Ranking the best superhero movies of all time
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129 posts in this topic

8 hours ago, fantastic_four said:

Lot of people ranking Days of Future Past above First Class, so there must be something I'm overlooking about Days of Future Past.  One of the things I really disliked about it was how incredibly powerful they made the future Sentinels; every one of them was more powerful than almost every mutant.  I far prefer the idea from the comic that while they could trash a bunch of them, there were just so many of them that they eventually got overwhelmed.

I REALLY loved the origin stories showed in First Class.  The retro feel was fun, Kevin Bacon was great as Sebastian Shaw, the Magneto origin was fantastic (this might be part of my own bias since he's my favorite super-villain), and that ending battle with the battleships was just completely awesome.  What is it about Days of Future Past people love so much?

I think the fact that X-Men 2 is the best of the X franchise and was followed by the atrocity that was X3 and that Days of Future Past basically retcons everything so that X3 doesn't exist is really all the justification I need.

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Are we talking "superhero" or "comic book movie"?  Because I'm not sure how we've gone 2 pages without anyone mentioning V For Vendetta.

1) The Dark Knight

2) Spider-Man 2

3) V For Vendetta

4) Logan

5a) Captain America: Civil War

5b) Captain America: Winter Soldier

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2 minutes ago, ExNihilo said:

Are we talking "superhero" or "comic book movie"?  Because I'm not sure how we've gone 2 pages without anyone mentioning V For Vendetta.

1) The Dark Knight

2) Spider-Man 2

3) V For Vendetta

4) Logan

5a) Captain America: Civil War

5b) Captain America: Winter Soldier

doh!

I do love that movie. So much solid storytelling and acting. Great callout!

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3 hours ago, ComicConnoisseur said:

My Baker's Dozen!

Logan(The gold standard).

The Crow (very underated movie)
Superman Christopher Reeve 1978(there will never ever be a Superman like Reeve).


Captain America: The Winter Soldier
The Dark Knight
Batman Begins
Iron Man
Captain America: Civil War
The Dark Knight Rises
Black Panther
Deadpool
Guardians of the Galaxy
 

does Stan have a cameo in Black Panther?

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Top 10 Live Action:

Captain America : Winter solider

Batman: Dark Knight 

Spiderman 2 with Toby

The Avengers

Guardians of the Galaxy

Antman

Wonder Woman

Gaurdian of the Galaxy 2

Blade

Iron Man

 

 

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18 hours ago, ExNihilo said:

Are we talking "superhero" or "comic book movie"?

I limited it to superheros because if you take anything printed as a comic you have films that aren't terribly comparable to each other.  For example, I don't find it useful to compare "Ghost World" or "Richie Rich" to "The Dark Knight"...their intent is entirely different.  But just because it doesn't interest me doesn't mean I resent anyone else trying to do it.  I'm always fine with anything tangentially related to any topic of discussion.

I almost put Raiders of the Lost Ark on my list, but he's not a superhero so I didn't.  If you go down the rabbit hole of comparing any impossibly-heroic figure, you've also got to consider Zorro, Tarzan, and every Western ever made.  Neo from the Matrix is a superhero, however, so I should have put that and Reloaded on there.

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1 hour ago, fantastic_four said:

I limited it to superheros because if you take anything printed as a comic you have films that aren't terribly comparable to each other.  For example, I don't find it useful to compare "Ghost World" or "Richie Rich" to "The Dark Knight"...their intent is entirely different.  But just because it doesn't interest me doesn't mean I resent anyone else trying to do it.  I'm always fine with anything tangentially related to any topic of discussion.

I almost put Raiders of the Lost Ark on my list, but he's not a superhero so I didn't.  If you go down the rabbit hole of comparing any impossibly-heroic figure, you've also got to consider Zorro, Tarzan, and every Western ever made.  Neo from the Matrix is a superhero, however, so I should have put that and Reloaded on there.

superhero/comic book

:rulez:

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Superheroes are tied to comics because the era when the comics medium thrived is when they emerged.  Had they emerged 50 years earlier in novels or 50 years later in television and film, we would never associate superheroes with comic books at all.

If you were born in 2000, if there's an Archie movie and a Black Panther movie both out at the same time, what does the fact that they both originated in comics mean to you?  Virtually nothing.  It means something to us because we're comic fans, but there's nothing endemic to the comics medium that ties every story told within that medium together in some fundamental way.  You wouldn't compare Archie and Black Panther movies because the genres they fall into have almost nothing in common.

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The last thing I'll say on why I focus on superheroes is on-topic because it's one of over a dozen reasons that Spider-Man 2 is the second-best superhero film ever made--Aunt May makes a memorably poignant speech to Peter about why hero worship is as old as civilization itself that makes me swoon every time I hear it again.  And the nature of heroism is the central theme to that entire film and the reason it's so incredibly outstanding.  Heroic mythology has always been with us, and it will likely ALWAYS be with us.  Superheroes replaced Westerns, and I'm sure Westerns replaced something else, but I haven't traced the entire history of heroic mythology to know what.  But I know it has always been there because examples of it are easy to find throughout the history of art.

I'm sure some other form of heroic fiction will eventually replace superheroes, but whatever it will be I doubt we've seen evidence of it yet.  I get that most people see superhero films as pure entertainment, but hero worship is about far more than just entertainment, and that's why humanity has always passed tales of heroism along to future generations.

