The Ghost Rider Reviews
The story goes that when Johnny Blaze was a young carnie motorcycle stunt rider, he sold his soul to Mephistopheles in exchange for his cancer-ridden father?s health. When Mr. Blaze gets his health back, the devil causes the old rider to have a fatal accident on his bike, and Johnny is stuck working for old ?Stopheles forever.
Cut to modern times. Nicolas Cage is Johnny Blaze, and he has used his deal with the devil to become famous for doing insane stunts that should rightfully kill him. To sum up the film?s long beginning, Johnny hooks up with his childhood romance, Roxanne (Eva Mendes), and they want to rekindle their old flame.
Meanwhile, a demon called Blackheart is coming in with his evil gang to do some evil stuff. This is not Devil-Certified Evil, so Mephistopheles wants Blackheart stopped. He taps Blaze and gives him the powers of the Ghost Rider, which means he is bulletproof, has the ability to stare and his head catches on fire. On his fiery motorcycle, Ghost Rider goes off to fight Blackheart and his cronies in what ends up being one very underwhelming fight after another.
Mark Steven Johnson, the guy who gave us the not-so-good [I]Daredevil[/I], and the outstanding [I]Daredevil Director?s Cut[/I], is at the helm of [I]Ghost Rider[/I], and from the very beginning you can?t help but feel that he really wanted to give us a comic book. On one side, we have a fun look, one that never seems real, but more comic book-like, which I appreciated. On the other hand, Ghost Rider, with its cheesy dialogue and strange story-telling, never feels like a movie. Also, I don?t really understand why Johnny Blaze turns into Ghost Rider, and suddenly he only churns out horrible lines and laughs really hard.
Honestly though, the real problem with [I]Ghost Rider[/I], besides its horrible dialogue and story that doesn?t translate well to film, is the fact that the audience never feels any dread. When you watch Spider-Man fight Doc Ock in [I]Spider-Man 2[/I], you have the feeling of ?Oh crap! Spidey is in trouble!? In [I]Ghost Rider[/I], you never feel anything like that. You always know how it is going to end: Evil will be punished, the girl is not going to die and Ghost Rider will ride off into the sunset (and in this movie, he actually does).
Always interesting to watch people beat up on a comic-book movie. What the hell else did they expect it to be?
All I know is: the f/x are damn good, and that's all I really care about.
[QUOTE]Nicolas Cage molded his "hard drinking and smoking bad ass" character Johnny Blaze to have more depth. "I'm playing him more as someone who... made this deal and he's trying to avoid confronting it, anything he can do to keep it away from him." Cage also explained that Blaze's stunt riding was a form of escape and a way to keep him connected to his deceased father, who taught him to ride.
Cage rode a Buell motorcycle for Blaze's stunt cycle, and a chopper named "Grace", which transforms into the "Hell Cycle", along with the character.
The Hell Cycle's wheels, made of pure flames in the comics, were changed to be solid tires covered in flames in order to give the motorcycle more weight onscreen.
To express emotion, Ghost Rider's skull flames were designed to change color, such as being toned down and blue when sad.
The film's visual effects supervisor, Kevin Mack, and his team at Sony Imageworks handled the difficult task of creating computer-generated fire on a shot-by-shot basis.
Ghost Rider's voice was manipulated by sound designer Dane Davis, who won an Academy Award for Sound Editing for [i]The Matrix[/i]. Davis filtered Cage's line readings through three different kinds of animal growls that were played backwards and covered separate frequencies. Davis then amplified the dialogue through a mechanical volumizer. Director Johnson described the sound as a "deep, demonic, mechanical lion's roar".[[/QUOTE]
[center][size=4]actual - 6.9[/size]