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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

A 2010 American action comedy film directed by Edgar Wright based on the comic book series Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O'Malley.

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Spoiler-Free Sneak Preview: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

  • Jul 27, 2010

One of my projects is watching Rotten Tomatoes' list of the worst movies of the last decade and, in doing so, I've pontificated at length on the misery that is movies based on video games. To recap: there are a bunch on the list, many are directed by Uwe Boll (perhaps the worst director of all time), the most critically-acclaimed video game movie ever is the not-so-great Mortal Kombat. Video game movies usually take themselves too seriously and fail by having to stick to story lines that are not generally feature film quality. So, maybe it should not come as a surprise that tonight I saw the best video game movie I can remember seeing and it is a) made by a director who is known for not taking anything too seriously and b) not actually based on a video game.

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is based on the Scott Pilgrim graphic novel series (which I have not read, but skimmed the plot on wikipedia to see where the movie differed), dealing with a Canadian slacker (here played by Michael Cera) who tries to find himself through an American girl (played by Mary Elizabeth Winstead). In order to be in a relationship with her, he has to deal with his current 17-year-old girlfriend, his nosy roommate and sister, and -- most of all -- defeat the girl's League of Evil Exes by besting her seven former significant others in battle.

I recognize the movie doesn't open for almost two weeks, so I'm not even going to go near any spoilers. Instead, I'll focus on the art of the movie. Cera is not nearly as annoying as he's grown to be in most stuff lately. Winstead, who I vaguely remember from Final Destination 3, is really good. There are some nice performances from Chris Evans, Brandon Routh, Brie Larson, and Jason Schwartzman, among others (and some cameos that are fun to pick out). Besides Winstead, the actor who steals the movie is Kieran Culkin as Scott's gay roommate, with some great lines and deadpan sarcasm. The music is great, with a lot of video game themes (a lot of Zelda, specifically -- I think Link to the Past) and some nice original stuff from Beck, who wrote all of the music that Scott's band plays.

The winner here is Edgar Wright's direction. I already love Wright for Shaun of the Dead, Hot Fuzz, and, most of all, Spaced. These two movies and one TV show were all about self-irreverence and rapid-fire pop culture references. He brings that to Scott Pilgrim and gets a lot out of his actors while still working in multiple sight gags and one-liners. The movie is really, really funny and that doesn't work without there being heart to the less wacky scenes. The wacky scenes are really wacky -- I wouldn't recommend this movie to someone who either hates video games or isn't just a little nerdy -- but they still fit with the rest of the movie.

I've been pickier lately about what movies I buy on DVD because I rarely watch them, but this is the kind of movie I could see getting. It's got a ton of great lines, it's really fun visually, and it's the kind of movie that would be great to put on at a party. It obviously pales in comparison to Inception, but it's a niche movie. You like quirky movies? You like video games? You should enjoy this one.

