Comic book movies are hot property in Hollywood, and very, very popular with audiences too. As such, plenty have been produced over the last few decades, leading to a wealth of great titles and huge blockbusters.

From X-Men: Days of Future Past and Spider-Man 2, to Turtles Forever and The Death of Superman, there are many great comic book movies to choose from and all can provide endless hours of entertainment. But which ones should you pop on your ‘watch list’?

Well, that’s where a post like this one can come in handy, because I am about to take a look at the best comic book movies that you (yes, YOU) should watch. This post will help navigate you toward all the hits, along with a few hidden gems too.

So, strap yourself in, get comfortable, and sling your eyeballs this way! These are the movies to take a look out if all you want to watch is comic book fun and super hero cinema.

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Spider-Man (2002)

Image: ©Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures/Marvel Entertainment

First up, is a superb super hero picture from director Sam Raimi. The movie is 2002’s Spider-Man, which stars Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, James Franco, and Willem Dafoe.

For the handful of audiences out there who still haven’t watched it, Spider-Man follows the story of high school student, Peter Parker, who is granted incredible abilities after being bitten by a genetically modified spider. These powers give Parker superhuman strength and agility, as well as a precognitive ability to sense danger, and the opportunity to spin his own webs!

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Spider-Man 2 (2004)

Image: ©Columbia Pictures/Sony Pictures/Marvel Entertainment

Taking place just a short while after the events of Spider-Man, Sam Raimi’s super-sequel, Spider-Man 2 reunites the cast of the original film to continue the story of Peter Parker. This time around, Parker has to cope with a new fearsome foe called Doctor Octopus, while at the same time learn how to balance his career as a crimefighter and the day-to-day responsibilities of being a university student.

Just as good as its predecessor (if not better), Spider-Man 2 is a cracking comic book adventure, filled with action and drama. It takes Peter Parker to new heights, while giving the audience plenty of bang for their buck!

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)

Image: ©New Line Cinema

Based on the Mirage Comics characters of the same name, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles is a gritty action-adventure movie, about four humanoid turtles who live under the streets of New York. By day, the awesome foursome eat pizza, while by night they take on the evil Foot Clan and their menacing boss, the villainous Shredder!

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Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021)

Image: ©Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Entertainment

During the production of 2017’s Justice League, original director Zack Snyder had to step back from filming duties due to a personal tragedy. With Snyder unable to finish his movie, replacement director Joss Whedon stepped in to complete the film, so that it could arrive in cinemas on time.

Unfortunately, Whedon’s version of Justice League was not met by a positive response from critics and was also not very good. Fans of Snyder’s work detested what became of Justice League under Whedon, and they campaigned very hard for a new cut to be released with Snyder back in the director’s chair.

Fast forward to 2021, and those same fans got their wish, when a revised version of the movie was released to home video, under the title Zack Snyder’s Justice League. This four-hour version of the film offered up an alternate take on the material, pleased fans greatly, and is actually rather good.

If you’ve not watched Zack Snyder’s Justice League yet, free up some time and give it a watch. The film will remove the bad taste of 2017’s Justice League from your mouth, while offering up some solid super hero action.

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Josie and the Pussycats (2001)

Image: ©Universal Pictures/20th Century

Onto a bit of comedy for this next film, with Rachel Leigh Cook, Tara Reid and Rosario Dawson fronting the hilarious cult favourite, Josie and the Pussycats. The movie – based on the comic book (and cartoon series) of the same name – is a satirical romp, which pokes fun at the music industry and features the funniest boy band ever put on screen.

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Logan (2017)

Image: ©20th Century/Marvel Entertainment

Hugh Jackman takes on the lead role for this gritty action-drama, which serves up his finest on-screen performance as Marvel’s merry mutant, Wolverine. In Logan, the X-Men are long dead, leaving Wolverine the sole carer of an ageing and mentally unstable Professor Xavier.

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Men in Black (1997)

Image: ©Sony Pictures

Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones band together for this sci-fi buddy comedy, based on the Malibu (Marvel) comic of the same name. Men in Black tells the story of a secret agency that protects the Earth from the worst scum of the universe and is filled with gag, after gag, after gag.

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The Losers (2010)

Image: ©Warner Bros.

Based on the Vertigo Comic of the same name, The Losers is an action movie about a black-ops team, tasked with a special mission. Jeffrey Dean Morgan, Idris Elba, Chris Evans, and Zoe Saldaña lead the cast, while Sylvain White directs.

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Batman: Gotham Knight (2008)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Set between the events of Batman Begins and The Dark Knight, Batman: Gotham Knight is an animated anthology picture, which sees the Caped Crusader battling various enemies, including the Scarecrow and Killer Croc. The film is divided into six interlocking segments, each boasting its own unique animation style, with the late great Kevin Conroy providing the voice of Batman.

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Superman: Red Son (2019)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Adapted from the comic book series of the same name, Superman: Red Son is an animated ‘what if?’ story, which asks the question: What if Superman’s spaceship landed in the Soviet Union when he was a baby. The film then uses this premise as its starting point to offer up an intriguing, action-packed tale.

