Top 25 underappreciated comic book movies

Feature James Hunt 30 Jan 2014 - 06:25

Comic book movies are solid blockbuster fare now, but there are plenty of adaptations that didn't get the love they deserved...

You might argue that fans of comic book adaptations have had a pretty good decade or so. Between The Avengers movies, the Dark Knight trilogy, and multiple Spider-Man and X-Men films, some of the biggest-grossing action movies of all time have been based on comics. Not bad when you consider that only recently, the medium was considered the preserve of dateless man-children alone.

But here's the thing: not every comic book adaptation lends itself to being a summer tentpole CGI-fest, and just as many get overlooked or forgotten completely by the time the next one comes out. Comic adaptations are coming out thick and fast, and with so much forward momentum it's sometimes worth taking a moment to look back on what's come before.

That's why we've dedicated an entire top 25 to what we think are the most underappreciated comicbook adaptations of all time. This list covers everything: the rarely-mentioned, the oft-maligned, the box office smashes and the box office bombs, and they all have two things in common: they were all based on a comic, and they're all worth revisiting the next time you think you've seen everything comic-movies have to offer.

25. Mystery Men

One of the few superhero adaptations produced in the wilderness years between Schumacher's Batman films and Fox's X-Men, Mystery Men was loosely based on Bob Burden's humour series, Flaming Carrot Comics. Despite a surprisingly star-packed cast (Ben Stiller, William H. Macy, Tom Waits…), it only made back half of its budget and was correctly regarded as a box-office flop.

But as it happens, it's a lot better than the numbers suggest. Whether Mystery Men failed by association with a genre that had temporarily gone toxic or because it genuinely didn't click with audiences will forever be up for debate, but those who've seen it are quick to fight its corner. We suspect that it was just the wrong time to be making fun of grim and gritty superheroes – after all, the memory of bat-nipples was still fresh in everyone's minds. Give it a try now and it'll make far more sense.

See also: rethinking Mystery Men.

24. Generation X

Intended as a pilot for a series that never materialised, this is technically a TV-movie, but the first screen-outing for Marvel's mutants – while you wouldn't call it good, exactly – qualifies as under-appreciated just because of how much it got right (and because no-one saw it). It's far from an overlooked classic, but it is an entertaining curio, providing the first screen appearances of characters like Jubilee, Banshee and Emma Frost and opening with a definition of the term "mutant" in a manner so similar to the original X-Men film that it's hard to imagine it being a coincidence.

To be fair the plot, which involves Matt Frewer (in full Max Headroom mode) invading people's dreams using a futuristic dream-chair thingy, is complete fluff. But the realisation of the link between teen angst and mutant powers is skilfully made, and if you're an X-Men fan it's worth tracking down so you can think about the series that could've been. And why, if they can manage this much in 1996, Agents of SHIELD seems so reluctant to show anyone using superpowers.

23. Supergirl

An oft-forgotten spin-off of the Christopher Reeves Superman era, Supergirl nonetheless remains pretty much the only comics adaptation with a super-powered female protagonist. Considering it was released almost 30 years ago, that's a pretty damning state of affairs.

It's fair to say that the film itself wasn't spectacular (it has an 8% score on Rotten Tomatoes!) but we should at least give it credit for what it was trying to do: A faithful adaptation that didn't pander to its audience. Unfortunately, the lack of even a cameo by Reeves' Superman hurt its credibility, and despite lofty intentions, it's a shame that it probably did more harm than good to the cause. Its biggest contribution to pop culture appears to be convincing an entire generation that female superheroes can't carry their own film.

22. The Punisher

Few characters defy a nuanced portrayal quite as completely as the Punisher. Unless you're reading a comic by Garth Ennis, he's little more than a vigilante who shoots criminals. A lot. Given that most action films don't go much further than that with their protagonists anyway, it's hardly a surprise that we've already had three adaptations over the years.

