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Paul Thomas Anderson defends superhero movies

01.15.2015

We have all had our dreams of the best filmmakers in Hollywood taking on superhero moves and other comic book adaptations. When Christopher Nolan helmed BATMAN BEGINS, we all shit ourselves with excitement. Even when the new batch of Marvel movies came about, we named ever auteur we could that would do something epic with these iconic pulp characters. But, we tend to not see those actually come to fruition.

So, when someone comes to the defense of the growing superhero genre the likes of Paul Thomas Anderson, you usually take notice. The INHERENT VICE director was recently asked by Rolling Stone for his opinion on whether there are too many superhero movies these days and his answer is pretty awesome.

Ah, that's such a fucking crock of shit. I can't remember a year in recent memory where there were less complaints about the quality of movies. And what's wrong with superhero movies, you know? I don't know. You're talking to someone that enjoys watching those films. People need to get a life if they're having that discussion [laughs]. Those movies get a bad rap.

Way to defend genre films, Mr. Anderson! If you scan the comments section of almost any article here on this site you will likely find a fan hating on the number of superhero movies that come out or the fact that we "only" report on that news. The truth is, genre popularity comes in waves. It doesn't mean the genre itself is crap even if there may be an overabundance of films released in it. Horror movies get watered down when dozens are released each year, but there are still good ones in that crop.

Whatever the case may be, I am glad to see that Paul Thomas Anderson is not locked in to only appreciating "films" but good old movies as well. Maybe one day he will make one of his very own. That I would like to see.

INHERENT VICE is now playing.

CLICK IMAGE TO OPEN GALLERY & SEE MORE PICS...

Source: Rolling Stone

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8:49PM on 01/16/2015
I think he's the type of director that could do "Doom Patrol" justice, or even the the Giffen/DeMatteis run of "Justice League"
I think he's the type of director that could do "Doom Patrol" justice, or even the the Giffen/DeMatteis run of "Justice League"
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9:59AM on 01/16/2015

Very refreshing

"Prestige" filmmakers often crap on what's popular and often sound as if they just need the headline. It's nice to see PTA on "our" side.
"Prestige" filmmakers often crap on what's popular and often sound as if they just need the headline. It's nice to see PTA on "our" side.
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9:19AM on 01/16/2015

overrated

i dont mind the amount of comic films we get these days, i just hate the fact that about 90% get so over hyped and the other ten get underhyped. most of the marvel movies are average, the two stand outs are the two we got this year, but the ones that came before are nothing special but they are probably considered classics now. the same with the xmen films one is a stand out the rest are very average. i think people have to heapo praise on these films to look cool and down with the kids.
i dont mind the amount of comic films we get these days, i just hate the fact that about 90% get so over hyped and the other ten get underhyped. most of the marvel movies are average, the two stand outs are the two we got this year, but the ones that came before are nothing special but they are probably considered classics now. the same with the xmen films one is a stand out the rest are very average. i think people have to heapo praise on these films to look cool and down with the kids.
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11:51AM on 01/16/2015
You may be right about the Marvel movies being average but comic book movies used to be really bad. Remember Supergirl? Batman & Robin? Steel? Elektra? I think most movies regardless of genre rate a 7 or an 8 but 7s get rated down to being the worst movie ever and 8s get hyped up to being the greatest movies ever.
You may be right about the Marvel movies being average but comic book movies used to be really bad. Remember Supergirl? Batman & Robin? Steel? Elektra? I think most movies regardless of genre rate a 7 or an 8 but 7s get rated down to being the worst movie ever and 8s get hyped up to being the greatest movies ever.
8:36AM on 01/16/2015

Punch Drunk Love

P.T. Anderson already made his superhero film! Punch Drunk Love is packed with superhero references and imagery (note Barry's "costume," the blue suit with the red tie, which is very Superman-ish, or the way that he keeps his violent, occasionally heroic, outbursts secret from everyone in his life). Of course, it's also a troubling look at a mentally ill man, and a sweet love story - but doesn't that sort of describe at least a couple of Batman movies?

That's that.
P.T. Anderson already made his superhero film! Punch Drunk Love is packed with superhero references and imagery (note Barry's "costume," the blue suit with the red tie, which is very Superman-ish, or the way that he keeps his violent, occasionally heroic, outbursts secret from everyone in his life). Of course, it's also a troubling look at a mentally ill man, and a sweet love story - but doesn't that sort of describe at least a couple of Batman movies?

