Monsters of Geek’s Top 20 Comic Book Movies: #20-#16

Superhero Collage

No more waiting fellow Geeks! We are now entering the first installment for our Top 20 Comic Books Movies! Today we will look at #20-#16 on the list. If you are wondering how we came up with our list you can read about it by clicking here. We also decided to share some love for movies that made our personal lists, but just missed out on the final list. You can read that post here.

Without further blabbering from your Editor-in-Chief, here is the start of our list. Enjoy!

Aaron Collier/EIC


Batman-movie-poster

#20) Batman (1989)

Tim Burton’s Batman was a wonderful interpretation of the the Bat. I loved these movies as a kid. The dark weird feel to these movies is what had me mesmerized. The only thing I see as a fault is he killed off The Joker.

In my eyes Michael Keaton will alway be Batman. I think he caught both the playboy side of Bruce Wayne and the dark side of The Bat. Jack Nicholson’s Joker was a perfect interpretation of what the Joker was at the time the movie came out. Add in Kim Basinger and music from Prince and you have a great movie.

The iconic scene of Jack Nicolson and his goons going through the museums and tagging all the paintings, is one of my favorite scenes in movie history.

But sadly, Burton would not return after Batman Returns, and we were left with the cheesy, always cold and one liners of Joel Schumacher. —Joe Collier


X2 Poster

#19) X2: X-Men United (2003)

X-Men United is the second movie in the X-Men franchise and is, in my opinion, one of the better movies in the series. It capitalized on the first movie in every way—more mutants; more action; and more Wolverine. However, I think X2 gets a bad rap because it sets up a lot of the story lines for the awful third entry, X-Men: The Last Stand (Sorry, Jenna). I encourage our readers to not consider the third movie when considering X2’s place on this list.

X2 picks up where X-Men left off. Xavier’s school is running well, Wolverine is exploring his past, and Magneto is in his plastic prison. But all is not right in the X-Men world. Nightcrawler just attacked the President and the government is on edge about the mutant threat.

So, what do they do? Attack a mutant school where some of the world’s most powerful mutants reside. Great plan, government.

Wolverine has always driven the X-Men movies and X2 was when they really let him take control and become a bad mamma jamma. Wolverine goes on a rampage during the school attack just before he meets the mysterious Stryker, and it turns out Stryker knows about Wolverine’s past and also wants to end mutant kind.

Of course, the X-Men foil his plan and save the world, and Wolverine discovers how he got his adamantium skeleton. Hooray!

X2 had a lot of good things going for it. Nightcrawler and Lady Deathstrike both made memorable appearances. (Lady Deathstrike’s fight with with Wolverine was one of the highlights of the film). The younger generation of mutants (Pyro, Iceman, and Colossus) got a little more screen time before joining the main X-Men team in The Last Stand. And Jean Grey’s Pheonix reveal was well done, even though it was eventually misused in The Last Stand.

It’s a little sad to consider, but X2 is seriously hampered by its sequel, much like the first Matrix is today. So it’s hard to remember fondly because we don’t like what came after it. I ask all of you to answer this question: Don’t you think X2 would have been higher on our list if X-Men: The Last Stand had been a better movie or never existed at all? I think so.

Sadly, we don’t consider these movies in a vacuum. Each movie on our list has to be compared to what came before and what came after. X2 is a victim of that truth and why its #19 on our list. — Daniel Robinson


Iron Man 2

#18) Iron Man 2 (2010)

Robert Downey, Jr. was something of a revelation for comic book movies. Hugh Jackman was (and is) a great Wolverine and Tobey Maguire had his moments as Spider-Man, I guess. But it wasn’t until RDJ’s Tony Stark – at least in this century – that we had a perfect on-screen characterization of a comic book hero.

Iron Man 2, at the very least, gave us more of that perfection.

Tony himself is a breath of fresh air. In a world full of heroes protecting their identities and struggling with the responsibilities, Stark takes a “Look at me!” approach to heroism. As such, Iron Man 2 opens with the hero flaunting just how awesome he is at the Stark Expo and again moments later at a Congressional hearing. This love for the limelight ends up serving as motivation for Mickey Rourke’s Whiplash, and Rourke performed well as the main villain, but it was nothing overwhelming.

Of course, the sequel certainly had its issues, and since we’re early in our Top 20 countdown, they’re probably worth pointing out. Principal among those issues is that the entire plot of the film stopped so that it could be an Avengers prequel. In a pre-Avengers world, it was thrilling to see the web Marvel films was weaving, and more Avengers exploration gave us more Agent Colson and more Black Widow. Unfortunately though, this foray into the larger Marvel Universe makes Iron Man 2 quite a bit boring to revisit today.

