The Best Superhero Movies

by slimsoldier18 | created - 15 May 2011 | updated - 01 Aug 2011 | Public

released by the comics industry (1998-today)

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1. The Dark Knight (2008)

PG-13 | 152 min | Action, Crime, Drama

82 Metascore

When the menace known as the Joker emerges from his mysterious past, he wreaks havoc and chaos on the people of Gotham. The Dark Knight must accept one of the greatest psychological and physical tests of his ability to fight injustice.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Heath Ledger, Aaron Eckhart, Michael Caine

Votes: 1,928,244 | Gross: $534.86M

2. Blade (1998)

R | 120 min | Action, Horror

45 Metascore

A half-vampire, half-mortal man becomes a protector of the mortal race, while slaying evil vampires.

Director: Stephen Norrington | Stars: Wesley Snipes, Stephen Dorff, Kris Kristofferson, N'Bushe Wright

Votes: 214,293 | Gross: $70.09M

3. X-Men (2000)

PG-13 | 104 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

64 Metascore

Two mutants come to a private academy for their kind whose resident superhero team must oppose a terrorist organization with similar powers.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Famke Janssen

Votes: 509,045 | Gross: $157.30M

4. Iron Man (2008)

PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

79 Metascore

After being held captive in an Afghan cave, billionaire engineer Tony Stark creates a unique weaponized suit of armor to fight evil.

Director: Jon Favreau | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges

Votes: 795,155 | Gross: $318.41M

5. Watchmen (2009)

R | 162 min | Action, Drama, Mystery

56 Metascore

In 1985 where former superheroes exist, the murder of a colleague sends active vigilante Rorschach into his own sprawling investigation, uncovering something that could completely change the course of history as we know it.

Director: Zack Snyder | Stars: Jackie Earle Haley, Patrick Wilson, Carla Gugino, Malin Akerman

Votes: 431,783 | Gross: $107.51M

6. X: First Class (2011)

PG-13 | 131 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

65 Metascore

In 1962, the United States government enlists the help of Mutants with superhuman abilities to stop a malicious dictator who is determined to start World War III.

Director: Matthew Vaughn | Stars: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Kevin Bacon

Votes: 579,092 | Gross: $146.41M

7. Iron Man 2 (2010)

PG-13 | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

57 Metascore

With the world now aware of his identity as Iron Man, Tony Stark must contend with both his declining health and a vengeful mad man with ties to his father's legacy.

Director: Jon Favreau | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Mickey Rourke, Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle

Votes: 601,591 | Gross: $312.43M

8. Thor (2011)

PG-13 | 115 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

57 Metascore

The powerful, but arrogant god Thor, is cast out of Asgard to live amongst humans in Midgard (Earth), where he soon becomes one of their finest defenders.

Director: Kenneth Branagh | Stars: Chris Hemsworth, Anthony Hopkins, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston

Votes: 623,200 | Gross: $181.03M

9. Batman Begins (2005)

PG-13 | 140 min | Action, Adventure

70 Metascore

After training with his mentor, Batman begins his fight to free crime-ridden Gotham City from the corruption that Scarecrow and the League of Shadows have cast upon it.

Director: Christopher Nolan | Stars: Christian Bale, Michael Caine, Ken Watanabe, Liam Neeson

Votes: 1,124,154 | Gross: $206.85M

10. X2 (2003)

PG-13 | 134 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

68 Metascore

The X-Men band together to find a mutant assassin who has made an attempt on the President's life, while the Mutant Academy is attacked by military forces.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Ian McKellen

Votes: 456,338 | Gross: $214.95M

11. Hellboy (2004)

PG-13 | 122 min | Action, Fantasy, Horror

72 Metascore

A demon, raised from infancy after being conjured by and rescued from the Nazis, grows up to become a defender against the forces of darkness.

Director: Guillermo del Toro | Stars: Ron Perlman, Doug Jones, Selma Blair, John Hurt

Votes: 271,521 | Gross: $59.62M

12. Ghost Rider (2007)

PG-13 | 114 min | Action, Fantasy, Horror

35 Metascore

Stunt motorcyclist Johnny Blaze gives up his soul to become a hellblazing vigilante, to fight against power hungry Blackheart, the son of the devil.

Director: Mark Steven Johnson | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes, Sam Elliott, Matt Long

Votes: 200,266 | Gross: $115.80M

13. Spider-Man (2002)

PG-13 | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

73 Metascore

When bitten by a genetically modified spider, a nerdy, shy, and awkward high school student gains spider-like abilities that he eventually must use to fight evil as a superhero after tragedy befalls his family.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Willem Dafoe, James Franco

Votes: 606,774 | Gross: $403.71M

14. The Incredible Hulk (2008)

PG-13 | 112 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

61 Metascore

Bruce Banner, a scientist on the run from the U.S. Government, must find a cure for the monster he turns into, whenever he loses his temper.

