Mirageman ★★★★

What makes Mirageman, a Chilean martial-arts-superhero flick, so special is a weird parallel attention-to-detail that it shares with "Batman Begins." Take for example, your everyday hero. In a tv show like "Dexter,", the lead character is ripped, but he has so much stuff going on in his life, you wonder how he isn't a 230 pound slob, let alone a buff serial killer. In Mirageman, we see the hero carefully pay attention to his calorie intake, partake in gruelling workouts, and train every day. So, we believe he could be a ripped, lethal vigilante just as we believe billionaire Bruce Wayne could become Batman in the Nolan film.

How do heroes constantly stumble upon crime when out and about in the city? In most superhero movies, it seems muggings take place about every second block, when we know this isn't the case. In Mirageman, he sets up an email account and has the oppressed send him messages on how he can help them. And then when he's there, the movie hilariously shows the 2-minute struggle to get on his superhero outfit from plain street clothes. It's played for laughs, but it isn't maudevillian over-the-top, it's simply what would actually happen.

Mirageman really surpassed my expectations. To be honest, one of the reasons I sought it out was that I had seen very few South American movies and no Chilean flicks, and I wanted to get one under my belt. What a great way to stumble into a low-budget, but very entertaining, take on the superhero genre. Sure there are a lot of problems with it, mainly in numerous implausibilities in the plot; but the action is great, the characters are likeable, and the attention to detail really elevates this above most Hollywood superhero flicks that have easily 20x the budget. This was a great discovery for me and I hope if you like superhero flicks, or foreign action movies, you'll give it a try.

Callan liked these reviews