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Justice League: Starcrossed (2004)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

A bit of a cheat for this next one, because Justice League: Starcrossed is technically three-episodes of the ‘00s Justice League cartoon, rather than a ‘movie’. But back in 2004, Warner Bros. edited the episodes together, released them on DVD, and called them a film!

So, if you can put aside its status as a faux-movie, Justice League: Starcrossed is excellent stuff, which is well worth your time. In the ‘movie’, Earth comes under attack from a Thanagarian invasion, putting the League under immense pressure as Superman and Co. fight for survival.

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The Mask (1994)

Image: ©New Line Cinema

Up next is a hilarious comic book comedy, based on the Dark Horse comic of the same name. The Mask stars Jim Carrey as an unlucky bank clerk, who is given wonderous powers after finding himself in possession of a magnificent mask.

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Superman: The Movie (1978)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Christopher Reeve slips into the iconic red and blue tights for an epic adventure of truth, justice, and the American way in Superman: The Movie. The film is one of the best-loved comic book movies of all time, includes a stand-out performance from Reeve, as well as a rousing theme from composer John Williams, and upon release it set the template for super hero cinema for decades to come.

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Superman II (1980)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Set shortly after the events of Superman: The Movie, the Man of Steel returns in Superman II – another epic adventure which pits the titular hero against three menacing Kryptonian criminals! Christopher Reeve reprises the lead role, while Terence Stamp excels as the villainous General Zod.

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The Avengers (2012)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

When the planet comes under attack from an alien invasion, led by the Norse god Loki, Earth’s mightiest heroes, Iron Man, Hulk, Captain America, Black Widow, Thor, and Hawkeye join forces to mount the ultimate defence. The end result is a milestone team-up picture which flew past the billion dollar mark at the worldwide box office and made The Avengers the No.1 super hero group!

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Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Over to animation for this next movie, the truly excellent noir-thriller, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm. The movie – set during the events of Batman: The Animated Series – tells a stand-alone tale involving a mysterious vigilante stalking the streets of Gotham City.

Although it flopped at the box office during its brief theatrical run in 1993, Batman: Mask of the Phantasm quickly found a huge following on home video and is often cited as ‘one of the best Batman movies ever produced’. If you’ve overlooked it in the past, be sure to give it your time.

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Batman Subzero (1998)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Continuing the animated Bat-film for this next movie, the adventure picture, Batman: Subzero. In the film, Batman and Robin set out to save Barbara Gordon from the clutches of Mr. Freeze, in this action-packed film, filled with thrills, spills, and emotion.

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Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

In Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Cap comes face-to-face with an old friend, who is now a threat. This friend-turned-enemy is the Winter Soldier, who was once Bucky Barnes, and he is mean, deadly, and out for the kill.

Filled to the brim with great action sequences, a superb turn from Chris Evans as Steve Rogers/Captain America, and expert direction from the Russo Brothers, Captain America: The Winter Soldier is Marvel Studios at its best. This is a politically charged action-thriller, with a lot of grit, and great deal of style.

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V for Vendetta (2006)

Image: ©Warner Bros.

Directed by James McTeigue, working from a screenplay by The Wachowskis, V for Vendetta is a dystopian political action-thriller starring Natalie Portman and Hugo Weaving. The film is based on the DC/Vertigo graphic novel of the same name and follows the story of a masked freedom-fighter who attempts to kick-start a revolution in a fascist-controlled United Kingdom.

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The Rocketeer (1991)

Image: ©Buena Vista Pictures

Based on the comic book of the same name by Dave Stevens, The Rocketeer is a superb adventure romp about stunt pilot, Cliff Secord, who discovers an experimental rocket pack and transforms into a super hero. Set on the cusp of World War II, the movie follows Secord’s story as he crosses paths with mobsters and Nazis.

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Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox (2013)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In animated adventure, Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox, The Flash finds himself in an alternate world where things aren’t what they should be. In this reality, Thomas Wayne is Batman, the Atlanteans and the Amazonians are at war, and the Justice League no longer exist.

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Ant-Man (2015)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

Directed by Peyton Reed and starring Paul Rudd, Ant-Man is an action comedy-caper, about former criminal, Scott Lang – a man who gets mixed up in a heist, despite trying to go straight. During the course of the movie, Lang transforms into the titular Ant-Man, and becomes a size-changing super hero in the process.

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Black Panther (2018)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

In Black Panther, the African nation of Wakanda comes under threat when the villainous Erik Killmonger arrives and claims he should be the rightful ruler of the throne. It is then up to Wakanda’s current king, T’Challa, to see that Killmonger doesn’t prosper, in this epic adventure which became a cultural touchstone back in 2018.

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Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

Action, comedy, and sci-fi are combined in this witty adventure romp which sees Thor do battle with his half-sister, Hela. But in order to stop her reign of tyranny, he must first gather together a team of fighters which includes Loki, Valkyrie, and the Hulk.

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Blade (1998)

Image: ©New Line Cinema/Marvel Entertainment

Next up is Blade, the Marvel movie about a half-human/half-vampire, vampire hunter who stalks creatures of the night. Wesley Snipes takes on the lead role in this action horror from director, Stephen Norrington.

