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Confessions of a Superhero
DVD disk
Sep 12, 2008 By: Jason Adams
Confessions of a Superhero order
Director:
Matt Ogens

Actors:
Christopher Dennis
Maxwell Allen
Jennifer Wenger

Rating:
Movie:
Extras:
Overall:

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WHAT'S IT ABOUT?
A documentary on the unusual cast of characters who dress up as superheroes and work outside of Mann’s Chinese Theater in Hollywood, taking pictures with tourists for money.
IS IT A GOOD MOVIE?
My license plate says IMBTMN. And even though some d-bags incorrectly misread it as “I’m Buttman,” it actually stands “I’m Batman.” I feel like that’s enough to prove my superhero nerdiness and also enough to explain why a documentary on average joes dressing up in tights might just appeal to me.

Director Matt Ogens lucks out in that there’s actually interesting characters underneath the costumes. Superman is married to a PhD student in psychology and is a former meth addict; Wonder Woman’s a small town Tennesee girl with a minister father and a Vegas marriage, Batman is a black belt with anger issues and a murderous mob past who started out on the Boulevard ironically as a George Clooney lookalike; and the Incredible Hulk moved to LA by himself as a kid and was homeless for years.

And much like the characters, CONFESSIONS OF A SUPERHERO itself is quite charming. Just their life in front of Mann’s Chinese Theater is interesting enough—surviving 130 degree heat inside the costume, dealing with the harsh politics and laws of the city, and the tight knit community of everyone from superheroes to Marilyn Monroe to Elvis. However, it also provides an honest look at the tough sell of the entertainment industry. All four people profiled are serious actors trying to make it in Hollywood. Sure, some like Superman take their character to heart (especially since he actually looks like a scrawnier Christopher Reeve), but to many it’s just a job. One where you can make $150 an hour on a good day.

The documentary runs a tad bit long and stretches the content as far as it can go, but it definitely kept my interest the whole time with its intriguing and surprisingly relatable characters. (It also didn’t hurt that Wonder Woman was quite hot.) There’s even some high drama (“When Elmo got arrested…”) and cameo appearances by Stan Lee, Margot Kidder, and Drew McWeeny a.k.a. Moriarity from Ain’t It Cool News.
THE EXTRAS
There’s enough extra stuff to satisfy even the most surly of supervillains.

Commentary by Superman Christopher Dennis and his wife: They may not be the most normal couple, but I dug their relationship in the film and it’s kinda nice hearing them interact in association with the film. Superman especially has the best insight in to this unusual world, and you get a little personal history that isn’t covered in the film.

Additional Scenes: These five unused scenes are actually pretty funny, with great plot points like “How Superman met his wife” and “Batman loves brandy,” but they don’t fit in the overall arc of the doc.

Comic-Con: Two clips of Hollywood Boulevard Batman and Superman as they travel to San Diego for the Comic Con, where they fits right in. Entertaining, especially when a porn star investigates whether the Dark Knight’s bulge is real.

HDNet Interview: A Village Voice critic interviews director Ogens and Superman at SXSW. Of course, Superman is in his costume the whole time.

Radio Interview: Batman calls in to an in-studio interview with Ogens, Superman and the Hulk. The fact that this is a legit sentence makes me giddy with joy.

Also, a Photo Slideshow and a Theatrical Trailer.
FINAL DIAGNOSIS
CONFESSIONS OF A SUPERHERO is an quirky but enjoyably interesting documentary that delves deep in to a world where it’s completely acceptable to where a Superman costume 24/7. One of the more enjoyable non-fiction films of recent memory; fans shouldn’t be scared to give it a try.

Extra Tidbit: Superman’s mom was Sandy Dennis, Oscar-winning actress from THE OUT OF TOWNERS and WHOS AFRAID OF VIRGINIA WOOLF?, or so he says.
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