America's 7th Best Superhero Team, the Specials, are a group of geeks and oddballs. We get to see one day in their lives as fan and new member Nightbird joins the group, just in time for the group to get a new line of action figures. But the members' extreme personalities and personal issues threaten to rip the group apart.Written by
Judy Greer was considered for both Deadly Girl and Power Chick. The director felt her talents were needed for the more difficult role of Deadly Girl. See more »
I've been a humongous fan of the Specials since I was knee-high to... something for sure. All my friends would make fun of me because the Specials were not a "cool" group like the Amazing Trio or the Crusaders. But, you know, screw that. I also liked Winger better than Bon Jovi. I still do. I don't care what the critics say.
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During the end credits we see an "In Memory: 1970-1993" reference and picture of Mr. Stretch, an original member of the Specials that we are told died of mouth cancer in one of interview segments. See more »
From the people who brought us "Free Enterprise", "The Specials" is clearly made by the same caliber of geek, but this time it dives into the fantasy. The conceit of this film is pure genius: make a superhero movie in which there are no battles, and nobody uses their powers; just focus on their personal lives and interpersonal conflicts, and play it mostly for laughs. I've seen several reviews here for whom that itself is the complaint. Let them go back to watching "Spawn". Those of you who are able to see the potential in the concept are in for a treat.
Going in, I'd only heard of Rob Lowe and Thomas Haden Church, both of whom are excellent. The surprise is that the rest of the cast keeps step all the way. They all understand the joke here, which is that they are not in on the joke. They're funny by way of taking it utterly seriously. This is not the "Airplane" of superhero movies. These people are completely serious about their past exploits and their powers, which we glimpse only briefly, and hear of in conversation.
The movie's length is perfect. It clocks in at under 80 minutes, disappearing long before the idea becomes tired or overused. I actually wanted to see more, which is far preferable to wishing it were over sooner. I could actually see a TV series based on this concept.
7 out of 10.
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