More like The Suck. I was curious about this movie after I saw the preview this summer, but I grew evermore skeptical when the reviews were published. Furthermore, the trailer that's been playing on TV during the holidays featured quotes from a website called MoviePictureFilm.com. What? That sounds like a website created by Borat. However, I had a free ticket and we showed up 5 minutes before showtime looking for a movie to watch, so we took a chance... not a great way to start off 2009.
While I enjoyed the insanely-violent Sin City, I was never sold on 300, so the "Frank Miller" tag didn't entice me. What confused me about The Spirit is that sometimes it was purposefully campy and at other times it seemed as if its campiness resulted from an accident or poor acting. If you're going to deliberately cheese-up your film, you have to do it consistently, so that way the audience doesn't blame it on poor writing/acting (off the top of my head, I think Firefly/Serenity did a good job with its intentional campiness).
Secondly, the addition of everybody's favorite angryblackman, Samuel L. Jackson, just made the film worse (that clip is his best role). He actually had some funny lines in The Spirit, but most of his dialogue was so ridiculous I laughed. What ever happened to the hold-on-to-your-butts version of SLJ.
One thing The Spirit did have going for it was sex appeal. I don't mean to be crude, but there certainly was a collection of "talent" on the screen: Paz Vega (AKA the other Penelope Cruz), Eva Mendes, Scarlett Johansson, and several other lesser known actresses. However, The Spirit's failure proves that action + hot women =/ success. A good story and clever writing always trump eye candy (although I can think of a few exceptions, namely District B13 and Ong Bak).
Blurb: Don't watch this movie, even if you have a free ticket... but you should definitely rent it if they make an accompanying RiffTrax.