Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Wanted: Dead Or Alive? AKA Dartflix Edition # 36

The topic of today's Dartflix entry is Timur Bekmambetov's (Night Watch, Day Watch) debut Hollywood studio picture, the graphic novel adaptation of Mark Millar's "Wanted". I had a different perspective on this film because I was curious to know how much of the source material if any was gonna be used in this film. You see, the graphic novel this film was loosely based on is pretty fucked up thematically and content wise. I was bracing myself to be dissapointed in that aspect...of course, it became a self fufilling prophecy.

The story is based around a young man named Wesley Gibson with no backbone, a cheating bitch of a girlfriend, a shitty job with a boss that bullies him endlessly and a best friend that sleeps with his girlfriend behind his back. Wesley knows that his best friend and girlfriend are cheating on him, mind you. He says nothing and lets people walk all over him. His father left when he was a baby. Wesley feels completely insignificant...until some chick named Fox shows up and his life changes forever.

Fox tells him that his father was the greatest assassin the world has ever known and that he was a member of The Fraternity, an ancient order of assassins that keeps the balance between Order and Chaos by killing people that are picked by a holy instrument called the Loom Of Fate. Wesley discovers that he has the power to be the world's greatest killing machine and begins training with The Fraternity in order to kill the man that merked his pops. One thing...

In the ingenious graphic novel, Wesley joins the Fraternity to kill the man who murdered his father...except his father was the greatest super villian in the history of the world. His father had the power to kill any and everything. He couldn't miss his target and he was proficient with whatever weapon he touched. In 1986, all of the supervillians in the world formed an alliance and worked together to rid the world of all superheroes.

They initiated a huge three month war in New York and in the aftermath all of the world's superheroes were either killed off or they had their memories wiped completely. The super villains ruled the world and they killed, robbed and destroyed whatever they felt like and whenever they felt like it because they remade reality through magic and science every time they struck. The movies a tad bit different...Fox was a Black chick that looked like Halle Berry and Wesley looked like Eminem in the graphic novel, for instance.

There were so many characters that were omitted from the film such as Professor Solomon Seltzer (who became Sloan), Fuckwit, Shit-head, Doll-Master, Sucker and the worst of all the villians, Mister Rictus. There were no real bad guys in the film..until the end and the twist that all of us that read the graphic novel saw coming a mile away like one of Mr. X's bullets.

The source material has so many quotable lines and it's so powerful a graphic novel that if you haven't read it yet I suggest you go cop it. However, if you've read the graphic novel already and loved it the movie will be a kind of disappointment to you. If you haven't read it (like 90% of the audience) then go enjoy the movie and locate a copy of the Top Cow graphic novel. I guarantee that your jaw will drop about 25 pages in. As a stand alone flick, I give "Wanted" a mos def. With all that said: Wanted the graphic novel>>>>>>>Wanted the movie.

Films I recommend in theaters (7.1.08-7.15.08) or to add to your queue early or for rental from either Netflix or Redbox:

City Of Men
Drillbit Taylor
The Ruins (Unrated Edition)
The Closer-The Complete Third Season
30 Days: The Complete Second Season
Shotgun Stories
Dragon Squad
Drunken Angel
Eagle Shooting Heroes
Patriotism (The Criterion Edition)
Batman: Gotham Knight
Batman Begins (Blu-Ray)
Gangs Of New York (Blu-Ray)
Vantage Point
The Tracey Fragments
The Bank Job
Jet Li's Fearless (Unrated Director's Cut)
Hard Times At Douglass High: A No Child Left Behind Report Card
Chop Shop
American Zombie
Blood Brothers
Meet Bill
Chaos Theory
Be Kind Rewind
The Incredible Hulk
The Promotion
The Boondocks-The Complete Second Season
In Bruges
Charlie Bartlett
The Grand
Funny Games
Californication-Season One
Burn Notice-Season One
Jericho-The Second Season
Rescue Me-The Complete Fourth Season
The Dead Zone: The Final Season
The Restless
Just Add Water
Futurama: The Beast With A Billion Backs
So I Married An Ax Murderer (Deluxe Edition)
Diary Of The Dead
Finishing The Game
War, Inc.
The Air I Breathe
The Warriors: Director's Cut Special Edition
Indiana Jones And The Kingdom Of The Crystal Skull
Savage Grace
A Dirty Carnival
Cross Bronx
Iron Man
The Machine Girl
The Forbidden Kingdom
I'm Not There
The 4400-The Complete Fourth Season
The Chair
The Tiger Blade
Bomb It
Inglorious Bastards (1978)
Heroes Of The East
Come Drink With Me
88 Minutes
Street Kings
Paranoid Park
Snow Angels
The Bank Job
How To Rob A Bank
Shoot Down
Chicago 10
Weeds-Season Three
Where In The World Is Osama Bin Laden?
The Onion Movie
The Killing Of John Lennon
John Adams (HBO miniseries)
Invisible Target
The Signal
Right At Your Door
Civic Duty
Dragon Tiger Gate
Definitely, Maybe
Player 5150

Dart's Movie Recommendations (I personally cosign all of these joints):

The Wackness
Hellboy II: The Golden Army
City Of Men
The Tracey Fragments
Chop Shop
Dragon Squad
Batman-Gotham Knight

Rent/Watch these movies at your own risk:

Tyler Perry's House Of Payne Volume 2: Fuck a Tyler Perry.

Tyler Perry's Meet The Browns: No thank you.

Superhero Movie: The purpose of parodies is to be funny. That's all I'm saying.

College Road Trip: Stay home instead.

Step Up 2: The Streets: Oh, so these are the type folks that dance on the streets? Where? In Beverly Hills?

Meet Dave: I'd rather not. It's looking like Pluto Nash all over again to me.

Journey To The Center Of The Earth: CGI/greenscreen based flicks are strictly special effects vehicles. Who needs a script and actors in that case?

Coming (relatively) Soon To A Theater (or computer) Near You:


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