OTB Movie Club Week 1: Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

The first week of the On The Block Movie Club is in the books, and we all watched Edgar Wright’s 2010 Scott Pilgrim vs. the World as our inaugural film. I’m not going to go through the whole movie and say what I thought about it all because I think that goes against the idea of a movie club, it should be about you making your own thoughts about these films, but I will give my brief opinions on a few major points of the work.

To say this movie is highly stylized would be an understatement. SPvtW is based on a graphic novel (Scott Pilgrim by Bryan Lee O’Malley), so it makes sense that the film would follow the exaggeration and artistic choices that are typical of a graphic novel. Whether it be the visual effects that accompany most sounds in the film, the over-the-top but incredibly entertaining combat scenes, or the unique transitions that accompany the changing of scenery, the pure stimulation that comes along with watching this movie is enough to make it an enjoyable watch.

It can be easy for acting performances to be drowned in such an effects heavy movie, but Michael Cera and Mary Elizabeth Winstead as Scott Pilgrim and Ramona Flowers, respectively, are both outstanding. Cera nails it as his prototypical lovable pushover that you can’t help but root for (even though Scott is a bit on an ass for the first ¾ of the movie) and Winstead makes the character of Ramona seem just as mysterious as needed for someone who has seven evil exes. Also, a very random assortment of some powerhouse stars in very supporting roles: Anna Kendrick as Stacey (Scott’s sister), Brie Larson as Envy Adams (Scott’s ex-girlfriend and lead singer of The Clash at Demonhead), Aubrey Plaza as Julie (worker at the record store and a connection for Scott and Ramona) and even Chris Evans as Lucas Lee (Ramona’s second evil ex and a movie star).

Despite being based on a video game, the movie is truly about music, and the best song in the film is “Black Sheep”, the song The Clash at Demonhead performs. Originally written and performed by Metric, a Canadian pop-punk group, it is a banger that comes through at just the right moment. Leading into one of the funnier scenes, having a break in the action where it’s just about listening to and watching a blast of a performance by Scott’s ex-girlfriend is a highlight of the movie.

All-in-all, I enjoyed Scott Pilgrim vs. the World and can very easily see why it has gained the cult following it currently has. Hopefully you did too, and if you didn’t get the chance to watch it there’s still time! However, it is a new week and that means we need another film, and this week’s watch is horror auteur Ari Aster’s 2018 debut Hereditary. I would recommend going in relatively blind to this movie if you have not already seen it, but watch with the lights on if you’re easily spooked. See you guys next week!

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