Is Frank Miller’s “The Spirit” gonna suck like nothing that has ever sucked before, or will it surprise a whole lot of people and make a ton of money, so much money in fact that Frank Miller could be walking down the block shouting, “I’m the king of the world!” You decide. No, really, you’re going to have to decide when the movie opens in 2009, because only your hardearned dollars (or lack thereof) will prove to the studio that Frank Miller knows what he’s doing when he made “The Spirit”, or he should be sent back to the comic book drawing board. If Miller has anything to say about it, the comic book world will have to wait. Here is an interview Frank recently did with the LA Times and a bevy of new images from the movie.
Highlights from the interview with the LAT:
“I adored Will Eisner and took a real ‘Don’t tread on me’ approach when I came to this movie. At the same time, I was willing to tread all over it. I knew Will always wanted to do something fresh and new, not some stodgy old thing that aspires to be revered. I don’t want anybody to bow to this movie. I want a ripping good yarn. It is not an antique.”
The biggest differences between “The Spirit” and “Sin City” or “300″ are the romances and the cartoon combat; the Spirit and Octopus both have a sort of Wile E. Coyote invincibility by the time they duke it out and they whack each other with cinder blocks, spanner wrenches and even a toilet with a jolly unreality that makes the film seem something like “The Mask” meets “Green Hornet.” Jackson said it was a giddy time on the set filming the escalating mayhem.
That may be a bit of a sore spot, though. Eisner’s humanistic and often gentle, Capra-like approach to his character has many comics fans wondering why Miller — famous for spilling vats of blood-red ink in his comics — is taking the old man’s winking Spirit into a Sin City. Miller welcomes all that.
I’ve never read Eisner’s The Spirit, and I’m willing to bet not a lot of other people have, either. Which bodes well for Miller. The studio will be selling this as “from the guy who gave you 300, Sin City, and that slightly cool Robocop sequel with the robot ninja”.