My Favourite Comic Book Movies of 2018

What a year it has been for the comic book movie genre! There’s no shortage of comic book movies today. But it’s all about trying to keep the genre fresh and at the end of the day, producing great movies. And this is the purpose of this article. Of all the comic book movies that were released this year I wanted to give you guys my own personal ranking. Just a heads up, I haven’t included every comic book movie that was released this year. This is just a list consisting of my four favourite comic book movies of 2018.

4. Black Panther

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Black Panther is another solid entry into the MCU. When I think about this movie the first thing that comes to mind is the cast. The cast of Black Panther was easily the highlight of the movie for me. Especially when it comes to the supporting cast. In particular, I really enjoyed Michael B. Jordan’s role in this movie. Killmonger is just behind Thanos when it comes to my ranking of the MCU villains. I also liked how Wakanda as a place was handled from the look and feel of it. You really got to understand why this place is important within the universe. However, I must say that at the time of the movie’s release I think I bought into the hype. While I enjoyed the movie, it’s not as great as I first remembered. It’s just solid. And that’s not a bad thing. At first, Black Panther was in my top 5 MCU movies. But now looking back, it just falls out of my top 5 MCU ranking. However, for this year it was still a strong comic book movie. It’s just that the bar has been set so high. I’m still looking forward to seeing what Ryan Coogler does with the sequel.

3. Aquaman

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The more I think about this movie, the more I love it. Now, don’t get me wrong this movie is far from perfect. For example, some of the musical choices. Yes, I’m talking about that Pitbull song. Also some of the romance didn’t work for me along with the humour. However, when this movie got something right, I couldn’t help but fall in love with it. James Wan really went above and beyond with Aquaman. Just the scale of the movie is something that should be admired. The characters are strong. The action scenes are refreshing for once. The costume design is amazing. It has strong villains. And the third act is one of the best I’ve seen in years when it comes to comic book movies. Although, I hated the Pitbull song. I have to admit I was wrong about the soundtrack as a whole. It’s definitely a lot better than when I first heard it. Aquaman is on pace to make a billion dollars at the box office and it deserves every penny. Warner Bros. should already be laying down the blueprints for the sequel. With James Wan at the helm of course.

Feel free to check out my review for Aquaman here!

2. Avengers: Infinity War

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What else can I say about this movie that hasn’t been said already? It delivered in every aspect to me. It was a dream come true for me to see all these characters interacting with each other on the screen for the first time. And to see them lose? Oh, I loved it! It only makes me more excited to see what happens in Avengers 4. With each viewing this movie gets better. I talked about Aquaman’s third act, Infinity War also has a really strong third act. Sometimes when I don’t feel like sitting through the whole movie I just skip to the fight scene on Titan and let it play out from there. Of course, I have to mention Thanos before I finish this. Hands down my favourite villain of the MCU. In-fact one of my favourite villains ever. Josh Brolin delivered a great performance which was helped by the VFX team who did an amazing job with the character’s look. I can’t wait to see how the remaining Avengers deal with the ramifications of the snap in Avengers 4.

For as much as I loved Avengers: Infinity War, it didn’t take the number one spot for me…

1. Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse

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Look, I knew Spider-Verse was going to be a great movie. I just didn’t know it was going to be this good! I can’t speak highly enough of this animated movie. As a huge Spider-Man fan, I have to say this is easily the best Spider-Man movie we’ve had to date. And it stars Miles Morales! Which makes it even better. The fact that the up and coming generations get to see a different Spider-Man on the screen is awesome. While Miles is the star the movie I loved the other characters just as much. I could spend so much time just going into detail about how much I enjoyed each character. But to keep it short I’ll just say Spider-Noir was by far my favourite character. The voice acting in this movie is top tier. Not to mention the animation style! The visuals in this movie are breathe-taking at certain parts. Miles’ relationship with his uncle was also a standout for me because of how it played into the overall story. As you can see I loved this film. I’m still struggling to find something I didn’t like about it. And weeks later… I still can’t find anything I dislike about it. So, I’m just going to let the film be great. Please, go see Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse if you haven’t already.

There’s my list! As you can see regardless of my ranking I spoke highly of each film. It just goes to show how great this year was when it came to comic book movies. Hopefully, next year is even better. It certainly has the potential to do it.

Let me know what your personal list is down below.

