Wednesday, June 30, 2004

Channeling the comic-book sensibility: At The New Republic Online, Adam Graham-Silverman examines the pitfalls of adapting comics to film:

"Comics are not ready-made storyboards, however, and there is such a thing as being too faithful to the source work. Mark Steven Johnson, director of Daredevil, suffered from a misplaced sense of loyalty to the comic book. He tried to stage several Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon-style fight scenes much as they occurred in comic book form. But the media are not the same, and even someone pleased to see the comic images come alive will tell you they slow the movie to a bore. 'He tried to tell a film with comic book language instead of telling a comic-flavored film in cinema language,' Young says. Movies such as The Matrix or even Pulp Fiction more successfully channel that comic-book sensibility. On top of that, he tries to cram about three movies' worth of plot and character development into one. By contrast, Raimi and Singer can throw in shots in homage to the artists who drew their stories, and the viewer who hasn't read the comics doesn't suffer in the least."