I have no idea what to expect when it comes to Jonah Hex. On the one hand, the comic book is fucking badass. On the other hand, Megan Fox. Then again, Josh Brolin certainly cancels out any problems she may create (although, to be honest, I have nothing against Fox). Yet then again, it’s directed by Jimmy Hayward, whose only other directorial credit is Horton Hears A Who. Of course, this is offset by the fact that the supporting cast is ridiculously cool — John Malkovich, David Patrick Kelly and Will Arnett are all also on board.
Well, this may have tipped the scales for me. It was announced last month that Mastodon (yes, the concept-heavy metal band) wrote the score for the movie. Now, courtesy of Paste Magazine, they’ve given some details that make it very intriguing. Apparently, they basically worked for free — in fact, most of the actors apparently took paycuts to get the movie made. Their studio costs were covered, but that’s about it. More intriguing is the fact that they’ve taken what they describe as “the Darth Vader approach” to the music. Bassist Troy Sanders said, “We wrote variations on themes for each character, different variables for a bunch of riffs: faster, slower, heavier, lighter,” All in all there is an hour of total music they’ve written, including five full songs, and all of it’s instrumental. The idea isn’t new to Mastodon — they’re all about thematic elements to their music. Their 2004 album Leviathan is essentially an ode to “Moby Dick,” and they constantly are inspired by the bizarre and fascinating in their music. Also? They’re one of the best metal bands working today, without question.
Which of course gives me an excuse to post this — “Blood and Thunder” from Leviathan.
In any event, there’s a lot of good news coming out of the Jonah Hex camp, which is not what I was expecting. But you know what? The less well-known comics need some good adaptations. There’s a ton of great material out there begging to be adapted, and if the folks behind Jonah Hex seem to be putting the time and effort in, that’s certainly promising.