Blade is not only a gore-soaked horror flick, loaded with some great set pieces, it was also Marvel’s first big box office success. And because Blade was a success, it paved the way for all the great Marvel movies that followed.

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Blade II (2002)

Image: ©New Line Cinema/Marvel Entertainment

And speaking of things that followed on from Blade, leads nicely onto Blade II – an action-orientated sequel, from director Guillermo del Toro. In this movie, Blade has to team up with a rag-tag gang of vampires known as the Bloodpack, in order to defeat a deadly new threat.

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Kick-Ass (2010)

Image: ©Universal Pictures

Based on the comic book of the same name, Kick-Ass is an action-comedy about a teenager who becomes a superhero. Starring Aaron Taylor-Johnson, the film is bursting with strong language and scenes of extreme violence, is a lot of fun, and is ‘kick-ass’ in every sense of the word.

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Sin City (2005)

Image: ©Miramax Films

Directed by Frank Miller and Robert Rodriguez, Sin City is a neo-noir crime anthology movie about the grimier side of life. The movie features an all-star cast, including Bruce Willis, Jessica Alba, Benicio del Toro, Brittany Murphy, and Mickey Rourke, and is filmed in black-and-white to reflect the look and tone of the comics it is based on.

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The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)

Image: ©Sony Pictures/Marvel Entertainment

Andrew Garfield slips into the Spandex for this Spider-Man movie which retells the origin of Peter Parker, with a new cast and a whole new direction. Based on the ‘Ultimate’ era of Spidey comics, The Amazing Spider-Man sees Parker go up against the villainous Lizard, while finding romance from Gwen Stacy.

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Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight (1995)

Image: ©HBO

In this horror movie from director Ernest Dickerson, William Sadler takes on the role of a drifter, who is pursued by a powerful demon in search of an important artifact. Billy Zane plays the demon, while Jada Pinkett Smith, Thomas Haden Church, and C. C. H. Pounder co-star, in a film inspired by the EC Comics stories of the same name.

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The New Original Wonder Woman (1975)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Another slight cheat here, as The New Original Wonder Woman is perhaps better known these days as the first episode of the 1970s television series, Wonder Woman. However, back in 1975 The New Original Wonder Woman was initially conceived as a stand-alone feature-length TV movie starring Lynda Carter as Diana Prince/Wonder Woman.

For those who have never watched the ‘movie’, the story focuses on Wonder Woman’s origin and her first arrival in the US. The film is set during the dark days of World War II and is a fun romp, with a lot of heart, and its tongue placed firmly in its cheek.

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X2 (2003)

Image: ©20th Century/Marvel Entertainment

In X2 (aka X-Men 2), Marvel’s mighty mutants join forces with Magneto in order to take on a new enemy who could see homo-superiors wiped off the face of the planet. But can the X-Men really trust their old foe, and what does this new threat have in common with Wolverine?

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X-Men: First Class (2011)

Image: ©20th Century/Marvel Entertainment

Onto another X-Men movie, only this time set during the 1960s. Directed by Matthew Vaughn, X-Men: First Class details the origin of the X-Men, with a specific focus on the relationship between Charles Xavier (James McAvoy) and Erik Lehnsherr (Michael Fassbender).

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Dredd (2012)

Image: ©Entertainment Film Distributors

In this stripped-back adventure-thriller, comic book lawman, Judge Dredd and his partner, Judge Anderson, are tasked with bringing order to a 200-storey block of apartments. What follows is a gun-toting battle as the Judges come face-to-face with some of the miscreants of Mega-City One, in this low-budget sci-fi action film.

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Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

Set during the events of World War II, Captain America: The First Avenger is a period picture which details the origin of the star-spangled super soldier. Chris Evans takes on the role of Cap, while Hugo Weaving is suitable scary as the villainous Red Skull.

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Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (2010)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

After arriving on Earth, Superman’s cousin, Kara Zor-El, has much to learn about the world around her, but before she can get to this, in steps the evil Darkseid, who wants to make Kara his new pawn. It is up to Batman, Superman, Wonder Woman, and Big Barda to stand in his way, and ensure Kara becomes the ‘super’ girl she is destined to be.

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Blue is the Warmest Colour (2013)

Image: ©Wild Bunch

Directed by Abdellatif Kechiche, and based on the French graphic novel of the same name, Blue is the Warmest Colour is an LGBTQ+ romance movie about a teenager who falls in love with an aspiring painter. The movie stars Léa Seydoux and Adéle Exarchopoulos.

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Man of Steel (2013)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In Man of Steel, the Superman mythology is given a reboot for a new generation, with Henry Cavill taking on the part of Clark Kent/Superman. Directed by Zack Snyder, Man of Steel looks at Clark’s early years in Smallville, as well as his rise to becoming the most famous super hero on the planet.

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Brightburn (2019)

Image: ©Sony Pictures

Not actually a comic book movie, but certainly inspired by comic books (especially Superman), Brightburn is a horror film, about a young boy who arrives on Earth as a baby, develops amazing abilities, then uses them in a terrible way when he becomes a teen. David Yarovesky directs, while Elizabeth Banks, David Denman, and Jackson A. Dunn star.