Aquaman: Review (non-spoiler)

Yesterday, I was lucky enough to be invited by Warner Bros. to attend an early screening for Aquaman. So, before I start this review I just wanted to thank the good people at Warner Bros. UK for allowing me to watch one of my most anticipated movies of the year a little earlier than everyone else. I’ve been waiting so long to see James Wan’s take on The King of the Seven Seas. From the moment he was attached to the project I had extremely high expectations. And yesterday, those expectations were not only met, but beyond exceeded. Aquaman showed us that Wan could take the comic book movie genre to another level. The film rises to the occasion and will leave you wanting more as there is still so much that is yet to be explored in this universe.

A very ambitious film!

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The first thing that comes to mind when I think about this movie is the term, ‘scale’. It’s huge in every form. Look, I knew the ocean was huge, but even I was taken back when watching how they interpreted it on the big screen. I lost count on the amount of kingdoms/underwater cities were introduced. Every single one of them were distinct from each other. None of them looked the same at all. This is what I admire the most about the movie, its ambition. They could’ve easily played it safe. For example, have the whole movie take place in Atlantis or another city. But they really went all out, by going full comic book! You’re probably going to see this a hundred times while reading other reviews. Yes, Aquaman feels like a comic book brought to life on the big screen. And I believe this is why comic book lovers and the general audience will enjoy this movie.

On the subject of scale I think it would also be a great time to mention the visuals in this film. Visually, alone this movie is a huge achievement. I mean 80% of it takes place underwater and of course there’s going to be an extensive amount of VFX used, and for the most part it looked great. Every time they were underwater it actually looked natural (helped by the great sound design). In general, I really enjoyed the cinematography. There are some shots in this film that are just epic. The final act/fight between Arthur and Orm played out amazingly! Seeing the two fighting with the lights hitting their costumes provides for an incredible viewing. Once again, it helps this whole comic book aesthetic the film is going for.

Well balanced tone

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Another thing I really liked about Aquaman is how the tone was handled. At the end of the day Aquaman can be a fun movie. It can also be a more serious movie if you want to look at it in that way. It strikes a good balance in between the two. I found this even more enjoyable because not only is the film juggling tones at the same time. Its also doing that with genres too. To me these two elements go hand-in-hand. Honestly, you can find genres ranging from Sci-fi, action, adventure, horror and comedy when watching Aquaman. Like I said, because all these elements are balanced well. It really gives Aquaman this lane of its own when it comes to the comic book movie genre. Having said that, I would have personally, toned down on some of the comedy aspects. A lot of the jokes just didn’t quite work for me. But, I understand why they were there. The audience were laughing quite a lot during the screening.

Strong characters

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I think it’s time I talk about the characters in the movie. Just by looking at the of names attached to this project the acting in this movie was easily, the least of my worries. At this point I feel like I’m giving this movie too much praise. But I cannot lie I loved the characters for the most part in this film. Jason Momoa is clearly having the time of his life as Arthur Curry, and it translates on the screen. I wouldn’t be surprised if we find out a bunch of his lines were improvised on the spot. He just seems to be enjoying the role that much. Arthur’s journey back home and to the throne is one that was entertaining and has me in interested in seeing where the character goes after this.

Orm

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Orm is up there with one of my favourite comic book villains in the past couple of years. This is mainly because of Patrick Wilson’s performance. Much like Jason, you can tell he really enjoys this role too. All you have to do is look at some of his recent tweets. The guy is still in character. Orm’s motivations are both easy to understand and relatable. I think a lot of DC fans will find similarities between Orm and General Zod from Man of Steel. What I liked the most about Orm is how he isn’t just an evil version of Arthur. He can stand on his own. You genuinely believe that he’s a major threat to both Arthur and the surface world. Overall, Orm’s a really great villain in this movie. Not to mention he looks amazing too when he’s fighting in his full costume.

The women in this movie are badass!

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Now, onto the women in this movie. They are straight up badass! Starting with Mera. If you thought she would end up being this damsel-in-distress. Or just there to serve this romance angle. You’re totally wrong. Mera almost steals the show for me. In-fact she carries the movie in certain parts. She can very much hold her own and doesn’t need to rely on Arthur to get her out of difficult situations whenever she finds herself in one. Arthur’s mother too, Queen Atlanna, another strong female character. I can’t really go into detail about her character for spoiler reasons. But trust me, Arthur inherited a lot of his fighting style from his mother.

