It never makes sense to me when you have a movie that has all the tools to make it a great film but ends up being a dud. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance is one of those. The movie had a solid plot but the rest of the movie except for some bright spots was hard to watch. First of all when will directors learn that some films should not be artsy like in nature. This film tried to hard to be something it should of never been which made it hard to watch at times. It felt like Cloverfeild and the first Hulk movie all wrapped up in one. To many quick zoom in and zoom out shots along with shaky camera tricks for my taste. It did not work for those films why the hell did any one think it would work for this one. Mark Neveldine and Brian Taylor should of known better.
The film loosely connected itself with the first but there was to much of the character of the Ghost Rider and Johnny Blaze that was changed that made many in the audience I was in asking WTF am I watching. If they were doing a reboot then they should of actually started in the beginning with a new actor and script. One of the changes that made little sense to me is in the charter himself . In the first Ghost Rider movie released in 2007 the the Devil, Mephistopheles (Peter Fonda), sends his bounty hunter of the damned, the Ghost Rider, to retrieve a contract for a thousand corrupt souls from the town of San Venganza. Because the nature of the contract would give Mephisto the power to bring Hell to Earth, the Rider refuses to give him the contract and goes into hiding. In this version the Ghost Rider is possessed by an angel from God that spent time in Hell and went insane. It kind of negated the premise of the charter that was established already . One that I thought could of been built on to make a great movie. Also the Devil himself is one of those changes made from the first movie . He is called Roarke in this one as played by Ciarán Hinds. You can almost get away with this one since evil goes by many names but the story arc of the Johnny Blaze/Ghost Riders genesis with the Devil was also fudged a bit to fit this movie.
Another significant change came in the charters profile of Johnny Blaze himself. This movie made him look like a crazed crack/ heroine addict looking for fixes. Granted having a demon in you would drive you a bit mad but there was something endearing about the way Johnny Blaze was portrayed in the first movie. The absent minded coolness and care free spirit . Something that was sorely missed in this film. There should of not been that total departure of the characters core structure.
It was not all bad though . There was some highlights that are worth mentioning. The ending fight sequence was well done. The fact that the Ghost Rider can turn any vehicle into an extension of himself like a huge crane or truck was cool. And then there was the French priest played by Idris Elba which was amazing. His portrayal of the character was one that saved the film from totally tanking out. It was shame they killed him off at the end It would of been something they could of used to salvage the franchise if they chose to do another film.
So bottom line is I tried hard to give this a 3 or 4 star but I could not. This film failed . It was like being given the Hope Diamond and using it for industrial drilling. If you expect a sequel of the first Ghost Rider you will be disappointed. The shot sequences are shaky and there was a huge amount of artsy type of shots however cool some were that were just wrong for this movie. The character was changed just enough to confuse most audience in the theater and to be honest with you it was a weak ass script with a strong plot. So this film gets 2 and half stars out of 5.
Johnny Blaze, still struggling with the curse of being the Ghost Rider, is hiding out in a remote part of Eastern Europe when a secret sect of the church asks him to save a boy from the devil. At first Johnny is reluctant to use his power, but it’s the only way to save the boy and possibly rid himself of this curse forever
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