SuperBob full movie review - A Touching, Charming, Funny Romantic Film that Ingeniously Downplays its Superhero Tropes
Reviewed by: Dare Devil Kid (DDK)
Rating: 3.9/5 stars
The dull side of being a superhero is sublimely and at times even touchingly explored in this independent British rom-com about Bob, a government-sanctioned caped savior who uses his day off to go out on a date. Adapted from writer/director Jon Drever's terrifically cute and pithy 2009 short film of the same name, this charming and amusing expansion follows meteorically transformed Bob Kenner as he struggles on his real quest of true love while clocking in at UK's Ministry of Defense where his invincible flying powers are in bureaucratic demand.
Opting for a low-key approach, "SuperBob" wins you over with a funny script rather than elaborate action scenes. Co-writer/star Brett Goldstein is likable in the lead - a timid everyman overwhelmed by what has happened to him, hilariously bemused as he deals with endless world-saving situations and resentful local residents. Amid the laughs there is also an appealing charm to Bob's clumsy quest for love, as well as some clever satire of the sillier side on world politics, personified by co-star Catherine Tate (most notable as one of "Doctor Who's" companions down the years) as Bob's highly strung government superior. Natalia Tena, Ruth Sheen, and Laura Haddock also provide solidly entertaining support.
By keeping the lid on the special effects that would be laughed at by the head honchos of Marvel Studios, and focusing instead on a low- key story of the world's most powerful man on his day off, Jon Drever and Brett Goldstein's movie almost taps into the same reserves of warmth and heart and wicked humor that made one of Britain's best feature films, "Shaun of the Dead", soar to amazing heights (the slightly drab beginning notwithstanding). Drever milks the banality for laughs and unexpected sweetness, playing it to the films strengths - one scene in particular, set in a nursing home, may be the most romantic in a superhero flick since Superman took Lois Lane for a night-time flight around Metropolis. Working within its low budget limitations without ever feeling cheap, "SuperBob" is a light but impressively effective love story blended against the backdrop of some brilliantly subtle satire, offering something uniquely refreshing in the superhero genre where almost everything has been explored.