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Old July 27th, 2016, 12:06 AM
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Default Daredevil (2003)

Daredevil (2003)
Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner, Michael Clarke Duncan, Colin Farrell, Jon Favreau. Directed by Mark Steven Johnson.

Daredevil is quite a bit better than I expected. I missed it in theaters because I didnít know a thing about the comic book hero, and because I didnít know Jennifer Garner was in it. It turns out to be nicely darkódarker even than the Dark Knight seriesówith interesting fight sequences and an intriguing romance-driven plot. Iím disappointed there isnít a sequel with the same protagonist.

Ben Affleck plays Matt Murdock, a lawyer blind since childhood, who takes clients who canít always pay in cash. The office he shares with his partner Foggy Nelson (Jon Favreau) is crammed with sports equipment and other items received as payment for the firmís services. The accident that took Murdockís sight also left his other senses extremely heightened, in a super power kind of way. He canít see, but his hearing is so acute that it serves as kind of a radar, so he can judge shapes and distances through (I suppose) echolocation. These super senses, combined with a restless, reckless need for justice, serve him at night, when he dons a costume and fights crime as a mysterious, mythical character named Daredevil. I have long thought that Ben Affleck doesnít get enough credit for his acting chops, and he does better than an apt job with this role.

Thatís pretty cool, but add a few details, and you really have something. Murdock lives in the stony, unlit basement of an old Catholic church, sleeping in a water-filled sarcophagus that acts as a sensory deprivation chamber. He has no family, and his fatherís murder is unsolved many years later. He literally smells attractive women before they enter a building, and he has some nicely honed moves for getting to know them. I have often wondered why superheroes in these films are never horndogsóI mean, given their abilities and their abundance of testosterone, it seems like a natural thing. Now Iíve seen two in three weeks who seem to enjoy the company of women (the other is Deadpool, but we see this before he has any powers, so heís not employing his advantages). Thereís also a short Kevin Smith appearance I appreciated.

I love Jennifer Garner, so my opinion here is disproportionately influenced by my affection, but her smart, tough, feline portrayal of Elektra Natchios, who seems able to keep up with Murdock, makes the film work. Sheís a great love interest for him, and an obvious choice for the spinoff series we never got. Michael Clarke Duncan and Colin Farrell as the villains are fine, but the characters are (and I realize I shouldnít complain about this in a comic book movie) silly and cartoonish.

This could have been the beginning of a great series. As it is, itís like watching a great TV show pilot and never getting to see any other episodes: promising but just a bit flat.

7/10 (IMDb rating)
74/100 (Criticker rating)
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  #2  
Old July 27th, 2016, 06:37 PM
Honoruru Honoruru is offline
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Default Re: Daredevil (2003)

I didn't like the movie version of Daredevil as much as you did. I liked Netflix's version much better, at least the first season. (I haven't seen the second season.) I thought Netflix's version was one of the best super hero shows ever, movie or television. I especially liked Vincent D'Onofrio's performance as Wilson Fisk. You should check it out if you have Netflix.
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Old July 27th, 2016, 07:51 PM
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Default Re: Daredevil (2003)

Yes; I've been encouraged to see that. For some reason, although I do plan to take a look at it eventually (I have the DVD plan, not the streaming plan), I'm not that amped for it. I mean, Jennifer Garner. You know?
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