" people, Daredevil did remind me of Spider-Man at some points of the movie. Some similarities to the web- slinger were the fact that when the title characters were young, both Spidey and DD were beat up and picked on by bullies. DD also experiences having a loved one die in his arms as Peter Parker to his uncle. And my all time favorite was the sequence when the leading lady gets soaked in the rain. Enough of the similarities though, because this movie has its own way of expressing itself. Gone are cheesy scenes in Spider-Man when you see him showing off to M.J. yelling "Yahoo!". Daredevil is darker and could care less if you knew who he really was. Scenes in Spider-Man are raised to the next level in Daredevil. If you want action scenes; hell, you'll be blown away. And if you want love scenes, it' ll give you "love scenes". See what I mean?
The film was actually a great adaptation to the comic book, though some parts didn't stick, particularly the way he got his powers. The scene plays like this. Seeing his father at "work", young Matt runs and absentmindedly gets chemicals in his eyes. To the audience, it makes him look a bit stupid. They should've had him become DD the way the comic book had him be DD (Saving an old man and getting the chemicals in his eyes.), but I'm sure the director needed Matt to "see" his dad that last time so that they would become closer to each other. What I really liked was the way the movie expressed how his powers work. The radar sense I actually understood more than from the comic book. Another thing was the costumes. Ben Affleck looked cool in his mask and red leather jacket. Jennifer Garner looked hot in sexy, black leather. I'm sure if you are a fan of the Daredevil comic, the film is no different. (If you don't mind watching some minor changes from the comic book.)
The actors played their roles well. Jennifer Garner is great as the sexy ninja Elektra. Michael Clarke Duncan is amazing as the Kingpin. The way Bullseye (Colin Farell) shows his hatred for "missing" DD is decent enough for the big screen. But Ben Affleck is most convincing as the blind vigilante mainly due to the whole get-up. (E.g. make-up for him to look blind) The special FX were sensational. (The way they show how DD's radar works is awesome) The soundtrack wasn't bad. The screenplay and directing could not have been better. Overall, I gave Daredevil 4.5 out of 5.
Jose Lopez's Review
All i gota say on the DD movie is...IT F@#%ing rockes man!!!. Spider-man was good in all but come on, Daredevil hit in on the head.It was the most realistic movie/comic adption that i have ever seen. How many "superheroes"come home to an empty house,they girl breaks up w/ them on the machine(low blow),take out a loose tooth in the showerwhile showing the scars from previous fights and then taking some painkillers,come on how ealstic can you get, i mean if you were a "super"hero like spider-man what wuld you do, i mean it sux right? and in spider-man a grenade blows up dead center on his face and what nuthin but blood, but in Daredevil matt has to take painkillers. i also loved the fact that they made kingpin and bullseye into perfect villians, no supe vilian that can fly o has enhanced strengh like spider man, nope just a big built black crime lord and an irish guy whohas a bullseye fo real. i also loved how they interpreted DD's shadow world, freaking awesome man for real. ennife garder,shoot 'll fight he day to get her in bed lik ben"matt" did.The itro was hott, taking the lights to braile to the names,hott,hott,hott!!!.Lets not forgetto me his favorite quote"that ligyht at the end of the tunnel? it's not heaven, it's an L train" freakin hott.evrybody collaborated good on this movie man,even the extras.this mve could have not been better and it does beat spiderman hands down for real, people didn't lke it uz they wanted aoher spider flick, u know what,to all who thought that, kiss it,if u want aother spider lick wait for the sequel,but to the rest good cuz this movie showed evrything that was real and how a hero woul be like in real new york doing what DD does. well thanx for your time.