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Added by moviebuff on 10 Aug 2014 03:32
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Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realis

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People who added this item 1823 Average listal rating (1190 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 7.3
How It’s Political: Only a few years after the Vietnam War and Watergate came this movie, acknowledging the cynicism of its era and presenting a noble hero that was the embodiment of everything that America once stood for - “truth, justice and the American way”.

What’s more interesting is that it’s an alien immigrant who embodies these cherished values, overcoming his own personal tragedy as an example to those disillusioned by recent events – represented by love interest Lois Lane, to whom he promises: “I’ll never lie to you”. You know, unlike those rotten politicians.
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People who added this item 246 Average listal rating (171 ratings) 5.4 IMDB Rating 5.4
How It's Political: The ultimate eco-warrior, Swampy is a big, giant green analogy for environmental activism. Not only is he one of the kindest, most peaceful creatures ever to come out of a comic book, he also symbolises the very power of nature.

More than a simple monster movie, Swamp Thing is packed with morality. The hero is a gengle giant, a literal treehugger who hesitates to kill humans and at one point knowingly tells us: "There is great beauty in the swamp - if you know where to look."
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People who added this item 2796 Average listal rating (1861 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 7.1
How It’s Political: The origin story of one of the most famous and prominent black superheroes of all time, some internet commentors have found class war undertones in Blade.

To them, vampire society is used to serve this allegory. Though all vampires ultimately see themselves as superior to humans, there is a distinct hierarchy in place. Purebloods, or born vampires, regard infected vampires as second-class citizens. And at the bottom of the food chain are familiars, who are essentially slaves hoping to one day rise amongst the ranks.
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People who added this item 6629 Average listal rating (4416 ratings) 7 IMDB Rating 7.4
How It’s Political: The numerous open references to the Holocaust aside, the entire X-Men universe is a commentary on racial tension.

Two heroes with strong, decent beliefs take very different approaches to their cause, the question of mutant equality being a direct metaphor for the American civil rights movement.

“The notion that Professor Xavier was Martin Luther King and Magneto was Malcolm X, and these were two men who had very strong, decent beliefs, but had taken different roads,” Brian Singer told the BBC.

“The irony of that, and the moral ambiguity of that, intrigued me. It was a step beyond simple crime-solving, superhero action. It was much more socio-political, and in that way exposed more truth.
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People who added this item 2949 Average listal rating (1986 ratings) 6.8 IMDB Rating 7.2
How It’s Political: Perhaps one of the wackier theories out there, it has been posited that the relationship between Price and Dunn is akin to that of George W. Bush and Osama Bin Laden. Bear with us.

The idea follows the principal that good and evil are dependent upon each other. Supposedly, the events of 9/11 galvanised and unified America behind the then president, making Bush stronger in the same way that in the movie, Price gives Dunn a purpose through his villainous machinations.
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People who added this item 1144 Average listal rating (724 ratings) 5.7 IMDB Rating 6.7
How It’s Political: Released soon after 9/11 and set in New York, it’s almost inconceivable that Spider-Man wouldn’t carry some sort of reaction to such a catastrophic event. In fact, with a character and city so intertwined, ignoring it would have been callous.

Several changes were made to the film’s promotional materials in reaction to the attacks, removing images of the World Trade Centre.

And Sam Raimi added a scene after shooting finished, depicting a group of people helping out Spider-Man by throwing objects at the Green Goblin and shouting: “You mess with one of us, you mess with all of us” in tribute to the people of New York.
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People who added this item 2791 Average listal rating (1833 ratings) 5 IMDB Rating 5.3
How It’s Political: By day Matt Murdoch battles in the courtroom, and by night he becomes a costumed vigilante with his own moral code, dealing deadly punishment to those he deems deserve it.

