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Dark Jedi Master 007

Are You Getting Tired of Comic Book Films?

  

81 members have voted

  1. 1. Are you faitgued by the amount of comic book films we keep getting

    • Yes, enough is enough.
      8
    • Somewhat, but every once in a while, a good one comes out and changes my mind.
      17
    • I can't tell right now.
      0
    • No, but I am worried that I soon will be.
      12
    • Are you kidding? COMIC BOOK FILMS ROCK!!!!!!
      37


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This isn't really meant to start a war, but just a question: are you guys getting fatigued by the amount of comic book films coming out every year?If not, when do you think you'll be fatigued?Do any of you have any ideas on how the situation can be improved?And what do you do to keep your enthusiasm on the subject? 

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My personal answer is: Yes, I am getting tired of them not because I dislike comic book films, but because I'm a little tired of how repetitive they've become. Even though I think CA2 is a really good movie, I couldn't help but find the ending similar to every other ending: a big battle in the sky to protect all of the world. After a while, seeing the world's fate on the line in every movie destroys the excitement and appeal of such plots. The spectacle gets lost and instead of being part of an event, you find yourself just watching a movie.I don't see any solutions to it, other than to avoid the bad ones and only focus on the ones that critics praised. 

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Maybe the better question is :

 

are you getting tired of superhero films ?

 

Road to Perdition was a comic book film you know.

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For all that people whine about there being too many comic book movies, they kinda forget that there are only about 4-7 of them released a year. It's really not that many, compared to most other genres.

 

My personal answer is: Yes, I am getting tired of them not because I dislike comic book films, but because I'm a little tired of how repetitive they've become. Even though I think CA2 is a really good movie, I couldn't help but find the ending similar to every other ending: a big battle in the sky to protect all of the world. After a while, seeing the world's fate on the line in every movie destroys the excitement and appeal of such plots. The spectacle gets lost and instead of being part of an event, you find yourself just watching a movie.

Hold on. Exactly how many recent comic book movies have actually had that ending though? Cap 2, Thor 2 and the Avengers are the only Marvel ones I can think of (although a good case could be made for Cap 1). The Spiderman and X-Men films (DOFP aside) rarely get big enough for 'the world's fate' to be on the line. The only ones who have consistently done that are DC with MoS and Green Lantern.

 

And for that matter, just because all of those endings involve the world being at risk doesn't make them 'too similar'. The Avengers, Thor 2 and Cap 2 all have wildly different climaxes, both in terms of plot and style. It's like calling LOTR 'too similar' to the original Star Wars because both follow the 'Hero's Journey' archetypical plot.

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I mean, not really. There's certainly a lot of them, so I don't feel the need to see them all anymore. Especially not on OW. I pick and choose like I do other stuff. It would be nice if studios were investing big bucks in a wider variety of films but they aren't, and there's not much we can do to change that, so eh

 

What is really fucking exhausting is the extreme fanboyism that comes with them on the internet. I mean, Jesus Christ. You can't even compare the different franchises anymore without upsetting a dozen people and starting a ten page flamewar

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Not yet, but if they start to give a character like Squirrel Girl her own film then it might be time to rethink things

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For all that people whine about there being too many comic book movies, they kinda forget that there are only about 4-7 of them released a year. It's really not that many, compared to most other genres.

 

Hold on. Exactly how many recent comic book movies have actually had that ending though? Cap 2, Thor 2 and the Avengers are the only Marvel ones I can think of (although a good case could be made for Cap 1). The Spiderman and X-Men films (DOFP aside) rarely get big enough for 'the world's fate' to be on the line. The only ones who have consistently done that are DC with MoS and Green Lantern.

 

And for that matter, just because all of those endings involve the world being at risk doesn't make them 'too similar'. The Avengers, Thor 2 and Cap 2 all have wildly different climaxes, both in terms of plot and style. It's like calling LOTR 'too similar' to the original Star Wars because both follow the 'Hero's Journey' archetypical plot.

