Author Archives: Bubbawheat

Superman

Superman (India) 1980

This is not the first, nor will it be the last semi-official foreign knock-off Superman movie. The main reason why I call it semi-official is because as far as I know it had a legitimate foreign release in theaters despite it not having official clearance from DC Comics. As opposed to the small handful of full-length fan films that I don’t cover on this site, at least not yet. There was even another Superman knockoff movie from India that came out several years later and is often referred to as Indian Superman while this one is referred to as Telegu Superman, the language used. Other than the similarities in the outfit and his super strength and ability to fly nothing else about the movie or his origin has anything to do with the DC Comics version of Superman. And though it was released in 1980, the fashion is heavily steeped in the 70’s with polyester leisure suits, gold chains, exposed chests, and bellbottoms a-plenty. Not to mention the helmet shaped hair and perfectly trimmed mustaches that all the men sport. That along with the low budget special effects, bizarre story choices, and ridiculous villains, this was a hilariously enjoyable low budget superhero knockoff. And if you’re curious to watch this for yourself, it’s currently streaming on Amazon Prime as well as YouTube.

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Super Heroes The Movie

Super Heroes The Movie 1998

I was in the mood for an ultra low budget cheesy superhero film and there are still quite a few of them available on Amazon Prime. When looking at the trailer for this film apparently it was made in 1998 but the original copy was lost in a fire that destroyed the negatives, and just recently a VHS copy of the film was discovered so the producer made it available on Amazon. It’s probably most notable at this point because Lisa Guerrero plays Wonderful Woman and is now a lead correspondent on Inside Edition. The film overall is a pretty direct parody of Super Friends with all the heroes and villains named just a few letters off of their DC counterparts though for some reason they still call the Wonder Twins the Wonder Twins only changing their individual names to Zana and Jan. The special effects are atrocious, the costumes feel like they were either pulled from a costume shop or cut with felt and scissors. But it was hilariously bad and an absolute treat to watch.

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It’s Time to Rewind – a new podcast

Groundhog Day After Day After Day

While I’m still going through superhero and comic book movies here in written form, I have started to revisit podcasting. My latest project will be coming out next month, but you can listen to a preview episode right now. I will be dissecting the 1993 movie Groundhog Day with each episode covering a single day of Phil Conners’ repetitive trip to Punxsutawney, PA for the Groundhog Festival. Hope you subscribe, listen, and enjoy! Click here or on the cover art to listen to the preview episode right now.

Zack Snyder’s Justice League

Zack Snyder’s Justice League 2021

I’m back with another superhero movie review and even though this movie is only a couple months old, I feel like I’ve been waiting for this one for ages. With some movies that have regular and director’s cuts I will do a “quickie” review that mostly covers the differences between the two versions that are often 80 to 90% the same movie so I just cover the differences. This is a different case and one much closer to the Donner Cut of Superman II where much of the story beats are different and the overall tone is way different. In fact, this is probably the instance where the vast majority of the film is different between the two versions. My guess is that there is only about 5-10% of the footage used in both films, and that’s 5% of the theatrical version which is half as long. For my part, I liked the theatrical cut well enough but there were plenty of glaring issues with it. This version almost feels more like a miniseries which it almost was and could still be watched that way, but that actually solves one of the issues where this team film came too quickly without introducing the rest of the team beforehand. Having this amount of length really helps to build each individual character before bringing them together as a team. And as this is still a new release, there will be spoilers in the review so be warned.

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(The Shadow) International Crime

International Crime 1938

While I would have preferred to have moved onto the two Shadow sequels after the Shadow Returns, instead the only other Shadow movie available on Amazon Prime was the second Shadow film featuring Rod la Rocque as the Shadow in a very different form than he would later become. And also most likely a different version of the Shadow than the one that was already popular at the time of this film despite the fact that both of their stories were based on The Shadow pulp novels. This one was based on Foxhound. Instead of the vigilante with the power to cloud men’s minds, here he’s basically an investigative journalist with a focus on crime stories. He doesn’t have any special powers, he doesn’t have any real special abilities other than a bit of quick thinking and a knack for accents. And his secret identity isn’t really a secret at all. As for the crime drama half of the movie, there’s barely a crime and the movie spends more time on the radio show and newspaper office than it does on the actual crime. There’s some comedy bits but not enough to keep interest in the period’s typical sixty minute run time.