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Unbreakable (2000)

Image: ©Buena Vista Pictures

Another movie that also isn’t based on a comic book (sorry), but is heavily influenced by them is the super-hero thriller, Unbreakable. Bruce Willis and Samuel L. Jackson star in this M. Night Shyamalan picture, about an ordinary guy who appears to be impervious to harm.

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Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (2000)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker, Bruce Wayne has long given up the role of the City’s saviour and now mentors a new Batman in the shape of teenager, Terry McGinnis. But Bruce’s past comes back to haunt him when an old enemy resurfaces from beyond the grave.

Created as a feature-length spin-off from the critically acclaimed animated show, Batman Beyond, Return of the Joker is an exquisite piece of Bat-storytelling. The film offers some genuine surprises, as well as an excellent voice cast in Will Friedle, Kevin Conroy, and Mark Hamill.

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Wonder Woman (2017)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Gal Gadot takes on the role of Diana Prince/Wonder Woman for this live-action period picture, which focuses on the origin of Wonder Woman. Set during World War I, the movie depicts Wonder Woman’s first adventure outside of the paradise island of Themyscira, as well as her first meeting with Steve Trevor.

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X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)

Image: ©20th Century/Marvel Entertainment

Set during two time periods – the 1970s and a dystopian future – X-Men: Days of Future Past is a time-hopping affair, which details the emergence of the mutant-hunting robots known as the Sentinels. The film combines different X-Men from different eras, with Hugh Jackman reprising the role of Wolverine to become the central figure in this stunning sci-fi epic.

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Watchmen (2009)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Directed by Zack Snyder, and based on the seemingly unfilmable comic of the same name, Watchmen is a dark and disturbing action-thriller, about a team of super heroes who uncover an insidious plot. The movie features performances from Billy Crudup, Matthew Goode, Jackie Earle Haley, and Patrick Wilson, and is a beautifully constructed picture with real grit and depth.

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The Batman (2022)

Image: ©Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Entertainment

Robert Pattinson dons the cape and cowl for The Batman – a detective thriller, set during the early years of the Dark Knight’s career. In the film, the Caped Crusader comes to blows with The Riddler and The Penguin, while getting a little assistance from femme fatale, Catwoman.

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Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015)

Image: ©20th Century

Matthew Vaughn directs this fantastic spy-comedy about a teenager who is recruited into a secret organisation, to fight for Queen and country. Taron Egerton, Samuel L. Jackson, Colin Firth, Michael Caine, and Mark Strong star.

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Hellboy (2004)

Image: ©Sony Pictures

Based on the Dark Horse Comics character of the same name, Hellboy follows the story of a demonic superhero who fights the good fight to take on the forces of evil. Guillermo del Toro directs, while Ron Perlman Doug Jones, Selma Blair, and David Hyde Pierce co-star.

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Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

Image: ©Sony Pictures

Set shortly after the events of 2004’s Hellboy, Hellboy II: The Golden Army is an entrancing sequel filled with beautiful imagery and curious characters. This time around, Hellboy must do battle with an underworld prince, who has plans to claim the Earth for himself and his kind.

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The Crow (1994)

Image: ©Miramax Films

In this dark, supernatural fantasy, Brandon Lee takes the lead role as a young musician who returns from the grave to avenge his murder, as well as the rape and murder of his girlfriend. Ernie Hudson, Michael Wincott, Tony Todd, and Michael Massee co-star, while Alex Proyas directs.

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Iron Man (2008)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

In Iron Man, Robert Downey Jr. plays the role of genius billionaire Tony Stark – a man who builds himself a suit of armour, after he is kidnapped by a group of terrorists. This suit gives Stark a tactical advantage so he can make his escape, and becomes the blueprint for a bigger, better suit of armour to follow.

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Batman: Hush (2019)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Based on the best-selling comic book storyline of the same name, Batman: Hush is an animated offering which introduces a new villain in the form of Hush. The mystery film makes some changes to the original story, but follows a similar format, incorporating many of Batman’s most famous foes along the way.

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Big Hero 6 (2014)

Image: ©Walt Disney

Aimed directly at the super hero-loving crowd, Big Hero 6 is an animated Disney movie, about a young boy who befriends a robotic healthcare companion, before becoming part of a super-group. The movie features larger than life characters, beautiful animation and a story that is effortlessly engaging.

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Flash Gordon (1980)

Image: ©Columbia-EMI-Warner Distributors/Universal Pictures

Camper than a row of tents and completely bonkers, yet so much fun to watch, is the sci-fi adventure picture, Flash Gordon. The movie – which stars Sam J. Jones, Max von Sydow, and Brian Blessed – follows the story of a football star who is taken into space and becomes Earth’s greatest hero.

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Batman: Under the Red Hood (2010)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In animated picture, Batman: Under the Red Hood, a mysterious vigilante arrives in Gotham City, causing great concern for Batman. But is this masked character a new enemy, or someone from Batman’s troubled past?

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Casper (1995)

Image: ©Universal Pictures

Based on the Harvey Comics character of the same name, fantasy family film Casper follows the story of a paranormal therapist and his daughter, who are tasked with removing four seemingly bothersome ghosts from an old manor house. But while three of the ghosts are extremely mischievous, the fourth is very lonely and simply longs for a friend.

