Ghost Rider (2007)
Running Time: 1 hr 54 mins – Action, Fantasy, Thriller
Starring Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes, & Sam Elliott – Directed by Mark Steven Johnson
Big JD (Host)
From the opening sequence you know that you are going to get a Motorcycle Cowboy flick. That Genre style is something I think they nailed. Hell, they created the whole story around it. They changed the origin a bit by skipping the whole adoptive family (Roxanne’s family) and brought Barton Blaze straight into the mix. Dying of cancer no doubt. Side note: It was Roxanne’s father (Crash Simpson) that had the cancer. I could probably write another couple page’s talking about what Mark Steven Johnson left out in terms of source material so, let’s just move on to the review. Peter Fonda plays Mephisto aka The Devil. Peter Fonda adds credibility to a motorcycle Cowboy flick due to his role in Easy Rider? Sure he does. I loved Sam Elliot’s narration and the fact they brought Carter Slade (The original Ghost Rider) into the story. Without Carter Slade, Nicolas Cage would still be pointing at himself in a mirror somewhere. (I’m meaning that the character helps push along the storyline … get it?) What about the main character? Johnny Blaze is played by the sometimes maniacal Nicholas Cage. In this vision of his character Blaze is a huge star in the stunt bike circuit. For some reason he has decided to channel Elvis Presley. Ok, Cage we know that you like Elvis. Don’t taint my favorite Marvel character with your jellybeans & love for Karen Carpenter. Black Heart could have been so much more than the c-list villain he is. He played more like an “un-caring” Dark Heart instead of Black Heart. … Look it up Care Bear. Although sucking people dry would be useful at times. He manages to assemble a couple f-list fallen angels Gressil, Wallow, Abigor to help in his fight for the contract of San Benganza. Actually they are so F-List that this is their first appearance in any type of media including comic books. Making up character’s when there is a plethora to choose from is a big no-no in my book Mr. Johnson. Eva Mendes as Roxanne Simpson? I’m still trying to understand how that happened. Her nervous “I love you but can’t say it” act is horrible. At times it’s like she’s still playing her character from Hitch. God she’s horrible! As for Ghost Rider? Probably the saving grace throughout this movie. I thought he was done well minus the stiff, Frankenstein moments. And I could have done without the “crazy-cage”.
I wish Ghost Rider would have had more screen time. But when your competing for Nicolas Cage’s facetime you will always lose. Badass Bike though. Loved the melting pavement bit.
Let’s be clear here. The Penance Stare does not kill anyone. I don’t think the director got that point across.
With all the things I disliked about this movie it all comes back to the simple fact that It’s Ghost Rider. And for that reason alone is what keeps me watching this movie. Ghost Rider on screen… that’s what’s important. When you’ve grown up with a character and you finally get a movie with said character it really doesn’t matter how bad or good it is. Just seeing that character in a movie is special enough. Oh, and seeing the Old GR riding with the new GR while playing “Rider’s in the Sky” is a nice touch. I gotta go now, Nicolas Cage is pointing at me and it’s freakin’ me out.
Comic Book Movie Plus: Nicholas Cage – Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance, Kick-Ass
So before giving my review I figured I would give you a little back story, Feb 14th 2007 this movie was Released in Mazatlan, Mexico. I know I was there, I was with my fiance at the time and we went to see this, mind you I thought this would be in Spanish with English subtitles, oh no it was in English with Spanish subtitles, it didn’t bother me until Eva would say “Oh my God” because then the bottom of the screen would say Dios Mio, It got really annoying, now it’s a running gag anytime I say “Oh my God” around my friends they tend to say Dios Mio… With that said here is my review.
–Ghost Rider —
Young Stunt man Johnny Blazes gives his soul to the Devil (Mephistopheles) to save his father, He becomes a body to host the Ghost Rider a Supernatural Bounty Hunter of the Wicked and Evil, Durring the Day he is Johnny Blaze World’s Best Stunt Man, when around the Wicked and Evil he engulfs in flames and becomes the Ghost Rider. Now Blackheart has come from Hell and the Ghost Rider must send him back.
I am not a Ghost Rider Connoisseur but to me this was fairly decent comic book movie so I can’t really judge this on it’s storyline , I felt that they were trying to cram too much of the comic into to this movie. I think Nicolas Cage did a fair job however I think a couple other people might have played a better Ghost Rider but he did ok. Eva Mendes also not bad, but there wasn’t much to her character other then the history between her and Johnny any girl could have really played that part. Wyatt from Easy Rider was in it also….Yes Peter Fonda himself played Mephstopheles. Which he did very well as the devil. Blackheart was ok for a demon offsping of the Devil.
Was this a good idea for a movie? Well it can’t be worse the Daredevil or Elektra. Overall all Comic Book movies to me are a good idea it’s just how they are presented to the audience is how bad or good it can be, to me the key to the comic book movies is follow closer to the story lines of the comic your choosing…good example The Avengers. (But that’s for another time)
When ok could have been great.
This movie had a lot of really good things going on. There were some draw backs however. I felt the cast as a whole did quite well. I did not like Nick Cage and Eva Mendez was not stellar either. To be honest I would have liked the movie better if they would have stuck with the actor/actress playing the kid versions. Nick Cage’s on again off again southernish accent drove me crazy. And the actor playing Black Heart? WTF?!!!! “We are legion, we are many!” So bad. He did not seem like the son of the devil to me at all. Adam Sandler was closer in my opinion. Who ever cast him as Black Heart should be fired. He should have been the waiter at the restaurant Eva was eating at.
I agree with Ranny about someone else playing Johnny. Maybe a relative unknown actor. That seems to work best. Case in point Green lantern vs Capt. America. I also was not a fan of him constantly pointing at people. I get it. It is from the comic book. I think they could have played it down a little, or limit it to when he is doing his penance stare thingy.
There were some good points to this movie. I did enjoy the story and the plot was decent enough. Pretty much every other member of the cast I loved. The devil was great. The wardrobe was also a nice high point. And seeing Ghost Rider with the flaming skull riding on his motor cycle was awesome. I thought the origins story was also enjoyable. The CGI was really cool. It wasn’t over done and I felt it enhanced a movie like CGI should. Not make it seem fake (Sorry Green Lantern.) Overall it was decent. It could have been great with a few minor tweaks and maybe a couple cast changes.
Suggestion: If you haven’t seen this go red box it. Don’t buy it. And make sure you take it back the next day. It isn’t worth $2.
3‘s (A generous 3…should have given it a 2.5)
P.S. The fact Randizzle gave this a higher rating than Smoking Aces makes me want to cut him….I just may.
For Those that have seen this movie. What did you think?