Black Manta! (major highlight)

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I had to save the best for last…Black Manta! Hands downs my favourite thing about this movie. Black Manta has always been one of the coolest DC characters too me. And seeing him in that outfit moving around on the screen was a joy to watch. I love his backstory too. Again, I can’t really go into detail but, I liked how he tied in with Arthur and a few other characters. If I had to pick out one issue I had with the character it’s that I wanted more of him! Don’t get me wrong I thought he was used well. But, looking back on it now I think they could have split up Orm and Black Manta as main villains in separate movies. I guess that’s still kind of a compliment at the same time by suggesting both characters/actors are good enough to carry a movie as the main villain by themselves.

The Score…was disappointing

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If you know anything about me you would know that I love my scores in superhero movies. I couldn’t wait to see what Rupert Gregson-Williams had come up with for this type of movie. I have to admit I was kind of disappointed. Apart from Orm who has a great theme, nothing really caught my attention. I can’t really tell you what Arthur’s theme is like, because it didn’t jump out to me. Again, a lot was going on during this movie and maybe I was just too caught up in the moment to notice the score. I can only speak for myself. I was going in expecting this Man of Steel/Dawn of Justice level type of score and I didn’t get that. I will still be checking out the soundtrack when it releases. Hopefully, my opinion on the score will change.

Closing thoughts

Overall, Aquaman is about as blockbuster as they come. I had a great time and would recommend this movie to anyone, not just comic book fans. I think anyone will find something they would love in this movie. From the stunning visuals, great characters and the breath-taking action. Or it could be that amazing third act/final fight which is one of the strongest I’ve seen in years when it comes to comic book movies. As for what this means for the DCEU? Is it “saved” once again? I can’t tell you how bored I am of that conversation. To me the DCEU has always been alive to me. Yeah, it’s had a few bumps in the road. But, films such as Man of Steel, BvS and Wonder Woman will continued to be talked about for the coming years. Aquaman, joins those other movies and proves that the DCEU isn’t going anywhere, anytime soon.

Aquaman 9/10

The Avengers 4: Endgame Trailer: Less is Better

Finally! After spending months in the dark after the events of Avengers: Infinity War we get something tangible from the upcoming Avengers 4 film. Not only did we get the title (Endgame), which I love. We also, got a teaser trailer to go along with it. It was a long wait but man did they deliver.

In general I really like this trailer. What I liked the most about it, was how it was handled. A lot of times in the past we’ve seen trailers show too much. However, with this trailer they took the opposite approach. They showed as little as possible, but it still got people like me hooked. There’s so many questions people have after this short trailer. I’m just going to give my thoughts on what the main characters are going through.

Tony

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The trailer starts off with Tony at his lowest point after losing the battle against Thanos on Titan. I loved this whole opening with Tony. It brought this sense of hopelessness to the film. Just a quick reminder to us that yes, the Avengers lost. Tony for one of the smartest people in the universe looks like he has no answers left as he records this goodbye message to Pepper Potts. What I liked the most about the dialogue here was how it felt like Tony was also talking to us, the audience. Especially when he was saying things like every journey has an end. With Tony on the verge of dying, flying in the middle of no where. It feels like a certain captain might run into him. I also have to point out that he’s not alone on the ship. Nebula is also present with him as she is shown in a later shot on the same ship.

Thanos

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After winning Thanos is doing exactly what he wants… living his life. He’s in the same place where we last saw him in Avengers: Infinity War. It appears the gauntlet is still busted from the snap. Thanos looks to be on him farm, growing crops and just minding his own business. For how long though? I think the rest of the Avengers will find their way to him.

Rest of the Avengers

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After spending the opening moments with Tony. The rest of the trailer is centred around the Avengers who survived the snap. It’s mainly up to Captain America and Black Widow, to somehow bounce back after their greatest defeat. I just love how the impact of Infinity War is felt here. With half the population gone the world seems so small now.  Seeing Steve cry was tough. Thor too. He didn’t even have to say a word. You can see what’s going on in his mind. After all, he didn’t go for the head. He must be blaming himself for all of this. Hawkeye is back! I mean Ronin! He looks to be in Japan just kicking ass. My guess is he’s gone full Ronin since his family were taken away from him by the snap. The trailer ended with Ant-Man showing up to the Avengers HQ. The last time we saw him, he was stuck in the Quantum Realm. Well, it looks like he can get in and get out of the Quantum Realm. This means he’ll be crucial in the movie. Because I guarantee the Quantum Realm will be used in this movie to help get the rest of the Avengers back.

As for the Avengers who fell victim to the snap? Well, we have no idea what they’re doing. And good! I don’t want to know until I sit down in the theatre next April. This trailer was overall a great appetiser for what’s to come. I hope they keep this vague approach with the rest of the promotional material for the movie.

Let me know your thoughts on the trailer