Matthew Vaughn explains what he thinks the problem is with superhero movies, and why it might be time for a break. Superhero movies have grown exponentially over the last decade, but in recent years, that success has also seen a steady decline. With new DC or MCU movies coming out every couple of months, the box office has reflected a decline in these projects’ profitability, as have the reviews from both critics and fans.
In an exclusive interview with Screen Rant at New York Comic Con, Vaughn explained what he believes is the problem with the superhero genre. He shared his hopes that someone would break the mold and make something great. However, he also believes that this genre has forgotten what may be the key to bringing back what has made superhero movies so popular in the last few years.
Matthew Vaughn: I genuinely don’t know what’s happening with the superhero in the sense that, I do think, maybe we all need a little bit of time off from it. Maybe someone will make something so great that we will get excited again and remind everybody that just having identical ways of making superheroes… Superhero films are films. It’s a film that has superheroes in it. I think what happened was that they became superheroes, and the film part wasn’t that important.
The superhero genre is one of the biggest in the world, spanning comics, movies, and television series. The MCU has been built out into a massive universe, now multiverse, for over a decade. Part of this evolution became a focus on spectacle, with the historic Avengers: Infinity War and Avengers: Endgame culminating in heroes from across the MCU coming together in an epic battle. However, in this final battle, many of the original Avengers were lost.
The loss of these characters, whom the audiences had connected with over the course of a decade, paved the way for a new generation to be introduced, but not many have struck the same chord. Part of this could be volume, with the sheer number of characters introduced making it difficult for audiences to connect. The sheer volume of superhero movies has also made it difficult to find original approaches to superhero movies, as many origin movies or series seem to follow the same path as those that came before.
Vaughn’s criticism about superhero movies losing sight of the fact that they are movies first could speak to the formulaic aspect. During the first phases of the MCU, many of the movies leaned into other genres, with Captain America: The First Avenger being a World War II movie, Spider-Man: Homecoming coming of age, and Black Panther seeming almost Shakespearian. Both the MCU and the new DCU need to focus on being movies first, with the superhero element being a part of the story as opposed to the spectacle being the most important.
Matthew Vaughn has advice for superhero movies. Read More