Monday, July 21, 2008

Movie Mon. - Super-Hero Masterpiece

So, this weekend I saw what will surely go down as one of the true masterpieces of the super-hero genre, thanks largely to a fascinating super-villain who steals the show due to the masterful work of the incredibly talented actor portraying him.

I am of course talking about

The brain-child of Joss "Buffy, Angel, and Firefly" Whedon is a relatively short made-for-the-Internet film about aspiring super-villain Dr. Horrible (played by the always amazing Neil Patrick Harris) whose plans to enter the Evil League of Evil are derailed when the woman of his dreams falls for his arch-nemesis, the smug and smarmy hero Captain Hammer (Nathan Fillion, a.k.a. Mal on Firefly) . Originally presented free online as a promotion, it is now only available on iTunes . . . at least until the DVD release, that is -- a DVD release that is promising to contain behind the scenes footage and insight into all of the little easter eggs, like the way the pots and pans in this shot

look amazingly like Serenity. Plus, "Commentary -- The Musical!" how can you beat that?

A couple of my favorite songs are currently available to watch via YouTube, although the quality isn't the best. Still, if you want to sample the product to see if it's worth pursuing, you could do worse than seeing NPH strut his super-villainous side, first by reveling in his decision to put Captain Hammer away for good

and then by executing his plan in a song whose style proves that Whedon is Sondheim fan

And if that's not enough to entice you, then maybe I need to talk a little bit about Bad Horse, the Thoroughbred of Sin who leads the Evil League of Evil with an iron hoof and his terrifying death whinny . . .

Wait, what's that? You say you were expecting me to talk about a different super-hero masterpiece with a fascinating super-villain who steals the show due to the masterful work of the incredibly talented actor portraying him? Oh, yeah, there was that other little movie that came out this week, huh?

The Dark Knight: Excellent, excellent follow-up to Batman Begins continues to show the world that not only does a Batman film not have to be campy and cheesy to work, it's actually exponentially better when it's not. I don't want to get into too many details for those who haven't been willing to fight the crowds to see it yet, so I'll just say that Heath Ledger's performance as The Joker is every bit as amazing as all of the critics have been saying, and it alone is worth the price of admission.

Hellboy II: The Golden Army: The follow-up to the stellar adaptation of Mignolla's excellent comic book finds H.B. and the B.P.R.D. transferring their battle from Lovecraftian evil to the realms of the Fairy Folk. I'm afraid this one suffered from my high expectations; really need to see it again to appreciate it for what it is, rather than what I wanted it to be. Not that I didn't like it; it's chock full of good stuff. Unfortunately, it also has one love story too many, and an incredibly over-the-top portrayal of new B.P.R.D. member Johann Krauss, a.k.a. "Stereotypical German Guy." Still worth seeing, just not quite what I was hoping for.


Starrlett said...

Yep, NPH rocked the house on that one. And Whedon further revealed how he's really, really into comedic tragedy.

Crossing my fingers to see Dark Knight this week, but I think I'll wait to rent Hellboy 2. Too many conflicting reviews and slightly-disappointed comments for me to justify the expense.

Flunky lover said...

The Whedon flick looks really interesting.

Cap'n Cluck said...

Maybe I'm a sucker for crazy, off the wall, psychotic characters, but I totally agree with you about Heath Ledger. His performance made that movie. I was weary at first about all the Oscar talk, but now I know it is just because of the performance. I loved the devil may care attitude.

Have a Cluckity Cluck Cluck Day!