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Old 02-11-2012, 10:20 PM   #1
CConn
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Default Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

So recently, I was watching Spider-Man for the first time in a few years, and I was pretty shocked at just how dated the film seemed.

From it's simplistic plot, to it's early CGI, to it's corny dialogue...it really didn't seem at all on par with these past 5 years or so of superhero films.

I still enjoy it, don't get me wrong, but it didn't help me to more understand why a Spider-Man relaunch was necessary.

Conversely, when I watch Batman or X-Men, they still seem to hold up pretty well, despite being over 10 and 20 years old.

So that brings me to my question: how do you think the various superhero movies have faired in terms of becoming dated? Which ones still hold up? And which don't?

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Old 02-11-2012, 10:43 PM   #2
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

I had just recently watched it and was surprised as well, it really has dated. Especially in terms of the CG, that scene when GG catches spider-man from the bugle was really bad.

I think of lot of films are dated very quickly with the CG.

Iron man 1 still holds up for me, just an entertaining movie. The batman movies hold up very well. I can still go back and watch b89 and be entertained.

I think it comes down to the CG and the excessive use of it in scenes that should never have required it. The Hulk films are a prime example of this. Although many will disagree I still think they could have done a live action hulk and done CG touch ups. Yes it may have looked fake, but at least it doesnt look like a cartoon character.

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Old 02-11-2012, 10:47 PM   #3
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

I wouldn't say it's just about CGI. Dialogue plays a big role too. I've never been a fan of the Superman movies purely because of how campy all of the dialogue was.

And I will say this about X1; I think everything in the movie holds up well - except for any of the Brotherhood scenes; four mutants in some rocky lair seems as unbelievable as it is unthreatening.

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Old 02-15-2012, 12:54 PM   #4
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

Blade 1 and 2 are still pretty good. I did not like the Burton Batmans, but due to their heavily stylized nature are as good now as they were back in the early 1990s.

I never liked Spiderman 1 and it has aged poorly even then in my eyes. X-men 1-2 were good movies, but nowadays just seem "small" in terms of scope, when you look at what superhero movies are like now.

I'm one of the few people, apparently, who liked Ang Lee's Hulk. This movie is still pretty good to watch now, but I know I'm in the minority there.

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Old 02-15-2012, 05:09 PM   #5
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

I need to rewatch Hulk. It doesn't seem like a movie that would age poorly, but the CGI could look pretty funky now.

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Old 02-15-2012, 05:53 PM   #6
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

Cannot think of one example oif a superhero movie that feels now different than it felt the first time I saw it.

Well, the only exception is Batman 66. That movie feels now better for its bizarre comedy.



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I need to rewatch Hulk. It doesn't seem like a movie that would age poorly, but the CGI could look pretty funky now.
I must be one of those guys, but, other than a few cases, I cannot really see much difference between CGI now and 9 years ago.

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Old 02-15-2012, 08:19 PM   #7
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

I think that the Burton Batman films still hold up pretty well, but that's because they used practical effects for them. I find X-Men and Spider-Man to look pretty dated at certain points. The CGI looks dated (Senator Kelly's death and Magneto's machine in the Liberty torch in X-Men, CG Goblin and Peter running across rooftops in Spider-Man), but their sequels look fine. Ironically, the critically panned third films in both of those trilogies have some of the best special effects seen in superhero films (Magneto moving the Golden Gate Bridge in X3, Birth of Sandman in Spider-Man 3).

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Old 02-15-2012, 08:32 PM   #8
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

I respect the first Spider-Man but I think the narrative was indecisive and overly simplistic. It just didn't know what to the do with the characters besides the build-up of both Peter and Osborn. Even Osborn didn't know what to do as a villain.

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Old 02-15-2012, 08:38 PM   #9
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

In my opinion the desert battle in Hulk is still the best action sequence in any superhero film.

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Old 02-17-2012, 11:23 AM   #10
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

Hulk hasnt aged a bit, and the CGI still stands up today, even more so than that of TIH IMO.

I'm one of the few who doesnt think the first Spiderman has aged, its still a great movie in my eyes.

For me, only really the Reeve Superman movies have aged badly, and thats more due to dialogue than anything else.

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Old 02-17-2012, 11:28 AM   #11
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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Originally Posted by Drizzle View Post
I think that the Burton Batman films still hold up pretty well, but that's because they used practical effects for them. I find X-Men and Spider-Man to look pretty dated at certain points. The CGI looks dated (Senator Kelly's death and Magneto's machine in the Liberty torch in X-Men, CG Goblin and Peter running across rooftops in Spider-Man), but their sequels look fine. Ironically, the critically panned third films in both of those trilogies have some of the best special effects seen in superhero films (Magneto moving the Golden Gate Bridge in X3, Birth of Sandman in Spider-Man 3).
I think the CG in X-Men holds up just fine. But, you seem to forget that other types of special effects also don't hold up sometimes, even in the time they were released, for example in Batman 89, when the Bat-wing crashes in front of the cathedral, it is one of the most fake looking miniature shots I have ever seen.

I think the birth of Sandman is very well animated, as in, it is timed and shot well, but it does not look real to me at all.

