Not another list of the last five Marvel movies, but an attempt at creating The Superhero List To End All…
Comic Book Confidential
In the 20th century, no artistic medium in North America with so much potential for creative expression has had a more turbulent history plagued with less respect than comic books. Through animated montages, readings and interviews, this film guides us through the history of the medium from the late 1930s and 1940s with the first explosion of popularity with the superheroes created by great talents like Jack Kirby and hitting its first artistic zenith with Will Eisner's "Spirit". It then shifts to the post war comics world with the rising popularity of crime and horror comics, especially those published by EC Comics under the editorshiop of William B. Gaines until it came crashing down the rise of censorship with the imposition of the Comics Code. In its wake of the devastation of the medium's creative freedom, we also explore EC's defiant survival with the creation of the singular "Mad Magazine" by Harvey Kurtzman.
The Rat Fink and Mad Magazine were gateway drugs that primed the Youth of America for wonders yet to come...wonders that took the form of underground comic books. Artists like R. Crumb, Spain Rodriguez, Vaughn Bode, and Dan Clowes have all shaped my view of the world over the years, for good or for ill.
Comic Book Confidential attempts to encapsulate the world of underground comics, tracing their development from the fantastically chromed and otherworldy visions of Jack Kirby and the furshlugginer humor in a jugular vein of William Gaines, to the dark, apocalyptic visions of Frank Miller's Dark Knight and the dadaistic musings of Bill Griffith's Zippy the Pinhead.
There are gaps here, to be sure. The world of…
I’m more disappointed by this documentary than anything else, as I really thought it was going to blow my mind in terms of coverage of the history of comic books. However, there were several major flaws that make it impossible for me to ever recommend it as anything more than a bit of light entertainment, or possibly as a primer for the completely uninitiated into the world of American comics (I think the uninitiated is far from being the film's target audience, although perhaps it should be).
Firstly, anyone with more than a passing understanding of comics history will see that several important artists, writers and works are completely missing from the chronology; the most glaring being the work of…
First off, I think comics are the most overrated form of "art" in existence. I don't rate them at all - so listening to a bunch of self-satisfied dullards chat about the importance of their work made me want to burn things.
Even so, it starts off well and the origin stories of early comics is fascinating but as soon as it moves onto the alternative crowd who are basically wanking onto paper and selling it, I just disconnected from it. Maybe that's the point of the documentary to highlight how pretentious these people are. I would have felt more if it had focused on fans or even artists discussing why these comics meant something to them. There can be…
Nice to see some creators that are no longer with us, such as Jack Kirby and Will Eisner. I might have preferred a little more talk about the comics, rather than the animated excerpts. I also wouldn't mind seeing a followup now, 25 years later.
Bien como visión general, pero toca tantos temas (orígenes, superheroes, censura, cómic independiente,... ) que no profundiza en ninguno.
I saw a comic book documentary a few years ago that basically encompassed the whole history of comic books, from superheroes, horror, indies, underground, ect... and I always thought this was it. Turns out I was wrong. After doing a little research I think I might have watched Comic Book Superheroes Unmasked, but I can't be sure. The title seems to suggest it would only be about superhero comic books though... Anyways...
This documentary mostly concentrates on indie and underground comics. It gives a great history of how they started and why they existed. The second half of the documentary though ends up being an introduction to different artists in the field with an example of one of their stories.…
This film changed my life
Nice overview of the art form. Only fault is that it tries to cover too much ground but has some great gets in terms of interviewees.
I remember this movie very fondly from my childhood, even though I saw it before I was an appropriate age.
Of course, an 11 year old kid watching a movie about underground comics could be exactly what they were going for.
A whirlwind timeline and thematic history of the comic book medium from its earliest years and the golden age of Superman, to the strange and bizarre underground comics of the 70s. Things wrap up in the late 80s with some jaw dropping footage of a young long-haired Frank Miller talking about his new DARK KNIGHT books.
More a statement about censorship and art, than it is about comics, the superheros are the sugar that helps the spoonful of medicine go down. What follows is a splendid journey into artistic expression in pop culture.
This is a great snap shot of the Comic Book history of 1988 and before. It is a great perspective of where comics were at then and where they are at today in 2012. I must have seen part of this film before because a lot of it seems familiar.
They hit some of the greats like Stan Lee, Jack Kirby and Frank Miller among others, but seems like they seriously overlook the big comic of that time which is Watchmen. I'm sure there must have been publishing and copy right issues as to why it wasn't touched upon, but I would have to figure something could have been said. Nevertheless, it is still a great documentary of it's time and also for the present.
Interesting 'point in time' snapshot of the history of comics as of the mid-1980s...
A retrospective of comic history done just before the revolution of Miller, et al.
A doc about the history of comic books. Basically a series of short interviews of important artists. Not informative enough to make up for how boring it is. It doesn’t go in any depth, showing comic book panels with the artist reading the captions doesn’t make for a fun movie. I guess die-hard comics fans could enjoy seeing so many artists. People who don’t know anything about the subject and stand to learn anything might be interested to. For me, with even only a passing interest in the art form, there was little and few artists in it I didn’t know, and it ended being just so so boring.
Somewhat interesting as a brisk snapshot of American comics at the end of the Eighties, and worth a watch for the archival footage and appearances of the ones who aren't around anymore (Gaines, Kirby, Eisner)...but it's a very flat piece of work. "People reading stuff" just isn't that compelling - the same goes for trying to "animate" comic panels by shuffling them around the screen with music over the top. On the cusp of the rise of Vertigo comics and the British Invasion, Mann's flimsy doc must have looked out-of-date very, very quickly...
Less a 'definitive' or even wholly comprehensive history of the comic book form than a stylish, sympathetic (yet never apologetically so), infectiously enthusiastic survey of the medium, which is now notable for interviews with key creators who've since passed. Plus points for energetic, animated sequences of artwork narrated by their creators. (Can Lynda Barry v/o my life?)
Here is a list taken from the very funny book of the same list title these films span from 1970's…