15 February 2007

Movie Review: Ghost Rider

I thank what ever angel that watches over me that I had to work the night the Catwoman sneak showed in Nashville. A couple of friends of mine were not so lucky. They told me the film was so bad that they felt the need to exact vengeance on the world for the waste of their time. This payback came in the form of convincing a third friend that the Halle Berry film was head and shoulders above other comic book films. The stunt worked, and duping someone in this way is now known as “pulling a Catwoman”. After seeing Ghost Rider, there should be a change in nomenclature.

I’m not quite sure what made Ghost Rider so horrible. Was it the Redman stains on a script that was written during yellow flags at the Daytona 500? It could have been the actors performances were driven by direction gleaned from focus groups of 12 year olds Anson Williams hopped up on Redbull and red-hots? (Thanks to Bear for that line. Sorry you had to vomit so many times during the film) The why is unimportant, the reality is the folks at Marvel jumped the shark with Ghost Rider.

The story chronicles the life of Johnny Blaze, an Evel Knievel-ish motorcycle daredevil. Johnny makes a deal with the Devil for his soul in exchange for healing his father’s terminal cancer. The deal is made in less time and emotional energy than it takes to order a Big Mac, and Johnny becomes the world’s next Ghost Rider (A sort of bounty hunter for ole split foot). Along the way Johnny leaves the love of his life, becomes the biggest stuntman since Super Dave Osborne, and is called upon to stop a group of four demons from bringing about the end of the world. Who the demons are and how they are going to bring about the end of the world isn’t very clear.

Why anyone would be compelled by the heroic characters is equally as vague. Nicholas Cage’s characterization of Johnny Blaze was a step above a snickering Bevis. There were a few attempts at making the character quirky and memorable. Blaze listens to Carpenter’s songs while guzzling coffee straight out of the pot before getting ready for his career defining big jump scene. That sums Blaze’s character development. Eva Mendes, as love interest Roxanne Simpson, is less believable than a high school cheerleader’s excuse of taking care of a sick mother for not going out with you on Saturday night.

The visuals and special effects aren’t bad, but far from carrying the film as just a piece of eye candy. If you’ve seen the trailers, you’ve seen all the cool action packed shots of the film. Surprisingly the best special effect is Eva Mendes’ anti-gravity bra pushing up her ever exposed cleavage.

Folks, don’t see this one. Don’t rent it. Don’t get it on Netflix. Don’t talk to anyone about thinking about seeing it. And please pray that Stan Lee was paying closer attention to Spiderman 3 and Fantastic Four 2 to watch the dailies of Ghost Rider. If this is any indication of what we have to look forward to this year for Marvel Comics’ movies, we should all start reading Nora Roberts.


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4 comments:

Bear said...

Oh, will I ever get the horrible after taste of that movie out of my mouth? I can only look forward to the porn version of this film, undoubtedly debutting soon...Ghosts Rider Her.

Ugh.

Bear said...

Errr, that was supposed to say, Ghosts Ride Her. I'm still addled from the Cage debacle.

Charlie said...

The horror...the horror.

Nicholas Cage should have said, "let's think this through," ever since Face Off.

Mike Thomas said...

I fully agree. What's worse is that Cage was a huge Ghost Rider fan. How could he do that to a potentially awesome movie?