Director: Louis Leterrier | Stars: Edward Norton, Liv Tyler, Tim Roth, William Hurt

Votes: 369,585 | Gross: $134.52M

15. Kick-Ass (2010)

R | 117 min | Action, Comedy

66 Metascore

Dave Lizewski is an unnoticed high school student and comic book fan who one day decides to become a superhero, even though he has no powers, training or meaningful reason to do so.

Director: Matthew Vaughn | Stars: Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Nicolas Cage, Chloƫ Grace Moretz, Garrett M. Brown

Votes: 478,157 | Gross: $48.07M

16. Green Lantern (2011)

PG-13 | 114 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

39 Metascore

Reckless test pilot Hal Jordan is granted an alien ring that bestows him with otherworldly powers that inducts him into an intergalactic police force, the Green Lantern Corps.

Director: Martin Campbell | Stars: Ryan Reynolds, Blake Lively, Peter Sarsgaard, Mark Strong

Votes: 242,570 | Gross: $116.60M

17. Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

PG-13 | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

66 Metascore

Steve Rogers, a rejected military soldier transforms into Captain America after taking a dose of a "Super-Soldier serum". But being Captain America comes at a price as he attempts to take down a war monger and a terrorist organization.

Director: Joe Johnston | Stars: Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Samuel L. Jackson, Hayley Atwell

Votes: 601,196 | Gross: $176.65M

18. Daredevil (2003)

PG-13 | 103 min | Action, Crime, Sci-Fi

42 Metascore

A man blinded by toxic waste which also enhanced his remaining senses fights crime as an acrobatic martial arts superhero.

Director: Mark Steven Johnson | Stars: Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner, Colin Farrell, Michael Clarke Duncan

Votes: 190,565 | Gross: $102.54M

19. Fantastic Four (I) (2005)

PG-13 | 106 min | Action, Adventure, Family

40 Metascore

A group of astronauts gain superpowers after a cosmic radiation exposure and must use them to oppose the plans of their enemy, Doctor Victor Von Doom.

Director: Tim Story | Stars: Ioan Gruffudd, Michael Chiklis, Chris Evans, Jessica Alba

Votes: 287,021 | Gross: $154.70M

20. Blade: Trinity (2004)

R | 113 min | Action, Adventure, Horror

38 Metascore

Blade, now a wanted man by the FBI, must join forces with the Nightstalkers to face his most challenging enemy yet: Dracula.

Director: David S. Goyer | Stars: Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Parker Posey, Ryan Reynolds

Votes: 148,356 | Gross: $52.41M

21. X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)

PG-13 | 107 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

40 Metascore

A look at Wolverine's early life, in particular his time with the government squad Team X and the impact it will have on his later years.

Director: Gavin Hood | Stars: Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Ryan Reynolds, Danny Huston

Votes: 412,146 | Gross: $179.88M

22. The Spirit (2008)

PG-13 | 103 min | Action, Crime, Fantasy

30 Metascore

Rookie cop Denny Colt returns from the beyond as The Spirit, a hero whose mission is to fight against the bad forces in Central City.

Director: Frank Miller | Stars: Gabriel Macht, Samuel L. Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Jaime King

Votes: 56,413 | Gross: $19.78M

23. Punisher: War Zone (2008)

R | 103 min | Action, Adventure, Crime

30 Metascore

Frank Castle, the ex-military man whose family was killed by criminals, who became a vigilante known as the Punisher, goes after a whole mob family and gets everyone except enforcer Billy ... See full summary »

Director: Lexi Alexander | Stars: Ray Stevenson, Dominic West, Julie Benz, Doug Hutchison

Votes: 54,465 | Gross: $7.95M

24. Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

PG-13 | 120 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

78 Metascore

The mythical world starts a rebellion against humanity in order to rule the Earth, so Hellboy and his team must save the world from the rebellious creatures.

Director: Guillermo del Toro | Stars: Ron Perlman, Selma Blair, Doug Jones, John Alexander

Votes: 228,982 | Gross: $75.75M

25. Blade II (2002)

R | 117 min | Action, Horror, Sci-Fi

52 Metascore

Blade forms an uneasy alliance with the vampire council in order to combat the Reapers, who are feeding on vampires.

Director: Guillermo del Toro | Stars: Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Ron Perlman, Leonor Varela

Votes: 177,435 | Gross: $82.35M

26. The Green Hornet (2011)

PG-13 | 119 min | Action, Comedy, Crime

39 Metascore

Following the death of his father, Britt Reid, heir to his father's large company, teams up with his late dad's assistant Kato to become a masked crime fighting team.