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A History of Violence (2005)

Image: ©New Line Cinema

Based on the graphic novel of the same name, A History of Violence follows the story of a diner owner who becomes threatened by a gangster. David Cronenberg directs this action thriller starring Viggo Mortensen, Maria Bello, William Hurt, and Ed Harris.

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Batman: The Movie (1966)

Image: ©20th Century/DC Entertainment

Conceived as a spin-off of the 1960s television series of the same name, Batman: The Movie is a hilarious and colourful comedy, which sees Batman and Robin take on four fiendish fiends in the shape of The Joker, Catwoman, The Riddler, and The Penguin! Adam West, Burt Ward, Cesar Romero, Lee Meriwether, Frank Gorshin, and Burgess Meredith star.

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Batman (1989)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Another Batman movie, and another superb picture which was hugely successful upon release back in 1989. The movie is Batman – a dark origin story which sees Bruce Wayne/Batman come face-to-face with the Joker in a battle for Gotham City.

Michael Keaton, Jack Nicholson, and Kim Basinger star. Tim Burton directs.

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Justice League: Doom (2012)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Another superb animated offering based on DC Comics characters, which this time sees all the core members of the Justice League come under attack from their greatest enemies. And with all of these enemies knowing intricate details about all of the League’s biggest weaknesses, it looks as if the villains might actually win this one.

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Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)

Image: ©Sony Pictures/Marvel Entertainment

Marvel Comics’ best-loved superhero gets an update and takes part in an imaginative adventure which spans the multiverse in this animated epic. Into the Spider-Verse is loaded with great gags and top-notch animation, but is also packed with plenty of heart and a superb origin story.

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Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut (2006)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In 1978, while filming Superman: The Movie, director Richard Donner was also busy working on follow-up film, Superman II. Although the movies were released two years apart, he initially started shooting the two films back-to-back, before he stopped work on the sequel to concentrate on completing the first movie.

However, before he could finish part two, Donner fell out with the producers on Superman II and was promptly fired from the project. In stepped fellow director, Richard Lester, who took what Donner had started, and completed the film ahead of its release in 1980.

Fast-forward to 2006, and thanks to continued interest in the Superman movie franchise, Warner Bros. re-hired Donner to return to Superman II and provide an alternate cut of the film. This version of the movie – titled Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut – saw the director re-edit the picture to incorporate deleted scenes and abandoned material, thus making a new version of the film in the process.

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The Incredible Hulk (1978)

Image: ©Universal/Marvel Entertainment

Onto this next one, which is the 1978 TV movie, The Incredible Hulk. This TV movie – which essentially became the pilot episode for the Hulk television show of the same name – stars Bill Bixby and Lou Ferrigno, and tells the story of a scientist who transforms into a seemingly monstrous creature.

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300 (2007)

Image: ©Warner Bros.

Set during the Battle of Thermopylae, Zack Snyder’s 300 is an epic historical fantasy picture, which serves up some superb visuals and plenty of action. Based on the comic book by Frank Miller and Lynn Varley, the movie stars Gerard Butler, Dominic West, Lena Headey, and Michael Fassbender.

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Shazam! (2019)

Image: ©New Line Cinema/DC Entertainment

In this excellent fantasy feature from DC Comics, young Billy Batson transforms himself into a super hero when he utters the magic word, ‘Shazam!’ But super heroics are not all they are cracked up to be when Billy soon finds himself crossing paths with a dastardly villain who could put an end to his fun, as well as his life.

Zachary Levi, Asher Angel, Jack Dylan Grazer, and Mark Strong star. David F. Sandberg directs.

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Dick Tracy (1990)

Image: ©Buena Vista Pictures

Warren Beatty directs and takes the lead in this action crime movie, which is based on Chester Gould’s comic strip character of the same name. The film follows the story of a police detective, who wears a very distinctive yellow coat, as he uncovers corruption in his home city.

Al Pacino, Madonna, Glenne Headly, Dustin Hoffman, Catherine O’Hara, and Mandy Patinkin are just some of the names featured amongst the all-star cast. Meanwhile music is provided by Danny Elfman, with songs from Stephen Sondheim.

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Turtles Forever (2009)

Image: ©Viacom/Nickelodeon

Created as a spin-off and conclusion to the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles animated series from the ‘00s, Turtles Forever is a fun sci-fi romp, which sees the awesome foursome engage in some multiverse action. In the movie, the Turtles of one universe cross paths with other Turtles from alternate worlds, leading to some animated hijinks and plenty of nostalgia along the way.

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The Death of Superman (2018)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In this animated action movie, Superman embarks on a brutal battle with the monstrous Doomsday, which ends in tragedy. The Death of Superman adapts the famous comic book storyline of the same name, and is a powerful piece about fighting against adversity.

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Reign of the Supermen (2019)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Picking up after the events of The Death of Superman, this animated sequel continues the story, with the citizens of Metropolis in mourning for their fallen hero. But there’s little time for tears, thanks to the arrival of a new bunch of super beings who all claim to be a newly resurrected Superman!

