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View Poll Results: The Best Super hero Origin Movie ?
Batman Begins 42 56.00%
Captain America 5 6.67%
Iron Man 9 12.00%
Spider Man 5 6.67%
Superman The Movie 14 18.67%
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:31 PM   #126
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I'll give you Otis being campy but Luthor proves himself to be a cop killer who can figure out how to contact Superman, kill Superman, and outthink Superman who can't save both the East and West coast.
The fact that Luthor's only accomplices were two idiots who lived with him in the subway kinda illegitimized his supposed intelligence, IMO.

Not to mention, he himself had plenty of campy lines and gags written in. The wig, the ascot, the "what my father always said to me" line...pure camp.
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The third act is not implausible for a movie about an alien person who can shot lasers from his eyes and fly around in a cape. Is the reversing time kind of silly, yes. But it's more symbolic of what we would do to save someone we love. As pure symbolism, it works.
Expect "pure" symbolism is stupid to have in a movie. Because it's always inherently nonsensical. A proper film should have a strong balance between symbolism and sense. STM didn't.
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Superman has alot of great dialogue. The only overly campy stuff would be between Otis and Luther. You can't dismiss and entire movie based on 4 or 5 lines of dialogue.
It was way more than 5 lines.

Otis was campy, Luthor was campy, Perry White was campy, Jimmy was campy, Clark was campy, even Luis had gags written in.
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The Smallville scenes and Krypton scenes have tremendous heart and resonance. It perfectly introduces us to Superman and both lofty birthright and hs humble upbringing.
I agree. They were the best part of the movie.
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Hulk had pretty dull stories with everyone looking at their watch waiting for the Hulk to show up and run around in slow motion, throwing bad guys through doors.
What made TIH great was anything but "waiting for the Hulk to show up and run around in slow motion", it was those slow-burn, dramatic stories. They were always very human, very sentimental, and usually had some (halfway logical) symbolism in them as well.

TIH wasn't some smash 'em up action. It was a drama. It was understated. And it was done very well.
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Acting wise I love Bill Bixby calm contrast to the Hulk monster but it their wasnt alot of strong acting involved. Bixby basically played himself. Reeve's was endearing as the bumbling Clark Kent. Reeve does alot with body language and subtle looks and creates a superhero performance that has yet to be matched.
Look, I'm really not trying to knock on Chris Reeve. He did a great job. Very ironic, definitely. My comment was that the dialogue, and the tone of STM as a film, limited what he was able to do. You can't exactly be campy AND subtlety dramatic at the same time.

But again, that's not necessarily a bad thing - and it's certainly not Reeve's fault - I just think the role in which Bixby played, gave him a bit more of an opportunity to turn in a more dramatic performance.

It's like comparing Keaton in Mr. Mom to Keaton in Clean and Sober. Same actor so it was the same quality performance, but due to the subject matter he was able to turn in a much different performance in the latter.
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Superman the Movie had tremendous heart and iconic imagery. It's still remains one of the best superhero movie ever attempted even after all these decades.
That really seems neither here nor there. Personally to me, B89 had tremendously iconic imagery and will always be my preferred superhero movie. But I'm not going to go around spouting that off as actual fact.

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Old 01-22-2012, 10:41 PM   #127
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Difference is that superhuman strenght in stressing moments was the whole theme in TIH77.



I have problems thinking that Superman didn't do everything to save innocent people. He needed a personal problem to put all his effort.



Care about, no. Notice, I think a lot of people noticed.
I completely agree!

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The fact that Luthor's only accomplices were two idiots who lived with him in the subway kinda illegitimized his supposed intelligence, IMO.

Not to mention, he himself had plenty of campy lines and gags written in. The wig, the ascot, the "what my father always said to me" line...pure camp.
Expect "pure" symbolism is stupid to have in a movie. Because it's always inherently nonsensical. A proper film should have a strong balance between symbolism and sense. STM didn't.
It was way more than 5 lines.

