Friday, 9 December 2011
DVD RACK-MARVEL SPECIAL
This year with 'Captain America' saving the box-office behind great help from 'Thor' and 'X-Men: First Class' 'Marvel' is at the height of it's powers with 'The Avengers' coming next year. So this weeks 'DVD Rack' takes it back to the comic books.
IRON MAN: Forget about 'The Avengers' for a second, we can't wait for the third installment of the greatest Marvel action hero. So let's take a look back to where it all started. With his charisma and charm Robert Downey Jnr breathed new life into the genre with Gwyneth Paltrow by his faithful side. Hilarious and thrilling, the graphics and the action where sublime thanks to Jon Faverau's direction (he'll be missed). Speaking of those missed by the franchise Terrence Howard raised his and the films stock (although Don Cheadle got his 'next time baby'). While fan favourite Jeff Bridges (dude where's your hair?) made a surprisingly sinister, coldly convincing villain.
X-MEN ORIGINS-WOLVERINE: When franchises have run out of sequels, it's time for the prequels and going back to the 'Origins' of X-Men really was something to 'Marvel' at. With all the characters to choose from it was clear that Hugh Jackman's most-popular 'Wolverine' character would sharpen this series. Darker, bigger, more exciting and epic, Hugh was joined by some new friends who now deserve 'Origin' movies of their own. From Liev Schreiber's villain, to versatile superhero Ryan Reynolds (catch him currently as 'The Green Lantern') and all his 'Deadpool' charm and deadpan wit and super-cool Will.I.am. this might just be the best X-Men yet.
FANTASTIC FOUR-THE RISE OF THE SILVER SURFER: Chris Evans may be taking the shield as 'Captain America-The First Avenger' currently in theatres but he's no stranger to marvelling us with his super powers. In this installment of the 'Fantastic Four' series Evans' Johnny Storm joins Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba and Michael Chiklis for another great action adventure. This time the iconic silver surfer helped make waves, with the voice of Laurence Fishburne and the CGI of a great special effects team, that stretched it's already thunderous, hot, rock-solid talents to the max. What resulted was a great looking picture, which made for a sublime sequel.
DAREDEVIL: Critics and comic-book fans alike hated it. We loved it. They said Ben Affleck was no good as the blind super-hero. We think apart from the pointy ears this was one of Affleck's best from his big-budget blockbuster days. They cruelly said Michael Clarke Duncan shouldn't have played 'Kingpin'. Well we think it has nothing to do with race (we see you Idris Elba, great performance in 'Thor') because Duncan leads the pack with one of the most convincing performances in the entire film. Michael has the last laugh starring in the 'Green Lantern' out now and wasn't that him in 'Thor')? They also said Colin Farrell looked stupid as 'Bullseye'...OK we'll give you that one but he was still great. As was Jennifer Garner and Ben's significant other to be after this movie. Electrifying as 'Electra' her sex appeal and strength of character garnered her a spin-off prequel. Overall the action and the effects where top-notch and if you've got something to say about the low-key acting, remember this is a superhero movie after all. Plus even if you do hate this movie it helped Jon Favreau get a better take on the comic-book genre. You got to love that.
IRON MAN 2: How about some more metal from Tony Stark to book-end this feature? Jon Faverau may not be on board for 'Iron Man 3' and Terrence Howard may have been replaced but this sequel proved that the 'Iron Man' franchise was still working, even with a little tinkering. Robert Downey Jnr brought his usual effortless charm and humor as he helped lift this superhero off the ground one more time. Ironman got an even better villain this time with Mickey Rourke playing the menacing Whiplash. As for Tony Starks sidekick, Don Cheadle filled in quite nicely as Lieutenant Rhodes and once he supped up that War Machine suit 'Iron Man 2' brought an artillery of action. An army of A listers filled out the cast from the cheesily charismatic villain of Sam Rockwell to Scarlett Johansson and that brilliant costume department. With another hilarious Stan Lee cameo and another 'Avengers' preview, Iron Man showed he was the king of the Marvel franchise. TIM DAVID HARVEY.