Avengers Endgame: Are Modern Superhero Movies UAMC Worthy?
The new Avengers: Endgame trailer is here! But should ultimate action movie fans care?
I’ll be honest. I’m torn on this subject. Are modern superhero movies Ultimate Action Movie Club worthy? Personally, I’m not a big fan of The Avengers or really any of these modern superhero franchises. I did see and enjoy Black Panther, Thor: Ragnarok and Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, but only because they seemed interesting for reasons outside of simply being the latest superhero movie.
Now we have a new trailer upon us and the debate is fresh once again. Let’s look at some reasons for and against Avengers: Endgame being considered ultimate action movie worthy.
Note: for those who aren’t up on what makes a movie ‘UAMC-worthy‘ here’s a great article explaining what makes 80s and 90s action movies ULTIMATE here! Also we have similar debates on whether action movie genre crossovers count and what’s the best way to watch ultimate action movies!
New Avengers: Endgame Trailer
First off, here is the first trailer for the upcoming Avengers: Endgame movie. Interested to know everyone else’s thoughts, but to me the trailer really doesn’t do much for me. Not only is there not much information about anything, there’s absolutely no action. It’s Robert Downey Jr. being sad. Then it’s some other Avengers being sad for a bit. That’s really about it!
An Argument for Superheroes being UAMC Worthy
Let’s ignore this latest trailer though. I’m sure the next trailer will begin to tease the plot points and action quite a bit more. And if there is ANY argument for the Avengers and modern superhero movies being UAMC worthy it’s squarely on the fact that they have ACTION – and usually lots of it!
Ultimate Action Movies from the 80s and 90s are notorious for having gratuitos action and violence that is used to solve all of life’s problems. Modern superhero movies are no different as every film has to come down to the same bad guy vs good guy showdowns.
Modern superhero movies are also hero driven much in the same way as classic action flicks. Instead of Chuck Norris doing his signature roundhouse you just have Captain America doing his signature – whatever the heck it is he does with that tiny shield – move. (And note: if there is one modern superhero that seems the most UAMC-worthy, it’s probably Captain America.)
It’s also worth mentioning that modern superhero, like their ultimate action movie counterparts, simply do a great job of giving audiences what they want. They make tons and tons of money because fans love seeing the same story arcs and big budget fights and CGI animations. Using Cannon Films as an example (who may be singularly responsible for action movies to begin with) is just proof that action movies were made for the masses.
Superhero Movies Are Not Ultimate Action Movies
However, let’s look at the counter. Modern superhero movies – especially this Avenger franchise – are different from classic action movies in several ways. As you can see in the Avengers: Endgame trailer they really make a meal out of their powerfully emotional characters. Unlike the singular destructive forces of Arnold, Bronson, Norris, Seagal and Van Damme who hardly bat an eye at loved ones being killed or kidnapped, these modern action heroes seem like soap opera characters – or at least similar to their WB spinoff siblings.
The biggest gripe with the modern superhero movies is the heavy reliance on CGI action. It’s basically like watching an animated movie (which is fine, but not UAMC). Every major fight scene becomes a video game cut scene where you don’t even really get a sense of what’s going on. Often the hand-to-hand fighting looks terribly choreographed and simple and certainly does not show off any significant martial arts skills or training.
As a fan of 80s and 90s action movies which themselves were very formulaic and cliched, I won’t hit modern superhero movies too hard for their sameness, but it does get a little tiring to see the same end-of-the-world stakes so quickly raised for every film and character. That’s just part of the superhero folklore, but it leaves little room for finding other unique stories and narratives.
These are just one man’s opinion though! And like I said, I’m not entirely convinced my sentiments are right. I’d be open to either giving many of these superhero movies more of a chance (I did really enjoy Black Panther), but I’m also interested in hearing from other who choose to stick to their ultimate action movie guns and stay focused on the classics.
How do you feel about modern action movies and their possibly UAMC-ness? Share your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page!