04th Nov2019

Comic Book Movies: The Good, The Bad, And The Debatable

by James Smith

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There is no doubt that comic book movies dominate theatres right now. Even before Marvel started rolling out 20+ films and inspired DC to try its hand at making its own franchise, comic book movies have been happening for decades. The 1980s had Superman and Tim Burton’s Batman. Later years saw the X-Men and Fantastic Four hit the big screen, and then a Batman trilogy reboot preceded the current Avengers and Justice League series.

Over the years there have been some exciting comic book films that have inspired kids’ toys, video game adaptations, and even online slot games. Every year there seems to be yet another comic book film that audiences can enjoy that star their favourite comic book heroes and comic book villains. There have been some outstanding films, some bad ones, and some that have received very mixed reviews.

The Good

  • The Avengers – This was the first MCU movie that brought the whole group of Avengers together to fight the bad guys. Fans got to see some of their favourite superheroes in action-packed fight sequences and scenes with amazing special effects.
  • Guardians Of The Galaxy – Many fans weren’t even sure what this was supposed to be until it came out, but this supposedly obscure comic book turned into one of the most entertaining MCU movies of them all.
  • Avengers: Endgame – A decade of more than 20 movies lead up to this one, which had never been tried before. While some thought that the start was quite slow, this was nevertheless a thrilling finale to the Avengers saga. Avengers: Endgame is currently the highest grossing film ever reaching over $2.7b worldwide at the box office.
  • Logan – Quite a few X-Men universe movies have come and gone, and the original X-Men movies certainly stand out, as does Deadpool. However, few hit viewers as hard emotionally as this one. Logan turned out to be just one of many unconventional comic book films that are not quite what you expected them to turn out like.

The Bad

  • Suicide Squad – One of the most disappointing comic book movies from the last few years has to be Suicide Squad. Even though the film had a talented cast including Margot Robbie, Will Smith, and Viola Davis, the film received a lot of negative reviews regarding a muddled plot, thinly written characters, and a disappointing end. Although many did not like the film, it still managed to achieve over $700m at the box office.
  • Batman v Superman: Dawn of Justice – One of the great parts about watching comic book films is seeing your favourite heroes come together. While many fans might have been excited to see Batman and Superman star together in a movie, many were left very disappointed at this Dawn of Justice result. The film even won a few Razzies awards for Worst Supporting Actor (Jesse Eisenberg) and Worst Screen Combo (Ben Affleck & Henry Cavill).
  • Dark Phoenix – Many fans of the X-Men comics were excited to see the ‘Dark Phoenix’ take centre stage in this new X-Men film release. But in reality, many were left disappointed by this adaptation. Some audiences thought that Dark Phoenix was an average superhero flick that had poor plot and had missed a lot of opportunities to display the story to its full potential.

The Debatable

  • Wonder Woman – This DC movie was a milestone for Hollywood, given the female director and primarily female cast. Gender discrimination is a long-running issue plaguing the American movie industry, and this movie was a proud demonstration that times are changing. However, many fans simply didn’t fall in love with the movie. Many thought that the actual plot and story of the movie weren’t anything that hasn’t happened in a dozen other superhero movies.
  • Captain America: Civil War – This MCU instalment has a dedicated fan-base that thinks it’s as great a movie as the other Marvel greats, and yet, there seems to be an equal number of Marvel fans that just yawn at it like it’s another instalment in this mega-multi-movie franchise. No one really seems to think it’s a bad film, so it’s not love it or hate it, but it does seem to be love it or snooze it.
  • Aquaman – Another film that received harsh criticism from critics was Aquaman, and many critics advised the audience not to waste time seeing it. However, millions still went to see it anyway and some fans ended up really loved it. Whether film fans thought it was good or not, it clearly did well enough as a sequel is due to be released in December 2022.

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