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  1. #1
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    Default Best and Worst: Superhero Movie Director

    Not comic book movies director. Superhero.

    Russo brothers have to be up there, but my boss has to go to Kenneth Branaugh. He understood the source material at a time when the source material wasn't really understood by Hollywood. He knew where to break with source material (no Donald Blake). He understood the relative importance of romantic plots. He understood the correct ratio of drama to comedy and where to inject it.

    Worst is Zack Snyder. No sense of color balance, or editing, or characterization, completely disregards - and even contemptuous of - the source material in many cases. Really just a bad filmmaker in general.

    Who's your picks?

  2. #2
    Astonishing Member thwhtGuardian's Avatar
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    I think my top pick would be Guillermo del Torro; from Blade II to Hellboy and even films like Pacific Rim and the netflix cartoon Trollhunters he shows that he not only has a great eye for action and fun action set pieces but he knows how to do humor, heart and even horror.

    For worst...I think I'll go with Rob Bowman for his atrocious film Elektra.

  3. #3
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Hard for me to pick best. Top four has to be Sam Raimi, Tim Burton, Guillermo del Torro, and Christopher Nolan. Technically a supervillain film but I'm counting Joker for this, so Todd Phillips makes it a dirty five.
    Runner up might be James Gunn. Super was great, GotG are a bit overhyped but fun, and Suicide Squad looks like it'll be good.

    I'm actually not big on the Russo brothers' movies as far as the MCU is concerned. They're alright, but the big Avengers movies feel overblown and hyped to me compared to the solo features.

    Worst, oof, has Uwe Boll ever directed a superhero movie? I see thwtGuardian has the right idea with Rob Bowman for Elektra. I'll also add Jean-Christophe "Pitof" Comar for directing Catwoman.
    Last edited by Vakanai; 07-24-2021 at 05:37 PM.

  4. #4
    Incredible Member chicago_bastard's Avatar
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    I don't think there is a truly great one as all have their flaws and missteps but I think I can settle on the following as best in no particular order:

    Nolan: although he seemed to be more concerned with taking the super out of his movies

    Whedon: The Avengers is basically the only superhero movie he had complete control over and it set the standard for superhero team-ups. On Age of Ultron the studio forced him to change many of his plans and he can't be held responsible for failing to make a mess like ZSJL watchable.

    Burton: I guess this may be a hot take on a comic book forum but his visuals were fantastic and his Gotham is by far the best version to this day.

    Choosing the worst is easier. There may be worse single efforts than his but their directors never got another shot at a superhero movie, whereas Snyder gave us one mediocre and two garbage superhero movies.

    I have to correct myself on that, other than the source material that was meant as a deconstruction of superheroes (what Snyder clearly didn't understand), Snyder's Watchmen is also a superhero movie what brings his garbage count up to three. Actually what he made out of the best comic book of all time is enough to earn him the top spot, his other movies just confirm it.
    Tolstoy will live forever. Some people do. But that's not enough. It's not the length of a life that matters, just the depth of it. The chances we take. The paths we choose. How we go on when our hearts break. Hearts always break and so we bend with our hearts. And we sway. But in the end what matters is that we loved... and lived.

  5. #5
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    Well I don't think the guy is the best. But I will throw a wild card in here. Mathew Vaughn. He has had a few missteps. But except for the second Kingsman I think all of his super hero movies have been pretty decent.

  6. #6
    Incredible Member chicago_bastard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by inisideguy View Post
    Well I don't think the guy is the best. But I will throw a wild card in here. Mathew Vaughn. He has had a few missteps. But except for the second Kingsman I think all of his super hero movies have been pretty decent.
    I thought about including him but didn't think that Kingsman really qualifies as a superhero movie and only First Class wasn't enough for me.
    Tolstoy will live forever. Some people do. But that's not enough. It's not the length of a life that matters, just the depth of it. The chances we take. The paths we choose. How we go on when our hearts break. Hearts always break and so we bend with our hearts. And we sway. But in the end what matters is that we loved... and lived.

  7. #7
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    Quote Originally Posted by chicago_bastard View Post
    I thought about including him but didn't think that Kingsman really qualifies as a superhero movie and only First Class wasn't enough for me.
    Well Kick- Ass is very watchable I think as well.

  8. #8
    Astonishing Member Castle's Avatar
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    I will just address the sleeping deer in the bank , especially after finding out about how the first opted director of black widow left because , Marvel told her they will take care of everything and she as a director, was not that needed in some major areas of the movie, a pattern they have been doing since phase 2 that has just gone a step too far now after watching the recent Black Widow film and reading more about the origins of the film from Lucrecia Martel . for this reason, I would not put any Superhero director on the list after Disney took over and marvel went all 300% cooperate film making factory style.


    They are all disqualified to me, if this thread is actually meant to be a serious discussion about directors directing their own superhero movies. None of them are on my best and also worst list, because I don't really know the extent of how good or bad they are as directors.

