Summer 2013 Movie Wrap-Up!
It’s now September, which means summer has ended. The hot days, ice cream, and swimming will come to an end for another year, and we nerds now have a chance to sit back and reflect on the big comic book movies of the summer. Of the three major releases (Iron Man 3, Man of Steel, and The Wolverine), which film stacked up as the best? Let’s take a look back on the three and find out.
Iron Man 3 served as probably the second most divisive comic book film of the summer. For the ten of you who still haven’t seen the movie, I’ll save the spoiler that’s caused such a rift in the Marvel geek community, but I will say I myself have very mixed feelings about it. On the one hand, it does work within the context of the story for the film, but I also completely agree with fans who were upset with the choices the film made. It seemed at times that IM3 was a little too knowing and funny. In fact, I’m stunned that RDJ didn’t look right at the camera and wink. That being said, it’s always fun to watch Robert Downey Jr on screen as Tony Stark, even if he is out of the suit for a majority of the film.
If you had told me that Man of Steel would be the most divisive movie of the summer back in May, I wouldn’t have believed you. However, now that the dust is settled, there seem to be two camps when it comes to the Zack Snyder film: those that love it, and those that despise it entirely. To be honest, I fall into the former camp when it comes to the film, even though I completely understand people’s feelings about the amount of destruction in the film’s finale. However, I’ve never understood the Zack Snyder hate, and I loved Henry Cavill’s performance as Superman. Yes, they spent way too much time on Krypton in the beginning, and the film assumes you already know the major beats of Superman’s origin, but I really liked this “serious” take on Superman, and can’t wait to see him (finally) meet Batman in 2015.
Hugh Jackman’s latest go-round as the clawed mutant was definitely better than his last. A marked improvement over the abomination that was X-Men Origins: Wolverine, The Wolverine took the classic “Logan in Japan” storyline by Chris Claremont and Frank Miller and transported it to the silver screen, albeit with a few changes to the original source material. By this point, Jackman can play the role in his sleep, but he’s still incredibly entertaining to watch. The Wolverine also deserves recognition for taking a more grounded, character based approach to the superhero genre, even though it quickly changes course in the final act, swapping out the inner turmoil of Logan for a special effects spectacle at the end.
So there are our three big comic book films of the summer. Yes, I left off Kick-Ass 2. Why, you ask? Well, to be honest, it didn’t have a lot of hype around it going into the summer. In fact, I had forgotten it was coming out this August until I saw a commercial for it a month before it came out. And judging by its final box office take, it seems that a lot of people did.
Anyways, of the three major superhero films that were released, I think I’m going to give the edge to The Wolverine. Yes, it screwed the pooch in the third act, but which of the three movies I mentioned didn’t? As I said before, The Wolverine did something different with the superhero genre, in a time when it’s definitely needed. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed Iron Man 3, and loved Man of Steel (that’s right, I LIKE IT), but the film that’s stuck with me the most of the three is The Wolverine, and it’s the only one that I saw twice in theaters. Plus, if the mid-credit stinger didn’t make you excited for next year’s Days of Future Past, then there’s something definitely wrong with you.