If you’ve read my blog you know how I feel about the movie Kick Ass. It generally did just that. And whether it was intentional or not, the movie came with clear doses of moral clarity. Evil was called evil, and the good guys were able to recognize and confront it. As I’ve mentioned before, one of my favorite moments was when Dave Lizweski puts his life on the line for a complete stranger and a gang of thugs ask him if he’s crazy. He responds:
“Three a**holes laying into one guy while everybody else watches? And you wanna know what’s wrong with me? Yeah, I’d rather die.”
It was refreshing to see young characters on film who would lay down their life for the idea that there are universal truths that should guide us. The credo that all evil needs to succeed is for good men to do nothing was addressed in Kick Ass, and I can’t help but think that part of the reason why the finished product ended up so satisfying was because it was made without the standard Hollywood gatekeepers’ approval and financial resources.
With that said, I’d like to address another movie that will be heading to theaters sometime soon. Liberals Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page, and Liv Tyler have teamed up with writer and director James Gunn (brother of Matt Gunn, who writes for Bill Maher), and the result is the movie Super.
Why do I get the feeling that the insipid rantings of Ellen Page will return for promotion of the movie Super, as they did with Inception? And why do I get the feeling that this “dark comedy” will really just be a bad deconstruction of the super hero genre that will leave the audience in a pool of moral relativist pap? Answer: because the odds of a gaggle of cynical liberals coming together and crafting something as uplifting as Iron Man aren’t very good.
Let’s look at the clips of Super that have already come out.
Boltie: We did it! We did it! We totally f**king beat evil!
Frank: You’re not supposed to kill him!
Boltie: And then he’d never key a car again, would he? A brand new f**king Jetta, Frank! Melissa loved that car!
Frank: Don’t say that.
Frank: Don’t…stop saying “f**k”.
*Man groans and writhes in pain as blood gushes from his head*
Frank: He really keyed your friend’s car?
Boltie: Yeah. I’m pretty sure it was him.
Besides the exchange above, another clip exists where Frank bludgeons a man for cutting in line at a movie theater, which is supposed to be hilarious. Correction: the hand held camera used in the scene, which obviously makes it feel more realistic, elevates the comedy to “darkly hilarious.” Bravo!
Perhaps I’m just cocky in the wake of the Seth MacFarlane prediction that went even better than expected. Or, perhaps I’ll be wrong and pleasantly surprised. However, something inside tells me that if I go to see Super I’ll witness a bunch of bitter characters using capes and masks as a vehicle with which to channel misplaced emotions. They’ll have a moral compass with zero magnetic north. I’ll be cued to laugh at the “unexpected” times it spins and some mildly annoying character is punished disproportionately to the actual crime (as defined by the film’s mercurial “heroes”). Along the way some really bad people will die unceremoniously and the obedient audience will wonder, “What’s it all mean? Is good and evil just an artificial construct? Is it all relative?” And then they’re supposed to slough it off because Ellen Page is “cute” and Rainn Wilson is “OMG, so funny!”
I’m hoping Kick Ass 2 doesn’t follow suit. It looks like the comic might veer off in that direction, but I have my fingers crossed it won’t (I stopped reading the first one when it became an exercise in getting as much violence into the panel as possible). Regardless, keep this post in mind since Super will be heading to theaters soon. If I’m wrong, I will own up and apologize. If I’m right…it’s going to be a fun weekend.