That's that.
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8:33AM on 01/16/2015
Again with the "shitting yourself with excitement". That's a very specific problem.
When I were a lad you shit yourself with fear. Soon you'll be pooping whenever you're remotely interested. Get more fiber in your diet or something?
Again with the "shitting yourself with excitement". That's a very specific problem.
When I were a lad you shit yourself with fear. Soon you'll be pooping whenever you're remotely interested. Get more fiber in your diet or something?
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8:26AM on 01/16/2015
I would pay to see a comic/super hero movie directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, no questions asked. This dude is right at home working with ensemble casts in different time periods.
I would pay to see a comic/super hero movie directed by Paul Thomas Anderson, no questions asked. This dude is right at home working with ensemble casts in different time periods.
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7:28AM on 01/16/2015
That Captain America costume is tragic. Glad to see the designers have figured it out a bit better for subsequent movies.
That Captain America costume is tragic. Glad to see the designers have figured it out a bit better for subsequent movies.
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5:27AM on 01/16/2015
I didn't realize that the most popular genre of movies needed a defender, but okay, you go!
I didn't realize that the most popular genre of movies needed a defender, but okay, you go!
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3:12AM on 01/16/2015
Genre films are like any other. 75% of them are utter shit. 20% are decent enough. 5% are great with a much smaller fraction being masterpieces.
Genre films are like any other. 75% of them are utter shit. 20% are decent enough. 5% are great with a much smaller fraction being masterpieces.
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+1
2:09AM on 01/16/2015
They're used to be a huge wave of westerns in the 60's, eventually they got overplayed and died out. In the seventies it was crime movies, in the eighties it was action. This decade or so it's superhero movies, eventually they'll also get played out, but until then just enjoy the strong ones.

We always have the eventual "last hurrah for the aging stars" portion of the genre to come after it's run its course also, where all the big stars of the genre work together when they're old to
They're used to be a huge wave of westerns in the 60's, eventually they got overplayed and died out. In the seventies it was crime movies, in the eighties it was action. This decade or so it's superhero movies, eventually they'll also get played out, but until then just enjoy the strong ones.

We always have the eventual "last hurrah for the aging stars" portion of the genre to come after it's run its course also, where all the big stars of the genre work together when they're old to celebrate the genre that made them.
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10:34PM on 01/15/2015
Superhero movies are difficult to make: you put a guy in a costume so he can go out and fight crime and people will laugh at him. Batman, Superman, Thor, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain America, the X-Men, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Falcon, Hell Boy, Hulk, they've all worked on screen though. Even Daredevil, Ghost Rider, the Fantastic Four or Spawn weren't the train wrecks they were said to be. Wonder Woman worked on TV and they've got the right costume and actress and now all they need is a
Superhero movies are difficult to make: you put a guy in a costume so he can go out and fight crime and people will laugh at him. Batman, Superman, Thor, Spider-Man, Iron Man, Captain America, the X-Men, Black Widow, Hawkeye, Falcon, Hell Boy, Hulk, they've all worked on screen though. Even Daredevil, Ghost Rider, the Fantastic Four or Spawn weren't the train wrecks they were said to be. Wonder Woman worked on TV and they've got the right costume and actress and now all they need is a script. Green Lantern didn't quite work: people said that his costume looked like glowing green bacon and the tone wasn't right; they inserted the whole dead-father / power-responsibility / face-your-fears back story because they thought all superheroes need dead father figures. It fell flat.

I think that's the problem right there: they will come a point where superhero movies become too predictable; if they take elements from other superhero stories because they think that is what the audiences want then the movies will end up being all the same. Right now Marvel is doing something that hasn't really been done before (well, except in the cases of Star Wars, Harry Potter, the Matrix and tLotR) and that is to build a story over multiple films as opposed to simply resetting after each movie and having each movie stand on its own. This generates hype because audiences literally don't know what to expect; they believe that anything could happen, even the death of the title character (in the case of rumors regarding Cap 3).

Marvel and DC have a huge advantage here: Sony can't kill off Spider-Man, for example, so Spider-Man adventures have become stale. People are willing to believe that they would kill off Captain America because Marvel has 7000 other characters in their library.

