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OPINION

Good Morning: It's all been done before

Michael Hutchins
Herald Democrat
Michael Hutchins

Over the last few years, I've been hearing a growing sentiment from many movie-buff friends — there simply  are no new ideas in Hollywood. These days it seems to be a safer bet to go with the tried and true rather than taking a risk with something new.

This is sentiment holds especially true for one of my favorite genres — the super hero film. As a unrepentant geek and fan of comic books and the super hero mythos, I always enjoy seeing my favorite heroes grace the silver screen.

However, you can only tell that origin story so many times before it all gets stale. Despite their differences, many of the origin stories for the heroes follow the same path.

Despite being a fan, I can't deny that they tend to blur together. There are only so many ways you can tell the super hero story. After a while, it's just the same story, but with different colored tights.

The question then becomes, what is the answer. Do we need new stories entirely, or simply different ways to tell the story we already know?

Over the weekend, I saw a good case for the latter.

I finally got the time and desire to sit down and watch Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse on Saturday. I know the movie has been out a while, but I never really found the time to watch it until now, and that was a mistake.

Spider-Man is probably the poster child for the over use of the origin story. In the past 20 years, he has had his origins told at least three times by multiple actors in the movies.

Yet, here was a fresh take on the super hero story. The movie stayed true to its roots while coming off as something completely new. It was still a Spider-Man movie, but it felt like and was a new Spider-Man, figuratively and literally.

After watching the film, I sat and thought about what I watched, and thoroughly enjoyed.  It reminded me of the first time I saw a super hero flick, when things were still fresh and inventive. It was then that it hit me.

Rather than trying to escape the trappings of a genre movie, the best approach may be to embrace what it is, while defying and countering the tropes and cliché that come with them. Acknowledge that they exist while then defying them or possibly inverting them in a way that leaves the viewer looking at the story from a new perspective.

Happy birthday to Dan Shugart of Yantis and Laurie Taylor of Brookings, South Dakota.