Laughing City

What are the films prospects?
Smooth Sailing
16%
 16%  [ 1 ]
Rough Waters Ahead
33%
 33%  [ 2 ]
Taking On Water
16%
 16%  [ 1 ]
the Ship's Sunk
33%
 33%  [ 2 ]
Total Votes : 6

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bigideas
Vintage Newbie


They are using more obscure villains, as I do not recognize any of them from any Batman movie I've ever seen. I have no idea how known they would be to the comic readers.
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wilsmith
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I didn't know half of the ones they used in the old cartoon. Apparently Gotham is the super villian captial of the world at the rate they churn them out, not so much on superheroes though.
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bigideas
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Anyone have any opinion on these 90's comic/superhero movies:

The Shadow
The Phantom
Darkman

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boone
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I love Darkman. One of Raimi's best. Sam Raimi was originally trying to get on The Shadow with a script written by him and the Coen brothers but for some reason it got passed on. He went on to develop his own character, Darkman.

The eventual Shadow movie that was made by David Koepp and Russell Mulcahy was fine. It kind of got an unfair shake with critics because it was "corny" (i.e., not modern enough), but there seemed to be a lot of 30s and 40s themed films in the 90s that suffered the same fate.

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wilsmith
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I was a fan of the Phantom thanks to theh Defenders of the Earth syndicated cartoon and my dad telling me about him from when he was a kid. The movie, though not bad, was not built for the 90s goth comic movie machinery. The Peter Chung (Aeon Flux) cartoon 2040, was excellent.

Darkman appealed to me as a preteen given my angst, hormonal outsider kids coukd definitely identify with that character, but looking back, it was kind of psychotic and twisted, like Robocop.

I never watched the Shadow. Noir went over my head and bored the heck out of me at that age if it wasn't super heavy in the melodrama department thanks to all those 80s Mob movies. plus i wanted Alec Baldwin as Batman.

Did Dick Tracy come out before or after The Shadow? I refused to watch that too.

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boone
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Dick Tracy came out right after Batman. 1990, I think. Neither it nor The Shadow were very noirish. Dick Tracy was pretty much a straight adaptation of the comic, with beautiful, colorful cinematography by Vittorio Storaro that looked more inspired by Fleischer Superman than anything. It was another one that got kind of unfair treatment because it was too close to an honest-to-goodness classic movie for an eXXXtreeeeem 90s crowd (this edgy/modern issue is not new.)

The Shadow was more like a 30s fun action-adventure film like The Thin Man (or, say, Romancing The Stone) than Touch Of Evil or even a dark Fritz Lang thing. Film noir was more of a 50s thing than a 30s thing.

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bigideas
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I don't remember Phantom, but I may have seen the other two.
It's been too long to remember much, and I haven't seen them rerun on satellite.

I did see Brenda Starr a year or two ago, but I have mostly forgotten it.

I remember Dick Tracy having a huge McDonald's campaign behind it.
Warren Beaty starred in and directed.
I mostly remembered the very vivid colors.
According to Wikipedia, Beaty was talking about a sequel as recent as summer 2011.

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wilsmith
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I think Dick Tracy was the John Carter of its time in terms of media campaigning vs. success, or better yet, the Lone Ranger of its time!

boone wrote:
Dick Tracy came out right after Batman. 1990, I think. Neither it nor The Shadow were very noirish. Dick Tracy was pretty much a straight adaptation of the comic, with beautiful, colorful cinematography by Vittorio Storaro that looked more inspired by Fleischer Superman than anything. It was another one that got kind of unfair treatment because it was too close to an honest-to-goodness classic movie for an eXXXtreeeeem 90s crowd (this edgy/modern issue is not new.)

The Shadow was more like a 30s fun action-adventure film like The Thin Man (or, say, Romancing The Stone) than Touch Of Evil or even a dark Fritz Lang thing. Film noir was more of a 50s thing than a 30s thing.


I was probably too broad with my use of the term Noir. I thinking more of the period of the films, the use of archetypical Tough Guy, Mysterious, hero figures, more so that the Cinematography and dramatic themes of the films, which are definitely signatures of proper Film Noir. I could have just set those movies were "period specific" or "retro" but Noir, for me, seems like the wheel house most of those crime fighter stories are set, in post World War but pre-Civil Rights/ Vietnam/ Moon Landing, America.

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boone
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The Phantom was kind of a troubled production. It started out in the hands of Sergio Leone of all people, then worked its way to Joe Dante, then to Simon Wincer. I skipped it at the time because I thought the costume was silly, and I was a big fan of Phantom 2040 (It was one of the few non-network cartoons I could watch back in the Big Ugly Dish days) and for some reason it seemed like a big departure from that (which is odd because I thought the idea of a generational hero and different shows and movies from different times was a great idea). Now that I know more about pulp magazines and classic adventure, I actually probably would have enjoyed it.

wilsmith wrote:
I was probably too broad with my use of the term Noir. I thinking more of the period of the films, the use of archetypical Tough Guy, Mysterious, hero figures, more so that the Cinematography and dramatic themes of the films, which are definitely signatures of proper Film Noir. I could have just set those movies were "period specific" or "retro" but Noir, for me, seems like the wheel house most of those crime fighter stories are set, in post World War but pre-Civil Rights/ Vietnam/ Moon Landing, America.

