Back in the day, when the world of blockbuster franchises was new, picking your favorite was easy: Empire, Return of the Jedi, or the first one. Today, it’s a little tougher. The interconnected stories of Marvel’s Cinematic Universe form the second highest-grossing film series of all time (and watch out, Harry Potter, they’re catching up!). With a separate solo series for each A-list Avenger and two focusing on broader line-ups from the S.H.I.E.L.D. gang, this franchise is expanding in every direction. In honor of this year’s Comic-Con, we’ll do our best to rank each entry from most to least heroic.
Every week there are dozens of film news stories. We read them all and bring you the five most important ones in the single most important blog post you’ll ever read (today [at this moment]). This week: format fumbles, humbled hobbits and late greats.
It’s July, which means we are all hot, tired and pretty much superheroed out. We’ve weathered the explosive onslaught of THE AVENGERS and now (another) AMAZING SPIDER-MAN, and still have a certain DARK KNIGHT to go. All this hoopla gets us thinking: Are graphic novels and comic books responsible for classic fanboy superheroes, and nothing more? Of course not! This rich literary (yes, literary) genre has inspired a wealth of other cinematic material, from dystopian yarns to biting black comedies, some of which you may not have even guessed had comic connection.
image via Slant Magazine
That springtime film festival somewhere in the south of France is now fully under way, and we’re sad to spread the word: there are no female-directed films in competition at Cannes this year. Not that things are much better here in the US. Only five percent of the past year’s big, studio films were helmed by ladies. What gives?
Every week there are dozens of film news stories. Every week, we read them all and bring you the five most important ones in the single most important blog post you’ll ever read (today [at this moment]). This week: the world ends, the road to Cannes begins, and the Avengers get slapped with a hulking clean-up bill.
THE AVENGERS became a bonafide hit after making over $200 million over the past weekend and in the process setting a record for the biggest opening before adjusting for inflation. That’s some serious “geek” spending power right there. I’m happy for director Joss Whedon and after the success of this film the (Skrull filled) sky is the limit for him. The pop culture impact this film is having can be seen across multiple sandboxes in the web as a point of reference ranging from The Economist to Botticelli. Or rather with apologies to Botticelli, Julian Totino Tedesco created the above Avengers-themed illustration inspired by the master painter’s “The Birth of Venus.” Tedesco’s painting was one of many by various artists commissioned by Marvel to create Avengers covers in the style of famous paintings and genres. If Seurat were alive today and an Avengers fanboy he might’ve painted something like this.