V for Vendetta micro-review, with some spoilers

22 Mar

These are two comments I made about the movie adaptation of V for Vendetta earlier this morning – one on LiveJournal, the other on Scott-O-Rama*. I thought I’d throw them onto this blog because I know that the world is holding its breath, waiting to hear my opinion.

These comments contain spoilers, though nothing you won’t be aware of already if you’re at all familiar with the plot.

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Even when I don’t compare it to the brilliant graphic novel on which it was based, V for Vendetta still leaves me kind of “eh”. It wasn’t a bad movie (despite some clunky elements), but it wasn’t all that good.

The main problem is that I didn’t believe it. The movie failed to convince me of the fascist takeover of Great Britain, the oppression of its citizens, and the revolution that V’s acts of terrorism sparks. The citizens are comfortable, well-fed middle-class types who are slightly irritated with their government and the media. Supposedly in this world, someone going out after curfew risks rape and murder at the hands of the police, but Evey breaks curfew to go on a DATE, with no apparent concern. This is the kind of disconnect that confronts us at nearly every turn.

It was a political movie with no political message except that “intolerance is bad and tolerance is good”. I suspect that in a few months I’ll forget that I ever saw it.

(Unlike Missing, for example, a great political “message” movie about fascism. I saw it almost 15 years ago and it still sticks with me.)

Also:

I had the impression that the Wachowski brothers (who wrote the screenplay) just looked at the pictures in the graphic novel, and made up dialogue based on what they thought the characters might be saying.

This occurred to me in the scene where V seizes the airwaves to address the people on television. The speech he gives is not at all the magnificent dialogue that I remember from the comic, but I can’t think of any reason they’d feel as if they HAD to change it for the movie.

* The top search result on A9.com for “tuna skroodle“.

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