Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Iron Man Vs The X-Men

So we saw Iron man last week.

And like the rest of the world, we liked it. It has some great lines, some great acting and I never get sick of looking at Gwyneth Paltro. There were a number of times when we belly laughed. Hard. It was good stuff, but really, am I telling you something you don’t know?

Two days ago we watched X-Men then last night we watched X-Men II. These remain for me the best Superhero movies in my humble opinion. The reasons may surprise you.

1. I’m very old. Which means that I actually lived and read the classic Claremont X-Men that the movies are “mostly” based on.
2. No Origins. Bang, right to the action.
3. Lots of action.
4. Almost perfect casting.

Let’s review the movies that rock for Superhero films. Spiderman – Origin story. Batman Begins – Origin story. Ironman – Origin story. Hulk – Origin story. Ha ha, of course I’m kidding, Hulk wasn’t a movie that rocked, that movie blew pink chunks! Which brings us to our movies that sucked ass – Hulk – Origin story. Electra – Origin Story. Daredevil – Origin story.

Notice a trend?

I can see why a lot of people will look to Spiderman or Batman Begins or Iron Man as better movies. Because they are. Better scripted, better acted, bigger stars. A well thought out plot, a perfect introduction to the character for the general audience that doesn’t know anything about them, etc.

But I’m a comic fan and Claremont’s run on Uncanny X-Men was phenomenal. When I saw X-Men for the first time, I was blown away. Hugh Jackman looked EXACTLY like Logan. EXACTLY! (Okay, they messed up the forced perspective a number of times and forgot he’s supposed to be 5’8, but other than that.) Scott looked and acted just as I always imagined. His mannerisms and command attitude. Jean looked flawless. Xavier? Jean-Luc was made for that role. Storm, well, mostly right. Halle Berry is fun to look at at least.

And lots of superhero stuff. I like superhero stuff. Lots of fights with people using powers, Scott blowing the roof off of Grand Central, Wolverine getting hurled off the Statue of Liberty in an epic battle with Sabertooth, Storm blasting Toad with lightning. I loved it all. And the second just built on that even more. How can you not gaze in wonder at Gandalf-Magneto gaining access to about a pound of iron in his plastic prison and decimating it and the guards with three whirling balls of death? Or Wolverine slicing his way through soldiers as they invade the mansion? Or Jean getting more and more powerful, hinting at the Dark Pheonix to come?

For me, X-Men I and II were the embodiment of what I had devoured and loved about the comics in the 80’s. And the actors they chose for the most important parts looked like God had breathed the gift of life into the ink on the pages and made them rise up.

To sum up – Yes, Iron Man, Batman Begins and Spiderman were better movies. But my favorites are still X-Men I and II.

Really looking forward to Hancock


  1. Iron Man was great, but it's just the same layout as the other successful super hero films. It makes me think that we've peaked and subsequent super hero films must either follow the format of Iron Man and Spider-Man or fail like Cat Woman.

  2. The fire extinguisher scene had me laughing harder than I have laughed in YEARS. No lie.

  3. And while you are on the subject, did you see that they have greenlit the Captain America movie? It will hit theaters in May2011 and be followed by an Avengers movie in July 2011.

    Also the Hulk movie later this summer will have a cameo of Ironman.

  4. Iron Man was really good. My wife and I enjoyed it on our date night. I also agree that the entire X-men trilogy rocked pretty damn hard.

    But Samuel Jackson as Nick Fury? You've got to be f'ing kidding me!

  5. Jackson as Fury makes sense if you read the Ultimate universe stuff (which I associate more with the movies because you can't really create a lush backstory in the span of 2 hours). I think it was a pretty solid casting.