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The Shadow Returns

The Shadow Returns 1946

Getting back into watching these superhero movies and writing reviews again definitely makes me realize how much I missed going back into some of the older superhero movies. This was available on Amazon Prime which I currently have so I figured I’d give it a shot. I had already reviewed the first full length Shadow movie a while back but that didn’t really feel too much like the Shadow from that 90’s that I’ve been more familiar with. Just nine years later, this feels like a giant step towards the more familiar Shadow with the addition of Margo and his personal cab driver though there are still some discrepancies. This also feels more like the later Shadow movie with the addition of plenty of humor where this is almost more of a sitcom murder mystery rather than a serious detective movie. There were plenty of fun moments throughout the movie despite the plot being overly weak and convoluted. It also didn’t help that the version showing on Amazon Prime does have some sound issues where the sound completely cuts out in a few places so I missed a little bit of the dialogue. Not enough to get lost, just enough to be annoying.

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Thunder Force

Thunder Force 2021

The year is almost halfway through and while most of the 2021 films keep getting pushed back there have been a small handful that have released on streaming services. This one came out just a few weeks ago on Netflix and while it has gotten some pretty poor reviews, it managed to tickle me quite a bit while I was watching it. Unfortunately, those moments of hearty laughs were interspersed with heavy moments of eye rolling so it’s ultimately a mixed bag. There aren’t very many instances of good superhero comedies, there are plenty of good superhero movies with a lot of comedy, but not the other way around. When the superhero element isn’t taken seriously, the entire movie generally suffers. Everyone in the cast plays their parts well, but the action is dull and the comedy is very hit and miss. And since this is still technically a recent release, here is my obligatory spoiler warning as I will be discussing potential plot twists as I see fit.

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Supervized

Supervized 2019

Even though I still have quite a few relatively major movies that I’ve missed out on the majority of the past year, one of the things that I enjoy the most about working on this site is finding these smaller and lower budget superhero and comic book movies. And trying to get back into the reviewing swing of things I didn’t just want to immediately tackle all the bigger releases, I wanted to seek out some of these smaller flicks that I do enjoy watching. This one was on my radar last year though I wasn’t able to get things lined up with a screener or the correct streaming service. But as of this writing it is streaming on Amazon Prime which I do have for the time being so I checked it out. There were actually a surprising number of parallels to Sky High only at the other end of the spectrum as this takes place at an old age home for superheroes rather than a high school for superhero kids. It’s rated R, has several familiar faces, but it still has a low budget feel in terms of the writing and special effects. The comedy is just a notch above fart jokes, the plot gets interesting towards the third act, but it all fizzles out at the end.

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Bloodshot

Bloodshot 2020

It’s been quite a year, right? But I’m not here to talk about that, instead let’s try to get right back into catching up with the handful of releases that actually made it out into the wild. This was actually the last theatrical release before things went to hell but I didn’t quite get around to seeing it back then. And based on the reviews it got, I wasn’t that enthusiastic to catch up with it. Even borrowed it from the library a couple times. But I finally checked it out once again, watched it, and you know what? I enjoyed it a lot more than I expected to. Now don’t get me wrong, this isn’t the best example of a comic book/super powered character movie. It suffers quite a bit from a first time director who came from a visual effects background, an early-but-significant twist that was spoiled in the trailers, and extremely forgettable dialogue coming from one-dimensional characters. Despite all of this, I’m a sucker for an interesting concept and that’s the best thing this movie has going for it. It won’t be enough for a lot of people, but it was just enough for me.

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Captain Underpants: Mega Blissmas

FTMN Quickie: Captain Underpants: Mega Blissmas 2020

Merry Christmas Everyone! I thought I’d take a little time out of my day to write about the latest superhero Christmas special that’s come out this year on Netflix. It’s not quite a TV episode but it’s not exactly a full movie. It clocks in at just under an hour but it feels more like a double episode of the Captain Underpants cartoon that’s also on Netflix. So much so that I’m not going to add this to my big list of Superhero movies, but I watched it, and I haven’t been that active here lately so I figured I’d still write about it. I watched the Captain Underpants movie a little while back but I never watched any of the TV series. This definitely has the same type of humor that mixes a typical 9 year old’s imagination with some meta humor, but it rehashes a very similar Christmas theme about how getting exactly what you want isn’t always the best thing.

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