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Comic Book adaptations

With the release of the big screen adaptation of Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons Watchmen looming ever closer (I personally can not wait) it looks set to be the first adaptation of an Alan Moore graphic novel which could be good, banishing memories of the atrocious League of Extrodinary Gentlemen,  the equally awful From Hell (read the novel it really is epic in every sense) and the slightly medicore V for Vendetta. So it makes me wonder bout other comic-to-film adaptations which I have either enjoyed or been bored though particually as the source matrieal for some is not ideal for filmmaking or even that intresting. Since 2000 there has been on average around 2 to 3 comic to film adaptations a year, the majority being Marvel comic based and I think this is down to the popularity of both the first Blade film and the first X-Men film. Immensley enjoyable both in their narrative and set pieces with Blade being the real standout with its bloody , brutal vampire rave which sets the tone for the rest of the film. Managing to be a mature comic book adaptation with a black superhero (or rather anti hero)  and being better then its orignal 70’s source matieral.

Each year with each adaptation Marvel seem to be leading the pack with more hits then misses, last year there was both Iron Man and The Increible Hulk released a month between each other both containing elements which tied both films into something bigger (whether we will see the avengers film is another thing), and for geeky fanboys everywhere it was the start of something intresting, two Marvel characters from different film studios directly crossing over into each others films.

So at the moment Marvel is the forerunner for enjoyable film adaptations with DC slacking on the film front, its primery source being Batman (The Dark Knight is a pheonminal film) and  Superman (which is being planned to be Re-booted again). It will be intresting to see characters such as The Green Lantern , Wonderwoman and The Flash (a personal favorate of mine) adapted on to the big screen instead of just tv series (which they are ultimately quite good at doing).

The last few years there has been a steady decline in Marvels film features such as Electra (felt rushed and quite shallow), Ghost rider which I actually enjoyed though not on a level as much as sayX-Men 2 or Spiderman 2 but purely for its wow factor of a flaming skull headed anti-hero. Same goes for Rise of The Silver Surfer the fantastic four sequal, the silver surfer was amazing to see on the big screen the rest of the film was a bit cheesy to say the least.

But comic book films seem to have a long way from the first adapatations , but pre-Blade and X-Men seemed to be missing that core spark that made them so much fun to watch, a film maker who was intrested in the various backstories and mythology of the characters, each new film seems to be written and directed (some better then others) by true fans of the source matieral and as Watchmen comes closer I hope this is a turning point for more faithful comic book adaptations.

Embrace the Inner Geek!


4 thoughts on “Comic Book adaptations

  1. Yeah, too right, it seems like they’re rushing a few too many out now – but there’s ambition going into them, especially Marvel. I mean, an Oscar winner directing a Wolvie spinoff? That’s gold. And that Green Arrow thing from DC will be interesting even if it pisses a few people off (it won’t be faithful, but ah well).

    I want to see some adaptations of comics that ain’t superhero stuff though. Hopefully that’ll come if the Preacher and Last Man things are succesful.

    Anyway, good stuff mate. Took me long enough to read it…

    Posted by Lukasz Fenrych | March 18, 2009, 11:21 pm
  2. I completely agree with you there mate, its such a shame when you get films like Electra, X-men 3, Man-Thing (which is almost as awful as the original 1991 captin america tv film) and Blade Trinity which feel rushed for a quick buck. Singers superman returns was overly lovey and cheesy in places but it had so much damn heart , and its producition design having a fantastic 40’s esc feel to it. The Wachowsiki Bros are apprently rebooting Superman. we’ll see how that turns out , but please hollywood no-more “if its dark that must be a winner” seniaro. Just caust The Dark Knight was doesnt mean it will suit the others source matieral. More DC film adaptations methinks….I’d happly make a flash film great comic book character potential if done right. oh and the less said about The Spirit the better.

    Posted by Musings of a film fanatic | February 26, 2009, 11:33 am
  3. Enjoyed reading your dialogue on comic books films man, it really brought home, i think what we all feels about these films and how we hope that hollywood stops messing them up in the hopes of making a cheap buck (x-men 3) a great example.
    Its a shame about the planned reboot of superman.I actually thought that superman returns was thoughtful and fanatastic film, sure it can be argued that it was not really entertaing for kids due to the focus on Story than on Action but I felt that it develop the Superman mythos from the Richard Donner era and it made excited for future instalments. Apparently they want to make the new superman reboot ‘dark’ in the vein of ‘the dark knight’. Again hollywood just copying what is popular to make a buck!
    But I hope that more film makers like Christopher Nolan and Bryan Singer are allowed to handle comic book films than say Brett Ratner who just focus on more than action and what looks cool than something called plot and story!

    Posted by Thulani Mupemhi | February 26, 2009, 10:13 am
  4. Been so busy haven’t been able to finish reading ur musing! But “Embrace the Inner Geek” is the motto of the year 😉 lol, i can’t believe they deleted you off fcbook!

    Posted by martyna | February 25, 2009, 10:22 pm

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