But in the midst of all the action comes a completely unexpected commentary on America’s love affair with the death penalty. At the end of the movie he battles the Kingpin, finally getting the chance to avenge his father’s death and end the gangster’s reign over Hell’s Kitchen. But Daredevil refuses to deal the final blow, because he’s “one of the good guys”. In short, capital punishment doesn’t make a wrong, right.
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People who added this item 7020 Average listal rating (4585 ratings) 6.7 IMDB Rating 7.3
Spider-Man 2 (2004)
How It’s Political: Rather more confused than Spider-Man’s post-9/11 pro-America leanings, Spider-Man 2 has very different undertones according to some theorists.

In an attempt to retire, Peter Parker abandons those who need him – just like America did its people (apparently).

But perhaps more interesting is the antagonist Doc Ock, and that machine of his. The theory has been put forward that Otto Octavious’ fusion generator represents empire and his mechanical arms the military-industrial complex, controlling him as various bodies hold influence over government spending. Of course, realising his error, the good doctor destroys the machine before it can do too much harm...

We know, we know - some superhero theorists have too much time on their (eight) hands.
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People who added this item 6906 Average listal rating (4545 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 8
How It’s Political: There’s a very middle-American sensibility not usually seen from Hollywood in The Incredibles, advocating the necessity of a nuclear family - something seen as having the utmost significance in the wake of 9/11, an era in which even cartoon villains can provoke debate about terror.

In a family made up of heroes, Mr Incredible must realise what’s truly important in life – and it isn’t a shiny car. Family is everything. Even when you’re a superhero.

Also worth noting are the nods to today’s blame-free society, and the law suits that come with it. "I just always wondered when a superhero broke through a wall, who was going to pay for that wall?" writer-director Brad Bird told the New York Times. "In the small-minded world we live in, that deed is not going to go unpunished."
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People who added this item 3736 Average listal rating (2439 ratings) 5.5 IMDB Rating 5.7
How It’s Political: Rather than going after governments or terrorists, Fantastic Four instead holds up a mirror against celebrity-obsessed society. After gaining their superpowers, the characters turn up in New York and instantly become famous, going into hiding from the media as they are recognised by photographers on the street - like paparazzi pursuing celebrities.

Regardless of its faults, the film shows the truth of being a superhero/celebrity in the real world: action figures, marketing teams, brand awareness and public perception.

From this perspective the actual villain of the piece, Doctor Doom, is almost secondary to the story.
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People who added this item 7192 Average listal rating (4803 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 8.3
Batman Begins (2005)
How It’s Political: Both villains, Ra’s al Ghul and the Scarecrow, are built on the foundations of terror.

Al Ghul, in particular, has an apocalyptic aim supposedly similar to organisations such as Al-Qaeda.

“Gotham’s time has come, like Constantinople or Rome before it. It is beyond saving and must be allowed to die,” he says, echoing extremist Muslim views that Western society has become corrupted - a disease in need of a cure.

Several theories also look closely at Batman’s militaristic modern-day makeover; gone are the spandex tights in favour of body armour and drives a very tank-like vehicle.

A superhero surrounded by these weapons of war seems to be an obvious metaphor for a superpower at war.

Oh, and then there’s the Weapon of Mass Destruction that rears its ugly head during the finale. That reference isn’t so thinly-veiled.
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People who added this item 7145 Average listal rating (4592 ratings) 7.7 IMDB Rating 8.2
How It’s Political: This film is all politics. The disfigured product of evil, government experiments, V vows revenge on the corrupt totalitarian government - from its dictator to the corrupt officials, fabricating news organization and raping police officers who rule over the citizens with an iron fist.

A terrorist, for once, on the side of right, V represents political action, warning how apathy and can allow a government that isn’t held accountable to strip a civilisation of its liberties.

And there’s a dig in the ribs for the good old U-S-of-A, too, with torture scenes in prisons that look reminiscent of Abu Ghraib and Guantanamo Bay.
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People who added this item 2982 Average listal rating (1927 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.1
How It’s Political: The Superman story has always been a Christ allegory, but Returns took it to a whole new level.

