Superhero movies have been a staple of cinema for decades, and the genre has only grown in popularity in recent years. I grew up with a fondness of superheroes. My brother had hundreds of comics and I would sneak and read them. My favorite comic book character is Batman.
When the movies started coming out, I was glued to the screen, watching my favorites come to life. I remember the first Superman movie released. I couldn’t wait to see it. Now the cinematography has come so far that my favorites look more real than ever.
With so many great superhero movies to choose from, it’s hard to know where to start. Below is my list of the top 10 superhero movies of all time. As a point of contention, I would like to state that Marvel had some great movies when it started, but they ruined it when they went to more comedy related scenes. No real superhero fan likes comedy in their movies. Now here we go!
Black Panther (2018). I’ve seen almost every superhero movie released. Black Panther, by far, was the best of all time. Everything about this film is outstanding. Chadwick Boseman’s performance has The Black Panther. never be matched by anyone.
The Dark Knight (2008). As I said earlier, Batman is my favorite character, and The Dark Knight would have been number one had it not been for the epic Black Panther movie. Christopher Nolan’s Batman is widely considered to be one of the greatest superhero movies ever made. Heath Ledger’s iconic performance as the Joker is a major reason for the film’s success. However, the movie is also well-acted, well-directed, and well-written.
The Dark Knight Rises (2012). The final film in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, The Dark Knight Rises is a fitting conclusion to the series. In the movie, Bruce Wayne reprises his role as Batman to confront his most perilous adversary, Bane. The film is an action-packed and emotionally satisfying conclusion to one of the greatest superhero trilogies ever made. For me, the ending put this one over the top. If you haven’t seen it, check it out.
Avengers: Infinity War (2018). The penultimate film in the Infinity Saga, Avengers: Infinity War is a dark and epic tale of good vs. evil. The film sees Thanos, the Mad Titan, collecting the Infinity Stones in order to wipe out half of all life in the universe. This film is both thrilling and emotionally impactful, and it’s sure to leave a lasting impression.
X-Men (2000). I’ve always been a fan of the X-Men. What kid into comics didn’t dream of mutant powers and saving the world. When the characters can to the big screen, I was like a kid again. In a world where mutants exist and are discriminated against, two groups clash: the supremacist Brotherhood lead by Magneto, and the pacifist X-Men lead by Professor Xavier. Magneto is one of the greatest villains of all time.
Iron Man (2008). After some lackluster superhero movies, this film rose the bar and started the modern superhero movie era. I was so pumped after watching it: I went back and watched it again. Just recently, I binge watched all three of the Iron Man movies. Iron Man is a well-made and entertaining film that introduces the world to Tony Stark, a billionaire playboy who becomes a superhero after being held captive by terrorists.
Spider-Man (2002). The release of Spider-Man ushered in the next evolution of superhero movies. I love the age of the superhero movies. I want them to keep coming. Tobey Maguire’s portrayal of Spider-Man was the best then and since. The dark version of Spider-Man and the recent versions of Spider-Man movies don’t compare to the three movies released with Tobey Maguire as Spider-Man. The movie shows how Spider-Man came into being. After being bitten by a genetically modified spider, a shy teenager gains spider-like abilities he uses to fight injustice as a masked superhero. Unfortunately for him, the one villain he should have stopped, he didn’t.
Superman: The Movie (1978). This film got it started for me. Superman is considered to be one of the greatest superhero movies ever made. The movie tells the story of Clark Kent, a young man who discovers that he has superpowers. Clark uses his powers to help people, and he becomes the superhero Superman.
Wonder Woman (2017). This film is a powerful and inspiring story about an Amazonian princess who leaves her home to fight in World War I. Wonder Woman is a well-made and entertaining film that features a strong female lead.
Avengers: Endgame (2019). The culmination of a decade of storytelling, Avengers: Endgame is the highest-grossing film of all time and one of the most satisfying superhero movies ever made. The film delivers on all the fan service, while also telling a compelling story about loss, grief, and redemption. It’s ten on my list because I don’t like the way the writers wrote Thor’s and Hulk’s characters. The storyline is great but superheroes are bigger than life, not comedians.
This is just a small sampling of the many great superhero movies that are out there. As honorable mention, I have to list all the Captain America movies, the remaining two Iron Man movies, Batman vs. Superman, Aquaman, and Dr. Strange. If you’re a fan of the genre, I encourage you to check out some of these other great films.