A) While there are only 4-7 films of the genre, they're usually the biggest films. Moreover, the "comic book" genre is not as broad as the genre titled "drama" or "comedy". Those genres allow for a lot of different storylines, with many possible climaxes and characters. Most comic book movies come down to a character/group that must save the world (more on this later) against an evil foe. The character/group has internal struggles that must be overcome in order to succeed. But in dramas, while there is conflict and internal struggle, it does not necessarily have to be solved, the same thing is true for comedy films. Also, comic book films come with a pre-requisite of action packed fights and stunts, whereas dramas and comedies don't need this.This isn't to say that dramas and comedies don't have their own genre conventions. But these conventions are not as rigid to actually force the storyline into a predictable pattern and the conventions are not so obvious.B) A lot of comic book movies have the ending that I described. The examples you gave to counter it aren't really good examples. Spider-Man may not see the world's future at stake, but NYC's future is still in the balance (this is the same as Batman, in which Gotham's fate is always being decided). While having one city's future at stake vs. every city's future at stake might not seem like the same thing, they are when you consider that The Avengers/CA2/MOS decided to have their battles over the fate of humanity" in isolated cities (New York, Metropolis, etc.)While X-Men bucks the trend by not being in the same city, it falls into the same situation of having the world's fate at stake for a lot of the films. It's been a long time since I saw the original X-Men, but wasn't that film about some huge device to wipe out humanity. Regardless of that specific detail, that film was clearly about humanity vs. mutants, a more nuanced storyline than other comic book films, but still involving the saving of humanity.  Moreover, the latest one (other than Wolverine) titled First Class, saw the climax revolve around the Cuban Missile Crisis, in essence, it put its characters in the middle of the 1960's equivalent to our world being destroyed.C) The LOTR/Star Wars point is a good one, but how many years separated those films? Like 25? I would have a problem with films that just keep following archetypes if they're released every year as the biggest, most marketed films. But there's a big gap between those films, so I'm not going to be screaming over them. And honestly, I don't think this is a matter of "archetype" as much as "the same thing repackaged." 

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Yes, been fatigued on the happy meals for years.

 

At least the fanboy wars are still entertaining.

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I want a JLA movie - after that the whole genre can go dead for all I care. Just that JL movie will be enough  :P

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Where did you say it?

 

In a few different threads, at various different times. :)

 

But very simply put, while I don't necessarily hate or dislike each and every CBM, I'm tired of the immense resources the studios pour into them (and other tentpole franchises based on on-going endless sequels), and I wish there was just a bit more effort into some variety (instead of a PG-13 "violent, but not too violent" movie that carefully avoids offending anyone, with a generic plot about having to save the entire world). Tentpoles need distinction and flavor, and the only way we get that are the rare occasions when you get a writer/director who's not only A-list in talent, but in power as well.

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A) While there are only 4-7 films of the genre, they're usually the biggest films. Moreover, the "comic book" genre is not as broad as the genre titled "drama" or "comedy". Those genres allow for a lot of different storylines, with many possible climaxes and characters. 

Okay, assuming what you're really talking about here is the superhero genre (since saying the comic book genre is not as broad is like saying the book genre is not as broad), are you really suggesting the superhero genre doesn't also allow for a lot of different storylines, climaxes and characters and that it doesn't give us those already? And before you say that they follow similar basic story patterns well, guess what, so do most movies! If you strip them down to their very roots, you'll find that a large majority of films follow similar archetypal plots, like 'The Hero's Journey'.

 

 

Most comic book movies come down to a character/group that must save the world (more on this later) against an evil foe. The character/group has internal struggles that must be overcome in order to succeed.

But, that's how most blockbusters work, rather than being something specifically applied to superhero movies. Good vs Evil is one of the most archetypical of plots in fiction, period. I can name thousands of films considered classics that follow good vs evil. And even then, like many other films have done, superhero movies can blur the lines, like in X-Men (with Well-Intentioned Extremist Magneto) or Watchmen.

 

 

But in dramas, while there is conflict and internal struggle, it does not necessarily have to be solved, the same thing is true for comedy films.

And that's not true of superhero films? Because didn't Spiderman and Batman totally get over their internal struggles at the end of their first film. And, of course, there's Watchmen to consider. And before you inevitably come in with 'Watchmen is an outlier compared to most superhero movies', yeah that's true, but it's also proof that it's not the Superhero genre that is specifically chained to that pattern, it's Hollywood blockbusters in general, of which most Superhero movies are a part of.

 

Also, what's so bad about having the conflict/internal struggle solved at the end of the film? Again, millions of infamous film, stories, etc, tie everything up at the end, with good reason (aka, not to leave unnecessary cliffhangers and a feeling of unsatisfaction from the audience).

 

 

Also, comic book films come with a pre-requisite of action packed fights and stunts, whereas dramas and comedies don't need this.

Well, duh. Superhero movies are a sub genre of action movies and, unsurprisingly, Action movies come with a pre-requisite of action packed fights and stunts. 

 

 

A lot of comic book movies have the ending that I described.

And a lot of them don't.