Iron Man 2’s last stroke of excitement came in its post-credits scene, which revealed Mjӧlnir, Thor’s hammer. Personally, it was this reveal and not the wasted half of the film, that made me truly believe Avengers may actually happen. That accomplishment is enough to give Iron Man 2 a spot in our Top 20. — Andrew Fultz


Thor Dark world

#17) Thor: The Dark World (2013)

I don’t know if it was the lack of Kenneth Brannagh as director, or just the storyline that caused this movie to be so low on our list, but there was just something that made this particular movie not that memorable in quite a few ways.

Unfortunately, coming in at #17 on our compiled list is MARVEL’s Thor: The Dark World (TDW). Don’t get me wrong, I love the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and I love me some Thor, however, there was something to TDW that was missing from the previous Thor movie.

Staring the same people that made Thor a success in 2011, in addition to the 9th Doctor (Christopher Eccleston), we begin to learn about the Aether – one of the Infinity Stones – and just why the Dark Elf, Malekith, wanted it for himself. (Think of this: limitless power, immense strength, and seemingly unlimited capabilities.) Technically, Malekith – played by Eccleston – wants to destroy the Cosmos and plunge the universe into eternal darkness. Yes, this is definitely the person we need Thor, Jane, Darcy, and Selvig to stop before that happens.

The movie starts with the backstory of the Aether and Malekith, and of how Odin’s father, Bor, led the Asgardians into battle to stop the Dark Elf from destroying the Nine Realms. We then jet off into modern day London where we see Dr. Jane Foster interrupted on a date by her intern, Darcy Lewis, who has some pretty impressive science data depicting what could only be some otherworldly phenomena. What this otherworldly phenomena happened to be was the walls between the realms thinning, an occurrence that only happens every five thousand years.

During this event gravity gets altered, doors to different worlds are open, and Jane is swallowed up by one of them and transported to an unknown planet. Jane then finds herself in a dark abyss with a strange vault where the glowing, dark red Aether is stored away from those who may aim to seek it for dastardly purposes. Of course, curious Jane touches the vault, and the Aether possesses her body, and Malekith wakes from his long hibernation with a plan for universal domination. Thor comes to the rescue of his lady love after she returns through a portal to Earth, and together, Thor, Jane, Darcy, Erik, Ian, and – surprisingly, or unsurprisingly depending on your belief of his character – Loki are able to unite and ultimately defend Midgard and the other realms from being taken over and destroyed.

While this movie has some very funny parts to it to keep watchers interested, there were some moments to where I lost interest completely. Could it have been the lack of on-screen chemistry between Chris Hemsworth and Natalie Portman? Maybe. Or was it the lack of screen time that Tom Hiddleston was given? That may have played a factor as well (it did, just a little, for me). Or it could have been that the story just dropped off entirely. The effects were pretty cool, though, especially during the Battle of Greenwich scene when Elves and humans alike were disappearing and reappearing in and out of the portals to other realms.

Although the effects and humor were well done, with the release of Avengers just a year prior, there was just something missing from making it truly great; therefore, unfortunately, Thor: The Dark World was still a bit lackluster in comparison thus dropping it to #17 on our list. — Jenna Johnson


ThorRed

#16) Thor (2011)

When it comes to origins, there are none better than Marvel. They seem to always pull off a good origin movie, and  Thor did not disappoint.

Marvel gave us everything, another sexy Australian that is not Wolverine, Natalie Portman, and great action scenes. Plus this is where we catch our first Hawkeye appearance. We even have Kat Denning trying to say Mjölnir multiple times.

My favorite scene in Thor is Loki sending the Destroyer to kill Thor. The action is non stop, and we get a true look at how much Loki dislikes his brother when the Destroyer smacks Thor after he pleads with Loki to take his  life and leave his friends alone. But, what Loki didn’t realize is that Thor just sealed his fate to be the Thunder God again and we witness the cocky warrior in all his glory.

But, that’s not what I like about it. What I like about it is we see just how far Loki is willing to go to claim his throne. I think Marvel captured Loki perfectly in this movie and has set up Loki to be one of the best villains in the cinematic universe of Marvel.

Overall, it had good action, a good story, and great cast. They’ve done so well in casting that they could make a Loki movie or show based off the 2004 comic book mini-sereis and make a killing.I give Thor a B+ for good action and origin story and an A+ for setting up a great villain for the cinematic universe. — Joe Collier

2 thoughts on “Monsters of Geek’s Top 20 Comic Book Movies: #20-#16

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