Browse Category: Superhero

RECAP: Iron Man

Iron Man (2008): Jon Favreau

The first of many, many entries in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Iron Man introduces film audiences to Tony Stark, the richest self-made superhero since that guy in a bat suit.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: A rich playboy, captured by enemies in Afghanistan, builds a flying armored weapon and becomes a new hero.  Continue Reading

RECAP: Thor: Ragnarok

Thor: Ragnarok (2017): Taika Waititi

Thor: Ragnarok is Marvel’s third trilogy about some of the individual members of The Avengers. They made all these movies in fewer than 10 years, plus Marvel through in an Avengers trilogy, a couple Guardians flicks, Ant-Man and Spider-Man (the two hyphens) got some love as well. Black Panther debuts his franchise in 2018, the last movie before the start of the Infinity War.

It’s been a long strange trip, and it’s gonna get weirder. Here’s where Ragnarok comes in. Are you ready for a space adventure comedy? Are you ready for Loki to scythe word “anus?” Are you ready for Jeff Goldblum’s least acted career performance? You better be. Let’s roll.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Two years after fleeing Earth and Ultron’s attack on Sokovia, Thor meets his sister, finds Hulk, loses his hammer, and gains a kingdom, all in a couple of days. 

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RECAP: Spider-Man: Homecoming

Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017): Jon Watts

“Homecoming.” Do you get it? The events of Spider-Man: Homecoming occur around homecoming dance at Midtown School of Science and Technology, but the producers were being cheeky. Wink wink nudge nudge. This Spider-Man is the first movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. Get it? That’s the homecoming. So clever.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Spider-Man struggles to be a normal teenager and a crime-fighting hero, but this time it’s different because Iron Man shows up.  Continue Reading

RECAP: Thor: The Dark World

Thor: The Dark World (2013): Alan Taylor

After the world-shaking events of The Avengers, Thor flies around the nine realms cleaning up Loki’s mess. He’s also not seen his girlfriend Jane Foster for two years. How will that reunion go?

With a new director, Thor: The Dark World plays as a denouement for The Avengers and a bridge to the upcoming Avengers sequel. That might explain why it grossed half Iron Man 3‘s total and barely beat the unknown Ant-Man released at the end of Marvel’s Phase 2.

Nevertheless, you enjoyed the family bickering, Hiddleston hair, Hemsworth chest, and Asgard aerials. Get ready for round two of Norse gods, because here we go!

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: The Dark Elves, who predate the universe’s nine realms, try to destroy all of creation with the indestructible Aether, and only Thor can stop them.  Continue Reading

RECAP: Doctor Strange

Doctor Strange (2016): Scott Derrickson

After trying out more famous actors (Robert Downey, Jr.) and more famous characters (Hulk, Thor, Captain America), Marvel moved into left field, throwing lesser-knowns into (hopefully) major franchises (Chris Pratt in Guardians of the Galaxy) and less-statured characters (Ant-Man).

That was a big hit. Of course, Doctor Strange was already on the table, but surely the success of Guardians helped executives breathe sighs of relief. Casting the most recognizable actor face of genius, or face of acting genius, no, guy who plays geniuses, Benedict Cumberbatch, eased tensions as well.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: The world’s greatest surgeon permanently injures his hands, and then he becomes the world’s greatest wizard. Continue Reading

RECAP: Logan

Logan (2017): James Mangold

Playing Wolverine for the seventh and final time (in a feature role), Hugh Jackman wanted to end his career as most folks’ favorite mutant with a slash. Can Wolverine go out any other way?

Joining Jackman, and also for the last time, is Sir Patrick Stewart as Xavier. These two actor/character combinations began life on film in the previous century, before 9/11, GMO plants, and Donald Trump. In other words, a world ago.

Wow, they delivered a great movie.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: In the future the X-Men have disbanded, leaving Wolverine (just “Logan” now, thanks) to care for a dying Xavier and help a new mutant.  Continue Reading

RECAP: The Wolverine

The Wolverine (2013): James Mangold

Fox released this gem of a mutant saga in a year full of Thor, Iron Man, and Superman. News was circulating of a team-up of the original X-Men and the new cast, released a year later.

For a character who loves to be lost, his film got lost. The Wolverine is the least X-Men-like X-Men film, and its gross proved it, earning only $133 million at the domestic box office, good for dead last in the mutant series.

And that’s a shame, because this is possibly the franchise’s best movie. It’s certainly a unique one, a film devoid of world-beating stakes and the mutant game of Mexican standoff.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Wolverine, eager to be rid of the world, returns to Japan to meet an old friend…or so he thought, Dun dun DUUUUNN! Continue Reading

RECAP: Suicide Squad

Suicide Squad (2016): David Ayer

On the heels of Superman’s death in Batman v Superman, Warner Brothers gave us a team-up movie featuring lesser known DC characters.

Suicide Squad introduces a team of baddies locked away in a black site prison. Harley Quinn, Deadshot, Killer Croc, El Diablo, and more are introduced to the film audience.

Fearing these to not be enough of a cinematic draw, Warner threw in appearances of Batman and Joker to anchor this puppy. The film also adapted a Neon Demon color scheme that appears in the opening and closing credits and whenever Joker is around.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Some real bad ladies and dudes join to fight for America against a badder lady and dude.  Continue Reading

RECAP: Deadpool

Deadpool (2016): Some Overpaid Tool (OK, Tim Miller)

That’s what the credits called Tim Miller, birth name of the man who directed Fox’s most recent mutant extravaganza.

You might remember Deadpool as a villain in the origin story of Wolverine from the 2009 film X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Well, you remember correctly.

Fox brought him back, divested him of Wolverine’s association (at least visually) and added a whole heap of humor. The result? The all-time February opening weekend record.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: A funny guy learns that he’s a mutant and hunts the guy who proved it to him. Continue Reading

RECAP: Fantastic Four

Fantastic Four (2015): Josh Trank

When does 1+1+1+1=53? When Fantastic Four finishes 53rd at the US box office in its year of release.

Fox released a reboot of the mildly successful duology featuring, yes, that Chris Evans. In casting Michael B. Jordan, Miles Teller, and Kate Mara, the studio captured some of Hollywood’s hottest young talent.

They tossed in the director, Josh Trank, of an off-beat superhero success, Chronicle, to make an un-Marvel superhero movie.

They made an un-Marvel superhero movie. Turns out the public wasn’t interested.

ONE SENTENCE PLOT SUMMARY: Four fantastic folks fight for friendship while single slithery scientist teleports terrain to new planet. Continue Reading

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