Throughout the decade, no other type of movie has been able to captivate people’s interests quite as the comic book movie has. While some like Scorcese and Coppola like to criticize them, there is no denying that the comic book genre has been taking Hollywood by storm. Many comic book movies have also been doing some pretty spectacular things lately, such as mirroring society, representing subgroups, mixing genres, showcasing cultures, and of course making a ton of money while doing it. So here is Kernel’s list of the 10 best comic book movies of the 2010s.
10. Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse
When Sony Animation, the studio behind The Emoji Movie and Hotel Translyvania announced they were making an animated Spider-Man movie, many fans were at a loss of words. However, flash forward to today, and Spider-Man Into the Spider-Verse is considered one of the best Spider-Man movies ever by many fans. It turns out animation was the perfect choice as it showcased stunning, comic book inspired visuals. The movie also had a lot of heart as it centered around the very relatable Miles Morales finding his place in his family, and community. Overall, this movie perfectly captured the spirit of Spider-Man with stunning visuals, great voice work, and a fun, heartwarming story.
Who would have thought that one of the most disrespected, laughed at DC characters, would star as a badass action hero in a billion-dollar picture? But lo and behold, Aquaman is one of the best DC movies of all time. Jason Momoa and Amber Heard knock it out of the park, and director James Wan brings the underwater world to life with revolutionary VFX. This movie is an epic adventure with awesome action sequences, a relatable hero, and stunning visuals. Plus, Patrick Wilson kills it as King Orm, the movie’s villain!
Deadpool changed the game for comic book movies. Before studios shied away from making R-rated comic book movies, but the success of Deadpool made movies such as Logan and Joker possible. Ryan Renolds finally got a chance to redeem himself after X-Men Origins: Wolverine and boy did he do so. This movie is everything Deadpool should be and more. Tim Miller delivers stunning action sequences and Ryan Renolds gives an iconic performance. The meta-humor in this movie is hilarious and makes Deadpool truly unique.
7. The Avengers
At the end of the first Iron Man movie back in 2008, Marvel teased that Toney Stark was apart of a bigger universe, and indeed he was. This epic team-up movie brought Iron Man, Captain America, and Thor together for the first time, along with new recruits Black Widow, Hulk, and Hawkeye. This team-up captures the tone of each character perfectly. Also, the way the characters interact and banter with one another is just brilliant. This team-up had everything fans wanted from epic action sequences, a great villain, and of course, teases for what lie ahead.
After an incredible 17 year run as Wolverine, Hugh Jackman finally decided it was time to bury the claws. One of the most unique comic book movies on this list, Logan combines a superhero movie with a western, giving Hugh Jackman’s Wolverine the perfect goodbye. While it might not be the biggest, most epic superhero movie, it’s a very grounded story filled with intense emotions. In addition, the R rating allows the film to really let loose, giving fans some amazing action sequences. It also introduced the fan-favorite X-23 played by Dafne Keen and gave fans a touching goodbye to Patrick Stewart’s Professor X.
5. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Speaking of mixing genres, Captain America: The Winter Soldier is more of a political thriller than a superhero movie. That being said, it’s a fantastic political thriller. Scarlett Johanson and Chris Evans make a great duo, and the Winter Soldier is one of the MCU’s best villains. Robert Redford and Samuel L Jackson round out the cast and the Russo Brothers make their directorial debut for Marvel. This sequel also features some of the best action sequences in the Marvel Universe from the bridge fight, to the iconic elevator showdown.
4. Black Panther
Certainly, one of the most influential movies of the decade, Black Panther blends the superhero genre with rich, African culture. Chadwick Boseman kills it as Black Panther and Michael B Jordan’s Killmonger is considered by many fans Marvel’s best villain to date. In addition to Boseman and Jordan, this movie is packed with amazing actors such as Lupita Nyong’o, Daniel Kaluuya, Sterling K Brown, Forrest Whitaker, and much more. It was also the first superhero / comic book movie to ever be nominated for Best Picture at the Oscars.
3. Wonder Woman
Not only is Wonder Woman a fantastic film, but an important one as well. It marks the first-ever mainstream female-led superhero movie. Now that being said, it’s not a “chick flick”. This is a movie everyone can enjoy and celebrate. The films empowering message about standing up for what is right even if no one else does is universal. It also contains a number of amazing action sequences and instantly iconic scenes. The No Man’s Land scene is one of the best in cinematic history. Gal Gadot and Chris Pine are perfectly cast and director Patty Jenkins really elevates the film.
2. Avengers: Endgame
Perhaps the most anticipated comic book movie of all time, more than ten years in the making, Avengers: Endgame delivers on the hype. Not only does the movie wrap up one of the greatest stories ever told, but it gives perfect sendoffs to Iron Man, Black Widow, and Captain America. Avengers: Endgame also features the greatest action sequence of all time, bringing all the Marvel heroes together at last. The film’s 3-hour runtime gives plenty of time for amazing character moments and shocking reveals. For a while, it seemed no comic book movie would ever be able to top it, but one did.
Fans were skeptical when it was announced that DC and Warner Bros were making an origin film based on the iconic Batman villain, Joker. Fans were even more confused when the studio hired Todd Phillips, director of The Hangover, to head up the movie. However, when the film finally hit theaters, it blew people away. Definitely one of the most controversial movies of the decade, some criticized the movie for promoting violence, but in fact, it seeks to do the exact opposite. Joker puts a spotlight on mental health issues and how dangerous it is to neglect people. This movie puts the audience in the shoes of Authur Fleck, a man who suffers from a mental health condition and is abandoned by society. This haunting and powerful film serves as a warning to society, that when it turns its back on people in need, bad things happen. Joaquin Phoenix delivers an outstanding performance, while director Todd Phillips also knocks it out of the park