Thursday, June 14, 2012

Ghost Rider (Mark Steven Johnson, 2007) Review

Comic book films. I've done lots of them already. The only ones I have reviewed however are ones that are part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Now listen, Ghost Rider is a Marvel franchise, HOWEVER, one should note that Ghost Rider isn't part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Ghost Rider is it's own film which may be it's biggest fault. Let's dive in.

After making a deal with the devil Mephistopheles (Peter Fonda) in order to cure his fathers cancer, Johnny Blaze (Nicholas Cage) becomes the devil's hitman. Blaze is called on when the devil needs him and transformed into the flaming skeleton known as Ghost Rider. A new evil is rising onto the Earth and threatening it's existence as well as Mephistopheles himself: Blackheart (Wes Bentley). Now Blaze has to enlist the help of a previous Ghost Rider (Sam Elliot) in order to defeat Blackheart while also trying to rekindle his relationship with Roxanne Simpson (Eva Mendes).

This is one of the most forgettable films I have ever seen. I can't really remember much of it! I had to go to IMDb in order to remind me about Eve Mendes' character! It was enjoyable, I'll give it that but it can't justify the rest. The two Ghost Riders are enjoyable but the rest of the cast seems boring and flat...except Peter Fonda who seemed too downplayed. I would have loved to see more of him.

Actually, speaking of Peter Fonda, my biggest criticism is the amount of downplayed characters. I already said that the two Ghost Riders were great but outside of them, the other characters aren't that great. Blackheart is a boring villain, Roxanne had little to no character since she was just a damsel (except in the final battle where she did more). Blackheart's henchmen and Mephistopheles were left out of a lot of it and I really enjoyed them so it was a shame to see them pushed aside for larger yet more forgettable characters.

Nicholas Cage was a weird pick for Ghost Rider, anyone can tell you that, but I was actually impressed. He managed to pull it off really well and since he has a reputation for being over the top and 'so bad he's good' but it works to his advantage here. Ghost Rider isn't as prone to wisecracks as, say, Deadpool (looking for to that film by the way) and Spider-Man (When done right) but it's good to see a combination. He's a great character who you empathise with (especially at the expository sequence)...don't get the jelly beans though or the questionable CGI. Glad they improved that in the sequel.

You properly think that I hate this film. Not really. Sure it has it's problems but it is NOWHERE NEAR the worst comic book film ever. I would even say it's closer to the best than the worst. It's above average. The only problem is the fact that it's forgettable except some decent characters, action scenes and it's based on one of my favourite Marvel franchises. It's an accurate adaptation but may bore those not familiar with Ghost Rider.

It's above average but is only for those who don't get bored easily. If you love Ghost Rider then you this.

And no, the sequel is not tomorrow. I haven't actually got round to seeing it yet.

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