New Releases: April 16

1. Kick-Ass (Lionsgate, 3,065 Theaters, 117 Minutes, Rated R): I think this film could very well be the most controversial comic book movie of all time.

I think that people think that this will be a funny type of deconstruction of the comic-movie genre, which it most likely will be since the comic it’s based on is a deconstruction of the comic genre. But people who come in through the ads which only hint at the graphic violence and shocking themes will be shocked, surprised, and possibly a lot angry. From most of the TV ads, this looks exactly like the type of film you would risk taking your kids to see. This would be a mistake because if it is even half as true to the comic book, it will be way not for kids.

Based on the comic book by Mark Millar and John Romita, Jr., it gives us what the creators view as what would really happen if superheroes existed in the real world. Of course, as is typical of Millar, there is a lot of over-the-top themes and comic book tropes taken to their logically illogical extremes. Millar likes to shock, and this film will probably follow suit.  So beware.

2. Death At A Funeral (Sony/Screen Gems, 2,459 Theaters, 90 Minutes): The 2007 British version of Death at a Funeral made $8.5 million domestically, which wasn’t even enough to cover its budget ( it made $46 million worldwide, just to be fair). It garnered a 63% positive review rating at Rotten Tomatoes, which is just three percentage point above it being rated as “Rotten”.

The original is no where near a classic. So, why is it being remade with a primarily African-American cast? You got me. I guess the powers that be thought that they had something to add.

But from all that I can see, all they added was a cultural reference or two about the difference in color of certain cast members. Outside of that, it seem to be a rote, by-the numbers remake of a film that no one saw three years ago.

Pity Neil LaBute. His film career started off great, but between this and The Wicker Man he has become the go-to hack in charge of poorly conceived remakes of British films. At least he has his stage work, where he is still respected as a risk-taking artist.

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About William Gatevackes 1931 Articles
William is cursed with the shared love of comic books and of films. Luckily, this is a great time for him to be alive. His writing has been featured on Broken Frontier.com, PopMatters.com and in Comics Foundry magazine.

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