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Category Archives: 00’s movies

The Science of Superman

The Science of Superman 2006

One of the shows that I used to enjoy when I was a kid was the early programming of the Discovery Channel and the Learning Channel back before they became the go-to channel for reality TV freak shows. There were plenty of shows on those two channels that were full of cutting edge technology and the like and in a way, this special follows that format. And while it does remind me of the Batman Tech special that I watched on the DC Universe app a couple weeks ago, where that felt very much like the promotional material for the Dark Knight that it was, while this was released in a similar way as Batman Tech, being shown on the National Geographic channel the day after the theatrical release, it really spread out the clips used between all sorts of Superman shows and cartoons alongside a fair amount of Superman Returns clips. It also helps that it was inspired by an actual book of the same name and they included the author alongside several of those interviewed for the special. Overall, it was a pretty good doc with a lot of interesting information and theories backed up by the shows and comic books of Superman that weren’t just Superman Returns.

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Batman Tech

Batman Tech 2008

I’ve been trying to go through everything in the DC Universe streaming app and while I’ve already seen all of the traditional movies, there’s another category called “Specials” that include the TV specials like the Aquaman Pilot and the Legends of the Superheroes minseries that I’ve already covered here, but there’s also a handful of what appear to be documentaries. And the first one I decided to check out was this one called Batman Tech. While I initially thought it seemed to be more like a DVD special feature for The Dark Knight, it was actually a promotional doc that aired on the History Channel during the Dark Knight’s opening weekend. But all in all, there was just enough there to review it as a short-but-still-feature-length documentary. And while we didn’t get much cinematic Batman, there’s a lot of info from the comics alongside some geeky real world tech stuff.

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Aquaman

Aquaman 2006

As I continue my trial period for DC Universe, I noticed that they had the Aquaman pilot pseudo-spinoff from Smallville available to watch on there. And I also realized that even though it wasn’t a double length pilot movie, it does pass the 40+ minutes for my feature length requirement. And considering I recently watched the new Aquaman, I figured that I’d give it a shot. I was a fan of Smallville and watched it regularly through the first 7 or 8 seasons before dropping off just before the end. I remember hearing about this pilot when it was in the works but I never looked it up until just now. It has a surprisingly good cast in some of the minor roles and it also has someone who seems to be superhero pilot bad luck as Adrianne Palicki was in this failed pilot, the Wonder Woman failed pilot, and the Marvel’s Most Wanted Mockingbird failed pilot spinoff of Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. As far as the actual Aquaman pilot goes, it’s a fairly standard origin setup for a monster-of-the-week first season. It doesn’t really do anything special or interesting. It’s just the same old format with an underwater theme to it.

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Inspector Gadget 2

Inspector Gadget 2 2003

This is one of those movies that’s been sitting in my Netflix queue for well over a year and I’ve been waiting to pull the trigger on it because I knew it was going to be pretty bad. But me being me, I was in the mood for a bad movie so I finally watched this one. Now, I was a big fan of the cartoon series when it was on Nickelodeon, but I never watched the first live action movie because I also suspected that it was kids movie trash. And while I did initially have some slight reservations on whether to actually consider this a superhero movie, I figured that there is a direct line from Cyborg to Robocop to Inspector Gadget. The best argument I heard against is that he is typically more of a spy than a superhero crimefighter, but at least in this movie, he’s a straight up cop. With super powers. So I think he’s just barely over the line. As for the actual quality of the movie? It’s straight to DVD Disney sequel trash that never got a laugh out of me and barely resembled the cartoon it was based on.

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FTMN Quickie/Almost Super: Sexina

Almost Super: Sexina: Pop Star P.I. 2007

A little while ago I was cultivating some lists of movies that I still need to review that are on various streaming services. One of those services is Hoopla which is free through most local libraries. I did a basic search for “Superhero” and this was one of the movies that came up. I ran a poll on Twitter, and this is the movie that won. I knew I was in for a bad movie from the start just based on the description and cover art, but I was in the mood for a bad movie and this scratched that itch perfectly. The only problem was that I didn’t quite read the description carefully enough because I quickly realized that this wasn’t really a superhero movie at all, but a private eye detective style movie. Not only that, but it was also a parody film though the line between the movie trying to parody its subject and the movie just being funny because it’s so bad is a very thin line. Honestly, the film did eventually get some genuine laughs out of me but it was also halfway between laughing with it and laughing at it.

