Since Olympic athletes are technically superhuman, film lover Harry Casey-Woodward thought it would be appropriate to list a few of his favourite superhero movies.
5. The Kickass movies (2010 and 2013)
No one has superpowers in these films, but they make my list for sheer brutality. This series about teenagers turned costumed vigilantes possesses some truly dark moments, such as the scene in the first film where two heroes are beaten live on TV by the mafia and Jim Carrey‘s death scene in the sequel. These films also score points for boasting one of the most savagely badass heroines ever, the purple-haired Hit-Girl.
4. Batman (1989)
How could I not include the classic that arguably raised the standard for all superhero films? Director Tim Burton excelled in his typically Gothic style while leaving out his annoying kookiness. Nevertheless, this dark edgy thriller still packs in some slightly silly capers and capes. It also has Jack Nicholson‘s infamous, smiley performance as the Joker, who somehow combined menace and cheesiness.
3. The Hellboy movies (2004 and 2008)
Hellboy is more of a superhuman than the above heroes while also being slightly less human. A big red half-demon with a stone hand that holds the key to the apocalypse, Hellboy’s backstory is admittedly more extensive than your average radiation-affected superhero. The world that writer Mike Mignola and director Guillermo del Toro imagined for him is also strikingly imaginative, with lots of crazed Nazis and cool monsters for Hellboy to beat the crap out while quipping one liners.
2. Christopher Nolan‘s Batman Trilogy (2005-12)
The man in the black, pointy-eared cape is back, only this time we’ve moved on from the over-the-top 80s and we’re into the slick, sophisticated noughties. The franchise needed a reboot, especially after the camp fiasco of Batman & Robin, and Mr. Nolan, director of smart thrillers like Memento, appears to have been the man to do that. His three Batman films did away with the cheesy Gothic excess of the 90s films and attempted to take the subject matter more seriously, with more complex characters. Of course, it is impossible to take Christian Bale‘s gravelly Batman voice seriously, but we did get non-stop action and some surprisingly villainous performances from such cute actors as Heath Ledger and Tom Hardy.
1. Deadpool (2016)
This shouldn’t really be number one, since it’s not a serious superhero movie. But it’s just so damn entertaining. I may also be a little biased, since I don’t really like superhero movies so the merciless humour directed at the moral pomposity of these films was much appreciated. It was also a refreshing revelation to see a Marvel film that had adult humour and blackly comic violence while openly mocking the conventions of its own genre. The hero is still badass, even if he never stops making pop culture references.