I won’t lie, I have been waiting with excitement for a few months for this movie to come out. I will state right now that I have not read the older Dark Horse series; however, I did read R.I.P.D: City of the Damned, this mini-series (4 issues long) is a prequel to the movie. So if you are interested in the movie, I suggest reading City of the Damned before seeing the movie.
For those who do not know much about R.I.P.D the comic series here is a little plot: When a person dies and the afterlife deems his/her talents to be useful, the lost soul, who does not want to be brought in for justice (aka: go to either heaven and hell) is swayed to work for this department in the afterlife (being contracted for 100+ years) and then they have to fight some crazy supernatural force or evil creatures along their journey.
The City of the Damned, really was a quick setup for the back story of Roy, who is played by Jeff Bridges in the film. The movie, however, dismisses this and you really do not know much about Roy, except for how he died (which came as comical relief to me). City of the Damned sets Roy Pulsipher as joining the R.I.P.D. to track down the reasons for how/why he was killed. None of this was answered in the film, which was disappointing to me. Being that the comic series was supposed to be a setup for the movie, I was hoping this would be answered. However you do learn about what happened to Roy’s old partner in the comics. Another thing that I believe people should know is that Roy is very witty, snarky, serious character. In R.I.P.D (the movie) he is just witty and funny, all sense of seriousness is out the window.
Now I can go on about each and every single character, but Roy is the main character in the comic series, and is given the passenger seat to the character Nick ( Ryan Reynolds) in the film. The movie follows Nick, a recently slain cop who joins the team of undead police officers. Unlike Roy, Nick knows who killed him, and throughout the movies finds out more about his murderer. I thought that Reynolds tried to give his best as Nick since he had to be the somewhat serious character in the film. In true Ryan Reynolds’ fashion his acting was overall mediocre, while Jeff Bridges played a southern cowboy version of “The Dude”.
In true movie format, there was a love story, which was very minimal until you got to the ending of the movie, very cliché. It was very action-packed; however, you could tell that a lot of the scenes were made for the 3-D viewing experience, and if you are like me-you could care less for that movie feature. I liked the fact that there was a little bit of tension between Roy and Nick (as there should be) when they first met and that tension flowed throughout the movie, but there was not really a moment when everything clicked into them coming to an understanding and became “buddies” or civil partners. It was literally like a big fight between the two and then they became friends. Not how I would have done things, but yeah I don’t make money making movies.
With all of this being said, I enjoy the quick witted conversation between the characters. Granted some of the lines were cheesy and corny, but others were memorable such as “I hope that coyote got both eye sockets.” The graphics were good for the fact that there was a lot of graphics needed, but it was not the best.
I did go into this movie with high expectations since the City of the Damned was so good, but had low hopes for it as well since Reynolds not only acted, but was given the executive producer title too. Obviously, by now you can tell I do not hold Reynolds up the the highest of lights. He proved me kind of wrong, well sort of. I can say that it did remind me a bit of Men in Black, which some people dislike about the movie. The script was lacking by a long shot, and with the setup that City of the Damned put in placed there really could have been more.
I wished they had played up the disguises of Roy as the blonde bombshell (Marissa Miller) and Nick as the old Chinese guy holding a banana (James Hong). Also the partnership could have been set up better. They could have developed the reasons as to why Roy did not want a partner in the first place, and why the R.I.P.D. wanted Nick to join them. Another thing they could have done was further express the hardship Nick was going through switching to living in the afterlife.
I can completely understand why other reviews may dislike the movie, especially if they have never read the comic books. Rotten Tomatoes gave the movie an 11% (which is a “rotten” score), but from what I have read in other reviews, the writers talk about how this is a comic book based movie and how it should scripted like the other comic book movies. In all fairness, yes they are correct, but this comic is different and that is something that should be kept in mind. These partners are not “heroes,” this is simply their job. I don’t think it’s fair to pin this up against the recent DC or Marvel movies, it is a Dark Horse comic book based film, let it be. Now, it’s not what I wanted it to be, but it was good. I will always love the roles that Jeff Bridges plays, it’s not the worst movie out there. I would not waste my money to see this in theaters (Oops, already did that!). Scratch that. I suggest that y’all wait to rent this movie, or Netflix it.
Have you seen R.I.P.D yet? If you have leave a comment on your thoughts of the movie!
Overall 3 out of 5
- R.I.P.D.: From Comics to Film and Back Again (kindlepost.com)
- Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges Talk R.I.P.D. (dreadcentral.com)
- Ryan Reynolds and Jeff Bridges Talk R.I.P.D., Childhood Memories, On-Set Injuries, Creating Roy the Cowboy, and More (collider.com)