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rare female film critic | by maryann johanson

10 years of Flick Filosopher: kid stuff starts growing up in a big way

Who’da thunk that movies based on comic books would start turning into some of the best movies of the year… any year? That started happening in a big way in the summer of 2002. From my review of Road to Perdition:

There’s not a thing that isn’t hauntingly, quietly electrifying about this, the first truly grown-up comic book movie. Fans of the medium have known for years that the form had no trouble being Important, but the film industry (though perhaps not all filmmakers themselves) has stubbornly insisted on treating comic adaptations as juvenile. Comics = superheroes = summer popcorn flick = throwaway junk. It’s extraordinary enough that director Sam Mendes — and cinematographer Conrad L. Hall and screenwriter David Self, but mostly Mendes — has taken the graphic novel by Max Allan Collins and Richard Piers Rayner and transformed it into something awe-inspiring. It’s even more extraordinary that Hollywood is treating Road to Perdition like the second coming of The Godfather. That it actually may be, is the final straw of passing-strangeness.

review of Road to Perdition, posted 07.12.02

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