Tuesday, January 14, 2014

Ranking the Comics Adaptations - Part IX - Smells Wonderful

Parts I, II, III, IV, V, VI, VII, and VIII

Here it is! The top three! While I might change my mind about the placement of some of these, I think it's safe to say that I'd always include these ones the top five, at least.

3. Iron Man - I already wrote a full review for this one, so it's hard to come up with anything new for me to say about it. I guess I'm just repeating myself a bit, but the short version is that it's a surprise that this film would rank so high up on such a subjective list when I probably only have a handful of Iron Man comic books. Much of what's great about this has to do with Robert Downey, Jr.'s performance, and just the sheer fact that it captures everything I like about superheroes while giving the character an interesting arc which leaves him in a different place than which he began.

2. Batman Begins - Not surprisingly, I also have a more complete review of this film. While I think that a lot of people would rank The Dark Knight higher than this one, I think that much of that has to do with Heath Ledger's performance as The Joker than anything else. Obviously, I loved that movie as well, considering it ranked at number five on this list. Still, I feel as though this one delivers a tighter story, and as I've said before, it did a remarkable thing by getting me to genuinely feel some emotions when I saw Bruce Wayne lose his parents for the billionth time (if you count all of the other versions in movies, comics, and cartoons that I've seen).

1. The Avengers - Yes, I've written about this one as well. I was alternating back and forth between this being the number one and Batman Begins, but I ultimately went with this. I think that the reason why is because it manages to incorporate so much of what superhero comic books do that you don't see anywhere else, and yet it works just fine in a movie. In theory, it shouldn't make sense to combine so many disparate genres together, but what are superheroes if they're not a mish-mash of various genres? I guess what's cool for me is that it proves that so many of the things that supposedly shouldn't work in an adaptation seem to work just fine. The one thing that also makes this film stand out to me is that unlike pretty much every other action film, it picks up speed as it goes along. So many of these have a great first half with only a decent second half. This has a decent first and an awesome, engaging battle at the end. After all, isn't it better to end on a high note?

Note: If you noticed something funky about the numbering as this list went along, it wasn't just you. I goofed it all up and had to renumber, as I thought I had 54 movies, but I only had 53.

Also, I apparently didn't put the sequels to The Crow on my "Movies I haven't seen" list. I bet you were really concerned about that.

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