Not the first time I’ve talked about this I know, but I actually have found a couple of superhero films that I like, and the new Wonder Woman came out this month, so let’s go for it.
First of all, start with the negative.
What I hate about superhero movies is how darn depressing they are. Seriously, there’s some pscyo villain who has some non-relatable reason for wanting to destroy humanity, and we’re all supposed to sympathize with them, even when they’re point of view makes no sense. And the hero never has a really good answer for them.
At least in the last decade and a half of films.
But when they do it right, the villain is tragic or at least someone we won’t feel sorry for; and the hero is not shaken by the villain’s warped world view.
Not all superhero movies are depressing, they were originally inspiring.
What I like about superhero movies is they can give us a cool story, with plenty of unrealistic action and science and powers; but they keep it grounded in real life. The perfect combination some would say.
In my personal opinion, “The Incredibles” nailed this one in every way. The heroes never stop being normal people with their own quirks and problems to work out.
In contrast, the Avengers never stop acting like superheroes. I have never seen any of them really loosen up and turn off the charm and bravado and wise cracking, and just be people.
The whole idea of a superhero is a person with special powers, who uses them unselfishly. The MCU can’t even decide whether it’s heroes are heroes or villains.
What shocks me is how many people are applauding this, even while many are horrified. People find a movie boring now, if the villain is not just as compelling as the hero.
I don’t mind an interesting villain, but if they aren’t going to reform by the end, I don’t want to get attached to them.
This will sound sacrilegious, but I have never made any connection with any modern superhero except briefly for Captain America. (In his first movie.)
But, what I do like about the superheros I actually connect with, is how they never let anything stop them from doing the right thing.
It’s like Superman says of his friends in one episode of the animated Justice League, he tells the bad guy he’s fighting that none of them will stop fighting as long as they ‘re breathing, and able to move. (I paraphrase.)
I appreciate the teamwork they exhibit. It’s what makes they’re powers are attractive, because the team shows the best of everyone.
But it’ how they are with each other in ordinary life that really makes it work.
I think Guardians of the Galaxy was better in this regard, even though they all start off as enemies and end up with rather dysfunctional family–friendship dynamic, it worked.
Anyway, there’s no formula for making a good superhero flick…which is the problem. Personally, I find movies where there has to to be a violent action sequence every five minute to be boring.
I’d really start to think superheros just don’t have self control.
At least when Mr. Incredible loses it, there are serious consequences.
I really hope that this new Wonder Woman film sparks a new trend, because I think this genre had a lot of potential if people figure out how to use it right.
In the end, though, whenever you have huge quantities of something, the’res only going to be a few really good products to choose from.
I think some people see it as stuck up to even complain, the masses like the total crud that studios pop out every two years, why not we? What makes our opinion so much better?
Well, I can’t really say. I have my reasons, my concern is that the majority of us don’t use reason when we’re judging a film or any other thing we like. We want to be entertained. Not taught.
(I know folks who won’t even try to hide that this is their perspective.)
And if that’s what you want, than even a really well-made movie is lost on you. Take Frozen as an example. I know for a fact that despite its popularity, not even half of the fans fully understand why it’s a great movie. They like the songs, the cool clothes, the funny scenes, and the wishy-washy message about love; but they miss the real deep message about true love, and the really important stuff the movie is telling us about ourselves.
And many just can’t stomach the format.
Personally, I don’t care about formatting.(Most of the time.) My tastes go from those super-boring-to-most-people real life story movies, to a few of the notoriously bad Christian movies, to Disney, to obscure movies very few people have ever heard of and movies that were supposedly made to sell toys.
I don’t care. I just want the movie to speak to me. Otherwise, what’s the point? Literally.
Now, it is possible to get caught in the trap of assigning meaning where meaning clearly wasn’t intended, which is why I think movie reviewers are important in moderation. Just like book reviewers are. I’d be hypocrite if I said that’s a bad thing.
But I do think there is too much credit given to the movies that are huge successes. Frankly, a lot of them are trash. Except the ones that are not.
But, there are legit reasons people like even the Superhero movies that I despise. A lot of the times they can overlook the flaws because the heroes are just so cool, and I suppose that’s fine to a certain point.
But you can’t just excuse every problem because a movie appeals to your personal taste. Per example, I used to like Pocahontas the best of any Disney princess movie, but though I don’t hate it now, I admit it’s pretty flawed. (Sorry to any fans out there.)
Anyway, I risk shooting the sacred cow just writing this, but I think people will see where I’m coming from.
Until next time–Natasha.