Otis was campy, Luthor was campy, Perry White was campy, Jimmy was campy, Clark was campy, even Luis had gags written in.
I agree. They were the best part of the movie.
What made TIH great was anything but "waiting for the Hulk to show up and run around in slow motion", it was those slow-burn, dramatic stories. They were always very human, very sentimental, and usually had some (halfway logical) symbolism in them as well.

TIH wasn't some smash 'em up action. It was a drama. It was understated. And it was done very well.
Look, I'm really not trying to knock on Chris Reeve. He did a great job. Very ironic, definitely. My comment was that the dialogue, and the tone of STM as a film, limited what he was able to do. You can't exactly be campy AND subtlety dramatic at the same time.

But again, that's not necessarily a bad thing - and it's certainly not Reeve's fault - I just think the role in which Bixby played, gave him a bit more of an opportunity to turn in a more dramatic performance.

It's like comparing Keaton in Mr. Mom to Keaton in Clean and Sober. Same actor so it was the same quality performance, but due to the subject matter he was able to turn in a much different performance in the latter.
That really seems neither here nor there. Personally to me, B89 had tremendously iconic imagery and will always be my preferred superhero movie. But I'm not going to go around spouting that off as actual fact.
I agree with most of this.

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Old 01-22-2012, 11:12 PM   #128
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Dammit. Lois, not Luis.

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Old 01-23-2012, 02:02 AM   #129
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Ok, first of all I was talking about the Hulk TV pilot (the origin), not everything (although all Kenneth Johnson directed was pretty good too).

And I was talking about Johnson doing that before Donner and Nolan or whoever. And he did with 100% serious approach, 0% camp, which neither Donner nor Nolan could say.

That said, I know what STM is considered amongst superhero movies. I myself consider it one of the 3 masterpieces of the genre. But the camp is there and it's Luthor alone, Luthor-Otis and Luthor-Teschmacher. And far more than 5 lines. And I cannot care any less about it. But I have to applaud that someone on a TV show did what Johnson did before the rest and how ignored that is.

And while Reeve could do two very different characters, what Bixby did was nothing short of difficult and admirable with Banner.
I think the thing is, Superman is the first epic superhero movie (yes, it was epic, despite the camp), while the Incredible Hulk isn't even the first serious superhero show. The Adventures of Superman is. I just don't think it was as special, it felt like a lot of other 70s action-adventure series.

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Old 01-23-2012, 02:32 AM   #130
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I think the thing is, Superman is the first epic superhero movie (yes, it was epic, despite the camp), while the Incredible Hulk isn't even the first serious superhero show. The Adventures of Superman is. I just don't think it was as special, it felt like a lot of other 70s action-adventure series.
And once again, I'm only talking about the pilot (origin movie) not the entire series which, indeed, feels very much 70's. The pilot, though, was a different thing, believe me. There were other episodes directed by Johnson, as I said, which were good but they had that 70's feeling all over and some cliches the series used to much throughout its run. But the pilot was amazing.

Now I have vague memories of The Adventures oif Superman, but I cannot remember the same level of seriousness.

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Old 01-23-2012, 08:38 AM   #131
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I think the thing is, Superman is the first epic superhero movie (yes, it was epic, despite the camp), while the Incredible Hulk isn't even the first serious superhero show. The Adventures of Superman is. I just don't think it was as special, it felt like a lot of other 70s action-adventure series.
I'll concede that point, definitely. STM was big and epic.

I was merely commenting on the writing of the two.

Although, now that you reminded me of it, already having a fairly serious live action Superman in the TV series, kinda makes me all the more is appointed that STM ended up as campy as it is.

I'll give all the credit in the world to the scope, and the plotting (which is now the standard plot for all superhero movies), ad even a lot of theerformances...but those few, rather big, logistical failures in the script will always diminish the film's quality, IMO.

