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Elektra

The Daredevil movie wasn't a great critical or commercial hit, yet somehow an Elektra spin-off got greenlit. And certainly it could have been a good film as the character is one of Marvel's modern icons and deservedly so.

But I became wary as soon as the opening expository narration started. These are rarely well executed and often bode ill for a movie. And even more so when followed up with an expository sequence that repeats most of the same backstory we just heard.

And neither of these devices were really necessary, since Elektra has conveniently acquired a a sidekick (or agent in this case... not as in secret but as in 10% commission). I don't know if this person is based on a comic character but personally I don't think that's very in character for the loner Elektra. Still, in movies exposition is most often revealed by dialogue so his presence is understandable. His purpose having been served he is dispatched in short order once the bad guys arrive on the scene. He's pretty much of a non-entity.

Not unlike Goran Visnjic who's, I suspect, merely there to draw in some female viewers for all the importance he has to the plot or Elektra's character development.

I was going to complain about the presence of a annoyingly cute kid, but she turned out to be important after all.

Like Revenge of the Sith there's more than its fair quota of bad dialogue. Did we have to have Elektra's target spouting "So it's all true - the red outfit, the knives..." as we see Elektra sporting a red outfit and knives? Did we have to have Elektra saying she was "getting rid of my DNA"? Or one of the villains quipping in that villainous quippy way, "You know, I used to be The Treasure and I don't like being replaced, so let's keep your death between you and me"? (All lines paraphrased, I didn't feel motivated to rewatch the movie to get an accurate transcription.)

As a fan I was a bit miffed that Elektra's resurrection given such short thrift. It was a big deal in the comics but here it was dismissed in a five second flashback.

I think maybe the problem was that - like the Ultimate Daredevil/Elektra comic I didn't think the movie was operatic enough to do justice to the epic tragedy and ambiguity of the character. Sections of it felt prosaic, more like a telemovie... or maybe Alias (though I haven't watched enough of that show to know if that's a valid comparison).

On the upside - I liked the production design - clean and modern, and there were some decent set pieces, centred around the fights of course.

Ultimately Elektra had intentions, I think, to tell a personal, mythic, kick-ass story, but they just weren't realised there on the screen. *sigh* (Or should that be *sai*?)

Far better than the movie is an excellent retrospective on the comic book Elektra featuring in-depth interviews with Frank Miller, Klaus Janson, Bill Sienkiewicz, Brian Michael Bendis and Greg Rucka included as part of the DVD extras.

Comments (1)

ELEKTRA:

I really don't care much about Elektra but Jennifer Garner just looks gorgeous on that outfit!

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This page contains a single entry from the blog posted on June 1, 2005 12:04 AM.

The previous post in this blog was Elektra: The Scorpio Key.

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