Avengers: Endgame (2019)


#61

Rocket Racoon is awesome, and he’d be the second-best character in the entire DC movie series. The only thing they have going for them is Gal Gadot.


#62

Heh, I hated the last SW main movie, but I very much doubt it was made by a boardroom, it’s not that kind of movie, it’s clearly owned by the people who made it, at best the boardroom might have set up some boundaries.

Which, to bring it into the subject, is how I think Marvel movies are made. They boardroom gives creators freedom to a point, and you’re aware who is making each movie, but creators can’t just do anything they want, they need to stay within boundaries. But they’re still owned by the people who make them, they’re proper movies, not boardroom Frankenstein monsters.

Also, holy shit, Marvel has managed to make a silly Raccoon character internationally famous.


#63

I think most of it is down to the people making the films respecting the source material. If you read the books, these are the characters we’ve known for years, and they were great way back when and are still great now. Stan Lee and all those who worked around him built something, um, Marvelous within the pages of their books. That it took so long for filmmakers to understand, respect, and bring that to the screen is the real travesty and by the time it happened it was also a miracle.

With the Berlantiverse on TV, the DC books have mostly been treated respectfully now as well. It’s their film production arm that has no idea what makes DC comics characters stand the test of time. Even as good as the Christian Bale Batman films are, they do sometimes miss the point, but those are the exception, and Batman as a character lends himself toward the darker interpretation and always has.

I loved the four issue Rocket Raccoon miniseries. It’s nuts. That they ended up pulling him out of that and putting him into the Guardians was equally nuts, but it’s all well-written and super cool. A film version of the character drawing from that was “easy” tbh. It’s just new stories with a character that was fully realized long before the cinematic universe got its version.


#64

That describes almost every Marvel movie. Sure, not everyone likes all of them, but they are well written, fit together with the others in the universe, and are fun to watch.


#65

To be fair, there are many versions of these characters, but I think you are right that the big difference that makes (most) Marvel movies tick is their director’s understanding and respect for the classic source material.

This is in stark contrast to e.g., Batman and Superman in the current DCVerse (especially as portrayed in BvS), which are essentially deconstructionist. I don’t think it’s a coincidence that pretty much the only acclaimed DCVerse movie is the one that adheres closes to the spirit of the original material.

I kind of feel Star Wars has the same problem, though I’ll leave that discussion to another thread.

It helps that the Marvel studios folks take continuity between the movies seriously. I like some of the X-Men films because they also (to a fair extent) get what makes their characters and world-building work, but their lack of interest in maintaining any kind of continuity across the films (with characters in one film often contradicting things said by the same character in a previous film) makes it hard to maintain any interest. Why should viewers take the events in the films seriously, when the film’s themselves don’t?


#66

I think it might be the best movie in the MCU.


#67

Is it that straightforward? I’m a general nerd, but never actually got into comic books, big time. Just peripherally. My understanding is that there is just so much material surrounding most of the major comic book characters that it is hard to say what the “spirit” of the material actually is.

Were the Nolan Batman movies truer to the spirit of Batman than the recent DC stuff? If so, how? If not, weren’t the Nolan ones critical successes? Or are you saying that they let Batman’s spirit infect the other movies precisely because Nolan was successful?

I’d buy a theory that DC is a victim of its own success with the Nolan flicks. It’s hard to back away from a winning approach (e.g., grimdark).


#68

So is there an interesting version of Superman I haven’t’ seen? I mean, I’ve seen that character re-created several times and he is pretty much the same every time.

As for Marvel, i went in not know much about a lot of these characters, but they certain made me want to know more about them.


#69

For sure, there are different interpretations of all of these characters, but for most of the major characters (IMO, of course), there are certain traits that have become central over the years. You’ll see elements get subverted from time to time, but they’ll tend to invariably return to the “classic” basis after the next reboot (the one exception is perhaps Miller’s Batman, which permanently turned that character more Grimdark).

I’m not sure there’s an “interesting version” of Superman, much like there isn’t an “interesting version” of Captain America. The character is pretty straightforward - the problem with the DC films is that (unlike Cap and Wonder Woman), DC/Snyder didn’t dare to go with the inherent kindness and idealism of the character and instead tried to make him “interesting”.