At points in the film we see the hero stabbed in side with Kryptonite (like Jesus stabbed with the spear), mysteriously vacate a hospital room (like the empty tomb of Jesus), cradled in his mother’s arms (likened to Michelangelo’s depiction of the Virgin Mary), and fall to Earth with his arms outstretched in a very Crucifixion-like manner.

Director Bryan Singer has spoken about the religious analogy, admitting it was probably too “heavy” for a summer movie.

“I’ve always felt that the origin of Superman is the story of Moses - the child sent on a ship to fulfill a destiny,” he told The Hollywood Reporter. “And this was a story about Christ — it’s all about sacrifice. It was kind of nailing you on the head, but I enjoyed that, because I’ve always found the myth of Christ compelling and moving. So I hoped to do my own take, which is heavy shit for a summer movie.”
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People who added this item 5372 Average listal rating (3354 ratings) 5.8 IMDB Rating 6.2
Spider-Man 3 (2007)
How It’s Political: Spidey must deal with two villains in the final part of Sam Raimi’s trilogy. One, Venom, is an alien that initially appears as a crude black liquid - the embodiment of oil. And when that oil possesses Peter Parker, he becomes arrogant, homicidal, and driven by revenge – which, Aunt May sagely informs us, can “turn us into something that we’re not.”

To save himself, he has to let go of the dark side, embrace lefty liberalism and forgive his enemies, swinging in to save the day against a background of stars and stripes. And then everything collapses in a heap of Christ imagery. But the metaphor about oil, and what it’s doing to the world, is there. Sort of.
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People who added this item 7596 Average listal rating (4996 ratings) 8.3 IMDB Rating 9
How It’s Political: Commentary on the moral compromises made since 9/11 pervades The Dark Knight. From the crumbling building behind Batman in publicity posters to the overt reference to warrantless wiretapping, this movie is an explicit commentary on the times we live in, approaching the topic from all angles with moral conflict after moral conflict.

Every time torture is employed it fails miserably and the Joker wins. Every time corruption is condoned, every time the rules are compromised, it creates an escalation in the violence. When Batman makes a selfish choice, it ultimately costs him badly because evil is one step ahead.

And then there’s the scene, in which we see a hardened criminal prove himself more moral than ‘upstanding citizens’, telling us that if you resort to evil to fight villainy, then you're a villain.

Terrorism works only when we let it make monsters of us.
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People who added this item 5018 Average listal rating (3356 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.9
Iron Man (2008)
How It’s Political: There really is no room for misinterpretation here. In fact, Stark says it himself at a press conference: “I saw that I had become part of a system that is comfortable with zero-accountability.”

The setting of Stark’s hippy-antagonising '60s origins are updated to war-torn Afghanistan where, after the genius experiences firsthand the part arms manufacturers play in perpetuating war, he decides to do something about it.

When he later returns, in full Iron Man regalia, he deftly takes care of the terrorist group who had captured him providing - for a moment - an efficient conclusion to a seemingly endless and confusing war.

If we all wish it hard enough, America will end the war on terror.
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People who added this item 3045 Average listal rating (1949 ratings) 5.9 IMDB Rating 6.4
Hancock (2008)
How It’s Political: Ostensibly a big budget vehicle for Will Smith to make his superpowered debut, some circles have accused Hancock of having a fairly nasty message.

They point out that this, the first depiction of a black superhero on the silver screen, sees him as a lazy, booze-addicted, foul-mouthed, loathed, bum who is ultimately saved by a middle-class, idealistic white guy.

And let’s not forget that Hancock can only keep his powers and become a hero if he stays well away from his beautiful, white wife. It’s a whole can of worms.
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People who added this item 2637 Average listal rating (1677 ratings) 6.2 IMDB Rating 6.8
Why It’s Political: While soldier Emil Blonsky might be the one who Bruce Banner ultimately battles, it’s General Ross who proves to be the scarier threat.

