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After seven years, 'Veronica Mars' sleuths again

Veronica Mars


Now that the "Veronica Mars" feature film is a reality, what do the 91,585 people that generated over 5.7 million dollars that fund the movie feel about their investment? The following is the account of one of those people.

Veronica Mars: The Movie
Warner Bros. Digital

The television show was that rare kind of under-appreciated genius like a "Firefly" or an "Arrested Development". With its story continuing post-cancellation, the comparisons are all the more apt. Off the air for nearly seven years, the Kickstarter project that got the movie made proved that people out there still cared about the small, blonde private detective. "AD" didn't (couldn't) live up to the ridiculous standard it set in its Netflix-only fourth season after seven years away. "Serenity" satisfied the "Firefly" crowd, even if it didn't lead to more movies or the return of the show. Could a movie do Veronica justice?

There is a certain amount of back story and pandering that goes into a project like this. It's a necessity as you try and serve multiple masters. You need to try and get as many people to see it as possible. Viewers that haven't seen the show need to catch up fast and this leads to maybe more exposition than one would like. Since the fans are investors, there are plenty of nods and in-jokes sprinkled in. Take all of that out and what you have is what most wanted really wanted: another season of "Veronica Mars", albeit, a severely truncated one.

Veronica has been away from Neptune, CA for about nine years. She's on the verge of becoming a high-powered lawyer in New York with her radio talk show host boyfriend, Piz. With everything going for her, she learns that her ex, Logan, is suspected of killing his girlfriend (again). She heads back home to help him find a reputable lawyer but everyone but Veronica can see that it won't end there. There wouldn't be much of a story if it did. Like the show, a lot is going on at once with the murder mystery but also the massive B plot of Neptune police corruption involving former gangbanger Weevil and Veronica's father. The movie goes along with its jokes and snark until the point where it hits the fan and it all gets real. There are deaths and near-deaths and plot threads left untied.

The film suffers due to its length. Writer-director-creator Rob Thomas had to get Veronica back to Neptune as fast as possible while also allowing the audience to know that she's giving something up in her return. The emotional attachment isn't there because of how fast everything has to move. He had to re-introduce a bevy of characters and only information pertinent to the story. But above all else, Thomas had to still give the diminutive gumshoe a mystery worth solving. This is where the heart of the film lies. Without a gripping mystery, the rest falls apart. It also doesn't hurt to have Kristen Bell working her magic again. She will likely never get a crack at another character like this and she acts like it. Ferocious, confident, yet vulnerable, Bell is utterly fantastic. Her performance is the foundation that holds up the entire house of cards.

Though the murder of Logan's girlfriend is solved, much in Neptune remains a mystery. With novels on the way to fill the gaps, there is no doubt that every effort to bring Veronica back to the screen will be made. More than 91,858 people should be anxiously waiting.

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