Last week, Marvel unleashed the trailer for “X-Men ’97,” the sequel to the series from FOX Kids from the nineties that continues the saga of the 1990’s iteration of the X-Men.
It was a time when they were massively popular, one of the big moneymakers for Marvel, and were given a variety of excellent characters. The X-Men property has been around for decades, and around the nineties, Marvel began developing the ideal “X-Men” movie. It wasn’t until the year 2000 that we finally got the “X-Men” movie.
But I think “X-Men” would have also made a great eighties action film, so I went back and cast an “X-Men” movie if it were developed, and cast in 1987! What if…?
After some really good individual Blu-Ray releases of his four part Toxie epic, Lloyd Kaufman and Troma usher in their classic series on the 4K UHD format. This should serve as no surprise as Lloyd Kaufman and Troma were the first to jump on to the DVD format, and use it as a basis of entering the new generation of movie lovers. This new box set described as “TA on 4K” includes all four “Toxie” adventure movies but on 4K and Blu-Ray, as well as a massive library of special features and vintage extras.
It’s too bad that in Wes Craven’s long and storied filmmaking career that “Swamp Thing” is the movie that’s aged the worst. It seemed like a slam dunk for the director, but his approach toward “Swamp Thing” never quite rises above niche horror camp. Even when adapting the source material as straight faced as possible, “Swamp Thing” is really never great as, say, “A Nightmare on Elm Street” and that’s probably because the movie itself jumps back and forth in tone and aesthetic. It goes from cheesy monster movie to an attempt at a Beauty and the Beast tale. It garners clear moments of pure camp and then tries to offer allegories on God complex drawing obvious influence from “The Island of Dr. Moreau.”
What we’re seeing with “Mutant Mayhem” is what happens after every movie makes a bang at the box office. The “The Spider-Verse” movies were so beloved and influential that we can expect studios to ape its animation and storytelling style for at least a few years. The first of what will probably be many to come is “Mutant Mayhem.” Jeff Rowe’s animated movie is a new re-imagining of Eastman and Laird’s “Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles” franchise, but aimed a lot more toward Generation Z. That’s both a quality that improves what producers Seth Rogen and Evan Goldbergh aim to be the beginning of a new wave of popularity for the Turtles, and a hindrance.
If ever there was an argument to be made about movies being cursed, there is “New Mutants.” This is a movie that even people that don’t like superhero movies will be re-visiting for decades, discussing how it has such a streak of bad luck, it’s become kind of heartbreaking by now. Reshoots, delays, rewrites, shelving, postponing, delaying, and the big Marvel purchase of FOX studios have made “New Mutants” one of the modern Hollywood disaster stories.
It’s a great premise, based on the climax of a great movie like “Logan,” that promised a brand new direction to a beloved Marvel series, that definitively closes the FOX “X-Men” movies and features a great cast of dynamic young stars like Maisie Williams, Anya Taylor Joy and the like. And it almost seems like we’re never going to see it until Disney breaks down and finally decides to put it on their streaming service.
The indefinite postponing on April 3rd to TBD, thanks to the COVID-19 pandemic has struck “New Mutants” once again, infuriating fans. But until Disney decides to release the movie finally, if ever, here are five great dark fantasies you can watch to fulfill the appetite.
Unless you’re in the Berlanti-verse, DC and Warner doesn’t seem to know what the heck they’re doing with their properties on TV these days. After a surge in TV shows based on their IP’s, they suddenly were all wiped off the air and left for future discussions on what could have been, by comic book geeks all over the world. It’s a shame because, since while all of DC and Warner’s TV series don’t re-invent the wheel, they’re at least bold enough to try something new and unique. Your mileage will vary when it comes to “Krypton” and “Swamp Thing” Blu-Ray releases, but you have to give them credit for at least thinking outside the box.
I’ll plead guilty in admitting that I’ve never understood why “C.H.U.D.” is considered a horror classic. The title is great, as it completely lays the cards out on the table for the audience. The concept is golden, as underground mutants that eat random people in the big city is ripe for a great monster movie. But when you get down to the actual movie itself, it’s a romance drama, mixed with a political thriller, with man eating underground mutants that kind of sort of appear in the finale for a bit here and there. You go in to it expecting a creepy monster film, but what you get is “The China Syndrome.”
The FOX “X-Men” movie era is officially over marked as the end with “The Dark Phoenix.” Now that Disney has absorbed FOX’s properties, there’s a strong chance we will be seeing the “X-Men” again on film and or television very soon, just not in the way FOX Studios imagined it in 2000. As an “X-Men” fanatic, I can’t say that the series delivered very much but it did offer some small nuggets that are worth appreciating. What did you think of FOX’s “X-Men” series overall?