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Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)

Image: ©Sony Pictures/Marvel Entertainment

In Spider-Man: No Way Home, Peter Parker finds himself outmatched when a group of villains begin popping up in New York City. With his back to the wall, and facing his darkest hour, things look grim for Spidey, until two allies from different universes join the fight and give him the edge he needs.

Tom Holland, Tobey Maguire, and Andrew Garfield join forces in this landmark Spider-Man movie, which brings together three different iterations of the webbed-wonder. Jon Watts directs.

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The Lego Batman Movie (2017)

Image: ©LEGO/Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Conceived as a sort-of spin-off of 2014’s The Lego Movie, The Lego Batman Movie follows Batman, Robin, Batgirl, and Alfred as they take on a huge collection of famous foes. But in order to protect Gotham City, Batman must combat some of his inner demons, including his reluctance to work as part of a team.

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Vampire Hunter D (1985)

Based on the first in the long-running series of light novels by Hideyuki Kikuchi, Vampire Hunter D is a sci-fi horror fantasy anime, about a vampire hunter who is hired to protect a young woman and her brother from the forces of evil. Huge on the home video market during the late ‘80s/early ‘90s, Vampire Hunter D is a cult favourite from a beloved era of Japanese animation.

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Men in Black 3 (2012)

Image: ©Sony Pictures

Oft overlooked, as it is sandwiched between the underwhelming Men in Black II (2002) and the absolutely dreadful Men in Black: International (2019), Men in Black 3 is a gem of a movie, which sees Agent J travel back in time to team up with a younger version of Agent K. The movie – directed by Barry Sonnenfeld – stars Will Smith and Tommy Lee Jones, with Josh Brolin joining the team as young K.

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Batman: The Long Halloween – Part One (2021)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Yet more Batman action, and this time it is the first in a double-bill, based on Jeph Loeb and Tim Sale’s marvellous noir thriller, The Long Halloween. The story centres around a year-long mystery involving a killer who murders their victims around public holidays.

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Batman: The Long Halloween – Part Two (2021)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Picking up directly after the events of Batman: The Long Halloween – Part One, this second chapter continues (and concludes) the story, with the Caped Crusader embarking on one of his most gruelling mysteries. The identity of the Holiday Killer is still up in the air, but before Batman can solve the case, he must contend with a bunch of villains who are getting in his way.

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Captain America: Civil War (2016)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

After the Avengers become embroiled in a tragedy, the US Government demands that all costumed crimefighters register their status as heroes. However, while Iron Man is keen to toe the line, Captain America is not so sure, creating a schism amongst the super hero community that puts friends at odds with each other.

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Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze (1991)

Image: ©New Line Cinema

Taking a lighter approach to the material than its predecessor did, Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze is a whacky adventure feature, which sees the Turtles learn a few details about their mysterious origins. For this film, Shredder returns, while henchmen duties fall to newcomers Tokka and Rahzar.

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Teen Titans GO! To the Movies (2018)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In this hilarious and joyful animated family film, the Teen Titans step away from their popular animated series, Teen Titans GO!, to embark on a big screen adventure filled with colourful chaos. Packed with mad-cap hijinks, Teen Titans GO! To the Movies is a tale for all ages, with plenty of in-jokes and rewards for long-term fans of comics and comic book movies.

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Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

Directed by James Gunn, Guardians of the Galaxy is a colourful, music-filled space romp, about a rag-tag group of misfits who band together for a common goal. That goal is to save the galaxy – a feat which even they don’t believe they can pull off!

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DC League of Super-Pets (2022)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Step aside Superman and Batman, it’s time for Krypto and Ace to take charge in this family animated movie which focuses on super pets. The film features the vocal talents of Dwayne Johnson and Kevin Hart, is filled with laughs, and is perfect for the whole family.

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Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Image: ©Marvel Studios/Disney

In Avengers: Infinity War, the villainous Thanos arrives on Earth with one goal: To locate the mystical Infinity Stones which will give him the ability to wipe out half of all the life in the universe. But keen to ensure he doesn’t succeed, a huge collection of Marvel heroes join forces to take him on.

Marvel movies don’t get much bigger than this one, nor are they quite so emotional. Avengers: Infinity War is a fantastic comic book movie, which moves at break-neck speed and ends on the mother of all cliffhangers!

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Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Image: ©Marvel Studios/Disney

Picking up five years after the events of Avengers: Infinity War, the Earth is in a terrible place having experienced one of the worst tragedies in history. But can this tragedy be partly undone, and what will it take for the Avengers to put right an incredible wrong?

Time-travel and team-ups become the focus of this hugely successful Avengers movie, which saw countless heroes join forces to put an end to Thanos’ reign of terror. The Russo Brothers direct, while the cast includes Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Tom Holland, Chadwick Boseman, and many, many, many more.

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Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)

Image: ©Universal Pictures

Based on a series of graphic novels by Bryan Lee O’Malley, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World is a romantic action comedy, about a young musician’s attempts to get a record deal, while also battling his girlfriend’s ex boyfriends. Edgar Wright directs, while Michael Cera, Mary Elizabeth Winstead, Kieran Culkin, and Chris Evans star.

