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Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

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Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Old 09-22-17, 03:44 PM
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Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Stemmed from one of my dumb comments in another thread, I thought this would be worth asking.

Is there a superhero movie that you would not hesitate to call a masterpiece. I don't mean a good or excellent film. There are a bunch of those. I mean... a masterpiece. Either for the director, the story, the execution... however you want to look at it. Just looking for a superhero masterpiece.

mas·ter·piece
/ˈmastərˌpēs/
a work of outstanding artistry, skill, or workmanship.


The first great superhero movie that comes to mind is the first Superman with Christopher Reeve... but is it a masterpiece, either for Donner as the director, or just as a masterpiece of a film in its own right? Maybe...

The Dark Knight? Hmm... I really like the opening sequence with the bank robbery, and there's some good stuff in the film... but it's not Nolan's best. That might be The Prestige, which isn't a superhero movie. Is The Dark Knight a masterpiece of the superhero genre? I don't know... my gut says no.
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Old 09-22-17, 03:46 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman The Movie
Batman (1989)
Batman Returns
Watchmen

Maybe Iron Man.

Not really sure I would call any of them masterpieces. None are on the same level as the Godfather films or Citizen Kane.

Last edited by stvn1974; 09-22-17 at 03:55 PM.
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Old 09-22-17, 03:51 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

I would not consider it a masterpiece, but for me the best superhero film ever made is Blade.
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Old 09-22-17, 04:20 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Batman Begins
The Dark Knight
Watchmen (yes it's a play for play of the graphic novel but it works)
Guardians of the Galaxy
Captain America Winter Soldier
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Old 09-22-17, 04:23 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman the Movie
The Dark Knight
Captain America Winter Soldier
Wonder Woman
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Old 09-22-17, 07:23 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Batman Begins
The Dark Knight
Captain America: Winter Soldier
Watchmen: The Ultimate Cut
Blade
Blade 2



That's all I got for now.
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Old 09-22-17, 07:35 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?



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Old 09-22-17, 07:35 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

I'm a comic book nerd to the core, and really enjoy most comic book films (heck maybe all of them), but nothing hits masterpiece level. If forced to answer, maybe Superman or Watchmen.
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Old 09-22-17, 07:36 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman the Movie
Spiderman 2
Darkman
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Old 09-22-17, 07:55 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman The Movie
Spider-Man 2
The Dark Knight
Captain America Winter Soldier
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Old 09-22-17, 08:03 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

I want to say Logan, but part of what elevates it is everything that came before it as preamble. It's good on its own, but to me it's great because it's a "final chapter" to all that came before it.
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Old 09-22-17, 08:26 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I'm a comic book nerd to the core, and really enjoy most comic book films (heck maybe all of them), but nothing hits masterpiece level. If forced to answer, maybe Superman or Watchmen.
This pretty much sums it up for me too...except I hated Watchmen.
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Old 09-22-17, 08:36 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Originally Posted by Trevor View Post
I'm a comic book nerd to the core, and really enjoy most comic book films (heck maybe all of them), but nothing hits masterpiece level.
I have a similar take. I really like most of them, but I'd be hard-pressed to put many of them on the level of masterpieces of cinema.

I'm more of a Marvel guy, but I'd probably go with The Dark Knight as the closest to a masterpiece.
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Old 09-22-17, 08:42 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman 1978
Superman II
Blade
Blade II
Supergirl
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Old 09-22-17, 08:54 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman: The Movie- as dated as it is it's a classic and Reeve is still Superman. It's got a charm to it that hasn't been matched. Also love the theme by John Williams.

Batman- again a bit dated in some regards but also very iconic. Keaton and Nicholson are great and I really love the mood of the first film before Burton got too crazy. Like with Superman: The Movie the score is fantastically done by Danny Elfman.

Batman Begins- my favorite of the Nolan trilogy by far. Such a great telling of Batman's origin. I love the training sequences in the Himalayas with Bruce and Ra's, showing the origin in Crime Alley (yes I know its been done before but it was done very well), showing Bruce put together his equipment/suit and getting the Tumbler. The cast is stellar from top to bottom (I even like Katie Holmes) and the film just works on so many levels. I often think this film gets overshadowed by The Dark Knight which is also very good but somewhat overrated to me.

Iron Man- good origin story and took a relatively low level character to top level heights. RDJ is fantastic and embodies Tony Stark. Also like Jeff Bridges as Obadiah/Iron Monger. Also of course it deserves credit for birthing the MCU.