Of those, our favourite (sorry, Lundgren fans) is the 2004 Thomas Jane version, which loosely adapts Ennis' "Welcome Back, Frank" storyline, surrounding the single-minded killer (that is to say, the hero) with a more colourful cast of neighbours and villains to inject something a bit less monotonous in there than two hours of shooty-shooty gun-gun. It makes for a distracting couple of hours, and we'd be surprised if it's bettered any time soon.

21. Daredevil: Director’s Cut

Most people missed the Director's Cut DVD release of Daredevil, and given the poor reception to the theatrical version it's hard to blame them. We'd hesitate to call this version completely fixed – it still has the awful costume, the tonally confused playground fight and a massively miscast Jennifer Garner – but it is considerably better than the version that reached cinemas.

The Director's Cut is almost 30 minutes longer and adds some gritty, Frank Miller-esque violence, removes the more overt romance elements and includes an entire subplot about Matt Murdock's courtroom battle to nail the Kingpin, giving some much-needed logic to the finale (without these scenes, it appears that the villain is arrested for, er, losing a fight to Daredevil.) It's altogether a far superior film and definitely worth re-evaluating if you liked any part of the original.

20. The Losers

Based on the comic of the same name by former 2000AD editor Andy Diggle and Jock, The Losers is the story of a special ops team whose masters turn against them. While the comic remains a fantastic thrill-ride, there's more than a hint of the A-Team about the distilled version of the concept and that spills over into the movie script, which is a broad, somewhat cliché-ridden action piece. Even so, its top-quality cast elevates what could've been a disappointment into something that's better than you might expect. And hey, if you've ever wanted a Gamora/Heimdall/Captain America (or Johnny Storm) movie then you're in luck: Zoe Saldana, Idris Elba and Chris Evans all feature heavily even though the original comic was published by Marvel's rivals at DC.

19. Dick Tracy

Another film that did reasonably well in its time but has since all but disappeared, the Dick Tracy movie of 1990 is a pitch-perfect adaptation of the pulp detective genre that also spawned Batman. Packed with retro charm and overseen by veteran director Warren Beatty, the film got seven Oscar nominations and actually won three, but its street-level antics and simplistic approach to story and character leave it buried under the more complex, effects-heavy offerings it's supposed to be competing with. Even so, Beatty was recently confirmed as the owner of the Dick Tracy rights after a long lawsuit and plans to bring a sequel to screens. We'd be interested to see that happen.

18. The Mask

Based on a comic? You bet! Whether or not it's under-appreciated depends on how good you think Jim Carrey is, but despite killing the box office (it cost $23m and made $350m) and establishing Cameron Diaz's career, it's basically disappeared from cultural memory along and been replaced by the over-worked catchphrases it spawned.

Maybe that's because stripped of CGI, Carrey's surrounding films – Ace Ventura and Dumb and Dumber – were that much better at showing the wacky, physical humour he excelled at. Maybe it's because the cartoon spin-off made people re-evaluate it as a kid's film. Or maybe, given the size of the box office numbers, we all saw it the first time around and never felt the need to revisit it. Whatever the reasoning, it's easy to forget the genius of Carrey's cartoonish bombast when he was still young and eager to entertain, rather than be taken seriously, and The Mask is vintage Carrey from when he was at his slapstick peak.

17. Turtles Forever

It's often forgotten that somewhere beneath the Ninja Turtle media juggernaut there was originally a comic series, one which was intended as a satirical mash-up of the most popular comics of the era, Claremont's X-Men and Frank Miller's Daredevil. That's why the Turtles are mutants and that's why their villains are called "The Foot" (parodying Daredevil's The Hand).

Several movies have followed. The original live-action film is probably better than you remember and 2007's CGI-animated sequel, TMNT, was nowhere near as big a hit as it should've been. But its sequel, Turtles Forever, unites the TMNT turtles with the black-and-white comic versions and 1987 cartoon versions for an amazing, if nostalgia-reliant 90 minutes. And hey, at the very least it's likely to be better than anything Michael Bay comes up with…

16. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance

The original Ghost Rider was a reasonably dumb outing, enjoyable only to those who turned up for flaming skulls rather than a decent story. But the sequel? Now that was a fun movie (yep, we're aware that, er, not everyone agrees on this one). It won't win awards for the story, but at least it wasn't based on the same template every other superhero movie follows, and if you're the sort of person who likes to see Nic Cage doing his thing (we hear the guy has quite a following in some circles) then you get everything you want and more.

Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance goes further than the original in almost every way, embracing the inherent ridiculousness of the character rather than trying to treat it seriously. When the filmmakers are having fun, the audience can have fun too, and in case there was any doubt that you're supposed to be having fun, Idris Elba turns up as a gun-toting priest doing a cod-French accent. What's not to like?

15. The Rocketeer

Just ten years after the pulp-throwback Rocketeer debuted as a backup in the pages of Starslayer, the character got his own film courtesy of Disney and Joe Johnston, later the director of Captain America: The First Avenger. And it was fantastic. An utterly charming story, with a timeless look and feel.

In all fairness, the effects visuals haven't aged particularly well, but as a homage to the pulp roots of the superhero genre it's got a light touch and wide appeal. Family-friendly action from the days before that meant one set of jokes for the adults and another set of jokes for the kids. The character's undergoing something of a renaissance right now in a new series of comics from IDW, and with a new adaptation being talked about there's no better time to revisit the original.

14. The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec

Luc Besson may have turned in some of this generation's most memorable films, like Leon and The Fifth Element, but his 2010 release The Extraordinary Adventures of Adèle Blanc-Sec, based on the comic of the same name, was disappointingly overlooked despite being praised as a return to form for the director.

The story itself is set around the turn of the last century and combines pulp adventure and Victorian-era parapsychology to create a classic adventure movie revolving around the eponymous writer and the characters she encounters. Polished, original and witty, it's a film unfairly overlooked for being French-language. Let's try to change that.

13. Road to Perdition

Sam Mendes' adaptation of Max Allan Collins' graphic novel is almost 12 years old now, but it remains a powerful a story about fathers and sons thanks to its historical setting and beautifully simple black and white visuals. Set in 1930s America, it follows a mob enforcer and his son as they seek vengeance against a mobster who killed the rest of their family. The superb cast includes Tom Hanks, Paul Newman, Jude Law and Daniel Craig, making it (by our reckoning) one of the most talent-stuffed comic adaptations ever made.

12. American Splendor

Lauded upon release but quickly expunged from the popular consciousness, American Splendor was an adaptation of Harvey Pekar's long-running autobiographical series of the same name, starring Paul Giamatti as Pekar.

Drawing heavily on Pekar's genius eye for slice-of-life detail and observation, it's full of humour and pathos, but as in the comics industry, this smaller and more thoughtful adaptation has been overshadowed by superhero blockbusters. Despite an Oscar nomination for best adapted screenplay, it remains a largely undiscovered gem. Make sure you see it, if for no other reason than the chance to see the most page-accurate version of a Robin costume yet portrayed on screen...

11. Flash Gordon

It may have been reduced to a single Brian Blessed line in the collective memory, but the 1980's adaptation of Flash Gordon (based on Alex Raymond's comic strip) still holds up today, even if it does have a Queen soundtrack. Cited as a favourite by filmmaker Edgar Wright, writer Seth MacFarlane and acclaimed comic artist Alex Ross, Flash Gordon is a bona-fide cult classic. Strangely, the film performed badly in most countries but was beloved in the UK. Maybe the distance of a few decades will allow a new audience across the globe to discover its charms.

10. Persepolis

An animated adaptation of Marjane Satrapi’s comic strip autobiography, Persepolis is a heartfelt, funny, well-realised depiction of life in revolutionary Iran. Although critically acclaimed and Oscar-nominated, we'd bet most people reading this never found the time to watch it, so let's take this opportunity to encourage you do so. We know it sounds worthy, looks pretentious and that a film about childhood in an increasingly oppressive regime doesn't promise a very upbeat experience, but give it a try. If you don't love it, we'll be surprised.

