100 Days of Superheroes- Day 53: Elektra (2005)
Elektra is hardily an "electrifying" film. Get it? See what I did there?
“Your second life is in no way like your first.”
(or even resembling it. Wait. Was this a spinoff?)
After the slight mess of Daredevil there weren’t many looking for a sequel and even fewer wanting a spin off of Jennifer Garners boring and inconsistent character Elektra. Yet the studios made sure to give the audiences exactly what they didn’t want by adapting to screen such a mess of a movie that it makes Daredevil look like The Dark Knight.
The film opens with horrible generic backstory dialogue that is a sure sign at the beginning of every film that it is going to be bad. It didn’t work for Catwoman, it didn’t work for Dragonball Evolution and it sure as hell doesn’t work here. In fact the only film to pull off the boring opening exposition text/dialogue is probably Star Wars and this film shouldn’t even be put in the same sentence.
From there we jump to Elektra who after being brought from the dead….somehow for some reason….and taught marital arts…..for some reason (as if she didn’t know anything in the first film)…..and now she works as a petty assassin rather than going home to her million dollar estate. She really has no incentive to become an assassin. Or at least not a believable one.
Feeling bored at home she gets the assignment to assassinate her neighbor. But in traditional Elektra fashion, she has a sudden and abrupt character shift that causes her to try and protect them rather than kill them. Thus she goes from millionaire to assassin, to bodyguard, to glorified babysitter. Though mostly she spends half the film sitting in her cabin looking like she is about to start crying angrily.
In truth the story barely even seems like a follow up to Daredevil and the character of Elektra feels almost forced into it. It is like someone came up with the idea and an idiot producer said, “Wait! But what if this was an Elekra film, because that’s what everyone’s been waiting for!” It isn’t helped that they decide to shove in as many convoluted and pointless flashbacks as possible. They also needed to sound redundant and cliché too so they toss in a sub story of Elektra finding her mother’s killer. Because they didn’t do anything like that in Daredevil (← Sarcasm). Same old tired plot device.
At least in this film Jennifer Garner’s character is a little more interesting than she was in Daredevil. This is mostly due to the supernatural elements added to her rather than just being a kung fu chick. Still she seems very unsympathetic because she is so apathetic. Overall just not likable in any way. As in Daredevil her character shifts are too abrupt and unbelievable. At least they gave her back the classic costume if only for about five minutes.
Elektra spends most of the movie forced to babysit a small girl and father who are being hunted down by an organization known as “The Hand”, you know because Shredder already had “The Foot” under copy write. Get ready people, future CBM’s will also have criminal organizations called Head, Shoulder’s, Knees, and Toes. You heard it here first.
As might be expected the kid is annoying, stupid and can’t follow simple directions. She is not really a character at all but a plot device that gets old within the first few minutes. She is supposed to parallel Elektra and the entire film I hoped she would and someone would slice her throat open with playing cards. Her father was a little more bearable and it’s kind of sad that this almost no-name actor gave the best performance.
Elektra’s only other ally is her Master Stick, a blind Kimuguri master. More Daredevil parallel’s anyone? He trains her to see things before they happen and communicates telepathically with others. He’s a fairly stupid person for a self proclaimed “wise man”. He risks a little girl being murdered just to teach Elektra a lesson. Whatta guy!
The writing is downright awful with generic, cringe worthy dialogue. I was sitting in my seat, tears of thankfulness streaming down my cheeks hen I realized this film was short at only an hour and twenty minutes. In order to make it “feature running time” they shove in a seventeen minute closing credit sequence. Yikes. Needless to say, I didn’t watch them.
Finally I have to talk about the villains. They consist of ninja’s that pop into green dust when killed, men with magic tattoos, girls with killer kisses, and their leade, a Master Roshi and no, he isn’t searching for the dragonball. They all live in a ridiculous giant Japanese styled skyscraper that is so absurd it belongs in a comedy akin to Mystery Men. The villains are just so boring and forgettable that they hardily deserve mention in the review.
The only decent thing I can say about the film is that there are some legitimately cool action scenes at times but mostly overshadowed by the sloppy ones. Also the music is at least better than Daredevil’s.
Elektra is a prime example of a film that never should have been made. No one wanted it, no one wanted to work on it, and no one was happy when they got it. Boring characters, generic plot, goofy villains, and anti climatic. The only blessing is this is a film that’s easily forgotten.
FINAL RATING: 1/10- (10%)
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