The superhero genre gained popularity from comic books. When people started building a cult around these comic characters, they immediately transformed into Saturday film serials beginning with Mandrake the Magician (1939).
Today, we all are aware of the demand for DC and Marvel movies – both modeled on comic books. While more and more films are being released and the trend doesn’t seem to stop anytime soon, we list the 10 best superhero movies on HBO Max to celebrate the genre.
Director: Patty Jenkins
Writer: Allan Heinberg, Zack Snyder, Jason Fuchs
Cast: Gal Gadot, Chris Pine, Robin Wright
IMDb Rating: 7.4
Runtime: 2hrs. 21mins
The superhero film Wonder Woman is based on the DC comic book character with the same name. It is a prequel to Batman vs. Superman: Dawn of Justice and the opening film in the Wonder Woman franchise. It earned more than $822 million, ranking as the tenth highest-grossing movie of the year.
Diana, a princess of the Amazons, travels to avert World War I because she believes Ares, an old enemy of the Amazons, is responsible. It all began when American pilot and spy Steve Trevor made a crash landing on the island of Themyscira in the Amazon.
Director: Matt Reeves
Writer: Matt Reeves, Peter Craig, Bob Kane
Cast: Robert Pattinson, Zoë Kravitz, Jeffrey Wright
IMDb Rating: 7.9
Runtime: 2hrs. 56mins
On March 4, the movie received a global theatre release. It earned nearly $770 million in total compared to the $185–200 million budget, ranking it as the fifth-highest-grossing movie of 2022. In addition, the film received ACCEC Award for favorite movie.
Its story starts when a vicious serial murderer kills important politicians in Gotham. Batman is forced to look into the city’s covert corruption and wonder if his family is involved.
The Suicide Squad
Director: James Gunn
Writer: James Gunn
Cast: Margot Robbie, Idris Elba, John Cena
IMDb Rating: 7.2
Runtime: 2hrs. 12mins
A 2021 American superhero movie is modeled on the Suicide Squad group from DC Comics. It is the tenth movie in the DC Extended Universe and a stand-alone follow-up to Suicide Squad (2016). The film received Golden Schmoes Award for Best Comedy Of The Year and Favourite Movie Poster Of The Year.
Its story follows Task Force X, thrown off at the distant, enemy-filled island of Corto Maltese. Now they must fight as supervillains, and a group of wacky conmen from Belle Reve prison joins them.
Director: James Wan
Writer: David Leslie Johnson-McGoldrick, Will Beall, Geoff Johns
Cast: Jason Momoa, Amber Heard, Willem Dafoe
IMDb Rating: 6.8
Runtime: 2hrs. 23mins
The 6th part of the DC Extended Universe, Aquaman, is a 2018 film centered on the DC character of the same name. The movie made $1.148 billion worldwide, ranking as the 24th highest-grossing film in history and the highest-grossing DC film. In addition, Aquaman was honored with The Chinese American Film Festival Award for Most Popular US Film in China.
The half-human emperor of the Atlantean realm, Arthur, sets off on a quest to prevent a war between the sea and the land.
Director: David F. Sandberg
Writer: Henry Gayden, Darren Lemke, Bill Parker
Cast: Zachary Levi, Mark Strong, Asher Angel
IMDb Rating: 7.0
Runtime: 2hrs. 12mins
The superhero movie Shazam is modeled on the same-named DC Comics figure. In the DC Extended Universe, it is the 7th installment. The film was a box office hit with a total gross of $366 million. It also garnered generally favorable reviews from critics. They commended Sandberg’s directing, Levi, Angel, Grazer’s acting, and the movie’s generally lighthearted and humorous tone.
A young child who has just been placed in foster care seeks his mother. But instead discovers unusual superpowers and quickly becomes a formidable enemy.
Justice League: War
Director: Jay Oliva
Writer: Heath Corson, Geoff Johns, Jim Lee
Cast: Sean Astin, Zach Callison, Christopher Gorham
IMDb Rating: 7.2
Runtime: 1hr. 19mins
It’s an American superhero film featuring the DC Comics superhero team Justice League. It is the second installment in the DC Animated Movie Universe and the 18th movie in the DC Universe Animated Original Movies series.
To prevent an alien attack on Earth, the greatest heroes in the world created the Justice League.
Justice League: Throne of Atlantis
Director: Ethan Spaulding
Writer: Heath Corson, Geoff Johns, Paul Pelletier
Cast: Sean Astin, Rosario Dawson, Nathan Fillion
IMDb Rating: 6.6
Runtime: 1hr. 12mins
The 2015 animated superhero movie Justice League: Throne of Atlantis features the DC Comics superhero team Justice League. The movie is a stand-alone follow-up to 2014’s Justice League: War. It is partly modeled on the “Throne of Atlantis” narrative arc from The New 52 created by Geoff Johns.
The Atlantian armies invade Metropolis in retaliation for the loss of their ruler. The Queen asks the Justice League for assistance locating her son, who has vanished during the frenzy.
Director: Kurt Wimmer
Writer: Kurt Wimmer
Cast: Milla Jovovich, Cameron Bright, Nick Chinlund
IMDb Rating: 4.3
Runtime: 1hr. 28mins
An American futuristic science fiction action movie Ultraviolet was released in 2006. The film garnered mixed reviews from critics.
A youngster on a dystopian planet is believed to be harboring antigens that would destroy all hemorrhages. He is protected by a gorgeous hæmophage plagued with a virus that grants her supernatural strength.
Director: Jeannot Szwarc
Writer: David Odell, Otto Binder, Al Plastino
Cast: Helen Slater, Faye Dunaway, Peter O’Toole
IMDb Rating: 4.4
Runtime: 2hrs. 4mins
It’s a British superhero film built on the DC comic character named Supergirl. It is the fourth movie in the Superman franchise, taking place after the happenings of Superman III (1983), serving as a spin-off. The film launched in the US on November 21, 1984.
Kara Zor-El, Superman’s cousin, travels to Earth to locate a potent orb but instead comes face to face with an evil witch.
Writer: Bob Kane, Theresa Rebeck, John Brancato
Cast: Halle Berry, Sharon Stone, Benjamin Bratt
IMDb Rating: 3.4
Runtime: 1hr. 44mins
It’s a superhero film modeled on the DC character with the same name. On July 23, 2004, Warner Bros. Pictures Catwoman premiered in theatres. Despite having a $100 million budget, the movie made $82 million only in its first weekend.
A detective relentlessly follows a quiet woman who straddles the line between villain and hero. She has quickness, reflexes, and cat-like senses.