Superhero movies

We popped the DVD of "The Incredibles" in for the kids tonight, and I swear, I can’t not watch it when it’s on. "The Incredibles" is pretty much at the top of my list for the best superhero movie out there. While it’s tough to pin down exactly what makes it so good—I mean, they did pretty much everything right—I think one of the strongest points to the movie is that they don’t bog it down with origin stories. They just present it to you with, "here’s their world, they have superpowers, it doesn’t matter how or where they got them."

They don’t let the origins get in the way of the story, in other words. Almost every other superhero movie I can think of does.

I’ll grant the exception to "Batman Begins." The whole point of that movie is the origin of Batman, and it’s done so well that it’s also on my list of top superhero movies.

Speaking of which, I watched the illicit trailer for its sequel, "The Dark Knight," online today. Even bootlegged, grainy, shaky-camcorder style footage doesn’t stop me from thinking, Hot damn I want to see that movie. It’s gonna be a really good Joker, I think.

What else is on my list? Um, "Mystery Men," I think. The first "Superman" movie. "Unbreakable" too, I think (it was so unconventional).

As for others, I’d have to weigh them carefully before I commit. You’ll notice I’m not talking about "comic book movies" here—I’m considering the superhero genre, and some of them are based on comics, some aren’t. At some point I’ll compile and post my full list.


6 Replies to “Superhero movies”

  1. Yeah, I think the origins are for the hard-core geeks who can just read the comics or other source material. Roddenberry was smart on Star Trek. He didn’t say, "This is a phaser and this is how it works and blah blah blah" … he just had them use it and you got the idea. It was there to aid the storytelling, not be part of the story. He added the transporter because it was a way to get a landing party to their destination faster so the story wouldn’t be slowed down.

  2. Dave- I don’t know, I think the origins are more for the NON-hardcore geeks who aren’t familiar with the material as the geeks are.

    And the story I always heard on the Star Trek transporter was they invented it because they didn’t have the budget for all the shuttlecraft shots they would need…

  3. I agree on the Incredibles. It’s probably my favorite Pixar movie, and I really like them all. From the action, emotion, the music, the family — it’s just a great movie, and I agree with you that it just doesn’t bore you with comic book-style story-telling about how they got their powers. I never really cared about that, either.

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