Seeing RED

Helen Mirren goes “badass” (to quote the People review) in Red, the movie based on the relatively unknown comic series by Warren Ellis and Cully Hamner, opening today. “Red” stands for “Retired: extremely dangerous,” which gives fimmakers an opportunity to bring out some “aging actors” (quoting People again), like Bruce Willis, John Malkovich and Morgan Freeman (even Richard Dreyfuss makes an appearance).

Unfortunately, the reviews are pretty terrible; People gives it just 2.5 of a possible 4 stars and the NYT‘s A.O Scott says, “It is possible to have a good time at RED, but it is not a very good movie.” Sounds like it’s a watered down version of the original story; Ellis has the deserved reputation of gleefully offending anyone and everyone, but being so hardcore and entertaining that he makes you love it (see Transmetropolitan, now being printed in new editions, for a splendid case in point.)

Thanks to the movie, Red is now back to print and I am taking the opportunity to pick it up. Warren Ellis is still one of the top writers. His work always goes out from my collection, so it’s a good bet regardless of how well the movie does.

Warren Ellis
Retail Price: $14.99
Paperback: 128 pages
Publisher: WildStorm – (2009-06-16)
ISBN / EAN: 140122346X / 9781401223465

D.C. comics is producing a miniseries based on the movie. I won’t be buying those titles unless I get requests; I find most of the time my readers aren’t as interested in tie-ins as they are in the original source material.

Whatever the merits of the movie, it’s fun to watch Helen Mirren in “badass” mode in the trailer.

One Response to “Seeing RED”

  1. Romance Books Online Says:

    Definitely want to see this movie! Also not sure if I am that interested in the comic book, but might check it out at the bookstore. Thanks for the post!