Brandon Routh takes the lead as Dylan Dog; a retired paranormal investigator who lives his life tracking down cheating housewives and various other banalities. Eventually, an attack on his assistant, played by Shia Lebeo- whoa wait… what the…what the hell is a “Sam Huntington”? You’re telling me that this guy isn’t… but he sure sounds like Shia Lebeouf…well, whatever – he gets attacked, and Dylan Dog gets back in the habit, some forgettable action is played out, you wish you were watching Ghostbusters, and then the movie ends.
So yeah, that’s the plot in a nutshell, dipped in chocolate, and sprinkled with apathy. It’s your standard “everyman detective with a twist” story, but it lacks punch, flair or comedic sensibility. Things kind of slog along for many a reason, and by the end, you might feel that the film was about 20 minutes longer than it needed to be.
But, don’t blame Brandon Routh – he can actually be pretty funny with the right material, as evidenced by Scott Pilgrim vs. the World. The problem here lies in most of his lines being lifted from the bargain bin at the Emporium for Generic Everyman Jokes. Much like that guy who’s turned out to not be Shia Lebeouf, they’ve definitely got some potential, but are trapped inside the box of mediocrity.
And the script problems aren’t just evident in the dialogue – they slap you in the face with distracting salience every 5 minutes or so. To give you a non-spoilerrific example, Dylan runs into multiple dead-ends during a case. Now, understandably so, these are meant to break momentum, and identify the viewer with the protagonist’s frustration, yadayada. The problem here, lies in having more than one dead-end wherein a voiceover reminds us that we’ve “run into another dead-end”. It makes for a viewing experience that’s more frustrating than it has to be, and highlights obvious filler scenes that could have been avoided for tighter storytelling.
Worse yet, is that the plot itself is pushed along by contrived conveniences or having certain characters be too stupid to live. For instance, it’s most unwise to employ a 7-foot tallassassin to snuff out loose-ends, when the deceased turn INTO FREAKIN’ ZOMBIES. In turn, the witness is pretty much immortal now, he hasn’t lost any of his capacity for telling others what he’s witnessed, and now he knows that there’s a larger game afoot – which includes a 7 foot-tall zombie who’s employed by a someone who they’ve most likely met in the last 10 minutes.
Or why attach a man’s belt to a steel hook, cable and pulley system before throwing him off a ledge, when you can just rip his face off and be done with it?
Take the preceding paragraph and use that same backwards-ass logic to get things rolling and you’ve got yourself a one portion-serving of Dylan Dog.
It’s not nearly as funny as Ghostbusters.
It doesn’t look nearly as good as Constantine.
And it’s not nearly as over-the-top as Drive Angry 3D.
So why eat hamburger when you can have steak?
Because sometimes hamburgers have cheese on them, and cheese can be good, assuming you’re in the mood for that sort of thing.
You see, sometimes movies can be so bad, that they’re good.
But not this movie. It’s not nearly bad enough. It’s just kind of bland and tastes like chalk.
The Verdict: [rating:1.5]
I mean, if you’re at someone’s house, and the host insists on watching it, and you’ve had a couple drinks, then you don’t really have to panic and leave the room. Just don’t expect to be captivated, impressed, or otherwise interested because in this case, you might be asking too much.
Just go watch the friggin’ Muppets, instead.
Note: Constantine came first. Just read Swamp Thing!