    After Batman and Robin in 1997, we expect directors not only to direct their own superhero films but also map out their own story and what is in the text of their films, as well as handle their own CGI, Action Scenes, Editing and Cinematography, screenplays and set their own tone for the film based on their little knowledge of the source material.

    Superhero directors names attached to marvel films after phase 1 don't get close to this freedom of directing, so for this one
    but big reason. I can not give them any spot. I am basing this on a film scholastic POV based in critical academia thinking, because what Marvel is actually doing to their superhero directors is plagiarism and that does mean total disqualification for them as will be in any credible school system . The only superhero directors that escaped this were
    Kenneth Branaugh (Thor)

    Jon Favreau (Iron Man 1)

    Louis Leterrier (Hulk)

    Now for the other list of best superhero directors backed up by much they pushed story telling of superhero movies and superhero genre for the better, especially those that made the genre finally grow up and move past the ideology that it's all just kids nonsense fairy tales, after Batman and Robin and above all were the primary one and only directors of their own movies


    Sam Rami (Spiderman 1, Spiderman 2)

    Chris Nolan ( Batman Begins, TDK)

    Guillermo del Toro (Blade 2, Hell Boy)

    Bryan Singer (X-MEN 1, X-MEN 2, Days of Future PAST)

    Zack Snyder ( Man of Steel, Watchmen, Snyder Cut, BvS)

    Mathew Vaughn (Kick Ass, Kingsman Secret Service, First Class)

    I cannot really say any director is the worst because they would have to have made at least 2-4 comic films I felt were bad or mediocre or disappointing, however there are some that just just made me shake my head. Their names are attached to Batman and Robin, X-MEN Origins, Amazing Spiderman 1, Howard the Duck, Dark Phoenix, Daredevil, Green Lantern. Just a few.

    It's so funny because even if I still feel this directors should not have directed those films, at least I can say they got to direct it and be directors even if some were of mediocre directing range, but it is mind blowing, I cannot say that about the most directors in the MCU and that to me is a far worse situation from a film making POV.
    Last edited by Castle; 07-24-2021 at 06:38 PM.

  9. #9
    Astonishing Member Castle's Avatar
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    A good shout out to Tim Burton and Richard Donner, however as I only only got really deep into superhero films in the 2000s and started to understand the art of cinema more on artistic level around the 2000s.I thought I just mention the films that mattered most to this thread.
    Last edited by Castle; 07-24-2021 at 06:27 PM.

  10. #10
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by inisideguy View Post
    Well Kick- Ass is very watchable I think as well.
    Didn't he also direct the sequel? Kick-Ass is one of my favorite films in the genre, but the sequel...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vakanai View Post
    Didn't he also direct the sequel? Kick-Ass is one of my favorite films in the genre, but the sequel...
    He did not direct the sequel.

  12. #12
    Astonishing Member Castle's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Vakanai View Post
    Didn't he also direct the sequel? Kick-Ass is one of my favorite films in the genre, but the sequel...
    Kick Ass 2 was not as good as the first but where I give Vaughn credit as a good superhero overall director is that he brought his Kick Out sense of style to X-MEN First Class. Bryan Singer may have mapped out the story with Vaughn, but Vaughn directed that movie from mostly A to Z, even opting for the so-called superhero costumes compared the hated black leather of Singer's movies and a more optimistic kind of cinematography compared to the darkness and gritters of X1 or X2 that Singer directed, while maybe doing a better job with the themes of the series that Singer was alpha male at.

    That is how you know not just a good superhero director but a good director in general. no matter the film, they keep their own unique style, you should be able to spot anywhere.
    Last edited by Castle; 07-24-2021 at 06:49 PM.

  13. #13
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    Its really hard for me to choose the best. For example I think Peyton reed did a great job with the ant-man movies for what they were. I don't know hard question. And then I think can a director work his way around a bad script or bad plot or studio issues? I mean some of these guys may have just been caught up in a crap situation.
    Last edited by inisideguy; 07-24-2021 at 06:55 PM.

  14. #14
    A Wearied Madness Vakanai's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Castle View Post
    A good shout out to Tim Burton and Richard Donner, however as I only only got really deep into superhero films in the 2000s and started to understand the art of cinema more on artistic level around the 2000s.I thought I just mention the films that mattered most to this thread.
    How could I forget Richard Donner?

  15. #15
    Incredible Member chicago_bastard's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by inisideguy View Post
    Well Kick- Ass is very watchable I think as well.
    I enjoyed it but also had the feeling that some of the potential wasn't used to its full capacity.
    Tolstoy will live forever. Some people do. But that's not enough. It's not the length of a life that matters, just the depth of it. The chances we take. The paths we choose. How we go on when our hearts break. Hearts always break and so we bend with our hearts. And we sway. But in the end what matters is that we loved... and lived.

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