In 2014, comic-book fans were given A LOT. Over the course of 12 months, we were given The Amazing Spider-Man 2, X-Men: Days of Future Past, Captain America: The Winter Soldier and Guardians of the Galaxy. As you may notice, this is primarily focused on superheroes, so don’t expect other comic adaptions such as Sin City: A Dame to Kill For or 300: Rise of an Empire. Without any further ado, lets get going at:
#4 – The Amazing Spider-Man 2
I’m sure most people were expecting this result, because even though TASM2 provided viewers with intense action and a shocking twist, the story was far too bloated, it was too long, and none of the characters had enough time to develop over the course of this 140-minute monster. Dane DeHaan was, in my opinion, excellent as Harry Osborn/Green Goblin, and the chemistry between Andrew Garfield and Emma Stone was brilliant as usual. Unfortunately, this film aimed far too high for its own good, meaning it was left eating the dust of 2014’s other superhero capers.
#3 – X-Men: Days of Future Past
Before people shout at me over the Internet, X-Men: DOFP is by no means a bad film. It is superbly cast, a CGI triumph, and managed to tie up most of the continuity errors created by numerous relaunches of the X-Men film franchise. It just so happened that DOFP was released in a year packed with other equally or exceedingly good superhero films. I walked out of this film thoroughly satisfied and incredibly excited for the future of this series, especially after the brilliant end-credits sting. I would go as far as saying that X-Men: Days of Future Past is the greatest entry in the X-Men franchise yet.
#2 – Captain America: The Winter Soldier
This was a very close tie for first, because both this and my pick for #1 were superb, but I felt that Captain America: TWS was not quite good enough for the top spot. As I said with X-Men, this is by no means a bad film; in fact it is much superior to Captain America: The First Avenger, and arguably also better than Avengers Assemble. TWS provided viewers with a twisty plot that really advanced the Marvel Cinematic Universe, and the film actually felt consequential in comparison to Iron Man 2, and even our #1 pick. I loved TWS, I loved Chris Evans as Cap – you can tell he has really settled into his role – I loved Sebastian Stan as The Winter Soldier, I loved the end-credits sequence, and really, I loved everything about it. Just not enough to warrant the #1 spot.
#1 – Guardians of the Galaxy
This may be a controversial choice, but in my opinion, Guardians of the Galaxy is the best superhero film of 2014. It was funny at points, touching at points, uplifting at points, but most of all, fun at all times. Anyone and everyone can enjoy GOTG, from an action junkie, looking for fights on the grandest scale, to a Marvel purist, who looks out for the special nods and the Easter Eggs, to your average cinema-goer. There is no excuse not to see Guardians of the Galaxy, even if you’ve never touched a Marvel comic or seen any of the previous MCU films, because it tells a relatively self-contained story, and by the looks of things we won’t be seeing the Guardians fighting alongside the Avengers any time soon. If you want to hear more of my opinion on this film, I’ll leave a link to my in-depth review at the end of this article. Every member of the Guardians brings something unique to the table, and there are several career-best performances, especially from Chris Pratt. If I had to summarise Guardians of the Galaxy, all I would say is, as fans of comics and superheroes, “We Are Groot”.
So there it is, my ranking of the superhero films of 2014. By all accounts, the next few years are looking even better than this year was, and if that is so, I think we can all agree that we are in for a treat.
How would you rank 2014’s superhero films? As always, be sure to leave a comment below and to share this article on Facebook, Twitter and Google+. Thanks for reading!