I’ve never understood the fascination at Comic-Con with wanting to see panels for movies that audiences already know everything about. To me, Super is the epitome of what makes this place special: getting to be the first to discover and experience the geekiest projects worth getting excited about in the years ahead, right alongside the filmmakers and cast that created them. Last year’s big winner was Kick-Ass, and this year, I was hoping the similarly-themed Super would take the prize.
The film is written and directed by James Gunn, whose geek cred skyrocketed with the horror-comedy Slither. Now he’s turned his sights to the superhero genre, and he’s got an amazing cast backing him: Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page, Liv Tyler, Nathan Fillion and Kevin Bacon.
Gunn and all of the cast (sans Bacon) arrived to Comic-Con to show off the trailer and a clip from the film. Find out more about the film and the footage—and if my hopes were in vain—after the break.
The trailer kicks off with Rainn Wilson and Liv Tyler hitting it off, and not soon after, getting married.
Things go awry almost immediately, when Wilson arrives home to find Tyler hanging out with some questionable company while getting high. Kevin Bacon plays the drug dealer at the root of the conflict. “She doesn’t want to be with you,” he says.
Dressing up in a gold-starred red spandex suit, which covers his entire body and most of his face. He tests out his weapon–a hefty wrench–against a melon. It splatters. “That’ll do.”
Bacon is at home, being protected by his gang of baddies, when Wilson smashes a window with the wrench. They pull out their guns and aim at him. He pauses awkwardly, and bolts away from the house; he clearly didn’t think this through. They dart after him and try to chase him down.
Ellen Page makes an appearance as a weird girl who becomes his sidekick. She shows off her moves in his apartment, bouncing pathetically around the room while attempting to punch and kick and flip onto her feet while laying on the ground.
Nathan Fillion, who plays The Holy Avenger, also shows up briefly wearing an old school, yellow superhero mask.
The trailer ends with Wilson throwing a stick of dynamite at a random dude. He stares down, unsure of what he’s looking at. Then, it explodes. A mess of blood and organs and limbs fills the frame.
Wilson is waiting in line for a movie, when an asshole cuts in front, and starts hitting on an attractive woman. Others quietly express their irritation, and Wilson perks up. “Hey,” he stammers. “No butts.” The asshole ignores him. “No butting in line!” The asshole dismisses him again.
Frustrated, Wilson leaves his spot and heads for his car. He opens the trunk, pulls out his costume, and awkwardly gets changed in the backseat while a little girl outside points him out to her mom.
He returns to the line, and stands beside the asshole.
Without skipping a beat, he blasts the guy in the forehead with the wrench. Blood starts to pour profusely down his brow.
The girl, shocked, starts to berate and swing at him. Wilson whips the wrench across her face, and she collapses.
After Kick-Ass, Defendor, Special and Mirageman, this film is a little late to the subversive-indie-superhero-parody party, but it’s not for lack of trying. James Gunn wrote the script eight years, and it took until now for him to get it made. And despite the film seeming pretty similar to Kick-Ass in terms of its hardcore violence and unadulterated vulgarity, it still feels like its own thing.
Stylistically, the film has the appearance of a typical quirky indie comedy/romance (lots of naturalistic handheld camera work, offbeat comedic moments, etc.), but all of it is meshed with the disturbing weirdness of James Gunn’s Troma-esque approach. It’s a great combo, and a significant departure from Kick-Ass‘ visually glossy perversion of blockbuster superhero movies.
For those put off by Kick-Ass‘ refusal to adhere to its “realistic” premise, this is the movie for you.
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