The reality is that this wave of superhero movies can't last forever, just as westerns, horror movies and romantic comedies have gotten stale over the years. On TV, meanwhile, sitcoms started to get stale so people started watching police procedurals but now police procedurals are considered stale and sitcoms are back. I think after people see Avengers: Infinity War Part II people might want to take a break from superhero movies. That may, ultimately, be a good thing because the only way Marvel will get back the rights to Spider-Man, the X-Men and the Fantastic Four is if Sony and Fox are convinced there's no more money to be made from these characters. That's when Marvel will reboot the MCU and recast everyone.
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10:23PM on 01/15/2015

More movie news

It would be nice to see more of an even ratio of non superhero to superhero movies. As it is now it leans MUCH more heavily on superhero movie news.

In fact, this article only involves Paul Thomas Anderson because of a superhero slant when there's plenty of interviews online where he goes into Inherent Vice that just recently got a wider release.

Talk about your superhero movies, but let's try to not talk about ONLY superhero movies... especially ones that won't be out for OVER THREE
It would be nice to see more of an even ratio of non superhero to superhero movies. As it is now it leans MUCH more heavily on superhero movie news.

In fact, this article only involves Paul Thomas Anderson because of a superhero slant when there's plenty of interviews online where he goes into Inherent Vice that just recently got a wider release.

Talk about your superhero movies, but let's try to not talk about ONLY superhero movies... especially ones that won't be out for OVER THREE YEARS OR MORE!
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1:12AM on 01/16/2015
Hi hamslime - Superheroes are popular and I admit that I love getting my fix. It's popular. What can you do? I love 'em. Having said that are you sure the ratio is that bias? I thought I'd test the theory. Out of the last 50 articles, 9 were superhero articles. Not that bad really.
Hi hamslime - Superheroes are popular and I admit that I love getting my fix. It's popular. What can you do? I love 'em. Having said that are you sure the ratio is that bias? I thought I'd test the theory. Out of the last 50 articles, 9 were superhero articles. Not that bad really.
12:38PM on 01/16/2015
Perhaps I've been unfairly counting the Ghostbusters, Godzillas, Transformerses, Star Warses, etc that aren't necessarily comic books.

Can we at least agree that we really don't need more than one or two news items per year for a movie that won't come out for half a decade?
Perhaps I've been unfairly counting the Ghostbusters, Godzillas, Transformerses, Star Warses, etc that aren't necessarily comic books.

Can we at least agree that we really don't need more than one or two news items per year for a movie that won't come out for half a decade?
9:13PM on 01/15/2015
Lol love this!!
Lol love this!!
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+2
8:57PM on 01/15/2015
Superhero movies need defending? It's all anyone goes see anymore.
Superhero movies need defending? It's all anyone goes see anymore.
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1:20AM on 01/16/2015
I'd agree that they're popular but it's not all that people see. There is still plenty of choice out there. 4 or even 5 movies a year is not a complete saturation of the movies on offer.
I'd agree that they're popular but it's not all that people see. There is still plenty of choice out there. 4 or even 5 movies a year is not a complete saturation of the movies on offer.
8:35PM on 01/15/2015
Superhero movies have come a long way. Imagine superhero movies from 1970s or 1980s shown in theatre today, Twitter would explode as people complain how bad they are, i.e. Dolph Lundgren's skeleton-less The Punisher. They weren't bad movies but not good movies either. I'm glad that we're living in an age where superhero movies are damn entertaining with great visual effects to go along with the stories.
Superhero movies have come a long way. Imagine superhero movies from 1970s or 1980s shown in theatre today, Twitter would explode as people complain how bad they are, i.e. Dolph Lundgren's skeleton-less The Punisher. They weren't bad movies but not good movies either. I'm glad that we're living in an age where superhero movies are damn entertaining with great visual effects to go along with the stories.
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2:57AM on 01/16/2015
I second that. We Are very lucky to be getting these films. This is their time and I am full of gratitude for them.
I second that. We Are very lucky to be getting these films. This is their time and I am full of gratitude for them.
3:55AM on 01/16/2015
Heck yeah, my man!
Heck yeah, my man!
+1
8:27PM on 01/15/2015
Article said "a fan" meaning that the author has some particular person in mind. Hmmmm i wonder who......
Article said "a fan" meaning that the author has some particular person in mind. Hmmmm i wonder who......
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9:41PM on 01/15/2015
The Soloist obviously ;)
The Soloist obviously ;)
6:24AM on 01/16/2015
Haha, I assumed it was me since my comment trashing this guy's article on the most overrated/underrated movies of the year mysteriously disappeared...