9. Batman: Mask of the Phantasm

In certain circles, Batman's animated series is considered the pinnacle of superhero cartoons, but that doesn't mean everyone's aware of it. We'd wager that the majority of the hundreds of thousands of movie-goers who flock to every Batman film missed out on Mask of the Phantasm, the film that span out of the cartoon series in 1993.

Originally intended as a straight-to-video release, Mask of the Phantasm was considered so good that it was upgraded to a cinematic outing. And if you think that's a low bar, remember that this was only a year after Batman Returns had been released. The short notice for this change left the film's box office poor, but the quality of the movie itself has never been in question. The late Shirley Walker's score is outstanding, too. You can read more about her here.

8. V For Vendetta

Like all Alan Moore adaptations, the V for Vendetta film isn't a patch on the original work, but as a movie it's better than it's often given credit for and even detractors would admit that it remains the Wachowski's second best blockbuster by some distance. Admittedly Natalie Portman's accent gets in the way and the use of the word vichyssoise was so forced-in that one suspects the crowbar is still stuck in the script, but the spot-on translation of a downbeat dystopian Britain from page to screen far outweighs the weakness of the casting and dialogue.

Purists will particularly denounce the shift in politics and alterations made to Evey's character, but for us those elements fall firmly under the "Why make an adaptation if you're not going to do anything different?" umbrella. The original comic was, after all, a pro-anarchist, anti-Thatcher tract that was very much of its time, and the film uses the same characters and setting to comment similarly on its own era. Just the fact that it's a blockbuster movie with themes and subtext puts it streets ahead of most.

7. Constantine

If you've ever read Hellblazer than you have every right to hate this film, from Keanu Reeves' distinctly un-punk portrayal of freelance exorcist John Constantine, to the way it butchers the punchline of the loosely-adapted "Dangerous Habits" storyline, to the strange decision for the title-character to wield a hellfire shotgun (what is this, Ghost Rider?)

But try to forget you've ever read a Hellblazer comic, and suddenly this film becomes a lot better. Tilda Swinton as Gabriel was a superb casting decision, and we're clearly not the only ones to think that because it quite cleanly delineates her transition into mainstream film. The story, sometimes described as "Theological Noir", makes supernatural contemporaries like Underworld and Van Helsing look even worse than they were, and the effects provide an unforgettable vision of Hell as a fire-blasted urban landscape. There's a lot to like, provided you can forget that it's an adaptation at all.

6. Kick Ass 2

Who knows what went wrong with this one? As with the first movie, Kick Ass 2 smoothes off the rough edges of the comic and replaces Millar's cynicism and satire with a convincing emotional core. So why didn't it do better? Perhaps people felt the joke was done. Perhaps they felt that the story didn't have anywhere to go. Perhaps, like Jim Carrey, they just felt that violence wasn't funny anymore.

But here's the thing: Kick Ass 2 was a sufficiently different treatment of the material and characters to justify doing a sequel, and even though it lost some of its originality and thrills, it was every bit as funny as the first. But considering that the majority of the cast came back for the follow-up, it's strange that the film didn't find the same audience as the first.

5. Tank Girl

Adapting Tank Girl was always going to be a mug's game, given that the strength of the strip was largely down to Jamie Hewlett's superb artwork and Alan Martin's stream-of-consciousness vulgarity. But despite being critically hammered and virtually disowned by everyone involved, Tank Girl is a slice of mid-90s craziness that has found a cult audience among those who hate the homogeneity and risk-free nature of modern blockbusters. This is, after all, a post-apocalyptic action-comedy with a dance number in the middle (a Wikipedia category we need to invent just so it can share it with Super Mario Bros.)

As for the cast, who can hate any film where Ice-T plays a genetically altered Kangaroo-man? It proved Naomi Watts was going to be a star long before anyone else even realised she existed, and Malcolm McDowell could phone his role in and still be gripping on screen (which is good, because that's what he did). You might want to describe it as a guilty pleasure, or say it's so bad, it's good, but however you want to justify it Tank Girl is more fun to watch than it's usually given credit for.