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Old 02-17-2012, 11:34 AM   #12
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

^I think the effects in the first 2 X-Men movies are fine, they dont seem to have aged at all. Yet a lot of the effects in Wolverine and X3 seem to have aged already and they came out a lot later.

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Old 02-17-2012, 05:22 PM   #13
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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I respect the first Spider-Man but I think the narrative was indecisive and overly simplistic. It just didn't know what to the do with the characters besides the build-up of both Peter and Osborn. Even Osborn didn't know what to do as a villain.
That's true - specially that Gren Goblin appears for the first time to get his revenge and then he's left with nothing to do - but I felt all that the very first time I saw it.

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Old 02-17-2012, 05:28 PM   #14
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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^I think the effects in the first 2 X-Men movies are fine, they dont seem to have aged at all. Yet a lot of the effects in Wolverine and X3 seem to have aged already and they came out a lot later.
I dunno about X3, offhand, I can't think of any fake looking effects, CGI wise anyway, there is some wire-work that looks obvious, like when Storm is flying in the danger room, but, y'know, I don't know if that is bad per se, like, if it could have been done any better. I'd rather see wire-work than a CG stand in when it comes to flying.

Wolverine, oh aye, that scene in the bathroom is notorious for the claws.

X1 wise, there is that bit with Toad jumping up onto the sides of the pillars that doesn't look v good, but they wanted to re-shoot that, and weren't able to due to time and money.

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Old 02-17-2012, 09:11 PM   #15
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

The bad thing about X3 wasn't the CG; it was the story that sucked.

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Old 02-17-2012, 09:23 PM   #16
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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The bad thing about X3 wasn't the CG; it was the story that sucked.
Really? How so?

It focused on the "problem" of being mutant instead of just a fight against the baddies like in X2. It involved the end of many mutants, the future of humanity, and the most powerful mutant ever. How exactly it did suck?

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Old 02-18-2012, 04:14 AM   #17
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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Really? How so?

It focused on the "problem" of being mutant instead of just a fight against the baddies like in X2. It involved the end of many mutants, the future of humanity, and the most powerful mutant ever. How exactly it did suck?
Old news!

They were trying to do too much like most sequels. Phoenix became a plot device instead a real emotional backbone for the story. Either you do one story (cure) or the other (Phoenix) not both. An if you do both, make it cohesive and epic. It felt like nothing was really thought out in the narrative throughline.

Old characters die without any weight. Xavier and even worst Cyclops die without any gravitas. In fact the entir movie just poops on Cyclops. Meanwhile the new characters didnt have much to do. Besides Beast anyway.

I also hated how Storm blatantly murders Calypso. Okay....

I think X3 can be viewed as a fun movie with some good action but it's story is so wishy-washy. Come on now; It's been too many years here to not know that X3 is a very polarizing movie.

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Old 02-18-2012, 04:17 AM   #18
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

Though I would say there are more offensive movies than X3: that being Ghost Rider, Wolverine, and Transformers 2.

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Old 02-18-2012, 04:31 AM   #19
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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Really? How so?

It focused on the "problem" of being mutant instead of just a fight against the baddies like in X2. It involved the end of many mutants, the future of humanity, and the most powerful mutant ever. How exactly it did suck?
Because it tried to cram all those things into a 90 minute movie so none of it held any weight.

Rogue went to get cured... that is the last we see of her. No real development or pay off for her character.

Jean Grey became the Pheonix, but wasn't really a character, just a plot device.

They should have picked on or the other. The Cure or Pheonix story line. Not try to cram them both in, because like i said, it left both story lines under developed.

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Old 02-18-2012, 07:46 AM   #20
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

What's the cut-off point for memory lane?

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Old 02-18-2012, 08:06 AM   #21
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

Superman the Movie has a dated atmosphere (70's NY) and Batman (89) has dated effects (Batwing) and music (Prince).

But because of nostalgia and how well those films define these icons I gladly forgive those flaws and consider them among the best comic book movies to this day.

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Old 02-18-2012, 10:22 AM   #22
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

The Batwing was actually just a plain out bad affect.

In the B89 thread, they were saying Burton was quoted as saying he regretted allowing that effect into the movie immediately after it was made.

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Old 02-18-2012, 12:17 PM   #23
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

B89 hasn't aged too well. There are some aspects that have lasted (Nicholson, atmosphere, some fights), but others (supporting cast{characters}, plot holes, lack of development of the protagonist, nonsensical visuals). It's easily been eclipsed by Nolan's stronger films

Batman Returns: aged terribly! Ridiculous characters and back stories, along with a lot of plot holes.

Spiderman 1: too over the top with a lot of "REALLY" cheesy dialogue, plus the effects were really bad at times.

Superman 2: The Lester Cut. Pretty much started the awful stigma of "Comic book films shouldn't take themselves seriously". Donner cut is far superior.

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Old 02-18-2012, 12:21 PM   #24
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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They were trying to do too much like most sequels. Phoenix became a plot device instead a real emotional backbone for the story.
Yeah well, some sequels try to do too much but little happens. X2 for example.

