This post will contain SPOILERS!!
My grade: B
So what are some things in this film one might like, I'll share mine:
- I liked how they explained why the devil looks different. Ciran Hands vs Peter Fonda.
- I liked the nods to acknowledging his stunt rider days and I don't mean the storyboards. The bonding moments with Danny on the highway doing bike stunts.
- Incorporating the Zarathos element inherent with the comic version. And that explanation sequence between Blaze and Moreau was nicely done.
- The use of Negative Space and filming in a Negative manner worked well in several scenes. Such as the purging of the Rider scene and "Decay vision".
- Glad the "pissing scene" was only an in-joke visual for Johnny and Danny and not an actual moment in the film.
- Tying into the first film again, how the Rider fears and/or is powerless in the light AND how events in the film change that.
- How we see the Rider as a hero, controlled by Blaze in that final sequence. Not just a force of nature.
So, in fairness what could've been better, my thoughts on that:
- I know they spent less money but I missed the full on Penance Stare. It's done but without the f/x, more implied then *poof* dead bad guy.
- The transitions between major set pieces could've been more fluid. A few too many Hard Cuts.
- Nadya, Danny's mom, is suddenly a good shot with a military grade sniper rifle from 500yrds? Some 30 second bs explanation earlier in the film might've sold this better. The best backstory we get is she a bit of a gypsy.
- Personally I would've liked more dialogue from the Rider. Like the Hulk films I feel they've missed this twice now. Neither character is that silent in their own book.
The few location cinematography shots we got were great. Liked seeing the Monks chiseled out monastic hideout.
The castle was very nice.
The amphitheater ruins for the ritual were cool.
Nice cameos by Anthony Stewart Head(Giles of BtVS) and Christopher Lambert.
Idris Elba did a very servicable job as well. Not Heimdell awesome but still a respectable performance. Cage was a much, much better Johnny Blaze this time imo.
Some nice humor although I can see where for some a few moments might be over the top(Jerry Springer's 1/2 second cameo perhaps).
The twinkie scene got several laughs at my viewing.
It's a fun movie, cut loose and enjoy the film. Oscar bait it's not but in all objectiveness there are worse films, worse comic films out there than this. Don't allow yourself to get caught up in the seemingly current "Hip to bash Cage and/or Ghost Rider" bandwagon this month. You'll miss a fun time at the theater and be forced to sit through The Vow.