4. Ghost World

A cult hit that deserves to be considerably less cult, Ghost World is an adaptation of the Daniel Clowes comic of the same name and deserves praise for its casting of Thora Birch, Scarlett Johansson and Steve Buscemi alone. There's more talent in this movie than some comics franchises combined.

That said, it's the small-town, big ideas contrast that really makes this film so great. The way it captures both the adolescent feeling that you don't belong and combines it with the teenage arrogance of thinking you're better than those around you. It's sharp, insightful, beautifully written and emotionally incisive. As much as, if not more so than Clowes' comic.

3. Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World

Scott Pilgrim Vs The World

Edgar Wright's action-comedy adaptation of Bryan Lee O'Malley's manga-influenced, pop-culture saturated slice-of-life series is easily better than any movie on this list. And for that matter, it's better than most movies not on this list. A combination of mis-marketing, misplaced anti-hipster criticism and people who just can't stand Michael Cera meant that this utter gem of a movie failed to make back its budget.

In truth, it's superbly-written and directed, thick with jokes and references, and has a supporting cast of amazing young talent, all of whom have gone on to greater and richly-deserved prominence. It's already destined for cult appreciation, but a movie this good should've been far more widely appreciated. We're probably preaching to the converted here, though.

2. Dredd

Now, here's the thing. If you're reading Den of Geek, we probably don't need to tell you how good Dredd 3D was. We shouldn't have to explain that it's a note-perfect interpretation of the character, with a superb cast, great script and inventive use of 3D. You're probably aware that it makes the original Judge Dredd film look like the mid-90s toss it was. And yet, despite all that, it seems like the majority of the population has simply failed to notice all of this. Which means we (all of us) haven't been doing our job properly. We don't care that by now, hopes for a sequel are all but dashed. Make a friend watch Dredd today. They'll thank you for it.

1. Hulk

Of everything on this list, our top choice is likely to be the most controversial, purely because the consensus on it is so wide. But hear us out, because if anything qualifies as underappreciated – or maybe misappreciated - it's Ang Lee's 2003 Hulk film.

In the wake of The Avengers, where the Hulk was played for laughs and thrills, it's easy to say what Ang Lee's Hulk apparently got wrong in terms of delighting audiences. But Ang Lee didn't go the easy route, instead delivering an adaptation few would've dared to. One that treated the concept of the Hulk more respectfully and thoughtfully than any director before or since.

Admittedly, its psychologically-layered writing, artful direction and strong themes have been overshadowed in popular memory by hulked-out pooches and hard to follow action. But especially when compared to the string of video game cut scenes that comprised its non-sequel, The Incredible Hulk, Ang Lee's movie is bold and original. Even if you don't like it, you have to admit that an ambitious failure is better than the unambitious one that followed.

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Great piece. I remember enjoying Hulk at the time, but everything slightly subpar gets so much hate with a bit of hindsight these days!

What, no 'Watchmen'... the boldest and most uncompromising big-budget CBM to date? I don't care what anyone says, it's an underrated masterpiece (and from Zack Snyder no less, who knew?) and one of the three greatest CBM adaptations yet made (next to 'Superman The Movie' and 'The Dark Knight'), and it's handbags at ten paces for anyone who says otherwise!

Just watch the scene where Rorshach makes his last stand and tell me that's not the single best scene of ANY comic-book-related film to date, bar none!

That is all.

I was about to say the same. Watchmen was fantastic, if a little slow at times, but definitely worth a watch and very underrated.

Alan Moore would beg to differ.

Totally agree, loved this adaptation, even thought the end was a better idea (for the movie).

I love Flash Gordon. It was on the other day and i watched it from start to finish. It may have had something to do with me having a massive crush on Ming's daughter and the soundtrack by Queen is amazing. Personally i think Hulk was the most boring fiilm and i fell asleep during it. Good list though.

I can't agree anymore with you my man. Loved that hell out of that movie and made me pick up the book (yes I called it a book). Watchmen needs to be on this list. Good call!!

Surely The Mask and Flash Gordon aren't under appreciated?? Everyone I know LOVES them!!

There's a fine line between under appreciated and just a bad film. Namely, Hulk, Daredevil and Ghost Rider.