Director: Michel Gondry | Stars: Seth Rogen, Jay Chou, Christoph Waltz, Cameron Diaz

Votes: 144,772 | Gross: $98.78M

27. The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen (2003)

PG-13 | 110 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

30 Metascore

In an alternate Victorian Age world, a group of famous contemporary fantasy, science fiction, and adventure characters team up on a secret mission.

Director: Stephen Norrington | Stars: Sean Connery, Stuart Townsend, Peta Wilson, Jason Flemyng

Votes: 152,100 | Gross: $66.47M

28. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007)

PG | 92 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

45 Metascore

The Fantastic Four learn that they aren't the only super-powered beings in the universe when they square off against the powerful Silver Surfer and the planet-eating Galactus.

Director: Tim Story | Stars: Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis

Votes: 229,950 | Gross: $131.92M

29. Spider-Man 2 (2004)

PG-13 | 127 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

83 Metascore

Peter Parker is beset with troubles in his failing personal life as he battles a brilliant scientist named Doctor Otto Octavius.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Alfred Molina, James Franco

Votes: 469,687 | Gross: $373.59M

30. Spider-Man 3 (2007)

PG-13 | 139 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

59 Metascore

A strange black entity from another world bonds with Peter Parker and causes inner turmoil as he contends with new villains, temptations, and revenge.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Topher Grace, Thomas Haden Church

Votes: 433,035 | Gross: $336.53M

31. The Punisher (2004)

R | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Crime

33 Metascore

An undercover FBI agent becomes a vigilante assassin and sets out to unleash his wrath upon the corrupt businessman who slaughtered his entire family at a reunion.

Director: Jonathan Hensleigh | Stars: Thomas Jane, John Travolta, Samantha Mathis, Laura Harring

Votes: 136,783 | Gross: $33.68M

32. X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)

PG-13 | 104 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

58 Metascore

An all-out war looms when the discovery of a cure for mutations draws a line between the followers of Charles Xavier and those of Magneto.

Director: Brett Ratner | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Famke Janssen

Votes: 428,932 | Gross: $234.36M

33. Batman Forever (1995)

PG-13 | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

51 Metascore

Batman must battle former district attorney Harvey Dent, who is now Two-Face and Edward Nygma, The Riddler with help from an amorous psychologist and a young circus acrobat who becomes his sidekick, Robin.

Director: Joel Schumacher | Stars: Val Kilmer, Tommy Lee Jones, Jim Carrey, Nicole Kidman

Votes: 210,556 | Gross: $184.03M

34. Hulk (2003)

PG-13 | 138 min | Action, Sci-Fi

54 Metascore

Bruce Banner, a genetics researcher with a tragic past, suffers an accident that causes him to transform into a raging green monster when he gets angry.

Director: Ang Lee | Stars: Eric Bana, Jennifer Connelly, Sam Elliott, Josh Lucas

Votes: 230,680 | Gross: $132.18M

35. Superman Returns (2006)

PG-13 | 154 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

72 Metascore

Superman reappears after a long absence, but is challenged by an old foe who uses Kryptonian technology for world domination.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Brandon Routh, Kevin Spacey, Kate Bosworth, James Marsden

Votes: 254,205 | Gross: $200.08M

36. Jonah Hex (2010)

PG-13 | 81 min | Action, Drama, Fantasy

33 Metascore

The U.S. military makes a scarred bounty hunter with warrants on his own head an offer he cannot refuse: in exchange for his freedom, he must stop a terrorist who is ready to unleash Hell on Earth.

Director: Jimmy Hayward | Stars: Josh Brolin, Megan Fox, John Malkovich, Michael Fassbender

Votes: 49,812 | Gross: $10.54M

37. Elektra (2005)

PG-13 | 97 min | Action, Adventure, Crime

34 Metascore

Elektra the warrior survives a near-death experience, becomes an assassin-for-hire, and tries to protect her two latest targets, a single father and his young daughter, from a group of supernatural assassins.

Director: Rob Bowman | Stars: Jennifer Garner, Goran Visnjic, Will Yun Lee, Kirsten Zien

Votes: 78,365 | Gross: $24.41M

38. Catwoman (2004)

PG-13 | 104 min | Action, Crime, Fantasy

27 Metascore

A shy woman, endowed with the speed, reflexes, and senses of a cat, walks a thin line between criminal and hero, even as a detective doggedly pursues her, fascinated by both of her personas.

Director: Pitof | Stars: Halle Berry, Sharon Stone, Benjamin Bratt, Lambert Wilson

Votes: 96,207 | Gross: $40.20M