Pop Culture Gadabout
Tuesday, February 14, 2006
      ( 2/14/2006 08:46:00 AM ) Bill S.  

CIRCLING THE BASIN – Watched Rodriquez & Miller's Sin City in its cable premiere on Starz last weekend: a visually engrossing exercise (which I definitely regret missing on the big screen) that still unmoved me despite all the eye-popping effort put into building a believable facsimile of Frank Miller's world. For me, the biggest problem lies in the GN source material, which takes too abundantly from Mickey Spillane for me to enjoy it. There's a reason Spillane, as successful as he was in the fifties and sixties, isn't mentioned in the same breath as tough-guy crime fictioners like Chandler and Hammett – he was a crap writer with a shot-loose sense of plotting. Every time I heard a tin-eared piece of dialog being read in movie voiceover, I said to myself, "Yeah, that's something Spillane would've typed," and I pulled away from the movie just a little bit more. It kept me from accepting the conclusion to "That Yellow Bastard," which came across more theme-dependent than character based.

I did like Mickey Rourke's performance and character in "The Hard Goodbye." Perhaps if the flick had focused purely on Marv's story instead of stringing three books together in the now established Pulp Fiction format, I'd have stayed with it more whole-heartedly. I wasn't bored watching the thing; a lot of it is darkly amusing (as when Rodriquez picks up on Miller's tribute to Mssrs. Kidd & Wint from Diamonds Are Forever), while the over-the-top violence provided plenty of kicky charges. (If one of the underling elements in James Bond films is castration fear, than Sin City puts that threat front-and-center.) But in the end my response to the movie was more, "Will you look at how they recreated that underwater panel!" than it was a full immersion in Miller's Universe . . .

NOTE: An hour after I posted this, I remembered that this isn't the first time on this blog that I've slammed one-time comics writer Spillane for his pernicious influence on otherwise sharp modern pulpsters. I also did it in my review of Johnny Dynamite.

NOTE II: Just for the heck of it, I took a gander at Focus on the Family's Steven Isaacs review of this ultra-violent exercise. Made the flick look more entertaining than it actually was . . .
# |

Pop cultural criticism - plus the occasional egocentric socio/political commentary by Bill Sherman (popculturegadabout AT yahoo.com).

On Sale Now!
Measure by Measure:

A Romantic Romp with the Fat and Fabulous
By Rebecca Fox & William Sherman

(Available through Amazon)

Measure by Measure Web Page

Ask for These Fine Cultural Blogs & Journals by Name!

aaronneathery.com News
Aaron Neathery

American Sideshow Blow-Off
Marc Hartzman

Arf Lovers
Craig Yoe

Sean T. Collins

Barbers Blog
Wilson Barbers

The Bastard Machine
Tim Goodman

The Beat
Heidi MacDonald

Kevin Church

Big Fat Blog
Paul McAleer

Big Mouth Types Again
Evan Dorkin

Laura "Tegan" Gjovaag

Blog This, Pal!
Gordon Dymowski

Rod Lott

Cartoon Brew
Amid Amidi & Jerry Beck

Cartoon Web Log!
Daryl Cagle

Clea's Cave
Juana Moore-Overmyer

Collected Editions

The Comics Curmudgeon
Josh Fruhlinger

The Comics Reporter
Tom Spurgeon

Christopher Butcher

Comics Waiting Room
Marc Mason

Comics Worth Reading
Johanna Draper Carlson

a dragon dancing with the Buddha
Ben Varkentine


Electromatic Radio
Matt Appleyard Aaron Neathery


Eye of the Goof
Mr. Bali Hai

Fred Sez
Fred Hembeck

Greenbriar Picture Shows
John McElwee

The Groovy Age of Horror
Curt Purcell

The Hooded Utilitarian
Noah Berlatsky

Hooray for Captain Spaulding
Daniel Frank

The Horn Section

The House Next Door
Matt Zoller Seitz

Howling Curmudgeons
Greg Morrow & Friends

The Hurting
Tim O'Neil

I Am A Child of Television
Brent McKee

I Am NOT the Beastmaster
Marc Singer

In Sequence
Teresa Ortega

Innocent Bystander
Gary Sassaman

Irresponsible Pictures

Jog - The Blog
Joe McCulloch

The Johnny Bacardi Show
David Allen Jones

Dirk Deppey

King's Chronicles
Paul Dini

Let's You And Him Fight
One of the Jones Boys

Mah Two Cents
Tony Collett


Michael's Movie Palace

Nat's TV
Nat Gertler

Ned Sonntag


News from ME
Mark Evanier

No Rock&Roll Fun
Simon B

Omega Channel
Matt Bradshaw

Pen-Elayne on the Web
Elayne Riggs

Peter David

Dorian White

Progressive Ruin
Mike Sterling

Punk Rock Graffiti
Cindy Johnson & Autumn Meredith

Revoltin' Developments
Ken Cuperus

Marc Bernardin

Matt Hinrichs

Self-Styled Siren

Spatula Forum
Nik Dirga

Tales from the Longbox
Chris Mosby


The Third Banana
Aaron Neathery & Friends

Thrilling Days of Yesteryear
Ivan G. Shreve, Jr.

Toner Mishap
B2 et al

Trusty Plinko Stick
Bill Doughty

TV Barn
Aaron Barnhart et al

Unqualified Offerings
Jim Henley

Various And Sundry
Augie De Blieck

Video WatchBlog
Tim Lucas

When Fangirls Attack
Kalinara & Ragnell

X-Ray Spex
Will Pfeifer

Yet Another Comics Blog
Dave Carter

A Brief Political Disclaimer:

If this blog does not discuss a specific political issue or event, it is not because this writer finds said event politically inconvenient to acknowledge - it's simply because he's scatterbrained and irresponsible.

My Token List of Poli-Blogs:

Roy Edroso


Jane Hamsher

James Wolcott

Lance Mannion

The Moderate Voice
Joe Gandelman


Amanda Marcotte & Friends

The Sideshow
Avedon Carol

Skippy, the Bush Kangaroo

Talking Points Memo
Joshua Micah Marshall

This Modern World
Tom Tomorrow

Welcome to Shakesville
Melissa McEwan & Friends

Blogcritics: news and reviews
Site Feed

Powered by Blogger

    follow me on Twitter