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Robocop Prime Directives: Dark Justice

Robocop Prime Directives: Dark Justice 2001

While the two Robocop sequels aren’t that well known at this point, they did at least get a theatrical release. What’s even lesser known is this Canadian miniseries that takes place ten years after the events of the first movie and moves things away from Detroit to Delta City, and yet continues to have multiple flashbacks from Murphy’s time as a police officer in Detroit. This is the first of those movies and while it’s not quite the TV series or cartoon which made Robocop much more family friendly, this returns to the violent and satiric tone of the first film, although with much less talent behind the writing, acting, and special effects. It’s an interesting concept, but very little was done with it to make things more interesting than a low budget, TV movie.

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The Phantom

The Phantom 2009

This is one of the very few superhero miniseries that I know of, it aired on the Sci-Fi channel back in 2009 in two parts. While it was initially conceived of as a backdoor pilot it never actually materialized into a series. There are extremely loose ties to the 90’s Billy Zane Phantom movie, but for the most part this updated the Phantom into the 21st century as a teen aged, parkour loving douchebag with an updated costume that gives him a few extra super powers. But as a miniseries, it takes way too much time trying to set up all the relationships and the new Phantom as a character, but that ultimately makes most of this miniseries uninteresting. There are only a few action set pieces, the villains are uninspired, and there’s a plot twist that I saw coming the moment the character stepped on screen. It’s not awful by any means, but it’s just incredibly mediocre.
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Krrish

Krrish 2006

Continuing on after watching Koi… Mil Gaya I finally watched the first actual superhero part of this Bollywood trilogy. But even then the film surprised me to a certain extent as it is still mostly a romantic comedy with a supernatural angle to it where the actual superheroics don’t come into play until around the two hour mark of a three hour film. But where Koi… Mil Gaya had some problematic elements with its romance, there was none of that here and while it also fell into a few sitcom-esque cliches, it was a whole lot more fun to watch. It ultimately turned into an odd combination of Tarzan, Superman, and Spider-Man but it all somehow worked well together. Even the musical numbers were less distracting and felt fewer and further between as well.
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Almost Super: Koi… Mil Gaya

Almost Super: Koi… Mil Gaya 2003

This was one of the first foreign titles that I had heard of to add to my big superhero movie list as it is the first movie in the Bollywood Krrish trilogy where Krrish and Krrish 3 are both clearly superhero movies, but even early on I had heard that this had very little to do with superheroes at all. But over at Cinefessions they are holding an annual Summer Screams Challenge that I decided to join in this year, and as part of that challenge there are weekly themes. The theme this week happens to be foreign sci-fi & horror films with a bonus if you watch an entire trilogy. So I thought this would be the perfect time to finally watch and review this Krrish trilogy. I’m not entirely well versed in Bollywood films, but I have seen a couple so I knew roughly what to expect: long run times and random musical interludes. I wasn’t entirely expecting the whole Flowers for Algernon subplot that took up the entire first third of an almost three hour movie. But even with that in mind, this was still a generally enjoyable film that fell into a few cliched traps along the way.
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Underdog

Underdog 2007

I’m starting to get back on the bandwagon of this site by continuing where I had left off when I made a Twitter poll asking what type of films I should watch next and kids films won. I’ve actually owned this one on DVD for quite a while and have seen parts of it more than once as my daughter was a fan of this movie. I wouldn’t quite say that I was a huge fan of the original Underdog cartoon, but I had seen several episodes and from what I remember I enjoyed them well enough. But when this film came out, I could tell that it was just a shlocky kids film trying to cash in on a little bit of nostalgia and somehow wrangled a handful of decent names, or at least names that were on the rise like Peter Dinklage and Amy Adams. Jason Lee was a bit of a mixed bag as this was also the same year that he starred in the live-action Alvin and the Chipmunks movie. But as expected, this is a schlocky kids movie that felt like it was trying too hard to cash in on a random piece of nostalgia while missing the mark as to what made that property great in the first place.
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