Well, I’ve finally done it. I’ve compiled a list of the most disappointing superhero movies of all time. It was hard, man. With so many choices it was hard to narrow it down to ten. There are probably a few really disappointing movies that I couldn’t fit onto the list. Now, keep in mind, this is not a list of the worst superhero movies, so I can’t include something like Daredevil or Elektra, because no one was expecting them to be fantastic. Don’t be surprised if a few bad superhero movies don’t make it onto the list. So, without further adieu, here’s the list. Note: I’ve attached Amazon links to these in case you wanted to buy them for whatever reason.
Yes, we’re kicking off the list by the sequel to Batman Returns that was something completely different. Yes, it’s quite obvious that the original cast did not have a good feeling about this odd, campy sequel. They replaced Michael Keaton with Val Kilmer, Michael Murphy with George Wallace, and Billy Dee Williams with Tommy Lee Jones. I don’t really get that last one. Anyway, there are several reasons I put this so low on the list. First of all, no matter how bad a Batman he is, Kilmer is a great Bruce Wayne. Second, I love Jim Carrey’s Riddler. Usually. Third, it wasn’t awful, it was just… not what I was expecting. It’s like if you were listening to 80s Rock on Pandora and a Britney Spears song came up. It’s certainly not terrible, it’s just not right. It shouldn’t be there. I also think that a lot of people agreed that Batman Returns was a really weird movie, and after hearing that Schumacher, who was best known for The Lost Boys at the time, was directing, I don’t think people had the highest hopes for this movie.
But fucking Tommy Lee Jones, man.
*Sigh* Iron Man 2. I don’t even know what to say about this. It’s just… fucking Iron Man 2. It doesn’t even deserve italics. This could have been a good movie. The villain had a lot of potential. Don Cheadle is a much better War Machine than Terrence Howard. Nick Fury is in it. So where did they go wrong? Well, the problem with this movie is that it deserved a serious movie. This was obviously just killing time until The Avengers, so why bother putting a villain like Whiplash in it? Iron Man has 61 villains in his rogues gallery, and most of them suck, so why put in an interesting one? Now, granted, they made Whiplash suck, but somehow that’s much worse than just putting a bad villain in it. They should have either taken it seriously or not. But the producers thought they could make a terrible script and then take it seriously. The result is the worst Iron Man movie and possibly the worst movie in the whole Avengers franchise.
Okay, I know a lot of people liked this movie. Some people might say it’s the most faithful comic book adaptation of all time. I just… don’t like it. I think the acting isn’t very good, the story is too confusing, and it seems like it was made specifically for people who’ve read the comic. That just doesn’t seem like how it should be done. I think when making a comic book movie, it should introduce audiences to the comic rather than making them feel bad for not reading it. I don’t know if they were going for some kind of mystery about who killed Ed Blake, but it was pretty obvious. People tell me that I just didn’t “get” this movie; that I need to read the comic or else I’m not going to get the full experience. That is not how movies should work.
Ah, yes. The Incredible Hulk. This movie may very well be the worst in Edward Norton’s career. It’s not that this is the worst movie of all time, it’s just not good. You can clearly tell that the two writers had very different visions for this movie. There’s a lack of consistency throughout. Now, granted, the 2003 one was even worse, but this one… was just not good. With a great cast like Ed Norton, William Hurt, and Liv Free or Ty Hard, you’d think they’d be able to make something out of this. But nope. They didn’t. There were some decent superhero movies in 2008, like Iron Man, Hancock, andHellboy 2. There were also some bad ones like Superhero Movie and Punisher 2. This movie, unfortunately, falls into the latter category.
Why did I put two pictures up for this movie? Well, the first one is from the original DVD and the original poster art for the movie, while the second one is from the more recent Deluxe Edition. Notice any differences? Yes, that’s right, Richard Pryor is mysteriously absent on the more recent cover despite his prominent role in the movie. Now, why would this movie want to distance itself from Richard Pryor? Other than his character, though, this isn’t a terrible movie. What makes it terrible is that they gave a great comedian like Richard Pryor such an ungodly annoying part, thereby wasting his comedic talents. So, while this isn’t the worst Superman movie (there were three after it), it was definitely the start of a negative trend and a huge disappointment compared to the second one.
Yep. The bad one. The one that is so bad that the studio had to hire another director to do damage control with another reboot less than ten years later (See: Superman, Spiderman). This movie is so bad that you can just take a look at the information surrounding the movie and know it’s bad. It had a $62,000,000 opening weekend but never cracked $150 million in the US. It made more than a quarter of its entire overall gross on opening weekend in the US. People saw it, hated it, didn’t see it again, encouraged their friends not to see it, and the movie made 70% less in its second week compared to its first. You don’t even need to read the Wikipedia synopsis to know that it’s a bad movie, but it helps. “One year later, Bruce is shown working as a doctor in a rainforest
. Some soldiers try to steal some medical supplies from the camp, and Bruce confronts them, telling them ‘Don’t make me angry! You wouldn’t like me when I’m angry!’ as the loud roar of the Hulk can be heard and the screen fades to green.” Yep.