A stark reminder that extremists exist everywhere, Ross is a military devotee, desperate to harness the Hulk and turn it loose on America’s enemies, regardless of the potential for collateral damage, and ensure military supremacy.

Though Ross is an exaggerated embodiment of America’s right-wing, there are those who’d agree with his point of view.
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People who added this item 3461 Average listal rating (2328 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.6
Watchmen (2009)
How It’s Political:Watchmen is all about one thing: the bomb. Embodied by superhuman Dr. Manhattan, this nuclear allegory wipes out all others in the movie - we see the character pretty much single-handedly winning the Vietnam War.

But there’s also a very literal bomb. The nuclear reactor Ozymandias uses to destroy New York City, eliminating the threat of the Cold War by bringing about harmony between America and the Soviet Union through necessity.

Veidt’s plot is, in theory, for the greater good. And the kicker is that he’s right. We learn from Watchmen that in a world where a man can end the world, there is no place for moral absolutes.
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People who added this item 3564 Average listal rating (2272 ratings) 6.6 IMDB Rating 7
Iron Man 2 (2010)
How It’s Political: Tony Stark might be a hero, but he’s also symbolic of lucrative privatised industry as he fights for property rights against the government trying to get their grubby mitts on his tech.

Echoing Ayn Rand’s Atlas Shrugged, Tony is hauled into a hearing where he responds to their demands with his trademark irreverence, telling them: "You want my property? You can't have it!"

He humiliates his opponents by winning over the crowd and concludes by telling them: "I will serve this great nation at the pleasure of myself." So, Tony's a metaphor for capitalism, then.

Throw in Russian (shorthand for communist) antagonist Ivan Vanko and it’s a veritable politicalpalooza.
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People who added this item 3398 Average listal rating (2267 ratings) 7.3 IMDB Rating 7.6
Why It’s Political: On seeing an 11-year-old child slice, dice and swear her way through a movie, most were shocked by the obvious.

Those who bothered to look a little deeper, however, saw something extremely refreshing.

This tiny, somewhat psychopathic, little girl is the hero of the piece. And her sex is absolutely by-the-by.

"We just really wanted Hit-Girl to be a character who, in a sense, simply happens to be an eleven-year-old girl, in the same way that Ripley in Alien could have been a guy but the part happened to be played by Sigourney Weaver," explained writer Jane Goldman in an interview with The Guardian.

“She's a feminist hero by token of the fact that she pays no attention to gender stereotypes. I think she also doesn't want special treatment because she's a girl."
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Why It’s Political: If muscle-bound science experiment Captain America seems like an obvious pro-war symbol, it’s because he is.

Originally conceived in 1940 to do battle with Hitler, the character entirely evokes early superhero values – patriotism and utopianism.

Steve Rogers is the epitome of the selfless hero, desperate to go to war and willing to go to any lengths to fight for his country.

In today’s climate, it’s a hard sell, but Cap’s pure intentions, courageous sentiment and heroic ideology evoke a nostalgia for a simpler time - before corporations and agendas and greed got in the way.

As Agent Coulson remarks in Avengers Assemble: “Everything that’s happening, the things that are about to come to light... people might just need a little old fashioned.”
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People who added this item 3065 Average listal rating (2038 ratings) 7.5 IMDB Rating 7.8
How It’s Political: Set against the backdrop of the Cold War and at the height of the Cuban Missile Crisis, First Class cleverly evokes the mood of the time, intertwining it with X-Men mythology.

Eschewing the temptation to go over the top with fantasy, instead the film is rooted in the genuine fears of the time - international espionage, government cover-ups and conspiracy theories – using them to the plot’s advantage and provoking thought too.
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People who added this item 1418 Average listal rating (901 ratings) 5.3 IMDB Rating 5.6
Green Lantern (2011)
How It’s Political: While many superhero stories have some kind of God metaphor, it’s extremely prevalent in Green Lantern.

