Jun. 3rd, 2011

thehefner: (I'm a pirate! YARR!)
For a movie that's getting so much praise as to be called "second only to The Dark Knight", X-Men: First Class was far more dumb, annoying, and frustrating than I was expecting. Oh, make no mistake, there's a lot that is excellent about it too. Pretty much everything with Magneto. Unsurprisingly. I mean, duh. But until I can do a full, spoiler-riddled review for discussion with others who've seen it, all I can say is that so much of it is stupider than I think most critics seem to be talking about.

I'm reminded of how some people called Thor and Iron Man "dumb action movies," even when they meant that as praise, whereas the stupid in X-M:FC far out-stupids those films. Hell, I'm further reminded of how people dismissed Iron Man's status as a great film opposite The Dark Knight, which was clearly the better superhero film for no other reason than because it was so dark and serious. I'm getting seriously sick of people, especially comic fans, equating "fun" with "stupid." I guess even geeks are guilty of the Oscar mentality that a comedy or action/drama with comedic elements can't be a Capital-G "Great" Movie.

Tangent: But it goes more deeply than that as far as geeks are concerned. Some time back, I read an essay that posited a theory that many geeks are deeply insecure about their passions, mainly after years of being told that the things they love are juvenile, only for kids, and that they need to grow out of it. To compensate, they want their superheroes and their cartoon adaptations to be dark, gritty, SERIOUS, so that they can feel like they're enjoying "adult" entertainment. Thus, we get a tone-deaf, blindly stupid Transformers film, which somehow removes all sense of enjoyment out of a huge-budget film about giant robots hitting each other.

Second tangent: Thor was also, coincidentally, called "The next Dark Knight by io9.com. Not only has this proved not to be the resounding case with movie or comic fans alike, but it's also an obnoxious reminder of how TDK remains flawless in the general esteem of fans and critics. When's the last time any of them have seen it on a TV screen, where the problems with that film are so much more evident? Seriously, if somebody really wants to earn my respect and interest in a superhero film they're espousing, call it "the next Batman: Mask of the Phantasm instead.

September 2012

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