Thanks to the ever-churning Hollywood, the debates regarding superhero universes are endless. DC or Marvel, Manga or American comics, which are the best superhero films, who makes for the best superheroes, who makes for the best Batman… phew, the list sure goes long. While we can’t provide you all the answers today, we can sure rank the top 10 superhero films, the way critics did.
Rotten Tomatoes is a popular review aggregation site that gives a combined percentage score by collecting critical reviews to allow audiences to find out if a particular movie or TV show is worth your time.
James Gunn’s The Suicide Squad, which has already released in the UK on July 30, has scored 96 per cent score after 94 reviews. This is undoubtedly impressive as it means almost every review thus far is positive, but it is the best Rotten Tomatoes score for a superhero movie? Nope.
Here are the top 10 superhero movies ranked by their Rotten Tomatoes score:
10. Thor: Ragnarok (93%)
Chris Hemsworth-starrer Thor: Ragnarok, the third Thor film, was a radical reinvention of the character in MCU that had been dour and too self-serious before. Ragnarok’s Thor was a man with a sense of humour, even though he lost his hammer Mjolnir to his evil sister. The film was a laugh-out-loud event with a lot of heart and humour.
9. Wonder Woman (93%)
With its strong heroine, an optimistic feel (unlike rest of the DCEU movies until then), and an incredible central performance by Gadot, Wonder Woman soared high up in the air. The film satisfied the genre demands of spectacular action but Wonder Woman is much more than simple superhero fare.
8. Superman (1978) (94%)
Richard Donner’s Superman is often said to be the first modern superhero movie. Unlike most DC movies, which are too self-serious and grim, Donner’s Superman was a film that was like its hero – instantly likeable. And like the symbol on the hero’s chest, it represented hope.
7. Iron Man (94%)
The first-ever MCU film, Iron Man introduced Robert Downey Jr’s Tony Stark to the world. He, like Batman, did not have any superpower, but became a superhero solely due to his money and knowledge of technology. However, unlike the Caped Crusader, he did not hide behind an identity and boldly proclaimed to the world that he is Iron Man — a fresher take on the rich superhero trope pioneered by Batman creators. (This did result in his abode getting destroyed in the third movie, as everybody knew where he lived).
6. The Dark Knight (94%)
With The Dark Knight, Christopher Nolan was not only making a definitive Batman movie with Joker as the villain, he was also commenting on the War on Terror. A rare superhero film that made the genre cool for people who would not otherwise watch a movie involving a costumed good buy fighting a costumed bad guys.
5. Avengers: Endgame (94%)
An epic conclusion to more than a decade worth of storytelling, Avengers: Endgame was more than just a movie. It was an experience, and an enthralling, emotional, indescribably satisfying one at that.
4. The Suicide Squad (96%)
Warner Bros and DC were quick to steal James Gunn from Disney-Marvel after he was fired by the studio due to his old, offensive tweets. He claimed the bosses at DC asked him to make a movie with whichever character that suited his fancy. The investment has clearly paid rich dividends. The Suicide Squad, the newest entrant to this list, is the best-reviewed DC film to date.
3. Black Panther (96%)
With a predominantly African-American cast, Black Panther was a game-changer not just for MCU but for the whole commercial film industry as well. Set after the events of Captain America: Civil War, it had T’Challa returning to his home, Wakanda, to be crowned king after his father dies. Unbeknownst to him, there are impending threats to his throne and his kingdom. It remains the best-reviewed MCU film.
2. The Incredibles (97%)
In Pixar’s The Incredibles, All the superpowered individuals (called supers) are forced to stay in their civilian identities by the government after severe collateral damage. Bob Parr, formerly Mr Incredible, is married to another super, Elastigirl, and they have three kids, one of them a baby, and the other two also have superpowers. Mr Incredible gets enmeshed in a plan hatched by a certain man called Syndrome who wanted to be Robin to Mr Incredible’s Batman and who was shunned by Mr Incredible. Not only a great superhero movie, The Incredibles was also a fairly realistic portrayal of what would actually happen if superheroes existed.
1. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (97%)
A loving ode to comic-books and superheroes, Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse became possible because some of the finest screenwriters in the industry collaborated with some of the most talented VFX artists. This film was simply a damn good graphic novel come alive. Every single frame looked as if it was handcrafted; every scene whether it was action-packed or sombre, had distinctive touches that made the visual experience unique. The action scenes were some of the best you will ever see — animation or otherwise. The script was phenomenal — funny, heartfelt, poignant, and still a classic Spider-Man story. A staggering achievement, Into the Spider-Verse was sublime in every single way.