The most anticipated and most under pressure!
It isn’t often you see the two names in the title mentioned together, unless it’s me talking about my dream team up, but these two premiere characters actually have at least two things in common. They both have movies releasing later this year and their respective movies are both under severe pressure to deliver.
So why exactly are these marketing wet dreams under so much pressure? Well let’s start with Wonder Woman (her movie drops first after all). The plans for a Wonder Woman movie were revealed all the way back in 2014, two years before we would see Gal Gadot don the iconic Amazonian warrior armour and save both Batman’s and Superman’s asses! Gadot was cast as the Amazonian even before the plans for a solo movie were revealed. In December 2013, it was announced that she would take the lasso and play the iconic character in Zack Snyder’s “Batman v Superman: The Dawn of Justice”.
So, lets fast forward to that movie and skip over all the whining and complaining about her casting seen all over the internet from people who obviously did not research Gal and how perfect she was the role. Dawn of Justice was a movie which a lot of people liked and a lot more people hated, especially one scene where I personally seen the angle they were going for, but I feel it was poorly done. Anyway, that’s for a different post, Wonder Woman was introduced early enough in the movie at a Lex Luthor Jr party looking gorgeous and showing her great cunning by stealing Bruce Wayne’s data stealing device right from under his nose. Wonder Woman would appear again in the film, but it’s the third appearance which stands out when she saves Batman by blocking a Doomsday blast with her gauntlets and looking badass with awesome theme music! She kicked ass in that battle and it made everyone pumped for her solo film.
A quick fast forward again to January 2017 and we are edging closer to the June 2nd release date with excitement and anxiety. The film will be directed by Patty Jenkins who is a very talented director, so why the anxiety? In a recent interview, I conducted for the podcast with comic writer C.E Murphy (which you can listen to here) she explains it. Murphy’s opinion and my own is that if they screw this movie up it will be unforgivable but also it could set the female hero movie industry into reverse. Cast your mind back to Halle Berry in Catwoman, an awful movie with an extremely talented actress who did what she could with the script she had, but ever since that mess Berry was labelled unfit to bring a super heroine to life on the big screen and was not given another comic role.
So why oh why was Ryan Reynolds any different? Green Lantern was an awful movie and they blamed the movie not the talent. I am a big fan of Reynolds and I am overjoyed he got another chance as Deadpool (granted he worked his ass off for the movie and role), but why did he get that chance when Berry did not? And that is where the worry lies, if this movie flops it will not only make the studios think “Women don’t sell comic movies” which will make it a while before we see an attempt at the Amazonian princess again, but it will be a huge dent in the relatively new career of Gal Gadot. There is also the worry for many comic fans of how close will it stay to its source material. I for one believe this movie will kick ass but I am also worried for the iconic character and the talented actress.
No movie could possibly be under as much pressure as that right? Wrong.
Spiderman: Homecoming swings into theatres July 7th this year and is one of the most anticipated and hyped comic movies I’ve seen in a long time. Tom Holland looked the part in Civil War and played both sides of the web slinger better than his two predecessors Andrew Garfield and Tobey Maguire. In Civil War, we were introduced to our new Spidey and his new suit, the movie also brought the realisation that we would not have to see poor Uncle Ben be shot for the third time, by having Peter reveal he has been Spiderman for about 6 months. There were plenty of other developments on Spidey during his rather short screen time but judging on just those two, we had reason to be excited for his solo run.
The trailer recently dropped for Homecoming where we saw Michael Keating as The Vulture, Donald Glover standing ominously by The Tinkerer, Peter in high school, and WEB WINGS!!! We finally get the classic Spiderman web wings. This trailer made me so hyped I almost decided to steal the movie before its release date. Another reason people are hyped is the fact that Sony finally saw sense and signed a deal with Marvel which gave them creative control and brought the web slinger into the MCU. It’s this partnership which is easing anxiety slightly, but where Sony and Peter Parker are concerned there is always room for errors.
The pressure on this movie comes from a different angle than the pressure on Wonder Woman. Where Diana’s pressure comes from previous female led comic movies being humungous flops, this movies pressure comes from previous Spiderman franchises fizzling out. This will be the third Parker we have seen in the last 15 years and many are hoping it’s the last. Sam Raimi’s trilogy fell flat at the final hurdle by introducing too many villains in one movie so the viewer never really had time to connect or feel much emotion towards any one of them. In that trilogy, Tobey Maguire played Peter Parker relatively well but in this writer’s opinion his Spiderman was average at best.
That is where the second franchise alternated, where Andrew Garfield played the smart mouth Spidey excellently, his Peter was not one that anyone liked to see. Peter Parker is a shy, intelligent, uncool nerd who struggles with women and friends, Garfield’s was a skateboarding hipster who charmed Gwen Stacey way too easily for his character. This franchise however fell to the same problem as the first when Amazing Spiderman 2 decided to try two main villains rather than just one main and one background. It could be said it had three villains if you include the Ace Ventura Rhino in the last scene. This movie had so much promise in using the death of Gwen Stacey (I thought it was maybe too early to try this) but ultimately it fell flat.
Spiderman: Homecoming already has three villains on its roster, however the Tinkerer can be seen as more of an accomplice. This leaves the question will Shocker be a main villain, a filler villain, or a background baddie who we may see more of in the future? So far, the casting seems spot on, the marketing is perfect, the costumes (yes even the black ops Vulture) are on point, and the hype is real! The only thing left to determine is the strength of the script, story, and directing. We will find out on the 7th of July and hopefully we will be talking about how to make the next Spidey film live up to the first.
Thank you for reading and I hope you enjoyed.
If you have any comments I will be happy to reply, and do you agree, are these the most anticipated and most under pressure films this year?
Have a wonderful week True Believers.