Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Red and the Comic Book Movie

On Monday night, partially to celebrate two midterms completed in one day, I went to see Red with some friends. Great movie, very funny, good action, I quite liked it.

Red was a brief comic book series by Warren Ellis and Cully Hammer. There's this retired CIA agent named Frank Moses (or Paul Moses in the comics) who suddenly finds himself pursued by the government - he's been reclassified to retired and dangerous, meaning he needs to be gotten rid of. He gathers his old team together and saves a girl he's interested in along the way.

At the end of the movie I turned to my friend and asked, "Is it just me, or have movies been a lot more fun since comic book movies started getting made?" He agreed. Movies made from comics do indeed seem fun, with a few exceptions (From Hell, I'm looking at you).

Much like the popularity of (or perhaps partly because of the popularity of) graphic novels, all of a sudden it seems like people are realizing that comic books have a lot of really entertaining stories to tell. And since they're already partially visual media, they've got that going for them in the transition to film. Comic book artists started borrowing 'camera shots' from movies, and now those angles and shots are being translated back to film, which is pretty cool.

(In a somewhat related aside, The Ultimates is an alternate version of Marvel comics where familiar faces follow different paths or are re-imagined. One such case of re-imagining came from changing Nick Fury, head of SHIELD, from a white guy with an eye patch to a Samuel Jackson in an eye patch. That was who they decided Nick Fury would look like. This paid off when Ironman was made and Sam Jackson signed on to be Fury. If you missed it in the first movie, it was after the credits and it was awesome.)

Warren Ellis commented about Red on his site. Also, take a gander at Comic Book Movies, a site devoted to comic book movies. (How surprising.)


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