Are you a fan of superhero movies? Do you enjoy tragic comedy? Are you secretly in love with Ellen Page and/or Kevin Bacon? If you answered yes to at least one of those questions then boy oh boy do we have a film for you; “Super”.
Super is an independent black comedy/drama, released waaay back in 2010 and helmed by James Gunn (Guardians of the Galaxy anyone?)
The film centres around Frank, played with heartfelt earnest by Rainn Wilson. He’s a fry-chef who’s down-on-his-luck; his wife has left him for another guy, he’s got zero social skills and he doesn’t know how to cope with his life that is seemingly going nowhere. So what does he do? He does what any of us would do; he creates a superhero alter-ego, “The Crimson Bolt”.
Frank’s charming ineptitude is kinda heartbreaking to watch, shining through every part of his new persona. From his ghetto-looking red suit, to his catchphrase “shut up, crime” it becomes clear that this film is less of a superhero origin story, and more an enactment of a tragic mid-life crisis, in which the protagonist goes to extreme lengths in his search for justice as he strives to save the woman he loves (Liv Tyler) from her downward spiral of addiction and bad decisions.
The biggest of her bad decisions is her choice of new boyfriend, sadistic badass Jacques, played to perfection by an on-point Kevin Bacon. It’s been a long time since I’ve seen such a menacing Bacon character, and he really does shine in this film.
Did I mention how violent this film is? Cos it’s pretty goddamn violent. Legs get crushed, heads split open, bullets rip through people, it’s savage. But it helps lend an organic realism to the film that shows you the gravity of Frank’s actions. Batman may not kill people, but the Crimson Bolt don’t give a care.
Speaking of Batman; he may have had Robin, but the Crimson Bolt has Boltie, played by an extremely erratic but endearing Ellen Page, and she absolutely kills it. I know who I’d rather have at my side…
The supporting cast is worth a mention, with Rooker playing a decent, if stereotypical douchebag-hardass and Nathan Fillion putting in a bizarre turn as a Christian superhero on a tv show Frank watches, but it’s really Wilson, Page and Bacon’s show. This film really cemented the three on my radar.
A surprising gem of a hero movie with alot more to it than you’d ever expect. Give it a watch, and let us know what you think in the comments below.
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