ByErling Rangnes, writer at
I might be a literary genius, but I tend to get so distracted by important things that I forget to ... oh, cookies!
Erling Rangnes

On October 1st a great movie finally makes it's DVD debut in USA, and you should probably watch it. The rest of the world already did. (a couple of years ago)

A lot of great movies are based on comics. This is true in the US, as in Japan where adaptations of manga is about as big as adaptations of comics in Hollywood. The world has a third centre for brilliant art coupled with inspired writing, but so far the only well known comic book movies to come out of France is 'Lucky Luke' and 'Asterix', neither of which is particularly faithful to the source material, or any definition of good that I can think of. 'Tintin' and the 'Smurfs' both had the Hollywood treatment, and while I'd be perfectly happy squishing any smurf I find under my foot, I love the work they did on Herges 'Tintin'. Still, as good as it is, there's more stories to be told, and storytellers ready to pick them up, and this time it's (Leon, The Fifth Element). I don't know how he did it, but he somehow convinced to let him make an adaption of Les aventures extraordinaires d'Adèle Blanc-Sec. The English title is Adèle and the secret of the Mummy, which is a bit misleading as far as titles go, but let's just say it also involves dinosaurs, metaphysics and that it's not a horror movie.

The movie is about Adele, a freelance journalist with a mind of her own who aims to find and resurrect the mummified physician of a great pharaoh so he can use his secrets to save her bedridden sister, who had an accident involving a hairpin during a friendly game of badminton. Add a sleep deprived, hungry police officer, a drunk with a penchant for seeing bits and pieces of the more fantastical events of the story, and a psychic who may be the only thing standing between an unsuspecting civilian population, and a bloodthirsty pteradactyl, and there you have it. Oh, the president of France and a lovesick biologist makes an apparence as well. It's all set in a pre-WW1 Paris, and visits several of the city's landmarks throughout the story.

For those of you lucky enough to have read the comics, I give a fair warning. It's not faithful to the story, although it does justice to key elements of Adèle and the Beast, and Mummies on Parade, both published by Dark Horse, if anyone's interested. The story of the film is a mix of the two albums and a third story from Luc Bessons twisted mind, shaken up and served in a movie that manages to keep the atmosphere and style of the comic, with a bit of Indiana Jones-ish suspense and some Pink Pantheresque slapstick. While I have on occasion requested that filmmakers stop forcing R-rated material into PG-ratings, this movie embraces its reduced rating and owns it! I'd still like to see some of the more love craftian aspects and adult themes of Tardis comics on film, but with the style Besson has chosen, it's still worth the time and money spent on getting it on DVD.

So, in conclusion. It's chaotic fun. If you're part of the world, go watch it again. If you're American and don't mind the subtitles (and really, even if you do most of the humor and suspense is mainly visual, so that's no excuse), go get it when it makes the stands October 1st.


Latest from our Creators