Also I do quite a bit of complaining about the number of comic book films. Even though I consider PTA the best director of our generation (and my personal favorite of all time), I think he's off on this one. It's fun to enjoy these films for what they are but the people clamoring for Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy to be on the
Haha, I assumed it was me since my comment trashing this guy's article on the most overrated/underrated movies of the year mysteriously disappeared...

Also I do quite a bit of complaining about the number of comic book films. Even though I consider PTA the best director of our generation (and my personal favorite of all time), I think he's off on this one. It's fun to enjoy these films for what they are but the people clamoring for Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy to be on the Oscar ballot need to get a fucking life.
8:10PM on 01/15/2015
not a fan of superhero movies, but I just avoid them. No need to hate on them.
not a fan of superhero movies, but I just avoid them. No need to hate on them.
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2:52AM on 01/16/2015
Now that's a grounded answer from someone who dislikes the genre. I thumb you up!
Now that's a grounded answer from someone who dislikes the genre. I thumb you up!
+1
6:39PM on 01/15/2015

Good for him!

You'll notice the people complaining are the ones not involved. The people who might have been turned away and/or spurned. It's jealousy, that's all it is. Even on the business side. When a studio is making heaps of money, others are gonna bitch and complain and try to take them down a peg by suggesting the product is crap. Jealousy. Plain and simple.
You'll notice the people complaining are the ones not involved. The people who might have been turned away and/or spurned. It's jealousy, that's all it is. Even on the business side. When a studio is making heaps of money, others are gonna bitch and complain and try to take them down a peg by suggesting the product is crap. Jealousy. Plain and simple.
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6:17PM on 01/15/2015
Luckily this was a year with great superhero films like Captain America: The Winter Soldier and X-Men: Days of Future Past (I don't count Guardians of the Galaxy as a superhero film, but it was great as well). Compare to last year when Iron Man 3, Thor 2, and Man of Steel were received with mixed reactions. I don't know if the argument is really about too many films, but more about all the big name superheros have been done already and people aren't thrilled about reboots, and a lot of future
Luckily this was a year with great superhero films like Captain America: The Winter Soldier and X-Men: Days of Future Past (I don't count Guardians of the Galaxy as a superhero film, but it was great as well). Compare to last year when Iron Man 3, Thor 2, and Man of Steel were received with mixed reactions. I don't know if the argument is really about too many films, but more about all the big name superheros have been done already and people aren't thrilled about reboots, and a lot of future films involve those heroes people aren't familiar with (like Antman).
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8:04PM on 01/15/2015
That's an important distinction.
That's an important distinction.
6:06PM on 01/15/2015
Defends them against who?
There are too many super here movies btw
Defends them against who?
There are too many super here movies btw
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2:49AM on 01/16/2015
For you. There are too man superhero movies for you.
For you. There are too man superhero movies for you.
9:15AM on 01/16/2015
its not that there are too many, there are too many average ones that become so overrated it get tiring.
its not that there are too many, there are too many average ones that become so overrated it get tiring.
5:57PM on 01/15/2015

Not only is PTA one of the best directors working today.........

.........but this response shows him to be a really down to Earth guy as well!
.........but this response shows him to be a really down to Earth guy as well!
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+5
5:48PM on 01/15/2015

My Hero!

What a fucking rock star. The end.
What a fucking rock star. The end.
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-1
5:47PM on 01/15/2015
I think some people fear that whilst they'd welcome a superhero movie every month...the general public won't...box office receipts will fall...and the studios will stop making them. I suspect that's the crux of most complaints. If you're actually complaining about too many of them coz you're fed up of it...yeh...go get a life ;o)
I think some people fear that whilst they'd welcome a superhero movie every month...the general public won't...box office receipts will fall...and the studios will stop making them. I suspect that's the crux of most complaints. If you're actually complaining about too many of them coz you're fed up of it...yeh...go get a life ;o)
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5:44PM on 01/15/2015
Love the way PTA begins his response.
Love the way PTA begins his response.
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5:42PM on 01/15/2015

Like every type of media out there.........

They are only there for you to sit up and take notice. Books, comic and films. They are all the same. They allow you to enter a world envisaged by it's creators. Sometimes it works for you personally, sometimes it doesn't work for you personally. That's the part of the media I like.
They are only there for you to sit up and take notice. Books, comic and films. They are all the same. They allow you to enter a world envisaged by it's creators. Sometimes it works for you personally, sometimes it doesn't work for you personally. That's the part of the media I like.
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