Friday, April 9, 2010

MovieSet: Anti-Superhero Movies

Once something has been established and popularized it’s only too soon before there is a counter for it. There was The Cosby Show and then there was Married With Children. It is too different perspectives for the same topic. Obviously the creators of Married looked at the popular family sitcom and decided to comment on it. This is now happening with comic book films and it’s very refreshing.

Superhero films have not necessarily been the most wholesome nowadays. The ones that have been the most popular have had a dark tone and focused on its flawed characters. The Fantastic Four films were not critically received mostly because it felt dated. Iron Man was a hit and still had a fun tone, but it still had several scenes of torture of its playboy protagonist. In fact, The Dark Knight is barely a comic book movie but a crime drama. The next logical step is to have “anti-superhero” movies.

There are two upcoming films that fit this bill: Kick-Ass and Defendor. Both of the movies are about people who are fans of comic books and take it upon themselves to don their own suits. The main character of Defendor (played by Woody Harrelson) is treated as a social outcast and is has to visit a court-ordered psychologist. The film is labeled as a comedy, but it’s obviously a very dark comedy because his mental well-being is in question. Nobody even believes his nemesis, Captain Industry, exists.

In Kick-Ass the kids who make their own costumes are seen as popular and successful. The violence is still based in reality and that gives the movie a certain edge. They are not younger versions of Spider-Man. Their aliases (Kick-Ass, Hit Girl, etc) are not supposed to be noble like Superman but badass like Scarface.

Both of the movies highlight how these “heroes” don’t have any superpowers or even any experience. Their homemade outfits make them look like vigilantes instead of superheroes. This sets the world more in a relatable reality. This is one of the elements that makes these movies so appealing. It’s a fun perspective into one of the most popular trends at the moment. This is something that appeals to those who like comic book movies and those who don’t. The major problem with the future of this trend is finding unique plots. There are already talks for Kick-Ass 2, but I don’t know how many unique franchise could be around these anti-super heroes. For now let’s just appreciate what we have. That’s right. I’m saying we should count our blessings and our crazed crimefighters.

1 comment:

  1. Interesting article. If you're attracted to anti-superhero movies, you should check out the film, "Special" with Michael Rappaport. It's like a lighter-hearted--and better--version of "Unbreakable".