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Old 01-24-2012, 04:48 PM   #132
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STM was released in 1978, Batman Begins in 2005. TV producer Kenneth Johnson portrayed a comic book character's origin in a completely serious way in 1977 and without campy villiains nor bad action and bad one-liners. But the Incredible Hulk wasn't released on theaters in America...
Yeah Hulk was more of an adult TV drama...which unfortunately took away from its superhero-ness, if you will, but appreciably serious. STM put it on that big movie scale and did a great job of maintaining that wonder while packaging it in something adult/sophisticated as well. Just the idea of doing a Superhero as a big popular film without having to 'kid it down'...and its immediate appeal genuinely came from just watching and experiencing the movie, even for those who casually knew of the character Superman but didn't follow him in comics and TV. It really hit the right formula from the beginning and is still a benchmark reference even for those who want to do it differently. So I think it still deserves the #1 spot even if some of that is earned by its veteran status.

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Plus, is the infatuation that teenage girls have with pseudo-vampires any less sad than your infatuation with men in spandex and Heath Ledger? Its probably more justifiable for them. :)

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Old 01-24-2012, 06:07 PM   #133
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I like your points, Kal, but at the same time, I don't see how you can say it wasn't 'kided down" with all of the campiness and pointless illogicality inherent in most of the film.

Look, it had great things about it - the plot structure, the epic scope, Superman's origin being done pitch-perfectly - but at the same time, I don't think you can at all say it's a film that still holds up to a modern, mature audience.

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Old 01-24-2012, 06:33 PM   #134
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The fact that Luthor's only accomplices were two idiots who lived with him in the subway kinda illegitimized his supposed intelligence, IMO.
On this one point, you could kind of no-prize it as being smart, in the way that he had crooks around him who were too dumb to figure out a way of overthrowing him and taking over whatever operations he had planned.
But, aye, Otis was a bit too dumb, he made that mistake with the numbers for the missile. With Miss Tessmacher, well, she played the role of seductive con-artist, and Lex had her around because she was crooked, she liked the money for nothing, but was not malicious in the way that she might turn on him and kill him for money or something.

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Old 01-24-2012, 07:36 PM   #135
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Yeah Hulk was more of an adult TV drama...which unfortunately took away from its superhero-ness, if you will, but appreciably serious.
I'm very sorry???

An innocent person was in danger, Dr. Banner would turn into Hulk, Hulk would save that person. Is that any non-superheroic?

Even in the pilot, where Hulk is basically the monster ruining Banner's life, he tends to do the "right thing," only it is not underlined for us.

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STM put it on that big movie scale and did a great job of maintaining that wonder while packaging it in something adult/sophisticated as well. Just the idea of doing a Superhero as a big popular film without having to 'kid it down'...and its immediate appeal genuinely came from just watching and experiencing the movie, even for those who casually knew of the character Superman but didn't follow him in comics and TV. It really hit the right formula from the beginning and is still a benchmark reference even for those who want to do it differently. So I think it still deserves the #1 spot even if some of that is earned by its veteran status.
Yeah, as you say, STM did it big scale. And that's precisely what I'm saying here: serious approach had been done already.

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:11 AM   #136
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I'm very sorry???

An innocent person was in danger, Dr. Banner would turn into Hulk, Hulk would save that person. Is that any non-superheroic?

Even in the pilot, where Hulk is basically the monster ruining Banner's life, he tends to do the "right thing," only it is not underlined for us.



Yeah, as you say, STM did it big scale. And that's precisely what I'm saying here: serious approach had been done already.
Yeah but just serous isn't really the point though. And again I think that was too serious even though it was 'ahead of its time' in a way. Not enough fun, if you will....it's not just about being serious. Whereas Superman very much embraced the fun of being the hero of comic strips, etc. but presented as popular hollywood film. Hulk was very depressing, whereas something like Six Million Dollar Man at least had a bit more fun to it. I kind of liken the Hulk TV show to the original Godzilla movie...which in a lot of ways wasn't really a monster movie...even if technically it had a giant reptile that breathed fire and all. Not that later Godzilla movies were sophisticated works of art.

