Monday, October 20, 2014

Genre is the answer!... and the cause

So I'm a huge fan of the Marvel Comic Book movies. I don't just love every single one of them though, no, I just love the good ones - X-Men saga, The Avengers Initiative, and the early beginnings of what they've got planned for The Amazing Spider-Man expansion (Venom and Sinister Six, which is the villain's point-of-view like in The Magnificent Seven).
I also am of course a huge fan of The Dark Knight, it's an amazing interpretation of Batman; and the new connective universe of DC starting with the new Superman, Man of Steel, with it's soon sequels: Batman V. Superman: Dawn of Justice, and Justice League Part I & II. This is all gonna be some ridiculous geek-fest!
I mean, I grew up reading these comics, I'm 28 years old so I was a thriving adolescent before the first blockbuster Marvel in 2000 (i.e. X-Men). All I had as a kid was the first two cool Tim Burton Batman's and the campy sequels from Joel Schumacher, and before that the bizarre and sometimes boring Superman collection of the 70s.
I guess what I'm expressing is how cool this is today, but also how off-putting it might be for others. There's just so much sci-fi/action/adventure/man films out there; there's some good appeal toward women, but those lie in and around stuff like Harry Potter and Hunger Games, or the other stuff outside franchises.
But this franchise stuff can get messy, and plain old obsessive/annoying. Some might ask, "well what about the movies before the franchise or comic book days? That's gotta be better!"
And I suppose they can be, nevertheless, the fact of the matter is that Times Warner, Disney Inc., 20th Century Entertainment, and Universal Studios have all always been after money-making, and the answer to that jingling change in corporate pockets has always been in genre.
Before the comic book phase, there was the 1990 action thrillers, you know the lot: Air Force One, The Fugitive, The Saint, Mission: Impossible, Jurassic Park, etc. This was a good mix, but also a genre - the stuff came from books and old TV series. Also in the 90s were the epic world crisis films: Independence Day, Donte's Peek, Volcano, Deep Impact, and Armageddon. Before this was the 80s major sci-fi and horror renaissance: E.T., Back to the Future, Ghostbusters, Friday the Thirteenth, Halloween, Nightmare on Elm Street, IT, and Poltergeist.
Before that was the down-and-dirty, sometimes racy 70s flicks: The French Connection, Rocky, Planet of the Apes, and Dirty Harry. In the 60s it was the beach bumming, party films: Blue Hawaii, Beach Blanket Bingo, and Pink Panther. Before that was the Musical age, oh dear, there were a lot of them, every Gene Kelly, Bing Crosby, and Fred Astair.
It's genre that makes money, and in between these genres are the header-runners I didn't mention like John Wayne's Westerns, Alfred Hitchcock's Thrillers, and George Lucas's Fantasy Sci-fi (Star Wars and Indiana Jones), plus the continuing adaptation of books into film.
This all has been around forever, heck, Ben Hur and The Ten Commandments were the most remade films like Shakespeare and alike, so there can't be any complaints about remakes either. Hollywood and people in general are all similar through time - if something is just amazing and feels so relatable, it's stamped timeless and must continue on whether in remake or further saga.
So stop complaining, it's old news, like hundreds, even thousands of years old news. We always share the same stories and shell out the same entertainment; I've gotten used to it and it feels wonderful to simply enjoy it :-)

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