Alright, after the long holiday weekend, I’m back with the next chapter in the countdown of the greatest comic book movies. With two Alan Moore graphic novel adaptations having already graced the list, another legendary comic writer joins him with a 2nd entry in this installment.
15. 300 (2006)
Frank Miller’s historically-inspired epic about the Battle of Thermopylae adapted brilliantly into a feature film. Zack Synder’s talent for visuals is perfect for the over-the-top, highly-stylized violence that is seen throughout this movie. Wonderful performances by Gerard Butler and Lena Headey are also a huge driving force for the greatness that is this movie. Is it completely accurate historically? Not at all. But is it a hell of a fun watch? Absolutely!
14. Spider-Man 2 (2004)
This might come as blasphemy to some, but while I love this movie, I do not believe that it is better than the first movie in the franchise. So spoiler alert: Spider-Man will be on this list as well. The infusion of the “Spider-Man No More” story arc from the comics was well done and Alfred Molina delivers a powerful performance as Dr. Octopus, but the mishandling of the Mary Jane character that was rampant throughout the entire franchise was still very prevalent here, as was Sam Raimi’s apparent insistence that every villain have a personal connection to Peter Parker.
13. X2 (2003)
For the longest time, this was the best sequel in the history of comic movies (not anymore), and the first time that a sequel surpassed the original…which has been done several times now. Loosely based on the “God Loves, Man Kills” story, which is a personal favorite of mine, this is by far the most emotionally powerful film in the X-Men franchise. The opening scene alone with Nightcrawler in the White House is worth the watch.
12. Road to Perdition (2002)
Taken from Max Allan Collins’ Depression-era gangster graphic novel, Road to Perdition is one of the most powerful comic movies ever made. Paul Newman was nominated for an Oscar for the Best Supporting Actor for his incredible work, the first time that a comic movie received an acting award nomination. Though his wasn’t the only great performance in the film. Daniel Craig, Stanley Tucci, Jude Law, and Tom Hanks in his only appearance in a comic movie, all gave outstanding performances as well.
11. Iron Man (2008)
The movie that birthed the Marvel Cinematic Universe. The casting of Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark was sheer genius. His captivating portrayal of the utterly charismatic arms dealer is reason enough to watch the movie. The fact that we got a great story on top of that was just a bonus. Then add in Nick Fury waiting for him in his living room during the after-credits stinger, ushering in the most ambitious project in cinema history, and you have one incredible movie.
See you guys next time.