But in general, we saw a rebirth in the big adventure film in the mid-to-late 70's, so STM came around at the right time, and thanfully was treated by Donner & crew like a serious big production that had to stand on its own feet and not just get by on the kid appeal. It's still remarkable how well they hit all the right marks from the get-go.

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Plus, is the infatuation that teenage girls have with pseudo-vampires any less sad than your infatuation with men in spandex and Heath Ledger? Its probably more justifiable for them. :)

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Old 01-25-2012, 01:27 AM   #137
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I like your points, Kal, but at the same time, I don't see how you can say it wasn't 'kided down" with all of the campiness and pointless illogicality inherent in most of the film.

Look, it had great things about it - the plot structure, the epic scope, Superman's origin being done pitch-perfectly - but at the same time, I don't think you can at all say it's a film that still holds up to a modern, mature audience.
Y'know...I think the campiness is more 'childish' in retrospect than it was for its day, in terms of a knock on the film. I'm not saying it was considered high-concept humor, but I think that maintaining some of that campiness in a more sophisticated cinematic package is where they were really breaking new ground. And I said that it still holds up in terms of pointing to how much they got right as a mold for the future, but again...by todays standards of course we'll find some things worth snickering over. For the time, they took a lot of bold steps...and you can still appreciate and draw influence from that today.

In a lot of ways, it's like saying that Walter Johnson or Satchel Paige couldn't have the kinds of numbers in today's baseball game...that baserunners would make mincemeat out of their motions in terms of stealing bases, or that even mediocre hitters today could turn on their fastballs and do more with a more live ball. That's not really the point in gauging them as all-time greats, and why their achievements stand up today as impressive, because we can still appreciate how much they stood out at the time.

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Plus, is the infatuation that teenage girls have with pseudo-vampires any less sad than your infatuation with men in spandex and Heath Ledger? Its probably more justifiable for them. :)

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Old 01-26-2012, 08:46 AM   #138
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Y'know...I think the campiness is more 'childish' in retrospect than it was for its day, in terms of a knock on the film. I'm not saying it was considered high-concept humor, but I think that maintaining some of that campiness in a more sophisticated cinematic package is where they were really breaking new ground. And I said that it still holds up in terms of pointing to how much they got right as a mold for the future, but again...by todays standards of course we'll find some things worth snickering over.
I'm sorry, but I still disagree with that. I often hear that excuse a lot with old movies. That the audiences of that day and age weren't sophisticated enough to realize what was campy and what was not, what was bad and what was good, etc.

And I'm sorry, that's ********. Why? Because movies from that same decade, and for decades before were perfectly serious and logical and adult, and there's no excuse why STM couldn't have been too. I mean, for god's sake, Mario Puzo wrote the damned thing. You can't tell me that the guy who wrote the Godfather - which still holds up as one of the best films of all time - couldn't have written STM to hold up just as well.

Look at Star Wars, released the previous year, that was catered to the exact same audience; children and adolescent men, and Star Wars, again, wasn't nearly as campy as STM, and was even more groundbreaking, revolutionary, etc.

So you're baseball analogy doesn't make sense; because STM didn't even hold up to its contemporaries. It wouldn't be asking Satchel Paige to hold his own against Ryan Howard. It would be asking Satchel Paige to hold his own against his own team mates, or other all stars around the league at the time.

And STM doesn't do that. It simply doesn't compare to The Gofather, Star Wars, and most major movies from that time period. If anything, it's most comparable to the Batman TV series from over a decade before - a series that actually was intended to be a comedy for adults.
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For the time, they took a lot of bold steps...and you can still appreciate and draw influence from that today.
I've never disagreed with that. STM was groundbreaking in a lot of ways.

