June 10, 2023

Feature:The Strangest Screen Super-heroes


This summer sees the release of Captain America, Thor, Green Lantern and another X-Men movie, with Batman, Spiderman, Superman and The Avengers all to follow next year. Starting to feel a bit sick of super-heroes? Well conveniently July sees the release of SUPER, a hilarious super-hero spoof starring an all-star cast including Rainn Wilson, Ellen Page, Kevin Bacon and Liv Tyler. The American Office’s Wilson stars as a down on his luck loser who gets himself a costume and takes on crime, with, er, less than perfect results. To mark it’s release, let’s look down some of the more unusual super-heroes to have graced our screens…

Michael Crawford (yep, Frank Spencer himself) stars in this classic piece of 80s Disney family friendly cheese, as a cartoonist who dons a pair of cheap-looking metal wings to fight Oliver Reed’s over-the-top Russian bad guy. It’s clunky and very silly, but it’s built up a cult following amongst those that have fond nostalgic memories of watching on telly at half-term.


Mystery Men
Ben Stiller led an all-star cast in this super-hero spoof, featuring a whole ensemble of crazy costumed characters. Notable members include William H. Macy as The Shoveler, who has special skills with, er, a shovel, Janeane Garofalo as The Bowler, the bowling vigilante, and Kel from Kenan & Kel as the Invisible Boy who can only turn invisible when no-one’s looking.


You had me at ‘Bollywood superhero’. The sequel to the Indian smash hit Koi… Mil Gaya (itself a Bollywood take on E.T.). Asian superstar Hrithik Roshan stars as the son of an alien who assumes the identity of Krrish to battle evil. The film features CGI and effects comparable to any Hollywood blockbuster you care to mention and definitely doesn’t disappoint in the action stakes.


Hit Girl (from Kick-Ass)
The most controversial cinema character of last year, Hit Girl was the gun-toting, foul-mouthed, 11- year old masked assassin that had the Daily Mail up in arms. However, she did also supply one of the year’s most exciting action sequences, and Chloe Moretz, the young actress that played her, looks to have a great career ahead of her, turn in another great performance in this year’s Let Me In.


Woody Harrelson stars as a mentally damaged man who takes on the identity of the titular hero in the quirky indie comedy. An odd film that went straight to DVD in both Britain and the US, but one that features a great performance from the ever-amazing Harrelson and great use of a jar of bees as a deadly weapon.



The American Office’s Rainn Wilson stars in what sure to be a break out role in this hilarious, over-the-top comedy. When Frank’s (Wilson) wife leaves him for a seductive, psychopathic drug dealer (Kevin Bacon), he is transformed and the Crimson Bolt is born.  With a hand-made suit and a monkey wrench the Crimson Bolt beats his way through the mean streets of crime. The rules were written a long time ago: You are not supposed to molest children, cut lines or key cars; if you do, prepare to face the wrath of the Crimson Bolt!

SUPER is in cinemas 8 June 2011.

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