Scott Pilgrim Versus the World

October 23, 2010 at 9:20 am (TV/movie review)

There are two possible reactions to this film:

1. Meh.

2. Rabid enthusiasm.

I am a nerd and all my friends are nerds and/or geeks. This film is for geeks, and it is only for geeks. I sat between CJ and my friend Ann (who is on the outer fringes of the geekhood realms of computer stuff, iphone stuff, and is well inside the geekhood of a handful of classic crime novelists).

I am mainly a fantasy geek and a writing-in-general geek. I can pass as a steampunk or medievalist geek. I get on well with music geeks (I can at least admire them) and computer geeks (there always seem to be a few around).

CJ is a video game geek, a graphic novel geek, a computer geek (his mildest area of geekhood – he’s competent rather than truly geeky – and he doesn’t actually love computers), a fantasy geek, an anime geek, and a little bit of a music geek. He plays bass.

Ann thought the film was a mix of brilliant and deadly dull. Her personal geekhood quotient: 40%

I thought the film was brilliant in all but one scene (he sings the girl a song – not very well. It’s not funny enough or musical enough to suit the rest of the film). A few bits were boring to me personally, but most of it was – like I said, brilliant. My personal geekhood quotient: 80%. Also, there are a lot of extremely funny lines coupled with perfect acting. At one stage, the main character is asked a question about “her” which he needs to dodge. In his head, a pointer swings between “who her?” and “I need to pee” and he blurts out, “I need to pee on her.”

CJ was flying high from the first frame, and he didn’t touch the ground until the next morning. His personal geekhood quotient: Freakin’ all of it.

Scott Pilgrim is a music geek, a video games geek, and definitely a graphic novel/surreal fantasy geek. If you get comics (ideally), video games, or fantasy in general (particularly on a metaphorical level – which is where it REALLY got me) you will get this film (I devour “Fables” and “Girl Genius” and any comic associated with Joss Whedon, but no others, and I always struggle a little bit with the genre’s rhythms, which is precisely my experience in this film).

This IS a brilliant film. It’s brilliant like durian* is brilliant – it’s difficult in a lot of ways, but those who love it and those who hate it both know there is nothing else in the world that is even similar to the experience of eating it.**

I recommend it for anyone who can hold their own with either graphic novel geeks, fantasy geeks, surrealist geeks, music geeks, or video game geeks. I fit only 1.5 of those areas, and I loved it.

*Also called “thorny fruit”. It smells so bad that some countries have made it illegal in some public places. It is so thorny that you need either the stalk or a bag of some kind to pick it up.

**Don’t eat Michael Cera. There are laws about that sort of thing.



  1. Ann said,

    I hold to my statement from last night. It would have been helpful to have been in the vicinity if joint before seeing this movie.

  2. Felicity Bloomfield said,

    vicinity of a joint? Yeah, maybe.

    • Ann said,

      Oh dear, iPhone typing failure!!!

  3. Ben (Crispin) said,

    I don’t particularly like graphic novels, fantasy, video games, or music, and I still thought it was sheer unmitigated genius…

  4. Felicity Bloomfield said,

    Hmm. Massive science nerd. Nope, my theory is ruined. Do you know why you liked it? It was very funny, but I’ve seen other films that were also funny. Maybe the innate sarcasm? What made you like the style?


  5. Ben (Crispin) said,

    It was awesome.

    No further analysis required.

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