Post by Prince Hal on Dec 30, 2016 13:45:58 GMT -5
#4 Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
I haven’t seen this too much since I first saw it in a theatre on a warm July night when the boys and I grabbed a meal in Harvard Square, took the T into Boston and caught this at some big movie house on Tremont Street.
Even if it had been bad, I might have loved it just for those reasons, but I also love it because it captured the essence of comics, the character, and his time better than 99 percent of other super-hero movies.
I loved that director Joe Johnston took time for the set-up, the many touches of comic book realism (like Cap’s first fight against the Nazi spies), the Red Skull’s absolutely frightening face, the post-modern take on wartime propaganda, and the verisimilitude of Cap’s shield. (Johnston’s name will pop up again in a little bit.)
Now, take this with a swig of Moxie if you are a dyed-in-the-wool Cap fan. I was never more than a casual reader of Cap’s adventures; for me the reprints in Fantasy Masterpieces were better than anything I read in his 1960s -70s book, so this was right in my wheelhouse.
However, Cap as an idea, an icon, as a mythological character in comics like Superman, I am a huge fan of, and this movie got that, in large part due to Chris Evans’ acting. In less caring hands, Cap could have become a buffoon, but Evans struck the right balance between idealism and realism. You can’t help think there’s a moral center in his Cap, and that was a defining aspect of the story and the movie.
This movie is also further proof of my notion that setting super-hero stories in the 30s and 40s frees them of burdens that more contemporary takes on super-heroes have to struggle with. Oh, how I’d love to see a Batman movie inspired by Jerry Robinson and Bill Finger, set in Gotham’s dark back alleys in the 1940s.
Even better, a movie version of the excellent Batman-Cap team-up by John Byrne!
Anyway, First Avenger was fun enough, serious enough and slam-bang active enough to be nigh perfect.
PS: Only complaint: more Howlers, please!
Last Edit: Dec 30, 2016 13:46:17 GMT -5 by Prince Hal
"The rarer action is In virtue than in vengeance." -- The Tempest, 5.1
Post by M. W. Gallaher on Dec 31, 2016 9:33:02 GMT -5
#4: The Brave and the Bold (tv, animated) How could I not love this, the cartoon based on one of my all-time favorite comic books? What was great about this was that the show captured--and surpassed--the "anything can happen" qualities that made each issue of B&B something to anticipate. While I learned to appreciate that the next issue might have an Earth-2 superhero like Wildcat, or a war character like the Unknown Soldier, or a character from another time like Scalphunter, or a long-cancelled feature like Metamorpho, I never would have dreamed that a nationally-broadcast tv show would have the same latitude. Brave and Bold always entertained, frequently astonished, usually surprised, and inevitably delighted me. See Jim Aparo's co-creations, the Outsiders, on the screen was a big kick, too.