With the success of live action DC and Marvel movies these past few years, there is no doubt that superhero films are enjoying another Golden Age.
So let’s take a walk down memory lane and see how this science fiction subgenre has evolved throughout the decades. Will the classics hold up against the new breed of superhero movies today? Let’s find out. Here are the 10 best superhero movies of all time.
Top 10 Best Superhero Movies of All Time
Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (2010)
If you’re one of those purists who still refuse to count this film as a superhero flick, you better change your mind quick.
Based on a fun comic book series, Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (2010) is every indie guy’s fever dream come true. Michael Cera stars as the titular Scott Pilgrim a college-age bass player on a quest to win the heart of the beautiful manic pixie dream girl Ramona Flowers.
See some awesome action sequences inspired by classic video games as Scott fights Ramona’s evil exes.
Kick-Ass (2010) one of the best superhero movies, is another unique take on the superhero flick based on a comic book series. Like, Scott Pilgrim, the film partly gets its laughs from its self-aware, meta humor.
A black comedy slash teen flick, the film follows the story of a teenager, played by Aaron Johnson, who decides to be a superhero called Kick-ass and his runnings-in with former cop Big Daddy, played by Nicolas Cage, and his daughter Hit-girl, played by Chloe Grace Moretz, who is on a mission to take a big crime boss down.
Marvel’s The Avengers (2012)
Although it feels more like a savvy decision to combine the power of Iron Man, Thor, The Hulk and Captain America in one film, the first Avengers film is still one of the greatest superhero movies to watch especially if you’re a fan of the franchise.
The film is notable for director Joss Whedon’s amazing direction and Mark Ruffalo‘s character redeeming performance which made fans appreciate The Hulk’s intriguing character.
Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
Relegated as an outdated superhero, Marvel Studios brings Captain America to the new millennium with Captain America: The First Avenger (2011).
Chris Evans stars as the titular hero who transforms from a weakling into a super soldier during the height of the Second World War. A feel-good action movie, critics dubbed the film as an angst-ridden flick that Man of Steel should have been.
The film was such a box office success it spawned other Captain America sequels with Chris Evans as Captain America appearing in other Marvel Cinematic Universe films. Captain America: The First Avenger is one of the best superhero films.
X-Men (2000) is Bryan Springer’s opening film that started the hugely popular franchise of mutant superheroes.
Departing from the lighter adaptations of the X-Men characters in the past, the film sought to portray its characters and issues covered more seriously. Most importantly, this is the film that first gave us Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine, which we think is the franchise’s most interesting and complex hero (or anti-hero ).
The film is followed by a slew of hit and miss sequels but the original film still remains to be the best of the series.
Meant to be the first film of a series of movies, Unbreakable stars Bruce Willis as a Philadelphia security guard discovering he has superpowers and dun dun dun– a nemesis.
The film is notable for being one of the few superhero movies that are not based on a comic book series.
Shyamalan surprised fans with a thematic sequel which came almost 16 years after the original in the psychological thriller Split (2016). A third installment of the film series will come in 2019.
Spider Man (2002)
While we have nothing against Andrew Garfield’s and Tom Holland’s performances as your friendly neighborhood superhero, Tobey Maguire as Spider-Man in Sam Raimi’s trilogy is still the best filmic adaptation of the character.
Spider Man (2002) is the first and best superhero film in the trilogy. Here we are introduced to college student slash photographer slash city crawler Peter Parker and the other beloved characters of the series.
Here he faces up against The Green Goblin which happens to be the father of his best friend. It is considered to be one of the greatest superhero films of all time.
Superman II (1980)
Superman II (1980) is the tougher and darker sequel to the 1978 filmic reimagining of the man of steel.
Christopher Reeve resumes his role as Superman this time facing up against his arch-nemesis Lex Luthor, played by Gene Hackman.
Despite some qualms for its departure from the first film’s treatment, this sequel still got praise from critics who commend the film’s superb storyline and Reeve’s consistently great performance.
Some critics consider Superman (1978) as the first legit superhero film (discounting Batman (1966)).
Christopher Reeve rose to stardom as he dons the man of Steel’s red cape for the first time.
In this film, we see the superheroes roots in the planet Krypton and his father’s attempt to save him by sending him on a spaceship bound for Earth where he is found and raised by a couple of farmers. He eventually discovers his superpowers and fights against Lex Luthor who would become his arch nemesis. It is one of the best superhero movies ever.
The Dark Knight (2008)
The number one spot in the list of best superhero movies goes to Christopher Nolan’s The Dark Knight (2008).
The story continues with the trio Batman, James Gordon and Harvey Dent coming together in an alliance that’ll put an end to Gotham’s organized crime problem.
The film rises above other superhero films because of its commitment to delivering a gripping storyline while still retaining the elements we love about superhero films. The Dark Knight is one of the best superhero movies of all time.
What do you think of the ranking of our best superhero movies list? Think you can do better? Tell us your personal take in the comments below.