Well, this was a surprise for the first time in this series' short history, I actually unironically enjoyed a film. Spaghetti Man is a 2016 action-comedy about an apathetic man who becomes a superhero with the power of spaghetti after his microwave malfunctions. Masking his identity with a brown paper bag over his head, he sets off to fight crime as long as he is paid for his heroics.
With a few good fight scenes and jokes that landed more often than missed, the film had me laughing along with it instead of at it. It’s a ridiculous and silly film but it knows that and leans into it. You can also tell that everyone who was involved in making this film is putting their all into every aspect.
The film’s protagonist is a down-on-his-luck unemployed man called Clark. He lives with his friend Dale who works for the police and is a comic book nerd. Dale tries to push Clark when he gets his powers to become a selfless hero like the ones in his comic books. However, Clark just wants to use his powers to get rich and, throughout most of the film, is a dick to everyone he saves. When he gets the attention of a local freelance videographer named Anthony, they team up to help each other make as much money as possible by selling videos of Clark saving people to local news networks. When Clark stops a mugging of a homeless man, he gets the attention of a crime boss named Keto! Keto kidnaps Anthony’s pregnant wife and threatens to kill her if Clark doesn’t turn himself in.
The Film is well paced and, at only a 1 hour 25 minutes long, doesn’t overstay its welcome. The characters are (for the most part) likeable and behave like people instead of cardboard cut-outs. For instance, Anthony is the most sympathetic character as an aspiring director and cinematographer who's trying hard to support his wife and soon to be child in a cut-throat industry.
The most surprising thing about the film is how good its fight scenes are, especially the final confrontation between Clark, Spaghetti man, and Keto. With a steady camera that allows the audience to see every hit, it’s definitely the standout moment of the film. The rest of the action might not come close to the final fight scene's style but that doesn’t mean they're bad - far from it. Whether it’s Clark stumbling through his first encounter with some muggers, to a run-in with an armed robber, all the action and fight scenes bring something interesting to the table.
So that’s the action. What about the comedy? Well, I can safely say that this was by far the funniest of the films I have reviewed on this blog. And unlike the other films reviewed none of us who watched it were laughing at the film, but with it. The matter-of-fact reactions to Clark’s spaghetti-based powers lends the film to a very silly tone that allows it to make fun of itself without it coming across as pretentious.
So, in conclusion, Spaghetti Man is a fun silly romp of a film with good acting, writing and action, jokes that land, and a lot of heart behind it. It is a film that I will be recommending that as many people as possible watch because it’s a wildly good time.