 

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1 minute ago, fantastic_four said:

Superheroes are tied to comics because the era when the comics medium thrived is when they emerged.  Had they emerged 50 years earlier in novels or 50 years later in television and film, we would never associate superheroes with comic books at all.

If you were born in 2000, if there's an Archie movie and a Black Panther movie both out at the same time, what does the fact that they both originated in comics mean to you?  Virtually nothing.  It means something to us because we're comic fans, but there's nothing endemic to the comics medium that ties every story told within that medium together in some fundamental way.  You wouldn't compare Archie and Black Panther movies because the genres they fall into have almost nothing in common.

And yet the medium is what helped people see worlds beyond their common experiences during the Golden and Silver Ages, even outside of superheroes when you consider Tarzan, Flash Gordon and The Shadow. Sure, originating from pulps and over time converting to comic books, we were able to see action and scenes not possible for the times. Yet it led to visual experiences and access to adventures inspiring people that otherwise would be stuck with the old Flash Gordon flying toiletpaper roll on a string painted gold.

So superheroes and action figures blossoming from comic books come naturally together that have background from this medium. I wouldn't overthink it.

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51 minutes ago, Callaway29 said:

I don't have the energy to contemplate greatest of all time right now, but I notice Dr. Strange doesn't get much love...I actually really enjoyed that movie. I'll admit Dormammu was just awful though.

He's not a superhero. He's a multi-universe, all-powerful magician who happens to run into superheroes.

:baiting:

I do agree this was enjoyable. My wife and I saw it in 3-D, which with all those wild colors and special effects was well worth the money.

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I think that Spider-Man 2 is still the best superhero movie ever made. Then probably Iron Man. After that, it gets kind of muddy for me. Most of the MCU movies are just variations on Iron Man with different set dressing. They're entertaining ( to varying degrees) but it's usually just more of the same, to the point where I have zero anticipation for Infinity War. I mean, I'll see it, but I am not excited at all, and wouldn't care if I didn't see another Marvel movie for 10 years. 

The DCEU movies are almost entirely abysmal, with the better than average Wonder Woman being the sole bright spot. The Nolan Batflicks are spotty. Batman Begins is pretty great, but The Dark Knight (aside from Heath Ledger's entertaining Al Franken impersonation) is an overlong snooze of a Heat remake, riddled with plot holes; and The Dark Knight Rises is just, ugh. 

Going back to the "classic" superhero movies, the Tim Burton '89 Batman hasn't aged well at all (it's stiff, airless, and the Prince music is pretty terrible, and I say that as a fan. Keaton is great, Nicholson is inspired, but as a film, it doesn't really hang together), and I'm not a Superman guy, so while I can appreciate that Superman II is a solid movie, I don't care about Superman, so it doesn't do anything for me.

As was mentioned above, if you're talking "comic book movies", then suddenly Ghost World, Road to Perdition, American Splendor, Sin City, and Josie and the Pussycats (that soundtrack is killer, don't even front) can all come sniffing around . I've never read or even seen the comics, but Atomic Blonde was one of my favorite movies in a while, so I guess that would have to make my list if we were talking about a wider "comic book movie" umbrella.  And even though I don't really care for them personally, a valid argument would likely be made for 300,  V for Vendetta, and a handful of others.

But...if we're JUST talking superhero movies, then I'd have to say:

 

Top 10

Spider-man 2  - An auteur director retains his cinematic identity while presenting a beautifully made, perfectly cast, colorful, exciting, and inspirational superhero tale. It's the tops, hands down.

Iron Man - Marvel created the mold with this one. Just wish they'd break the mold at this point. But you can't fault the original for the endless imitators.

Batman Begins - This movie captured the globe-trotting adventurer AND street level action that make an exciting Batman tale. Bale's McGruff voice is a bit much, but overall, it's a great Batman movie, with the Scarecrow bits being visually inventive enough to give the flick a little flair.

Batman Returns - Now THIS one fulfills the promise of a Burton Batflick. Dark, kinky, arty, silly,sexy, weird.

The Rocketeer - What a terrific, old school action adventure picture, and so faithful to the source material.

Darkman - I'm a Raimi fan, true, and I love this R-rated gonzo gory superhero horror pastiche. Such an odd movie to have been as successful as it was.

X2 - As a childhood X-maniac, this is the only film out of all of them that really FELT like the X-men, to me. 

Hellboy - Perfectly cast and lovingly rendered adaptation.

Dredd - It's a sci-fi remake of The Raid, but that doesn't make it any less cool.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier - By far my favorite MCU movie after Iron Man. It had a grittiness that the other Marvel films lack entirely.

 

Honorable Mentions:

Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles - Yeah, it may not still be as awesome as I thought it was when I was in middle school...but it's still pretty awesome. It's surprisingly faithful to the tone and origin of the comic book.

Swamp Thing - It's garbage, but it's garbage that I love. The less said about Return of Swamp Thing, the better.

 

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7 minutes ago, F For Fake said:

Swamp Thing - It's garbage, but it's garbage that I love. The less said about Return of Swamp Thing, the better.

The movies were hard to get through. But the USA Networks TV show, to me, seemed so much better and well casted.

One of the sadder episodes was when his main antagonist asked for the Swamp Thing to bring his wife back to life. No luck on that one.

 

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