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Green Lantern: First Flight (2009)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Back to animation for this next movie, the brilliant sci-fi adventure film, Green Lantern: First Flight. Nathan Fillion voices Hal Jordan, in a fun story centred around the origin of one of the most iconic Green Lantern’s in the universe.

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The Suicide Squad (2021)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Directed by James Gunn, The Suicide Squad is an action-comedy, which sees Task Force X sent on a secret mission to defeat a deadly enemy. Margot Robbie takes centre stage in the story as Harley Quinn, while joining the team are newcomers Peacemaker (John Cena) and Bloodsport (Idris Elba).

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Werewolf by Night (2022)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

Ok, so this next one is not actually a movie, as it is a television special, but it makes the list because a.) it’s great, and b.) it is a standalone piece which runs to almost an hour in length. The piece in the spotlight is the horror tale, Werewolf by Night.

Directed by Michael Giacchino and starring Gael García Bernal and Laura Donnelly, Werewolf by Night details the story of a group of monster hunters who gather together to determine who is worthy of wielding the powerful Bloodstone. This TV special is filmed in black-and-white and is heavily influenced by the Universal Monster movies of the 1930s and 1940s.

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The Dark Knight Returns – Part One (2012)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Based on the critically acclaimed (and highly influential) graphic novel of the same name, The Dark Knight Returns – Part One is the first instalment in a two-part animated movie set during the latter part of Batman’s career. In the movie, the Caped Crusader has to contend with threats, old and new, as he faces the realisation his days of crimefighting are edging ever nearer to the end.

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The Dark Knight Returns – Part Two (2013)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Picking up after the events of Part One, The Dark Knight Returns – Part Two is the concluding chapter in this animated story. As with its predecessor, the movie offers superb animation and an excellent voice cast, with Peter Weller on fine form as Bruce Wayne/Batman.

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From Hell (2001)

Image: ©20th Century

Johnny Depp, Heather Graham, Robbie Coltrane and Ian Holm star in this a dark horror movie based on the graphic novel of the same name. From Hell – directed by The Hughes Brothers – focuses on the murders of Jack the Ripper.

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Batman Returns (1992)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Michael Keaton returns to the role of Batman for this stylistic sequel to Tim Burton’s Batman. Set during Christmas time, the Caped Crusader faces three fearsome foes in the shape of Catwoman (Michelle Pfeiffer), The Penguin (Danny DeVito), and Max Shreck (Christopher Walken).

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Deadpool (2016)

Image: ©20th Century/Marvel Entertainment

Ryan Reynolds is at his hilarious best in this action-packed comic book comedy, about a wise-crackin’ mercenary with the ability to regenerate from any injury. Sure, the story is pretty thin on the ground, but what Deadpool lacks in narrative depth, it sure makes up for in its huge collection of gags and its incredibly likeable lead.

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Deadpool 2 (2018)

Image: ©20th Century/Marvel Entertainment

In Deadpool 2, Ryan Reynolds returns for more belly laughs, only this time he is joined by two new mutants in the shape of Domino (Zazie Beetz) and Cable (Josh Brolin). The plot of this film involves a spot of time-travel, and the introduction of a super-group known as X-Force.

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The Phantom (1996)

Image: ©Paramount Pictures

Daft, camp, but a heck of a lot of fun, The Phantom is a jungle adventure story based on the comic strip character of the same name. The film stars Billy Zane as Kit Walker/The Phantom and is heavily influenced by the likes of old-school fantasy features, including Indiana Jones and the Alan Quartermain films.

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Wonder Woman (2009)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Set largely on the paradise island of Themyscira, Wonder Woman is a magnificent animated film which focuses on Wonder Woman’s origin. The movie delves heavily into Wonder Woman’s backstory, as well Greek mythology, to tell a captivating tale about the rise of a hero.

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The Old Guard (2020)

Image: ©Netflix

Based on the comic book of the same name, The Old Guard is a super hero tale about a group of immortal mercenaries. The Netflix movie stars Charlize Theron and Chiwetel Ejiofor, with director Gina Prince-Bythewood calling the shots.

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Batman Begins (2005)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Christopher Nolan directs, while Christian Bale takes on the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman for this next comic book movie – the absolutely brilliant Batman Begins. As the title suggests, this is a Year One-style story, which details Batman’s origins, from the tragedy that shaped Bruce Wayne’s life, to his first encounter with villains such as the Scarecrow and Ra’s al Ghul.

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The Dark Knight (2008)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Picking up a short time after the events of Batman Begins, Batman is now an established vigilante, and Gotham’s shadowy protector. But life gets a little more complicated as two new foes come to Gotham City in the form of the Joker and Harvey ‘Two-Face’ Dent.

Christian Bale reprises the role of Bruce Wayne/Batman, while Christopher Nolan returns to the director’s chair. Joining the cast is the late Heath Ledger, alongside Aaron Eckhart, who appear in one of the best comic book sequels ever filmed.

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The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

In the third and final entry in Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, Christian Bale’s Batman is brought out of retirement to face yet more threats to Gotham City. The villains this time around include Bane and Talia al Ghul, while Catwoman drops by to provide ample assistance.

