My top 20 Comic Book films-8-X Men 2

I did my top 20 horror and SF films last year, and found doing the lists to be more fun than expected, so in a massive bit of logic here’s my top 20 films adapted or inspired from comics. I need to point out I mean comics, not ‘superhero comics’ which is a lazy, and incorrect way to describe a wonderfully varied medium and it’d also cut out some bloody good films!

Previously, in this list at #20, X Men19The Crow18Heavy Metal, 17, Spider Man ,16The Avengers, 15Danger: Diabolik, 14The Dark Knight Trilogy , 13A History of Violence12Kick Ass , 11,Spider Man 2 , 10, Barbarella and 9, Batman Returns.

Next up is X Men 2, or X2, or the sequel to the first Bryan Singer X Men film.

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X Men 2 is pretty much the perfect modern superhero film. It’s got engaging characters, plot, subtexts, action, metaphors and lots of people in leather jumpsuits hitting and tabbing each other with their adamantium claws. It really is one of those rare cases where the sequel is not only as good as the first film, but actually totally surpasses it. Yes, it sometimes does get swamped by the amount of characters in it but most of the time all the various plot threads seem to be going somewhere rather than just hopelessly flailing around hoping that everything sorts itself up during it’s running time.

This is also the film where Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine clearly becomes the main character in these films which is obviously why producers decided to make an awful and a slightly less awful couple of Wolverine solo films, though the entire film hinges on Stryker, the character played by the always superb Brian Cox. Without him there’s no plot so in effect he becomes the film’s MacGuffin.

Singer puts a lot of work in this film to make it work as it’s own beast as opposed to a sequel, and what most expected at the time, a middle film in a trilogy that he’d complete. Sadly, Singer decided to go away and make Superman Returns and some worthless shite hack made a third film that’s not even worth wasting any more spite upon. I do look forward to Singer’s return with Days of Future Past if only to see if he’s remembered how to make a good film as he’s not done one since X Men 2. I can but hope….

Next up, who was the law again?

My Top 20 SF Films-17-Sunshine

I’ve recently dived into doing ”best of’ lists, so as I’ve explained, I’ve decided to do my top 20 SF films. This is my personal list, so feel free to disagree with it and of course, you’ll be horribly wrong.

Previously at # 20, The Matrix19, Seconds and 18, A Boy and His Dog.

At #17 it’s the film that made Professor Brian Cox famous, it’s Danny Boyle’s criminally underrated, Sunshine.

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Sunshine tells to story of a crew sent to reignite the Sun to prevent it from dying by dropping a thermonuclear bomb in it. It’s a fantastic idea, and Boyle tries as hard as possible to present it as scientifically accurate as possible, but when your film is about a spaceship dropping a bomb into the sun.

It’s a fantastic tale, and one in lesser hands than Boyle wouldn’t have worked but by concentrating upon the human characters and leaving the effects to the minimum, Boyle manages to tell a great story which although it does fall apart when he decides to throw a bit of Event Horizon in at the end, the actual ending itself is lovely and haunting at the same time.

As a bit of SF it’s pretty strong. As an action drama it’s almost perfect with only the flutter at the end ensuring the film doesn’t rank higher on my list. It’s one of the few more recent SF films set in space that isn’t a Space Opera, or just shite, so for that it needs to be applauded. I will say though that if you get a chance to see it at the cinema do so as watching it in your living room just won’t capture the scale of the film in it’s larger moments, especially in that ending I mentioned.

Next time, we stay in space with some tripped out astronauts…