And as far as I remember I saw plenty of true emotion regarding Phoenix. From Wolverine, Xavier, Cyclops and Magneto. But if you want to see it that way, every character could be considered a plot device.

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Either you do one story (cure) or the other (Phoenix) not both. An if you do both, make it cohesive and epic. It felt like nothing was really thought out in the narrative throughline.
Now I see you mention Phoenix and the cure and you apparently think two plots are way too many somehow? Where's the rule where both stories can't be mixed? Is there a rule where sick Spider-man losing his powers and 'Spider-man no more' plots can't be merged. Adaptations are the realm of merging, characters and stories.

Xavier killed by his dearest pupil, Magneto actually defending Xavier a couple fo times and the final massive battle. Much better and epic than anything in X2, it seems to me there's a real vital need to hate this movie.

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Old characters die without any weight. Xavier and even worst Cyclops die without any gravitas. In fact the entir movie just poops on Cyclops. Meanwhile the new characters didnt have much to do. Besides Beast anyway.
Well, Nightcrawler did nothing besides getting into the White House. But I guess new characters in X3 also had fun displaying his super-powers.

And then, any death in X3 had more gravitas than Rachel dying in TDK for Bruce Wayne, just to name an example. And at least this time deaths were deaths - the only thing I truly hate about X3 is Xavier's 're-incarnation.' Jean in X2 died for like 4 minutes.

I mean, I even felt Cyclop's, Xavier's and Jean's deaths more than Uncle Ben's, which was, this time, only a quick plot device to make things going on back in 2002.

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I also hated how Storm blatantly murders Calypso. Okay....
I loved that. It was great to see her doing something, unlike the previous movies.

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I think X3 can be viewed as a fun movie with some good action but it's story is so wishy-washy. Come on now; It's been too many years here to not know that X3 is a very polarizing movie.
I can't give two ****s in a row about fans calling it 'polarizing' as some evidence of anything. It is not.

But I'm puzzled as to why the hate. Singer having to leave, fans knowing the original plot beforehand and then comparing it to the actual movie. Beats me. X2's borefest didn't give me any hope for the third movie and I was pleasantly surprised. At least X3 had to do with the mutant condition; X2 was merely Wolverin trying to find out his origin and finding out NOTHING, Xavier being endlessly under hypnosis and Jean and Wolverine flirting without going anywhere concrete, which is pretty much the same they did in X1. Zero character development.





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Because it tried to cram all those things into a 90 minute movie so none of it held any weight.
All those things being only two plotlines. And 104 minutes for two plots that went somewhere was far better than 133 minutes of things that barely changed throughout the whole X2.

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Rogue went to get cured... that is the last we see of her. No real development or pay off for her character.
So, her being unable to touch his boyfriend, his boyfriend becoming increasingly interested in other girl, Rogue having to see that and then, as a consequence, making the decision to become a normal person is no development.

I'll tell you what's no development: Rogue not being able to touch his boyfriend and then her being still unable to do it. That's all what happened to her in X2.

And then Wolverine knowing little about his origin just to end up knowing little about it. Or him and Jean talking about how they kinda like each other but had better not do anything about it because of Cyclops. Which we already knew in the first movie. That is called no development.

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Jean Grey became the Pheonix, but wasn't really a character, just a plot device.
Strange. She acted and looked different than when she was Jean. She was a different person (aka character). But sure, when you have dozens of super-powered beings, like in every X-Men movie, then you cannot probably develop everyone as much as you want.

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They should have picked on or the other. The Cure or Pheonix story line. Not try to cram them both in, because like i said, it left both story lines under developed.
On the contrary, they were able to develop both stories pretty well, unlike in the previous movie were nothing went anywhere. Ah, okay, Jean died in the last scene, that's the only true change I saw in any character of X2.





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Originally Posted by MessiahDecoy123 View Post
Superman the Movie has a dated atmosphere (70's NY) and Batman (89) has dated effects (Batwing) and music (Prince).

But because of nostalgia and how well those films define these icons I gladly forgive those flaws and consider them among the best comic book movies to this day.
I have never got this 'dated' concept based in technical stuff. It's like calling Mozart dated because he didn't use synthetizers.

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Old 02-18-2012, 02:12 PM   #25
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Default Re: Fine like wine: how well have superhero films aged?

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I have never got this 'dated' concept based in technical stuff. It's like calling Mozart dated because he didn't use synthetizers.

aye, I agree, you just put into words something I have tried to when seeing those kinds of posts that concern special effects especially.

In regards to his point about Superman being dated because it is set in 70s America, well, I disagree, sure, we all know where it is set, and there are some fashions that give it away, but in general, it just feels like it is set in a large metropolitan city, the era is not relevant really. Yes, that could have happened to the film, but they took a lot of campy stuff out of the film's first script so that did not happen, the most famous example being a cameo by Telly Savalas playing Kojak.
But in regards to it dating the film, no, it's like a similar complaint I have read about the first Sw film being dated, because a few of the characeters have big sideburns, which i always thought was a testament as to how timeless the movie was, when you have to go looking for something from around that eara.

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