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The Road to Perdition (2002)

Image: ©DreamWorks Pictures/20th Century

Directed by Sam Mendes, The Road to Perdition is a crime drama about a mob enforcer who seeks vengeance on those who murdered his family. Tom Hanks, Jude Law, Jennifer Jason Leigh, Daniel Craig, Stanley Tucci and Paul Newman star.

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Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)

Image: ©Disney/Marvel Studios

Marvel Studios delves into the realm of martial arts and Chinese mythology for this excellent super hero picture, which details the arrival of a new hero. Directed by Destin Daniel Cretton, Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings is an imaginative adventure film, which is beautifully shot.

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Batman Forever (1995)

Image: ©Warner Bros./DC Entertainment

Val Kilmer steps into the Bat-suit for this next Batman movie, while Joel Schumacher directs. In Batman Forever, Batman gets a new partner in the shape of Dick Grayson/Robin (Chris O’Donnell), while new villains The Riddler (Jim Carrey) and Two-Face (Tommy Lee Jones) cause chaos.

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Joker (2019)

Image: ©Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Entertainment

And finally, in this dark, twisted psychological thriller from director Todd Phillips, the origin of The Joker is retold, with Joaquin Phoenix taking on the lead role. Here, Joker is repositioned as part-time clown and failed stand-up comic, Arthur Fleck, who suffers from mental illness as well as a rare condition that gives him a very distinctive laugh.

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Recap

Image: ©Warner Bros. Pictures/DC Entertainment

OK, so those are the best comic book movies you need to watch – so be sure to check them out. And to save you having to scroll back up the post, here is a list of all the movies in one handy place.

  • Spider-Man (2002)
  • Spider-Man 2 (2004)
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles (1990)
  • Zack Snyder’s Justice League (2021)
  • Josie and the Pussycats (2001)
  • Logan (2017)
  • Men in Black (1997)
  • The Losers (2010)
  • Batman: Gotham Knight (2008)
  • Superman: Red Son (2019)
  • Justice League: Starcrossed (2004)
  • The Mask (1994)
  • Superman: The Movie (1978)
  • Superman II (1980)
  • The Avengers (2012)
  • Batman: Mask of the Phantasm (1993)
  • Batman: Subzero (1998)
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
  • V for Vendetta (2006)
  • The Rocketeer (1991)
  • Justice League: The Flashpoint Paradox (2013)
  • Ant-Man (2015)
  • Black Panther (2018)
  • Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
  • Blade (1998)
  • Blade II (2002)
  • Kick-Ass (2010)
  • Sin City (2005)
  • The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)
  • Tales from the Crypt: Demon Knight (1995)
  • The New Original Wonder Woman (1975)
  • X2 (2003)
  • X-Men: First Class (2011)
  • Dredd (2012)
  • Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
  • Superman/Batman: Apocalypse (2010)
  • Blue is the Warmest Colour (2013)
  • Man of Steel (2013)
  • Brightburn (2019)
  • Unbreakable (2000)
  • Batman Beyond: Return of the Joker (2000)
  • Wonder Woman (2017)
  • X-Men: Days of Future Past (2014)
  • Watchmen (2009)
  • The Batman (2022)
  • Kingsman: The Secret Service (2015)
  • Hellboy (2004)
  • Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)
  • The Crow (1994)
  • Iron Man (2008)
  • Batman: Hush (2019)
  • Big Hero 6 (2014)
  • Flash Gordon (1980)
  • Batman: Under the Red Hood (2010)
  • Casper (1995)
  • A History of Violence (2005)
  • Batman: The Movie (1966)
  • Batman (1989)
  • Justice League: Doom (2012)
  • Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse (2018)
  • Superman II: The Richard Donner Cut (2006)
  • The Incredible Hulk (1978)
  • 300 (2007)
  • Shazam! (2019)
  • Dick Tracy (1990)
  • Turtles Forever (2009)
  • The Death of Superman (2018)
  • Reign of the Supermen (2019)
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)
  • The Lego Batman Movie (2017)
  • Vampire Hunter D (1985)
  • Men in Black 3 (2012)
  • Batman: The Long Halloween – Part One (2021)
  • Batman: The Long Halloween – Part Two (2021)
  • Captain America: Civil War (2016)
  • Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles II: The Secret of the Ooze (1991)
  • Teen Titans GO! To the Movies (2018)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
  • DC League of Super-Pets (2022)
  • Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
  • Avengers: Endgame (2019)
  • Scott Pilgrim vs. the World (2010)
  • Green Lantern: First Flight (2009)
  • The Suicide Squad (2021)
  • Werewolf by Night (2022)
  • The Dark Knight Returns – Part One (2012)
  • The Dark Knight Returns – Part Two (2013)
  • From Hell (2001)
  • Batman Returns (1992)
  • Deadpool (2016)
  • Deadpool 2 (2018)
  • The Phantom (1996)
  • Wonder Woman (2009)
  • The Old Guard (2020)
  • Batman Begins (2005)
  • The Dark Knight (2008)
  • The Dark Knight Rises (2012)
  • The Road to Perdition (2002)
  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (2021)
  • Batman Forever (1995)
  • Joker (2019)
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Thank you for stopping by It’s A Stampede! to read this post about the best comic book movies. For more posts, be sure to check out the recommended reads below.

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