Saturday, June 18, 2011

Hollywood's Secret Superhero universe

This thread on Story Games(*) reminds me that, for the three years, I feel like Hollywood has secretly been building a rival superhero universe to compete with Marvel and DC.


THE FILMS

PUSH has got the psychic abilities covered.

JUMPER gives us teleporters.

NEXT was actually a pretty cool film about a precognitive superhero (albeit a film whose script has an extremely weird ending - it resolves the hero's emotional and psychological dilemma, but leaves the external threat superficially unresolved. It's weird. Weird.)

LIMITLESS sets up a cool backdrop to the world where super-intelligent masterminds affect everything, acting in their own, not necessarily altruistic, interests.

... and maybe HANCOCK, which I enjoyed and gives us two *super* superheroes.

They're all movies that are kinda flawed, but also filled with really interesting ideas. I may have my next sequence of films to watch lined up.

2 comments:

d f mamea said...

if the last three years of Hollywood superheroes were to be described as 'aspirational', what does that say about the decade of "Scanners", "Firestarter" and, um, "Edward Scissorhands"?

Steve Hickey said...

I'm not sure, but I think I love the idea of a secret 1980s Hollywood superhero continuity that was being creatively overseen by Cronenberg and King.

But, yeah, maybe I should add Scanners and Firestarter as origin stories to this universe.

Also: watching Super 8 (WHICH SUCKED), made me think there's probably mileage in creating a secret history of alien contact and monster movies as represented in Hollywood films.

1977: US Government opens negotiations with codename:MOTHERSHIP at Devil's Tower, Wyoming.

1979: An escaped alien devastates the small town of Lillian, Ohio.

1982: An alien dies in custody in Northern California.

1990: 90% of the population of Perfection, Nevada vanishes.

2002: A series of disappearances in Prosperity, Arizona are attributed to extra-terrestrials (although residents claim to have attacked by giant spiders).