 

 

The examples you gave to counter it aren't really good examples. Spider-Man may not see the world's future at stake, but NYC's future is still in the balance (this is the same as Batman, in which Gotham's fate is always being decided). While having one city's future at stake vs. every city's future at stake might not seem like the same thing, they are when you consider that The Avengers/CA2/MOS decided to have their battles over the fate of humanity" in isolated cities (New York, Metropolis, etc.)

Oh come on! That's moving the fucking goalposts! 

 

Of course something is going to be at stake. That's a staple of creating conflict which is something a story needs. And when you've got superheroes in your films, you need a villain that would be a challenge for them to take down. And when you have a villain who is a challenge for someone with superhuman abilities, you need a goal for them that is realistic to their abilities. If the entirety of Loki's scheme in the Avengers was to take over a small New York street, that would feel completely beneath his abilities as a villain and the heroes struggle to defeat him carries much less weight because, fuck it, it's just a small street. Who cares?

 

And before you get on my case about how that 'proves your point' and how 'saving the world carries much less weight now', let me point this out. Nowadays, the whole 'Die Hard' sort of action plot is pretty damn common. Yet the Raid Redemption is one of the best action movies, hell one of the best films I've ever seen, despite the same sort of plot having been used a thousand times before. That's because of how it carries out that plot, with amazingly choreographed martial arts fight. And that's the real important thing there. It's not about how many times a certain plot point has been used that makes it good or bad. It's about how you do it.

 

 

C) The LOTR/Star Wars point is a good one, but how many years separated those films? Like 25? I would have a problem with films that just keep following archetypes if they're released every year as the biggest, most marketed films. But there's a big gap between those films, so I'm not going to be screaming over them. 

Finding Nemo, Karate Kid, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, The Wizard of Oz, Transformers, Star Trek (2009), Gravity, Avatar, Shrek and The Princess Bride all follow the same archetype and those are just off the top of my head.

 

 

And honestly, I don't think this is a matter of "archetype" as much as "the same thing repackaged."

You can believe that if you want but, to put it bluntly, you're wrong.

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Okay, assuming what you're really talking about here is the superhero genre (since saying the comic book genre is not as broad is like saying the book genre is not as broad), are you really suggesting the superhero genre doesn't also allow for a lot of different storylines, climaxes and characters and that it doesn't give us those already? And before you say that they follow similar basic story patterns well, guess what, so do most movies! If you strip them down to their very roots, you'll find that a large majority of films follow similar archetypal plots, like 'The Hero's Journey'.

 

 

 

 

For starters, don't comic book movies follow "the hero's journey." And yes, most movies do have similar patterns in the sense that they have character, conflict, story, and setting, but most genres have variation in terms of conflict, character, and story. I think that the comic book film world is lacking in such variation. How many superheroes find that part of the reason or the reason that they're a superhero has to do with failing their parents/guardians? (Batman, Superman, Iron Man, and Spider-Man all come to mind, and those happen to be the 4 biggest films of this genre). How many of them end with the same outer conflict (saving the world). I don't see such lack of variation in drama or comedy. While comedies can be predictable to a certain extent (they include laughs) and dramas are predictable (they include tears) they aren't as predictable as these films. Moreover, read the criticism of these different genres. The more predictable a drama or comedy, the more it gets hammered. Comic book movies find themselves getting much more slack in that department. Often, critics go "yes, the conflict is overblown, but what did you expect from a popcorn movie." Now, none of this is bad all by itself, but the issue is that comic book films have hit a saturation point, which makes it annoying.

 

 

But, that's how most blockbusters work, rather than being something specifically applied to superhero movies. Good vs Evil is one of the most archetypical of plots in fiction, period. I can name thousands of films considered classics that follow good vs evil. And even then, like many other films have done, superhero movies can blur the lines, like in X-Men (with Well-Intentioned Extremist Magneto) or Watchmen.

 

 

 

And haven't most blockbusters been criticized for this form of simplicity before? Aren't people tired of the simplistic nature of big blockbusters? Perhaps, it's unfair to criticize only comic book movies for the flaws of the blockbuster system, but I don't think this justifies your point.

 

 

.

And that's not true of superhero films? Because didn't Spiderman and Batman totally get over their internal struggles at the end of their first film. And, of course, there's Watchmen to consider. And before you inevitably come in with 'Watchmen is an outlier compared to most superhero movies', yeah that's true, but it's also proof that it's not the Superhero genre that is specifically chained to that pattern, it's Hollywood blockbusters in general, of which most Superhero movies are a part of.

