Non-Summer Big Superhero Movies
July 18, 2008

Two major comic-related movie trailers were released this week, although the movies aren’t due this blockbuster season. But it’s almost San Diego, so they have to work the geek circuit timing to get the buzz. (It’s a flaw of the culture, to always be focused on the next big thing, spend too long anticipating it, and then invariably be disappointed because nothing could live up to the expectations.)

The Spirit

The Spirit is due at Christmas, and the second trailer focuses on the many women in the movie. Shame that the art style and content reminds me SO much of Sin City — it makes Frank Miller look like a one-trick pony, and it has little to do with the Eisner comics I’ve read.

The Spirit looks like a drip, which makes it ludicrous that all these over-sexed females are throwing themselves at him. I don’t need to see the Octopus — he was scary because he was unseen — especially with black mascara running down his face. The whole thing reminds me of Sky Captain, and not in a good way.


Watchmen is coming out next March, for some reason, and based on this, they’re pitching it as another big superhero movie instead of the meta-commentary that made the book unique. I’m not really interested. Especially since the eventual DVD sounds like the thing to wait for, with the different layers of content.

They’ve also put out a motion comic, which means light animation to make the comic interesting to the visual audience. Which is creative if not totally faithful.

I know, I’m a downer. Are you looking forward to either of these films? What am I missing?

12 Responses  
James Schee writes:  

I agree with you on The Spirit movie, it just looks to be a mess. If Miller wanted to do Sin City 2, why not do it rather than force that style on The Spirit?

After seeing the preview for the Watchmen movie I’m actually kind of curious to be honest. I thought the way Dr. Manhatten looked was pretty cool. I wonder how they’ll handle all of the plotlines and characters. Could this be called the first superhero team movie?

I now want to see the movie after the preview. So it did its job, no?

Jarrett writes:  

(((Could this be called the first superhero team movie?)))

At the very least X-Men would have that claim to fame, surely?

Tony Hsieh writes:  

The Spirit trailer made me feel terrible. I couldn’t figure out why it needed that extreme comicky look.

Even the French fan-made Green Hornet movie looks more interesting than this. (http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bnfSl3zKyzY)

I have hope for Watchmen but I still wish some cable channel (SHOWTIME, HBO) would have picked it up as a twelve 1 hour episode year-long series. Like the Prisoner with Ian McKellen.

James Schee writes:  

To quote a great hero of our age, “D’oh!”

For some reason I’d completely blotted the X-Men movies out of my memory. But yup, they’d be the first superhero team movie.

Nat Gertler writes:  

And besides the X-Men movies, there’s the Fantastic Four films, and Zoom, and the Invincibles, and Sky High.

Nat Gertler writes:  

Oh, and me? I want to see The Spirit. Not everything in the trailer works for me, but I’m no more against Frank doing a more-Miller-than-Eisner Spirit than I was against a more-Miller-than-Kane Dark Knight Returns.

KC writes:  

Super-team movie: Mystery Men!
(or doesn’t that count…)

Paul Sizer writes:  

Based on the trailers, the SPIRIT movie is going to SUCK. Sorry, it seems so off target that I wondered if Miller was trying to slip this in as a Sin City 1 1/2 movie. All the points that are hit in the trailer seem like a million miles away from Eisner’s vision for the character.

WATCHMEN trailer looks really great. Can they stick the landing? God I hope so.

Brian M. writes:  

The Spirit trailer leaves me wondering why they are paying for the rights to the property. From the prominence of Frank Miller’s name in the trailer and the advertising and the “Sin City” visual style they are using it is clear the studio wanted this to be a “Sin City” clone because that film made money and copying films that make money is what Hollywood does.

If they really wanted to make a great Spirit movie, they just should have grabbed Issue No. 12 of Cooke recent revival of The Spirit and filmed that. Cooke flat out nailed The Spirit and the genre with that one issue.

James Schee writes:  

Mystery Men!!!

cognitive dissident writes:  

I agree that The-Spirit-as-Sin-City will probably suck, but I still have hope for the Watchmen film. Yeah, the theatrical release will leave out far too many of the book’s cool touches…but that should help DVD sales without driving anyone away from the theater except the most rabid fanboys.

(Oh, and the Mystery Men references cracked me up!)

John writes:  

I agree with you entirely. I don’t really see the point in either of these two films and, frankly, I don’t think any comic book story needs the validation of a film version anyhow, with all the quirks and depth stripped away for a wider audience.


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