1990s Superhero Movies Ranked | The cinema magazine
Once upon a time, superhero movies didn’t dominate the Hollywood blockbuster landscape. They certainly weren’t the most popular, highest-grossing film genre on the planet, nor were they the go-to talking point for hack movie journalists to tackle when interviewing highly respected directors. . Hollywood had previously obsessed over genre trends — westerns in the ’50s and disaster movies in the ’70s, for example — and even had brief alliances with comic book adaptations starring Christopher Reeve. Superman movies and the Tim Burton/Michael Keaton Batman movies. Even so, by the 1990s, the obsession with capes and spandex had yet to take hold.
The superheroes that emerged on the big screen during this era (especially those that weren’t the Boy Scout or the Bat) tended to be weird and lesser-known; they depicted filmmakers, studios, and stars experimenting to find out what the winning formula would ultimately be and, more often than not, failing to find their own success along the way.
I don’t know your Shadow of your Spawnyour Mysterious men of your Hide? (And while we’re at it, what’s a Guyver anyway?) Well, we at The cinema magazine are here to help you. We have classroom all the major superhero movies released in the 1990s, from worst to best, based on critical and box office success, as well as whether the films had a lasting influence on Hollywood. These are: 1990s Superhero Movies Ranked.
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18. Batman and Robin (1997)
With the help of new allies, Batman (George Clooney) attempts to stop supervillains Mr Freeze (Arnold Schwarzenegger) and Poison Ivy (Uma Thurman) from using diamonds to freeze Gotham City meaning in context).
It was the first but certainly not the last superhero movie with far too much stuff crammed into its execution: multiple villains, too many subplots that go nowhere, and a chilling amount of ice cream puns. A completely misguided Clooney is limited by a comical super-suit but looks even more embarrassed with his face fully exposed as Bruce Wayne. Schwarzenegger and Thurman do little or nothing to justify their stunt casting, and screenwriter Akiva Goldsman doesn’t seem to notice that Ivy’s involvement in the plan makes absolutely no sense (a new ice age will help the plants, how?).
It may not be entirely technically inept — it looks exactly as expensive as it was to make (over $150 million) — but it’s still a monumentally miscalculated, franchise-killing dud; an amusement park ride with a tone-deaf script and sinful performances.
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17. Mighty Morphin Power Rangers: The Movie (1995)
Six teenagers are chosen by the immortal Zordon to protect their hometown of Angel Grove and the rest of the world from evil. As Power Rangers, they are sent on a quest to find a mythical power source to fight against the former shape-shifting despot Ivan Ooze (Paul Freeman, The Raiders of the Lost Ark).
Saban Entertainment’s “Mighty Morphin Power Rangers” was the spectacle for a lot of kids growing up in the 1990s, but this movie seems to have mostly survived in the public consciousness for the past few years because of the amount of Oscar Isaac’s villainy in X-Men: Apocalypse supposedly looked like Ivan Ooze. This is a mostly forgettable extended episode of the popular kids martial arts/superhero series with an even more ridiculous than normal plot involving parents possessed by purple slime and the Rangers traveling through a distant world that looks suspiciously like a beach in Australia, but at least Freeman looks like he’s having fun strutting around like a pantomime villain under heavy prosthetics.
It was the first time in the “Power Rangers” franchise where existing Japanese “Super Sentai” footage was not reused, making the action finale quite huge with the Rangers in their new Zord suits battling giant mechanical insects on a rather impressive city skyline. Everything else looks pretty cheap (it only cost $15 million), and you can’t really expect to get much out of it unless you’re heavily invested in these characters already. or if you watch it with your sense of irony and nostalgia working overtime.
16. Judge Dredd (1995)
Judge Joseph Dredd (Sylvester Stallone) is the street judge of the dystopian Mega City One tasked with eliminating crime without prejudice, but when he is framed for murder, he finds himself an outlaw on the run in a desolate wasteland. .
The movie has a decent shot at recreating the dystopian aesthetic of Mega City One from the 2000 AD comics and the money is definitely on screen, but it brings next to nothing else from its pages. There’s a judge called Dredd, he’s got an evil clone half-brother called Rico (played here by Armand Assante) and that’s about it. Studio interference and Stallone’s mistaken intentions for what he thought was Judge Drdd the movie should be (funny and less violent) helped deliver a pretty toothless end product.
It should have been obvious that something was wrong when, in the opening scene, Dredd, who in the comics is the faceless, incorruptible symbol of absolute justice, first stomps the screen in his signature armor and immediately removes his helmet. Completely wasting Max von Sydow and giving Dredd a comedic sidekick played by Rob Schneider pretty much puts it on the line.
15. The Shadow (1994)
After spending years as a morally reprehensible warlord in China, playboy Lamont Cranston (Alec Baldwin) returns to New York with dark new superpowers to battle a bloodthirsty descendant of Genghis Khan.
An overloaded plot and overcooked presentation with leaden performances and admittedly striking visuals make The shadow a bit disappointed overall. Taking the main character as he appeared in the radio series and later in the comics and adding an eerie supernatural twist could have made this really unique, but anyone who doesn’t at least know who the Shadow is and what he can do will be confused and frustrated because nothing is sufficiently explained.
You can see that Alec Baldwin would have made a decent Bruce Wayne as he’s strongest in millionaire mode with sufficient secrecy, but elsewhere seems somewhat disengaged or lacking in helpful direction. Ian McKellen somehow manages to keep a straight face as a hypnotized scientist and Tim Curry does it as well as ever, but everyone involved should do a bigger job when you reach that level of achievement.