 

 

Spiderman and Batman took huge steps in the direction of solving their struggles. Does that mean that those fears cannot come back and be revisited? No. But compared to dramas, where the internal struggle can actually consume our main hero and destroy him, it's much more closer to "solving the conflict" than not. In other words, when was the last time you saw a comic book movie and thought "I wonder if he'll be able to solve this internal issue?" The answer is never. Again, this is not bad, but when this form of film dominates our box office landscape, then it is tiring.

 

 

Well, duh. Superhero movies are a sub genre of action movies and, unsurprisingly, Action movies come with a pre-requisite of action packed fights and stunts. 

 

And haven't action movies been criticized for the same thing? I see your point "well then blame action movies and not comic book movies" but I still think it's a negative against comic book films, just like it'd be a negative against action movies as well.

 

 

 

Oh come on! That's moving the fucking goalposts! 

 

Of course something is going to be at stake. That's a staple of creating conflict which is something a story needs. And when you've got superheroes in your films, you need a villain that would be a challenge for them to take down. And when you have a villain who is a challenge for someone with superhuman abilities, you need a goal for them that is realistic to their abilities. If the entirety of Loki's scheme in the Avengers was to take over a small New York street, that would feel completely beneath his abilities as a villain and the heroes struggle to defeat him carries much less weight because, fuck it, it's just a small street. Who cares?

 

And before you get on my case about how that 'proves your point' and how 'saving the world carries much less weight now', let me point this out. Nowadays, the whole 'Die Hard' sort of action plot is pretty damn common. Yet the Raid Redemption is one of the best action movies, hell one of the best films I've ever seen, despite the same sort of plot having been used a thousand times before. That's because of how it carries out that plot, with amazingly choreographed martial arts fight. And that's the real important thing there. It's not about how many times a certain plot point has been used that makes it good or bad. It's about how you do it.

 

 

A) I know that we need conflict, but do we need the same conflict over the same thing (our world/a big city) all the time? And I like how your counter-argument is a "street in NYC" as though that's my suggestion. You could have plenty of other important things. How about they're fighting over information vital to the world's survival? That's still cliché, hell that's still "save the world" but at least we don't have massive explosions all the time, maybe just a nice one-on-one. Or hell, do something even better, raise the stakes with an actually imaginative final battle that I can't think of.

B) Yes, "how" you handle content can elevate a generic film into greatness territory. You know what else makes great films: original content. Or an original twist on already established content.

My computer is about to die, and I'm in public, so I'll reply later.

 

Edited by Dark Jedi Master 007
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Finding Nemo, Karate Kid, Monty Python and the Holy Grail, The Wizard of Oz, Transformers, Star Trek (2009), Gravity, Avatar, Shrek and The Princess Bride all follow the same archetype and those are just off the top of my head.

Instead of trying to defend what was originally a weak point, I will concede that you have me here. With that being said, what are the major complaints against those films? Those few who did dislike Gravity or found it to not be perfect complained about its lame conflict. Same thing with Avatar. 

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The differences between Finding Nemo and Gravity are greater then the differences between TDK and IM3.

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My personal answer is: Yes, I am getting tired of them not because I dislike comic book films, but because I'm a little tired of how repetitive they've become. Even though I think CA2 is a really good movie, I couldn't help but find the ending similar to every other ending: a big battle in the sky to protect all of the world. After a while, seeing the world's fate on the line in every movie destroys the excitement and appeal of such plots. The spectacle gets lost and instead of being part of an event, you find yourself just watching a movie.I don't see any solutions to it, other than to avoid the bad ones and only focus on the ones that critics praised. 

 

To be fair you have just described a shitload of popcorn movies that have nothing to do with comic books. I mean maybe not a big battle in the sky to protect all of the world, but definitely a big battle in location X to protect object Y. It's what the masses want to see and until that changes this is the forumlae we are stuck with for these big budget films regardless of where they base their source material.

 

So to answer your question I'm not tired of comic book movies because they are comic book movies, but because big budget movies as a whole are so incredibly formulaic. 

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To be fair you have just described a shitload of popcorn movies that have nothing to do with comic books. I mean maybe not a big battle in the sky to protect all of the world, but definitely a big battle in location X to protect object Y. It's what the masses want to see and until that changes this is the forumlae we are stuck with for these big budget films regardless of where they base their source material.

 

So to answer your question I'm not tired of comic book movies because they are comic book movies, but because big budget movies as a whole are so incredibly formulaic. 

Yeah, I'm coming around to that line of thinking as well.

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