Reviewing V for Vendetta
Bryan Caplan found it disappointing. So did our own reviewer, Adam. Here are his thoughts:
Reviewers generally seem to be praising it to the heavens. The general audience reaction at my theater was from "...It was OK." to "Great googly moogly, that was horrible.".
I was not aware of this, but the movie is only written by the Wachowski Bros.; it's directed by an assistant of theirs, for whom this is a debut. His directing is serviceable; he seems to know how to point a camera, but not a whole lot more.
Alan Moore demanded his own name be removed from the credits of this movie (the movie simply attributes its source material like so: "Based On A Graphic Novel Illustrated by David Lloyd"), and it's really little wonder why: There are a couple of moments in the movie that are genuinely smart, at least one of which is even original and not to be found in the novel. But on the whole the film is a mishmash of bad story-editing decisions, a number of which are almost physically painful (V and Evey are now in love, for instance). This goes double for the film's horrendously heavy-handed attempts to make the film "more relevant"; there's not a single modern-day bogeyman that keeps liberals up at night which the film doesn't manage to add into its indictment (the overtly Christian Fascists come to power with the help of a pharmaceutical company and in one scene execute a man for owning a Koran). I suppose if we ever wanted a window into exactly what the hardcore liberal of today thinks will happen if the Republicans are ever fully in charge, now we have it.
Summarily, what we have here is a generally boring movie that will frustrate if you are expecting entertainment or profound thought from it, but which is interesting if you come to it with the intent of analyzing its deficiencies, a mental switch I made at some point in that theater. You can see the ideas that in other hands could have been (and WERE, under Moore's pen) extremely interesting. What ideas do make it through are rendered philosophically incoherent by minds that are either not clever enough for them, or that could not help but butcher them do to the limitations of working for Hollywood masters.
I actually won two free movie tickets at a comedy show two weeks back, so I didn't have to plunk down a dime for the viewing. See at your own $7.50's risk.