I’ve always taken pride in my ability to write, but I’m still unsure of how this turned out; even though I’ve read it over-and-over, countless of times. I’m sure there are areas of fault and areas that need critiquing, but I figured that I’d share this with those of you that might be interested. I’ll be turning it in early (tomorrow) and will hopefully have my grade within the next week or so. Let me know what you think, if it’s of any interest to you.
Lenny Benologa vs. Fantasy Essay Writing
by Leenard Benologa
Most people like to believe that Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is a movie geared towards gamers, but that is far from the case. This movie is loaded with a slew of different genres thrown into less-than two hours of film. These genres include, but are not limited to several popular categories such-as Action/Adventure, Romance, Drama, Comedy and even several Musical numbers. The question therefore, is not ‘what genre is most represented?’, but which genre holds the most importance to the underlying message to this entire movie?
Like any other movie, it begins by introducing the production studio that assisted in its creation, Universal Pictures in this case; however, the introduction is modified to display 8-bit sound and 8-bit visual effects. This almost immediately causes viewers to presume this will not be your typical movie, but hints towards a video-gamers’ dream-come-true. As the credits end, a narrator introduces the setting of the movie to give the illusion that the events are taking place in a far-off fantasy land; when in reality it’s announced to be taking place in Toronto, Canada. It then continues forward with a plethora of sound-effects from video games such-as Super Mario Brothers, the Legend of Zelda and even references to Tetris and Pac-Man. Another gaming moment I’d like to refer to is a scene when Scott Pilgrim is at a video game arcade with his high-school girlfriend, Knives Chau. They appear to be playing an arcade game where Scott, who has been playing a ninja-character, has to fight an enemy named Nega-Ninja. The scene abruptly ends with Scott saying, ‘I can never get passed that guy’ as his character’s head is knocked off by his opponent. One can find a slew of different video game references through-out the entire movie, but this is just one of the genres the author uses to convey a much-larger message.
Romance and love can be found in practically every movie genre, and Scott Pilgrim vs. The World is not an exception. The romance-aspect of the movie actually starts before the beginning scenes; when Scott was dating his ex-girlfriend, N. V. ‘Envy’ Addams. She eventually ended up dumping him as she moved on to become a musical icon, leaving him heart-broken. As the movie progresses, Scott Pilgrim dates Knives Chau, a 17-year old high school girl, to get rid of his thoughts about Envy. It is not until he notices a girl from his dreams (Ramona Flowers) is real, does he pursue a relationship with her. As time progresses Knives grows fonder and more content with Scott while at the same time he begins to fall for Ramona. In a matter of time and through a series of fortunate (or perhaps unfortunate) events, Scott Pilgrim is able to secure a relationship with Ramona and dumps Knives Chau. Of course, it’s through the breaking-up of individuals and finding new-love can we carry ourselves into the next genre.
If the love of your life broke up with you for no apparent reason, wouldn’t that be enough for you to move on with your life? If your answer is ‘yes’, then I must say you are much stronger willed than I am. If your answer is ‘no’, then I’m sure you can understand some of the things going through Knives Chau’s mind. After some sulking, she sets out to discover why her precious Scott broke up with her, and in doing so she finds out about Ramona. As a 17 year-old girl, she immediately blames Ramona for ‘stealing’ her boyfriend away from her and thinks of a plan to steal him back.
In Scott’s dramatic role on the other hand, he discovers that in-order to date Ramona in peace, he must first defeat Ramona’s seven evil exes. After a few battles however, he begins to question her fidelity, as he discovers that she has always dumped her exes and was never the one to-be dumped. This eventually leads Scott to question whether-or-not dating Ramona is a good thing for him, since he previously experienced a terrible break-up when his previous girlfriend, Envy. Drama continues to stir as Envy shows up in Toronto for a show and becomes jealous as she finds out about Ramona. As a strategic means to get Scott to attend her performance, she asks Stephen Stills (the lead guitarist of the Sex Bob-Ombs) to open for her show with a live performance. To Stephen Stills this was an opportunity of a lifetime, so he eventually pressured the band play to acquire a bigger fan-base. Later on, drama continues to stir as Ramona chooses to get back together with Gideon Graves and dump Scott Pilgrim. This continues to fester in Scott’s mind until he decides to take action. As you may-well see, without the implementation of drama there would be no content for this movie. With the right balance of romance and drama, substance has been created. The utilization of these two genres also tie into video gaming, because most video games star a protagonist and someone (or something) the protagonist loves; whether it be a member of the opposite sex or an idea.
One of the major genres in this movie, that I have yet to mention, was introduced within the first 10 minutes of the movie. Were you able to catch it? Scott Pilgrim is the lead bass guitarist for the band Sex Bob-Omb, so naturally the band plays an intricate role in the Musical genre for this movie. Most of what takes place in this film revolves around Sex Bob-Omb competing for a record deal with other rival groups in the T.I.B.B. – better known as the Toronto International Battle of the Bands. From the beginning you catch the band rehearsing at band practice, performing during competitions and you even watch their rivals perform. One of the most memorable musical scenes took place during the first battle between Scott Pilgrim and Matthew Patel (evil ex-boyfriend #1), who displays a very Bollywood-influenced performance. The music is undoubtedly the glue that firmly holds many of these genres together within this movie.
Well-choreographed Action-Adventure fighting scenes and a slew of various comedic performances with sarcasm and satire, fill this movie from beginning to the end. From memorable scenes like, Scott Pilgrim stumbling over his words during his first encounter with Ramona, to a scene where Young Neil tells everyone that Todd Ingram punched the highlights out of Knives Chau’s hair. This movie is loaded with so-much more than the average movies, as it not-only includes these two genres, but also makes reference to homosexuals and the gay community, as Scott’s roommate is gay and plays a fairly large role.
After discovering all of these various genres, I believe the final thing to do is to take a look at this movie from a larger perspective. In doing this, I’ve come to discover that this film falls under a new genre altogether. It has romance with a touch of drama and comedy, along-with video game references, action-adventure mixed with musical performances; and it even makes reference to the LGBT (Lesbian, Gay, Bi, and Transsexual) community through one of its characters. With all of these things factored together, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World categorizes itself into the genre of Culture & Society.
‘This genre is applied to titles pertaining to social topics such as the study of other cultures, the examination of social or activist movements, pop culture and social trends, current events, race and gender, political movements and trends, and other various national and international social issues.’ (AllMovie.com)
Our society has changed a lot within the past few generations and along comes a movie that stops to take the time to reveal some aspects of today’s youth. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World opens your eyes to the new society America’s young men and women are shaping and growing up in, today. Video game violence has been a major topic for years, but the youth of America continue to play them so-long as their parents approve and/or the rating(s) allow it. The government continues to battle with gay-rights activists, but the youth have been taught to accept others regardless of their race, gender or sexual orientation. Music on the other hand, is the constant. It may change every generation, but it always manages to bring people together. This movie is more than an action-adventure, romance, comedy, or drama, but it’s a film that helps us to discover and foresee the direction our youth are headed towards, in an ever-changing society and culture. So the next time you choose to watch this film, I challenge you to remind yourself that it’s not just a movie for gamers, but a way of understanding a new generation.
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World. Dir. Edgar Wright. Perf. Michael Cera, Mary Elizabeth Winstead and Kieran Culkin. DVD & Blu-Ray. Universal Pictures, 2010
Mike Russell. “Mike Russell’s Top Ten Films of 2010”. OregonLive. OregonLive, 12.30 (2010). Web. 15 Jan 2010
“Scott Pilgrim vs. The World” IMDb. IMDb, n.d. Web. 15 Jan 2010