Captain America: Civil War- the best of the team up film in opinion. Really well done for having such a large cast. Also introduced us to the best Peter Parker/Spidey to date in my opinion as well as to Black Panther who seems like a promising character.
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Old 09-22-17, 08:54 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

I don't know about masterpieces but for me:

Upper echelon:
Superman: The Movie
Spider-man 2
The Dark Knight
Wonder Woman
Guardians of the Galaxy
The Crow
Avengers

Below those would be:
Logan
Deadpool
X-men 1/2
X-men: Days of Future Past
Captain America: Winter Soldier
Superman 2
Batman Begins

then everything else
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Old 09-22-17, 09:00 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Maybe Superman, but I really don't consider any in this genre a "masterpiece". Word just doesn't seem to fit. Fun and some ultra entertaining, but wouldn't use that word...
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Old 09-23-17, 12:43 AM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Originally Posted by Mike86 View Post
Batman Begins- my favorite of the Nolan trilogy by far. Such a great telling of Batman's origin. I love the training sequences in the Himalayas with Bruce and Ra's, showing the origin in Crime Alley (yes I know its been done before but it was done very well), showing Bruce put together his equipment/suit and getting the Tumbler. The cast is stellar from top to bottom (I even like Katie Holmes) and the film just works on so many levels. I often think this film gets overshadowed by The Dark Knight which is also very good but somewhat overrated to me.
Gotta agree with this. I loved TDK when it came out, but that one as a whole just doesn't age that well for me. BB is damn good.

Anyway, just wanted to say I appreciate the explanations on your list. I should have made that a request in the OP.
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Old 09-23-17, 06:20 AM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

There aren't any superhero movies that meet that standard.

I'm surprised at the number of votes for Superman. It's the ultimate ripoff movie, where the writers give Superman an asspull power of clicking the Undo button. None of the events in the third act happened, and he lives happily ever after. If there are no consequences to the protagonist making the wrong decision, then there is no dramatic tension.
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Old 09-23-17, 06:26 AM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

None.
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Old 09-23-17, 10:36 AM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman
Superman II
Batman (1989)
The Dark Knight
The Crow
Captain America: Winter Soldier
Captain America: Civil War
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Old 09-23-17, 11:50 AM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

It's among these three:

Blade: The musical score, the acting by everyone especially by Wesley Snipes, atmosphere of the city...it was mostly all good. Stephen Dorff is a good actor but I can't see him going toe to toe with Snipes. And the cgi blood/creature was kind of lame. But I feel like most of it feels like a masterpiece, especially the scene when Blade cuts the plant that he was growing since a youngster. The look and feel of the film seems atypical to what Marvel and DC have been churning out lately, with the exception of Nolan's films.

Thor: This film felt more majestic than the any of the Superman films to me. Asgard looked great, the tone that Brannagh brought to the film was excellent. Loki's story was unique, and made for a more nuanced villain.

X-Men 2: This felt more like a science-fiction film than superhero. Good from start to finish. I only wish Jubilee's deleted scene of the anti-mutant propaganda masquerading as science would have been kept in.

I don't consider The Dark Knight to be a masterpiece, because without Heath Ledger's performance I would have lost interest. I didn't buy Bruce being in love with Rachel, and once they got to the boat it just went on and on.

Batman Begins has aged well, but I still hate that sepia-colored city, and the stupid doomsday machine. Rachel here is more attractive but her acting isn't that good. But the training he takes with Ra's is excellent and feels like it should be a masterpiece. "It's your fault your parents died. It's your fathers."

Donner's Superman was great but I can't get past some of the campy elements. And the rhyming internal monologue by Lois is awful.

Oh shit, I forgot about The Dark Knight Rises. Maybe I'd include that as my fourth. Damn near perfect except for the stupid fight between Batman and Bane. All that journey only for Batman to resort to a punching contest again. I thought he would have fought him in a "smart" way this time. I liked the allusions to A Tale of Two Cities...Nevermind. Not a masterpiece.
Had Bruce beaten Bane in a smart way, and really died without the public ever knowing he was Batman THAT would have made it a masterpiece.
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Old 09-23-17, 01:34 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Superman and Superman 2 are flawed masterpieces, but masterpieces nonetheless. It's crushing to think about what they could have been had there been less interference.
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Old 09-23-17, 02:14 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

Originally Posted by Mabuse View Post
Superman and Superman 2 are flawed masterpieces, but masterpieces nonetheless. It's crushing to think about what they could have been had there been less interference.
I agree. Then again The Richard Donner cut of Superman II is horrendous.
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Old 09-23-17, 03:38 PM
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Re: Which superhero movies would you consider masterpieces?

While several are damn good and enjoyable, the only one I would get close to calling a masterpiece is Watchmen.
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