3: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
There are many, myself included, who think that Guardians of the Galaxy is the best film the Marvel Cinematic Universe has ever gifted us. The film arrived back in 2014 with little to no expectations from the fans and it blew us all away, introducing us to a whole new side of the MCU and filling our screens with weird and wonderful characters.
The sequel, released earlier this year, arrived with much more expectation on its shoulder and it duly delivered. Sure, the film may have been a case of rinse and repeat, but why not, when everything worked so well last time? The film was even more colourful and hilarious than the first one, and the ending ranks among the most emotional moments in the last decade of the MCU. Kurt Russell’s Ego was also a great addition to the movie, while Baby Groot has won himself a place in the hearts of a whole generation. What I’m most thankful for, though, is the fact that James Gunn is on board to close out the trilogy.
2: Thor: Ragnarok
Nearly one decade old and still going strong, it would appear that, right now, Marvel can do no wrong. What has made Marvel such a success is their ability to simultaneously takes risks but somehow stick to a crowd winning formula. Case in point- Thor: Ragnarok. Bringing on board Taiki Waititi, director of What We Do in the Shadows and Hunt for the Wilderpeople was, in a lot of ways, a pretty big risk, but it is one that paid off massively.
Waititi’s take on Thor was something very different indeed. The Asgardian God of Thunder had struggled in his first two solo outings, but Waititi managed to bring something completely different to the table for Ragnarok. While you would expect a movie about the end of the titular character’s earth to be a pretty miserable affair, Ragnarok was quite the opposite. The film was laugh out loud hilarious from start to finish, and it did all of this, while also managing to do a great job of adapting not one, not two, but three iconic Marvel storylines.
In a year where everyone has been looking at the movies of Marvel and DC, it was Fox’s ‘X-Verse’ that really stole the show with the first big superhero flick of 2017.
Like last year’s Deadpool, Fox decided to go for a hard R rating with Logan but the resulting two movies couldn’t have been any more different if they tried. In Logan, we catch with the titular character years after the collapse of the X-Men. The atypical man without a name type character, Logan spends his day living in anonymity, while also trying to protect the only other X-Man left standing, Professor Xavier.
Logan really felt like a turning point for comic book movies. This was a film that was grounded in realism, one that was not only character driven, but also incredibly affecting, and heartfelt. The film’s final half an hour is a difficult watch, and it’s a fitting send-off for arguably the most iconic on-screen comic book character to date.
Being a comic book movie, Logan is likely to get overlooked during awards season this year, but Hugh Jackman and Patrick Stewart are both more than deserving of some recognition for their performances here. After two botched attempts, this was finally the Wolverine movie that the character deserved.
What was your favourite superhero movie of the year? Let us know in the comments below, and let Liam know on Twitter @liamhoofe