The Guardians of Oa are immortal – Christ figures, so the theory goes. And they go about utilising their almost limitless power to ensure that the universe essentially bends to their will.

Enter our very human hero Hal Jesus... *ahem* sorry, Jordan, who must prove himself worthy of such omnipotence and conquer his fears before embracing his destiny.
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People who added this item 1269 Average listal rating (811 ratings) 5.5 IMDB Rating 5.8
How It’s Political: In his transition to the big screen, pulp hero Rogen Reid has more to him than goofy lines and slapstick humour.

Like many of his generation, trust fund brat Reid is facing a crisis of masculinity, unsure what his place is in society and what’s expected of him.

In turn, there’s a larger metaphor as the United States also struggles for identity - to find a way to continue its place in the centre of economic, political, and social circumstances. Both are trying to achieve the American dream.
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People who added this item 2305 Average listal rating (1402 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 7
How It’s Political: Perhaps simpler in intent than Raimi’s earlier films, The Amazing Spider-Man still sees patriotism rewarded.

Throughout the movie, the good Spider-Man does as a vigilante (though his true intent may not be totally pure) is ignored. Instead he is hunted as a criminal himself. But when his purpose becomes honourable – and above all, patriotic – Spidey is rewarded with support, by both New York’s crane driving citizens and the city’s police force.
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People who added this item 3540 Average listal rating (2187 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8.4
How It’s Political: Tying in the themes set up in Batman Begins, The Dark Knight Rises once again introduces villains that terrorise Gotham as a metaphor for the United States.

This time it's class war - with many seeing Bane's attacks on Wall Street serving as an allegory for the world-impacting failures of the U.S banking system.

Like many corporate villains, Bane hides his true intentions of finishing Ra’s al Ghul’s work under the guise of helping the city’s people - and does more damage to Gotham than any other villain of the trilogy.

In one scene the heavily-accented brute is literally placed in opposition to the USA, as he sets off explosives in a football stadium just after the national anthem has been sung.
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People who added this item 3685 Average listal rating (2349 ratings) 7.6 IMDB Rating 8.1
The Avengers (2012)
How It’s Political: From the right angle, it’s possible to see how celebrated lefty Joss Whedon has slyly stuck his liberal stamp all over this superhero extravaganza.

From casting some of Hollywood’s most progressive stars, including anti-fracking advocate Mark Ruffalo, to passing commentary on right-wing commentators through Loki’s rants about how oppression equals freedom and how humanity will be happier without free will.

As can be expected of Whedon, there’s also a notable feminist perspective.

The film’s female lead, Black Widow, is as much front-and-centre as her male counterparts – transitioning her from the femme fatale cliché we saw in Iron Man 2, to bona fide kick-ass hero. And all without being heavy-handed about it at all.
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People who added this item 970 Average listal rating (666 ratings) 7.2 IMDB Rating 7.1
Dredd (2012)
How It’s Political: In this day and age, that there’s equality in the portrayal of male and female characters in this film shouldn't be exceptional. But it is.

Neither heroine Judge Anderson and villainess Ma-Ma are sexualised, weak, or over-emotional. They share equal screen time with the titular hero Judge Dredd, their wardrobes are genderless, and they actually have personalities. They are simply excellent characters who happen to be women.
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People who added this item 2030 Average listal rating (1227 ratings) 6.5 IMDB Rating 7.2
Iron Man 3 (2013)
How It’s Political: At several points we see echoes of modern-day terrorism. A US army veteran self-combusts in rural Tennessee reflects the rising rates of military suicide, while depictions of the shadows of the dead inscribed on walls recall the aftermath of Hiroshima and Nagasaki.

And then there’s The Mandarin himself – a vague mish-mash of ‘terrorist’ tropes, albeit with no discernable ideology, political association or definable ethnicity.

The public face of the evil organisation is essentially a hybrid of Bin Laden, and Ming The Merciless.
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Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political
Total Film's 30 Superhero Movies You Didn’t Realise Were Political

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