Despite the pandemic raging across many countries, Hollywood still managed to release some huge movies at the theatres. Which includes several superhero films. Warner Bros and Disney tried the dual-platform release for The Suicide Squad and Black Widow respectively. Zack Snyder’s Justice League, which is basically the Director’s Cut of 2016’s Justice League, went straight to HBO Max. Eternals, Venom: Let There Be Carnage and Spider-Man: No Way Home were theatrical releases. Year Ender 2021: From Tom & Jerry to The Matrix Resurrections, 11 Most Disappointing Hollywood Films of the Year and the One Redeeming Factor About Them!
Of course, not all the movies won over both critics and masses. A couple impressed both the bases, some were rejected by both and a couple were hits with the audiences but were not so with the critics. In this special year-ender feature, we rank all the superhero movies Hollywood gave us in 2021 and rank them from Worst to Best.
Venom: Let There Be Carnage
A Still from Venom: Let There Be Carnage
The sequel to the 2018 Venom is slightly better than the first film, but not good enough to be a memorable offering. Tom Hardy is dependable as always, and Venom 2 is fun when it focuses on the romcom-like bonding between Eddie Brock and Venom. However, the villains were disappointing, be it Woody Harrelson’s Carnage or Naomie Harris’ Shriek. Well, what can you say about the movie when the most talked about feature is the mid-credit scene that connects the movie to MCU. Venom Let There Be Carnage Movie Review: Tom Hardy’s Spider-Man Spin-Off is Entertaining, Weird and Flawed!
Scarlett Johansson in Black Widow
Both best buddy Avengers – Black Widow and Hawkeye – got a raw deal when it comes to their solo offerings. Or supposedly solo offerings. Both Black Widow and Hawkeye ended up with the eponymous heroes being upstaged by their successors, which is a little annoying since these projects were these superheroes’ opportunities to shine outside the Avengers’ shadow. In case of Black Widow, this came after the character’s demise in Avengers: Endgame and was released amidst a huge legal fracas its main star and the studio. The film itself was a major disappointment, with an unconvincing plotline and some dodgy VFX and action setpieces. But where Black Widow scores are in the performances and in the character bonding moments. Black Widow Movie Review: Florence Pugh Steals Scarlett Johansson’s Deserving Thunder in Her Underwhelming Solo Outing!
Richard Madden and Gemma Chan in Eternals
Eternals is the kind of movie I am pretty sure Time will be kind to it. It is beautiful to look at, the diverse cast is spot on, and its Oscar-winning director Chloe Zhao has taken some bold decisions when it comes to her characters and narrative. But Eternals spends quite a lot of time in its buildup, not all the characters get their chance to shine, and the third act is a disappointment. Still, Eternals is not as bad as its Rotten Tomatoes score or the critical consensus. Eternals Movie Review: Chloe Zhao’s Marvel Film Offers A Different MCU Experience, Until It Isn’t!
Zack Snyder’s Justice League
A Still from Zack Snyder’s Justice League
Whoa, who thought one of the worst reviewed superhero movies of the last decade could be redeemed thanks to an (over) aggressive fan campaign and taking out Joss Whedon’s ‘inputs’ from the film. Zack Snyder finally got to showcase his vision for Justice League on HBO Max with additional footage, different character turns, and expanded arcs for The Flash, Cyborg and Steppenwolf. Sure, it has some very glaring flaws, like dodgy repair VFX, the Martian Manhunter scenes or the hastily-added epilogue. Not to mention, it still retains the plot problems of the theatrical version. Zack Snyder’s Justice League Movie Review: A Love Letter to DC Fans.
The Suicide Squad
A Still from The Suicide Squad
It is a travesty that James Gunn’s soft reboot/sequel to 2016’s Suicide Squad was a box office failure, for this is easily one of the best directed films of the year, and also one of the best directed superhero films of all time. It is brutal, it is funny and it is also surprisingly poignant when needed, with some very polished action sequences and interesting characters. And it has to be credited for making a giant starfish into a terrifying villain and then give it a tragic afternote to its brutal actions! The Suicide Squad Movie Review: James Gunn’s DC Epic Is a Violent Delight.
Spider-Man: No Way Home
Tom Holland in Spider-Man: No Way Home
The Suicide Squad is a better-directed film that retains the director’s vision, but Jon Watts’ Spider-Man: No Way Home captures the top spot purely for the kind of impact it leaves on the fans. It is 19 years of fan-servicing done right, redeems some of the less-appreciated Spidey movies, uses the cameos very well, all the while making sure that Tom Holland’s beautiful and emotional coming-of-age arc isn’t overshadowed in the process. Trust MCU to always make the third film in a superhero’s solo series always the best one, be it Iron Man 3, Captain America: Civil War, Thor: Ragnarok and now No Way Home!
(The above story first appeared on The Hamden Journal on Dec 30, 2021 04:22 PM IST. For more news and updates on politics, world, sports, entertainment and lifestyle, log on to our website thehamdenjournal.com).