Daredevil review by The Grim Ringler


Somewhere out there Marvel and Stan Lee are laughing like madmen and the minds at DC comics are probably getting ready to ring someone’s neck. Way back in the day Batman and Superman were the studs of the comic world and when their movies came out way back when and it looked like nothing could stop them. But then Warner got greedy and foolish and let Joel Schumacher, a talented director, take Batman into his own direction and thus died the bat. Heck, Schumacher did what no other supervillian could – laid Batman low. And the heck of it is that it isn’t Joel’s fault. He’s a good director but not a man you entrust with your cornerstone franchise. And since then Superman has languished, anxious to suit up again but with no one ready to pull the trigger. And all the while Marvel Comics have been waiting and watching and suddenly they’re the big boys on the block and are looking mighty fat and sassy after Spiderman, X-Men, and now Daredevil. And yes, Daredevil is good.

Daredevil, a vigilante crime fighter in New York’s (don’t they have enough yet? Aren’t they being selfish?) Hell’s Kitchen, a fighter for the poor and the bullied. By day he is Matthew Murdock, a blind attorney taking on pro bono cases, much to his partner’s chagrin. And so it goes, Daredevil fighting crime in the courts by day and then in the streets by night, a dark desire to perhaps find the men that killed his father when he was a boy while he is doing all this. Things change though when he meets a stunning woman named Electra, whose father, a rich industrialist (I think) is about to try to end his dealings with New York’s crime boss, the Kingpin, and here’s where the trouble starts because as Electra and Matt are falling in love and doing their courtship dance, a madman named Bullseye is making his way to New York to kill Electra’s father, and then her, tying up any loose ends and making things a bit easier for the Kingpin. Daredevil gets wind of all this and leaps in to save the day but fate takes its first nasty turn here when a deflected short staff used by Daredevil ends up impaling Electra’s father and creates a new foe for him and also works to shake the faith he has in what he is doing down to its core. He has hurt the father of someone he loves, no matter if he meant to save them or not, and he cannot forgive himself. And nor can she. But knowing her hatred for the Daredevil, and knowing that Bullseye means to take her out of the picture now as well, he suits up again to try to save this woman, not knowing she will be waiting for him with blood on her mind.

Daredevil is not perfect. Far from it. Some of the camera work is just too busy and makes you angry more than anything. And the action scenes, which are very neat, are really badly shot, using a very chaotic and moving camera that makes you wonder if they have that little of faith in their stunt work and action scenes. I am sick of these movies using digital actors WAY too much because it seems like a cop-out. There are problems with everything moving too fast as well, and we don’t get the leisurely feel we got with Spiderman, where you really felt you knew all the parties involved, but you do get a pretty darn good movie. Affleck is very good as Daredevil, sort of a blind Batman, dripping with charm but with a tortured heart deep down. And Jennifer Garner is wonderful as Electra, making her character sexy, tough, and damaged all at once. And there is one scene in the film, when Daredevil and she are fighting, and she learns his identity, that it is this man she loves, and its heartbreaking. The chemistry between Affleck and she is really well done. And Colin Ferrell is pretty good as Bullseye, a weak villain but a nice character. The biggest problem people may have is with Michael Clark Duncan as the Kingpin, not because he is bad, but because he isn’t in it a whole lot. Which makes sense because Kingpin is more of a shadow than anything else. The climax may put people off as well, seeming too much like a lead-in to a second film, but I think it’s a decent ending overall, showing a character that is willing to change, and a hero that can see when he needs to change.

I did not want to see this movie. At all. It looked stupid and sounded stupid. But it won me over. What it lacks in some areas it makes up in its genuine-ness and the joy with which the movie was made. And it won me over by being so brutal and dark at times, a trait too many movies shy away from. People will carp about the movie copping out on this or that, and I am sure people will carp on Affleck, and that’s fine. But if you want a solid, fun, superhero movie, this is a pretty good choice. A bit better than the first X-Men, but not as good as Spiderman, here’s hoping they do make a second and it fulfills all its promise. P.S. Stay during the credits to see a final scene from the movie. (And my score is more like 7.5)


7 out of 10 Jackasses

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