Nolan’s Batman owes a lot to Miller’s take on the character, but remains fairly faithful to the Batman mythos. He does fail pretty spectacularly in the intelligence department, but then again no on-screen Batman has ever deserved the moniker “World’s Greatest Detective”. The new Batman is basically Nolan’s Batman, but with the grimdark turned up to a hundred and eleven. I actually think Affleck does a pretty good job with the character, but the material he has to work with is abysmal.

In many ways, Miller’s take (especially in the seminal Dark Knight Returns) is a deconstruction of the Batman mythos, but it works in that story because it’s basically a stand-alone and a story of it’s time. And while influential for the development of the character, DC comics were smart enough to leave that story pretty much outside of the canon. The DC Movies, on the other hand, basically tried to make the DKR story the “Phase 1” of its DC Universe, but without understanding at all what makes that story work (also, Zack Snyder).


#70

There is an interesting version of Captain America; he’s currently in the MCU. I had zero interest in that character, and dislike the first movie even, until he join the group and became alive with the vision of the people currently in charge of the overall story arch.

The current version of Superman… as far as I can tell, he did not fit in or change or morph in any fitting way when he joined Justice League.

The Endgame is the result of years of working toward an end in a way that kept most people along for the ride. They didn’t just honor the origins of these characters from comics, they brought them alive and related to a huge group of the audience that could careless about comic books. That’s not easy task to do.


#71

Not exactly, but…


#72

eeee, a superhero horror movie? I thought there was another one of those floating around too.


#73

Not sure how you can say that Snyder’s take on Superman has very much in common with any other version of Superman. Classic Superman (which is the version in pretty much every other screen version) is a Hero with capital H - Snyder’s is very, very far from. Cavill does his best with the part, but there’s nothing to relate to there because Snyder is all about mythological battles sans any kind of relatable characters.

It’s not necessarily an easy character to make work on the big screen, IMO, but it’s doable - as Marvel and Chris Evans have demonstrated with a character that embodies some of the same qualities.


#74

FWIW this version of Cap is from the comics to an extent. Each actor is going to put their take on the character for sure. Evans is doing it with Cap but the man without a country, anti-authority theme has been there for at least 15 years, when they did Civil War. Maybe before that too.

Marvel struck gold with RDJ no doubt, and they adapted the comics version of Tony Stark to be like RDJ’s depiction. When they finally let Hemsworth play Thor he way he wanted to the character improved tremendously.


#75

Cap in the books is as complex as he’s appeared on screen. He started out as a Star-Spangled Man, but he became a whole lot more over the years. The thing he never did lose though was his boy scout side, and frankly, that’s what made the character so damn cool in a Marvel universe where everyone else seems to have some other side to them they have to fight with and reconcile. Cap’s is just simpler (and often cooler IMO, because he’s at odds with modern life in some ways and revels in it in others)… he’s a man out of time.


#76

I know that was the goal, but outside the battles, I don’t think the character was much different at all.


#77

RE: X-Men, it’s a bummer how those progressed because that is truly the most soap opera thing in the Marvel Universe, and it has the most genuine heartache and power to affect an audience, yet they often miss it by just that little bit or completely miss the mark entirely.

I think the stuff they’re doing on TV resonates a little better because the X-Men are a better fit to television. It’s often Days of our Lives with mutant powers. The thing that sucks is they’ve been separate from the rest of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, so where they really connect with everyone else, in the big events, is lost.

That said, they’ve plumbed some of the best stories for the films, although First Class might be my favorite and that’s not really a comic story.


#78

Cap works in the MCU precisely because the other characters exist. On his own, the character is boring. Standing in contrast to Stark, they both become more than the sum of the parts. I think this is why the first Cap movie is one of my least favorite of the MCU.

The DCU has none of this synergy.


#79

I probably haven’t read a comic book in about 25 years. There just wasn’t anything there for me to care about outside of X-men. I don’t read them now, even when they give them away for free. All I can say is I thought he was lame, out-dated and about as relatable as a bleached piece of wood. That they brought him to life in a way that works like that on the screen is great, but I didn’t like the first movie so there is that.

I like him as part of a team, that team.

So since the comic book readers like him too, that’s great. That’s just my POV.


#80

Oh yeah, it’s more like 45 years. Look up the Secret Empire and Nomad arcs from 1974.