Spoiler-Free Sneak Preview: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

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August 03, 2010
I am soooooooooo excited for this movie. I have only read a couple of the graphic novels but I love a lot of the people working on this one: Edgar Wright, Michael Cera, Jason Schwartzman, Chris Evans and Beck. The previews just scream nerd cult movie heaven at me :D
July 27, 2010
@AerinBlue -- I felt the same way; I was intrigued but not totally sure other than having liked Edgar Wright's other stuff. It would have been a hard sell to drag my wife to see it, but I got lucky by hearing last minute about a screening last night!
July 27, 2010
I am so going to see this! I skimmed your review for now but I'll be back once I see it myself. I have featured your review in the main page. Thank you!
More Scott Pilgrim vs. the World reviews
review by . August 15, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Let THE EX-BATTLES Begin in This Zany, Bizarre, Action-Packed Romantic Comedy!
We’ve all had nightmares about our girlfriend’s ex-boyfriends; some make us feel insecure, some make us feel proud while some…well, makes us forget about the whole thing. But hopefully, none of us have experienced being assaulted by the hordes of ex-boyfriends of the person we are dating. Well, those who are familiar with the graphic novel series by Bryan Lee O’Malley may still have a hard time preparing for the film adaptation “SCOTT PILGRIM VS. THE WORLD”. …
review by . June 15, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
After 16 years of slamming Hollywood studios for never getting our video game movies right, we finally have one that gets it exactly right. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a video game movie, even though it doesn't have a basis in any actual video games.     Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is more of a visual and cultural tribute to video games than anything. Every other element of the movie, including the plot, takes a backseat to the list of power bars, status updates, and special …
review by . December 12, 2010
In terms of actors today, Michael Cera is kind of overrated. He plays the same character in every single movie he's in: the awkward, geeky teen who's either anxious to lose his virginity or just be generally geeky. That doesn't mean that every once in a while, he can turn in a good performance, and Scott Pilgrim is definitely one of them. This is an incredibly awesome movie, and epic of epic epicness indeed. It's also kind of hard to put into words unless the person you're talking …
review by . January 22, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
This movie grabs your attention from the display of the Universal Logo.  The Universal theme music is like  the sound of an old video game.   Scott Pilgrim seems to drift from dream to reality and the scenes rapidly shift with written text to explain who the various characters are.       Scott is in a band with an ex-girlfriend and two other friends.  He lets them know that he is dating Knives, a 17 year old Chinese girl.  Everybody seems against …
review by . August 15, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Scott Pilgrim Saved my World
SCOTT PILGRIM VS THE WORLD   Written by Michael Baccall and Edgar Wright   Directed by Edgar Wright   Starring Michael Cera, Kieran Culkin, Anna Kendrick and Mary Elizabeth Winstead      Stacey Pilgrim: Are you legitimately moving on or are you just being insane?   Scott Pilgrim: Can I get back to you on that?      By the time you reach a certain age, if you’ve tried at all to make connections with other human …
review by . August 17, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Just imagine for a second that your life is a video game.  One where the potential exist for you to beat up bad guys, live each new day of your life as though it were a level where you score points, get extra lives and pull off amazing stunts because you simply can.  This is exactly what Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is.  A movie that turns the life of one young man into a video game.  It's zany, it's over-the-top but it's a lot of fun.  If you don't like Scott …
review by . August 16, 2010
posted in Movie Hype
Scott Pilgrim ROCKED my 8-bit world!
I heard about the Scott Pilgrim movie about 2ish years ago and my response was: No... no way.  How can they even begin to capture the pure epic awesomeness of Bryan Lee O’Malley’s comic book series Scott Pilgrim compressed into one movie?  It can't be done.  Wait?...  What is this you say ... Michael Cera's going to play Scott Pilgrim?  The cutie pie guy that fans the flames for geek girls everywhere?  Well that changes everything.      …
Quick Tip by . February 05, 2012
Action, Romance, Comedy and filled with homage for all the things we love; this film is just a rockin’ good time! This stands as one of my favorite comic book adaptations and a refreshing change from all the super-hero movies that have plagued us of late.      C’mon, how can you resist a super-powered Vegan with telekinetic powers?      See Full Review here.     
Quick Tip by . January 04, 2012
posted in Movie Hype
Surprising sleeper hit. This is one of those movies that seems like it was as fun to make as it was too watch.
review by . May 26, 2011
posted in Movie Hype
Pros: entertaining! a little of everything-action, romance, comedy     Cons: Style and humor not for everyone     The Bottom Line: "I heart you, Sex Bob-omb!"     Struggling to recover from the gruesome break up with his Big Ex, Scott is currently dating Knives Chau, a high school girl five years his junior. He's enjoying the simplicity of just holding hands. Knives, sweet girl, is just a phone call away from stalker-intensity fan dom for …
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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a 2010 American action comedy film directed by Edgar Wright based on the comic book series Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O'Malley. The film is about Scott Pilgrim (Michael Cera) meeting the girl of his dreams, Ramona Flowers (Mary Elizabeth Winstead). In order to win Ramona over, Scott learns that he must defeat Ramona's seven evil exes, who are coming to kill him.

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World was planned as a film after the first volume of the comic was released. Director Wright became attached to the program and began filming in March 2009 in Toronto, Ontario. Scott Pilgrim vs. the World premiered after a panel discussion at the San Diego Comic-Con International on July 22, 2010. It received a wide-release in North America on August 13, 2010.

  • Poster art for "Scott Pilgrim vs. the World."
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    Director: Edgar Wright
    Genre: Action, Adventure
    Release Date: August 13, 2010
    MPAA Rating: PG-13
    Studio: Universal Pictures
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