But at the same time, I view it like the model-T of superhero films. It was the original, it was what started it all, and it's what all cars that proceeded it were based on. But does that mean it's better, or deserves more praise than a 2012 Corvette or Ferrari? Of course not.

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Old 01-26-2012, 01:33 PM   #139
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I'm sorry, but I still disagree with that. I often hear that excuse a lot with old movies. That the audiences of that day and age weren't sophisticated enough to realize what was campy and what was not, what was bad and what was good, etc.

And I'm sorry, that's ********. Why? Because movies from that same decade, and for decades before were perfectly serious and logical and adult, and there's no excuse why STM couldn't have been too. I mean, for god's sake, Mario Puzo wrote the damned thing. You can't tell me that the guy who wrote the Godfather - which still holds up as one of the best films of all time - couldn't have written STM to hold up just as well.

Look at Star Wars, released the previous year, that was catered to the exact same audience; children and adolescent men, and Star Wars, again, wasn't nearly as campy as STM, and was even more groundbreaking, revolutionary, etc.

So you're baseball analogy doesn't make sense; because STM didn't even hold up to its contemporaries. It wouldn't be asking Satchel Paige to hold his own against Ryan Howard. It would be asking Satchel Paige to hold his own against his own team mates, or other all stars around the league at the time.

And STM doesn't do that. It simply doesn't compare to The Gofather, Star Wars, and most major movies from that time period. If anything, it's most comparable to the Batman TV series from over a decade before - a series that actually was intended to be a comedy for adults.
I've never disagreed with that. STM was groundbreaking in a lot of ways.

But at the same time, I view it like the model-T of superhero films. It was the original, it was what started it all, and it's what all cars that proceeded it were based on. But does that mean it's better, or deserves more praise than a 2012 Corvette or Ferrari? Of course not.
Again, I still think you're using a lot of today's standards in areas that aren't quite fair in terms judging STM. I'm not saying the campy parts weren't campy or silly...but they just didn't stand out as 'painfully' at the time as they do now. And no, I'm not comparing it to the Godfather et al. And yes there are even parts of Star Wars that are rather silly or underdeveloped by today's standards. But to portray a comic-hero story onscreen with that kind of scope and impact was all but unheard of at the time...and that's what identifies the movie the most to this day, not the pratfalls and silly gags. Had the latter been the most prominent component of it, what audiences came took away most from the experience, the view of movie and even the concept of Superhero movies could have turned out quite differently. If you're somehow saying that the campiness should have exposed it more as mediocre effort back then....well, sorry, but it just didn't. It wasn't that big of a deal.

Also, it's possible that the campiness doesn't bother non comic-fans as much as it does comic-fans. Because the latter may take it a bit personally as a jab at comics being inherently 'silly', whereas a non comic-fan just sees it (and is okay with it) as part of the movie. there's really nothing to clearly indicate that it was intended that way, yet still it could be taken that way.

And as I said, it doesn't mean it deserves to be considered for example, a better car part for part than a modern supercar. But it still does deserve the title of best superhero movie/origin movie just like the P-51 Mustang deserves the title as best fighter plane, even if you have things like the F15 Eagle and F22 Raptor which would blow it out of the sky from miles away. Or even what the Miura did for modern supercars, even with its faults and even with things like the McLaren today. The importance and significance of it in its genre and for films to follow puts it there, and much of that is thanks to things the movie did very well despite the parts like the silliness that you mention.

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Plus, is the infatuation that teenage girls have with pseudo-vampires any less sad than your infatuation with men in spandex and Heath Ledger? Its probably more justifiable for them. :)

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Old 01-26-2012, 01:46 PM   #140
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I guess it's simply that I disagree with that concept; that, even though better things have come down their pipeline, it should still be considered the best due to its legacy.