Film noir actually refers to the dark subject matter, untrustworthy main characters, and serpentine plots of post WWII thrillers. It was certainly influenced by certain movies and photography styles of the 30s and 40s, (especially the increasingly bleak films of Fritz Lang, after he had to flee Germany and abandon his wife because she was diving headlong into the Nazi party,) but film noir really didn't exist as a narrative or visual style until at least after 1945. And it's not exactly what people think it is.

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wilsmith
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I remember doing a big study on Film Noir in an English class of all subjects. LA Confidential was the film we were asked to review and analyze as an example of Film Noir. It's definitely a particular style of story and film-making. Sin City would be the prototypical Noir styled comic for example. Not specifically because of the time period, but because of the characters and plot, along with the visual style.

The Phantom went for the Adventure Film tone of Indiana Jones, which is true to the character. 2040 took it and put it in a completely different context, and made it very appealing for contemporary times. The visuals were great, as Peter Chung was the closet thing to Anime I'd seen, courtesy of his Aeon Flux stuff on Liquid Television. It made the costume easier to take. On film, that purple body suit looked like an "If They Mated" for Grimace and the Hamburglar. Some things are just better sans live action productions.

The Spirit, outside of it's penchant for irony and humor at its own expense used a lot of the stylistic elements, and backdrop that visually evoke what I'd call a "Noir" feel, but it was a straight up Hero throwback story, minus the coloration.

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boone
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Since L.A. Confidential is not a good example of real film noir, I would take what you learned with a grain of salt.

Film noir (which was a term used by critics and not filmmakers until, like, the 70s) was more about unscrupulous, often inexperienced characters getting themselves caught up in complex crime plots and having to use deception and trickery to get out of it. The stark, dreamlike and evocative lighting and camera work was actually budgetary at first, since those types of films started out as B-movies and Grindhouse features and quickly worked their way up into fine films.

The tropes and visual styles of crime and adventure films from the 30s and 40s tend to get smashed into the subgenre these days, but they're not the same.

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wilsmith
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Yeah, that professor was just really keen on making us watch that film more than anything. I always thought D. O. A. (The remake) was the best example from my childhood. I could never make it through Chinatown as a kid, but that's a textbook example.

I think Noir and Gothic are two terms that get used in broader senses than intended, but it's become part of the contemporary vernacular to a certain extent. To the extent that those two terms are sometimes used interchangeably, like in the case of some descriptions of Dark City or Tim Burton's Batman. Funny how those things happen.

To bring it full circle, I thought some of the costuming choices for the Kryptonians had a gothic feel to it, along with the use of "living metal" for their technology. That was an interesting visual choice. I wonder what the next film will look like without having that otherworldly setting to borrow from?

I googled and found a sketch of what may be the new batman and it had a note that might be a big spoiler...

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bigideas
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Does anyone want to talk about movies made from trading cards?
Thinking about all of this reminded me of Garbage Pail Kids.
I'm pretty sure my mom hated it, but I think I got a few packs of them.
The GPK movie is one of those that I'm not sure if I only saw the trailer, or actually saw the complete movie.
The trailer makes it look completely stupid, but I kinda want to see it.

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The Man In The Moon
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i wish they'd make a Justice League Unlimited movie. I loved that cartoon.

oh, and of course batman ALWAYS will carry some kryptonite with him just in case.

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boone
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wilsmith wrote:
Yeah, that professor was just really keen on making us watch that film more than anything. I always thought D. O. A. (The remake) was the best example from my childhood. I could never make it through Chinatown as a kid, but that's a textbook example.

I think Noir and Gothic are two terms that get used in broader senses than intended, but it's become part of the contemporary vernacular to a certain extent. To the extent that those two terms are sometimes used interchangeably, like in the case of some descriptions of Dark City or Tim Burton's Batman. Funny how those things happen.

To bring it full circle, I thought some of the costuming choices for the Kryptonians had a gothic feel to it, along with the use of "living metal" for their technology. That was an interesting visual choice. I wonder what the next film will look like without having that otherworldly setting to borrow from?

I googled and found a sketch of what may be the new batman and it had a note that might be a big spoiler...

"Noir" gets thrown around a lot for anything that's theatrically shot with chiaroscuro lighting: expressionism, new objectivity, deep focus, "neo-noir," and pretty much anything in black-and-white. But the term "film noir" is as much about the storytelling, if not more, than the image. Look at Chinatown. It certainly doesn't look like film noir, it looks like a color film from the 40s combined with an eastern European film from the 70s. But it's a story about a bumbling, morally ambiguous PI who gets himself caught up in a disturbing, complex plot (that actually did happen in LA, but it was in the 1900s) by a woman of questionable virtue who he can't handle. That's noir.

"Neo noir" is a term that should probably mean "I don't know what film noir means, but I love old crime films." Speaking more from a critical standpoint, because I'm sure the filmmakers aren't labelling their films as such. The modern films that are coming to mind that could really be considered actual film noir are Blood Simple., Body Heat, Basic Instinct, Lost Highway, Fargo, The Big Lebowski, Fight Club, The Man Who Wasn't There...

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