Pop Culture Princess

Pop Culture Princess
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Monday, May 07, 2012

Seems we have the makings of a real superhero showdown this summer

The superhero film has had it's ups and downs over the past couple of decades but with the instant blockbuster impact of Marvel's The Avengers on both audiences and critics this past weekend,all signs are pointing to go for this genre to dominate the summer movie season.

Raking in a truly record breaking box office take of $2000.3 million and ranking highly in the Rotten Tomatoes count of positive feedback from film critics,The Avengers has become an overnight sensation that,for once,is living up to the massive hype generated by the studio and the comic book company.

Not to mention the fact that certain producers must be kicking themselves over the golden opportunity they had to work with Joss Whedon on a Wonder Woman movie and allowed that deal to slip through their fingers. With Whedon working his magic on Marvel territory,one hopes that he might be persuaded to display his talents with a DC project again(probably after a lot of groveling,I would imagine):

The gang at DC Comics does have an ace up their cinematic sleeve,as The Dark Knight Rises is due out in late July. Despite doubts about Anne Hathaway's Catwoman garb and the garbled speech of heavy hitter bad guy Bane,the combo of Christian Bale and Christopher Nolan in this third and promised to be final collaboration should please all comers.

The catch is,of course,that this is the last Batman movie both Bale and Nolan will work on. In a way that's good because as we have seen in the past,wearing out your welcome in the caped and cowled genre leads to very cheesy flicks that are so bad even the director will actually apologize for making such a mess on the DVD extras. On the other hand,getting another visionary director to elevate the genre is not as easy as it seems:

The underdog in this game is a reboot of the Spider Man franchise,which was upgraded by director Sam Raimi(until the third movie,that is.)and is now in the hands of Mark Webb,who gave us (500)Days of Summer. Granted,I didn't see that rom-com but it can make folks puzzle over why that fella was chosen for this gig.

The Amazing Spider Man stars Andrew Garfield as the teen title hero,replacing Tobey Maguire and takes a few twists with the story such as having Gwen Stacy be the focal girlfriend(who actually was Peter Parker's first big love interest before Mary Jane Watson)and having The Lizard/Dr. Connors as the major villain of the piece.

I was ready to rip on this remake,having fond memories of the earlier Raimi Spidy films but after watching the trailer,I must say that ASM does look promising. The action looks great,the story appears to be smart and funny and casting Denis Leary as the chief of police is a nice touch. The film opens on the July 4th weekend,so it does have a good shot at staking it's superhero claim:

So,it looks as if we actually have some great superhero movies to enjoy,a nice surprise for all concerned. I would advise,however,Marvel to not be too quick to rest on their laurels just yet and for DC to gear up and make a few superhero films that are not overly reliant on visual effects,plus allow some crossover connection. A Justice League movie,if done right,could open up a whole new world of possibilities both artistically and financially.

As for the fans,we must try to encourage good comic book films from the powers that be and avoid arguing over which franchise is better. It would be fun to not only have a Justice League movie but to have an Avengers/JL crossover film as well. Sounds crazy,perhaps,but I can dream,can't I? Stranger things have happened,especially at the movies:

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