Saturday, November 28, 2015

9 comic book movie adaptations that need love

In the spirit of our list on comics and the recent explosion of comic adaptions, we felt it was time to revisit some of the adaptions t... thumbnail 1 summary

In the spirit of our list on comics and the recent explosion of comic adaptions, we felt it was time to revisit some of the adaptions that the world just wasn't ready for, or had the unfortunate timing of releasing when the market was bad.  These are the movies we always have to force people to watch, that everyone ends up liking.   It is time to get them noticed for the fun and solid movies that they are.  If you haven't seen any of these, you are missing out if you love comic style stories at all.

1. Mystery Men

Mystery Men is one of those movies that I am not sure what went wrong.  It is legitimately fun, everyone in it did a good job.  It's funny and smart.  The pacing is good and the plot is decent. 

The tone is a little campy, but in a deconstructionist way that is actually pretty entertaining.  I even like the costumes and sets, and yet most non geeky people just sneer at it.  At least it has grown to where more initiated people regard it with some entertainment value.  I truly believe with the character dynamics, the over the top personalities and the decent effects, it is a decent movie that is worth the time to watch it.

Watch Mystery Men now

2. The Losers

The Losers has some amazing acting in it, along with some truly funny dialog to back it up.  The action scenes are done extremely well and the entire group dynamic pushes the whole story to the next level. 

The plot is a tried and true standard action type plot, mixed with some of the strongest characterization I can name which combines into one of the most enjoyable action movies I have seen.  I think one of the primary strengths is that it doesn't have anything detracting from it, I don't have any critiques as far as what they could have done better.  I have forced at least 30 people to watch it, and I haven't had a single person not like it, most even quoting it from time to time.

Watch The Losers now

3. Tank Girl

 Tank girl is a movie that I always end up having to defend.  It took risks and brang a very punk rock in your face attitude with strong commitment and that makes it a very easy target, but it also makes it a passionate love letter to the comic itself. 

The design work shows hints of the expressive art styling in the comics, loud colors, and big shapes.  The acting is big, loud and braggarty, which is Tank Girl to me.  Critics love waving it off as an MTV generation overly loud piece of fluff, but I found it was spiritually in tune with the comic and the style choices reflect the style choices made by the comic. 

That and I genuinely love the practical effects, and found a lot of the scenes funny because most of the jokes land perfectly, over all at the end of the day, if you watch it looking for a light and fun time, you will end up satisfied.

Get Tank Girl here

4. Scott Pilgrim

I think Scott Pilgrim wasn't widely accepted due to how fiercely it's indy rooted fan base claimed it as theirs.  The effects and action in it are impressive, its smart, has a million quotable lines, and the entire movie start to finish feels like an adventure, one that pays off. 

There isn't a weak performance in the entire movie, and the usually hand waved things (Like the bands music) exceed expectations, the video game effects are true to the source material and add humor and style to the visuals.

Above that, Scott Pilgrim is easy to relate to for a lot of fans because of the genuine personalities of characters that have real seeming problems, given that they also punch foes  into coins and get extra lives, you can see the level of work that was put into it.  It didn't get ignored as much as some of the others, but it deserved a lot more in my opinion.

Watch Scott Pilgrim Now

5. Ghost World

 Ghost world has amazing casting, truly great actors hide across  this over looked movie.  No super powers, and aside from a nun chuck to mop fight in a parking lot, and one tackle, no action.  It does have the authentic feel of a small town full of very eccentric, but very real feeling people. 

The balance of weird and authentic combines to tell a tale about the fringe of society that feels right and not forced.  It's an honest take on people without a place trying to feel at home in a world that made it clear they don't fit.  It hits the part of you that looked at the cool kids and knew you weren't going to be one.

The pain of rejection and the futile feeling that trying to fit in isn't an option come through with a clarity that only massive amounts of insight from writers and flawless acting could show.  The most literary story this list, but it still takes you on a journey, an emotional one.  Most avid comic book fans have never even heard of it.
Watch Ghost World now

6. Judge Dredd

Another movie I defend constantly is Judge Dredd, more so since Dredd came out as darker and grittier.  I love 80's movies, Judge Dredd  isn't as gritty as the comics, but is a master piece of excessive props and awesome plot twists.

Seeing a war bot come to life and the grand standing Rico wreak havoc is enough to make this movie popcorn fodder.  Rob Schneider nailing the comic relief and the huge dystopian future setting is just a cherry on the top.  It is one of the better action films from its time and it delivers on fun.

They pepper in ok jokes over the action to add even more.  I rewatched it recently and it holds up.  I never understood why so many people bashed it, and no ones ever articulated a reason to I agreed with.  Shame that it flopped, I've never watched it with anyone that didn't enjoy it.

Watch Judge Dredd now

7.Dylan Dog

Yet another movie that I think most people never gave a chance.  Dylan is a bit of a Constantine clone but that's half of the protagonists in the urban fantasy genre.  He comes off a little dry but otherwise it is a strong performance, and the source material is good. 

His comic relief partner having to cope with his new undead state, such as not necessarily having his own body parts from now on, is worth the watch.  The action is decent, and as detective stories go it's on par, add cool magic and monsters and what you have is bonafide good way to spend 2 hours.

I made a few friends go watch it with me when it came out and the theater was deserted.  After we agreed it was worth the ticket, even the concession guy agreed that it should have been packed.  If you haven't seen it, its atmospheric in the bayou of Louisiana and just an all around decent watch.

Get Dylan Dog now

8. Howard the Duck 

If the other movies I defend are battles, than Howard the duck is the war.  Yes, it is cheesy, yes, it is ridiculous, yes, the effects are dated, and yes, the acting is a giant sack of hams, BUT, it is still amazingly fun to watch.  If you go in expecting an over the top and borderline parody movie, than Howard the duck is, dare I say, fantastic.

From threatening people with space rabies, to playduck the erotic duck magazine, it is truly so bad its good.  I can't see a reason not to have a good time with this movie unless you made a decision not to have one, even just making fun of it is better than watching your average 3 star summer hit.  It knew it went off the rails and just embraced it, and if you embrace it too, you will have a great time because there is a LOT of opportunities to laugh.

Get Howard the duck here

9. 2 Guns

2 guns is in the same category as the losers, there is literally nothing wrong with this movie.  The dialog is good, the plot is strong, the acting is arguably some of both Denzel Washington and Mark Wahlbergs best, The gun fights are awesome, the villains are severe, and settings are well picked.

Not only does this over deliver on the action and raw explosion side of things, but it is genuinely funny, the back and forth between the duo is razor sharp and its a charismatic battle of titans every time they share the screen.  The pacing is well done and there isn't a single lull, I honestly have no idea why this movie wasn't absolutely huge, I would put it above many of the other action movies released around it that out performed it.

 Get 2 Guns here

So hopefully this article has inspired you to try one of these movies, and you will find it every bit as good as we do.  If you like the article, please share it, and if you like this site, you can join any and all of our various social media outlets at the top left of the page.  As always, thank you for reading.