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Old 01-26-2012, 01:52 PM   #141
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I guess it's simply that I disagree with that concept; that, even though better things have come down their pipeline, it should still be considered the best due to its legacy.
I think the same can apply when ranking a lot of things in life. And if it is legacy, it's earned that much moreso than happening to fall on it.

Put it this way...best from a cinema history standpoint? Probably STM.

Best craft-wise/from a pure filmmaking standpoint? Probably BB or something recent.

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Plus, is the infatuation that teenage girls have with pseudo-vampires any less sad than your infatuation with men in spandex and Heath Ledger? Its probably more justifiable for them. :)
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Old 01-26-2012, 01:56 PM   #142
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I definitely agree, none of the films listed have had the cultural/historical impact that STM did.

Except for B89, of course.

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Old 01-26-2012, 02:47 PM   #143
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I definitely agree, none of the films listed have had the cultural/historical impact that STM did.

Except for B89, of course.
Yeah, also...when 'ranking' superhero movies, I actually put B'89 pretty high up and above Xmen/Xmen2...even though I really didn't like B'89 and did like Xmen. As actual works of filmmaking, I like Xmen, Iron Man, BB/TDK, and even Spiderman better than B'89....but B'89 had more 'importance', if you will, that I respect.

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Old 01-30-2012, 07:03 PM   #144
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Put it this way...best from a cinema history standpoint? Probably STM.
Definitely right.

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Old 01-31-2012, 05:18 PM   #145
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Default Re: Batman Begins Best Origin Movie ever ?

I think that one could make a very good case for Batman Begins being the best origin film to date. One of the things that Batman Begins does that no superhero origin film had done before it is that it really explains things that other origin films simply glossed over.
It explains things like:
  • Why does the hero fight crime as a vigilante instead of from within the justice system?
  • Why does he wear an elaborate costume with a motif instead of a basic disguise to fight crime?
  • Where does the hero's moral code come from?
(And these explanations were often found in the source material, which shows the awesomeness of the Batman mythos.)

Neither Superman nor Spider-Man made me believe that Metropolis or New York City needed their respective superheroes like Batman Begins made me believe that Gotham City needed Batman.
So I think I could agree that Batman Begins is the best superhero origin movie to date.

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Old 01-31-2012, 05:23 PM   #146
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Default Re: Batman Begins Best Origin Movie ever ?

I also think, despite certain weaknesses of the script, BB does a much better job of really getting into the psychology of its main character than any other superhero film put there.

It's almost a Bruce Wayne biopic more than anything else.

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Old 01-31-2012, 05:33 PM   #147
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Default Re: Batman Begins Best Origin Movie ever ?

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I also think, despite certain weaknesses of the script, BB does a much better job of really getting into the psychology of its main character than any other superhero film put there.

It's almost a Bruce Wayne biopic more than anything else.
Exactly! Batman Begins does a brilliant job of not only explaining why Bruce Wayne is who he is and does what he does, but why he isn't who he isn't and doesn't do what he doesn't, which I can't say about Clark Kent in Superman or Peter Parker in Spider-Man.

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Old 01-31-2012, 06:51 PM   #148
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Default Re: Batman Begins Best Origin Movie ever ?

And that isn't even a criticsm of Spider-Man or STM, they play out exactly as I'd want and expect. BB does more to explain Batman's motivations and psychology than I'd ever expect from a superhero movie.

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Old 01-31-2012, 07:00 PM   #149
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Default Re: Batman Begins Best Origin Movie ever ?

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And that isn't even a criticsm of Spider-Man or STM, they play out exactly as I'd want and expect. BB does more to explain Batman's motivations and psychology than I'd ever expect from a superhero movie.
Agreed.
And unlike some other superhero origin films like Spider-Man, Batman Begins doesn't suffer from a lack of plot after telling the origin story.

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Old 01-31-2012, 10:21 PM   #150
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Default Re: Batman Begins Best Origin Movie ever ?

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It's almost a Bruce Wayne biopic more than anything else.
When it is at its best.

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