This movie had a lot of potential. With Zack Snyder in the director’s chair and the old Nolan-Goyer team behind two good Batman movies, this movie seemed like it would be fantastic. In fact, everyone tried really hard to like this movie, and quite a few succeeded. Unfortunately, some people didn’t. So, what did we weaklings not like about this movie? Well, for one thing, in a similar fashion to The Hunger Games,
the camera was too shaky. Sometimes, it was even shakier. For another, like Star Trek,
there were too many lens flares. But once again, it’s even worse in this. There’s even a lens flare on the poster in this one. For yet another, the editing was shit. The first hour jumped back and forth between Clark’s childhood and adulthood, leaving little room to take in what just happened. The second half was basically one fight scene. Sure, it had a few twists and turns, but it was still one fight for the entire third act of the movie. The second act is very short and involves Zod informing Earth that there is a Kryptonian among them. This brings me to the final, and probably worst, complaint. The ending. First of all, Zod and Superman spend an hour pushing each other through buildings, but at the end Superman straight up snaps his neck. Was that an option? Why didn’t anyone ever think of snapping Superman’s neck, then? Also, when Zod dies Superman is devastated. It might take him months before he can… nope, everything’s fine in the next scene. All in all, this movie sucks. It’s not the worst thing I’ve ever seen (North, Twilight, Batman & Robin
) but it might be the worst of the year (besides Oblivion
and A Haunted House
). And now we’ve reached the top three (technically five), the worst of the worst, the most disappointing superhero movies ever.
And then there’s this asshole. Green Lantern was clearly supposed to lead into the upcoming Justice League movie, a la Marvel, even though Flash is the Iron Man of the Justice League, but after its failure, it was Man of Steel that had to carry that burden. Granted, Man of Steel wasn’t very good either, but it made enough money to keep the franchise afloat. More accurately, it’ll keep the franchise afloat for now, since the rest of the franchise will be delayed ad infinitum. Ryan Reynolds is a good actor. He was a really good choice to play Green Lantern, and also a really good choice to play Deadpool. He just fell victim to what we in the writing business call TERRIBLE WRITING. I could have written a better Green Lantern movie, one that would lead into Flash and Aquaman movies, and I’m a teenager. I also love how few and far between the posters are if you Google Image search “Green Lantern,” as if even Google is embarrassed about this movie.
Yep. We’ve entered dangerous waters. Two movies that are so bad that no one is allowed to take them seriously (26th amendment). These movies are so bad that according to Amazon, their prices without the discount are both under ten dollars. That’s not any sort of sale; neither of them is worth ten dollars. Let’s examine each of them. Superman Returns is the fifth Superman movie and the second-worst one. And that’s saying a lot, because only two of them are good. In it, spoiler alert, Superman returns after several years exploring the ruins of Krypton. When he returns, he finds that Lois Lane has moved on and has a child that is obviously his. This is the big twist at the end of the movie even though we know right when we see him that he belongs to Clark because why else would he be in the movie? Did they just put him in for shits and giggles? No. They didn’t. Shut up. This movie does have a few redeeming qualities, though. The cast is great, the… actually, that’s it. Everything else sucks. I can’t say the same about Catwoman, though, because the cast also sucks. Catwoman is like a porno that someone tried to sneak into theaters on the flimsy pretense that it was a Catwoman movie, even though it has NOTHING TO DO WITH CATWOMAN, but then realized that they couldn’t get the sex scenes into theaters and were left with a movie about a woman who wears an S&M outfit and acts like a cat. You know, Catwoman’s thing isn’t that she acts like a cat. She’s cat-themed. It’s like making a Batman movie where Batman steals fruit and screeches at robbers. Both of these movies were supposed to be the start of something new (High School Musicalreference not intended), but they both bombed so horribly that they aren’t even spoken of outside of comedy (also 26th amendment). “Wait a minute,” you might say to me if I was telling this to you in person, “what could possibly be more disappointing than two of the worst movies of all time?” I would tell you in this hypothetical situation, “These.”
Well, here we are. Number one. The two most disappointing superhero movies of all time. You know, in normal circumstances, these movies wouldn’t be so bad, but they were preceded by two of the best superhero movies of all time, so they had a lot on their plates. I think what makes these movies the most disappointing in their genre is that they’re not terrible. They’re bad, sure, but they’re not terrible. So, if you went into the theater expecting what most people expected, a great ending to a great franchise, you would be disappointed. If you went in expecting a decent superhero movie, you would be disappointed. If you were expecting a movie that’s so bad that it’s funny, you would be disappointed. If you were expecting a movie that was just kinda bad, you wouldn’t SEE IT. So, what makes these movies so bad? That’s a good question, me. Oh, thank me. I’m quite welcome. Anyway, a lot of people have seen TDKR and don’t know what’s wrong with it. Watch it again. Try to watch it with a critical eye; try to find flaws in the plot or the background or the characters or the everything because you will find two flaws in EVERY SINGLE SCENE! If you’ve seen Spiderman 3, you probably know what’s bad about it. You might not know what’s good about it because you were so hung up on the bad stuff that you couldn’t enjoy a Spiderman movie. For one thing, the fight scenes are phenomenal. That’s pretty much it.
So, there you have it. The most disappointing superhero movies of all time. Here are a few that I didn’t mention because I was trying to think of ways to get rid of this thing on my couch: Batman and Robin, Superman IV, X-Men 3-5, the Fantastic Fourmovies, and others.