Yes, yes and yes.
Mystery Men goes bang alongside Galaxy Quest as the great genre spoofs of the late Nineties. Would also add weight to the claim that Persepolis is well worth the watch if the theme has otherwise put you off.

As for Ghost World, I went and checked out the comic after having seen the film. My feeling was that the film had distilled the material into something much more cohesive, warm-hearted and enjoyable.
Plus, you know. Thora Birch, Scarlett Johansson and Steve Buscemi. Need one say more?

I cant even begin to describe how depressing it is that we are unlikely to get a DREDD sequel, whereas Adam Sandler movies continue to be green lit. I guess we'll just have to make do with the one shot comic follow up for now :( Nice to see some love for Mystery Men. I love that film! Good to see Ghost World is there as well.

Not a perfect film by any means, but for me Tom Jane is The Punisher. The Dirty Laundry short (which I believe he sorted out himself) further demonstrates his mintness.

I used to think that Watchmen, the film, was a very strong adaptation and under-rated, but overtime to me it just started feeling like the film was all style and not much substance.
Part of it is the near fetishisation of violence in the action sequence (slow shots, bones snapping etc) and how that runs in direct conflict with the message the comics trying to convey. But it also started to seem to me like Zack Snyder spent more time trying to emulate the visual aspects of the comic, that he seemed to forget about exploring the themes of the work.

Also the ending of the film (Ozymandius' plan) kinda doesn't make sense, if you think about it.

No love for 'The Spirit' ? Its a great film and completely bonkers :)

Mystery Men was boring and unfunny. Same with Hulk. The Losers was surprisingly good.

'Dredd' and 'Adèle Blanc-Sec' are awesome and deserve a sequel, 'Hulk' was far too serious for a comic book movie, 'Scott Pilgrim vs. the World' had me excited but was utterly dissapointing to me and the comic 'Kick-Ass 2' was based upon is by my opinion far to "how can we shock the reader?" with grouprape and child murdering, but I believe they scratched that for the movie.

Quite a few good films on here. Dredd is still high on my favourite film list. Kick-Ass 2 suffered because the first one wasn't well received by everyone, however I think the sequel was much, much better (despite the Jim Carrey controversy).
Scott Pilgrim is decent too. I'm surprised to see V for Vendetta and Flash Gordon here, I always thought they were quite popular films.
I'll be honest about Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance. I still haven't seen the ending. I just stopped watching about 20 minutes before and never bothered to go back, just couldn't manage it. Worse than the first film, in my opinion.
Your comments about Daredevil intrigue me. Whilst I don't hate the theatrical cut, it isn't the best film. I may have to track down the extended cut.

"Flash Gordon ... still holds up today, even if it
does have a Queen soundtrack." What is that supposed to mean? Are you
seriously suggesting that the soundtrack is somehow detrimental to the film
itself? Really? Wow DoG, that’s a really surprising call by you. The soundtrack
is superb and fits with the visuals perfectly. Messrs Mercury, May, Taylor and
Deacon have always said that their music was bombastic and over the top, which
is exactly what this movie needed. Sheesh, I’m shocked…

Could The Mask really be considered unappreciated? I know I still appreciate Diaz in that red dress.

Dredd sequel comic is out today kids, including a digital download.

Great list. I have a soft spot for the League of Extraordinary Gentlemen, yes I know it's not the same as the comic, as a fun movie with a touch of steampunk I really enjoyed it

The end reminded me of Battle Royale 2, which sucked from the opening credits on, but that ending... Terrorism saved the world?

The mask was one of my favorites growing up.
Mystery Men is better than a lot if those others.

Two dollars and fifteen cents!

Great to see some love for the Hulk. I thought I was on my own. I feel it's problem was once again other peoples very limited expectations. They moaned they were expecting the TV series...when they got that in the boring sequel, they moaned again. Also I'd add Watchman. Great film.

That was a crazy short wasn't it?! He just sat there while that guy took that girl... But boy she got her revenge!

The current lack of a Dredd sequel is nothing short of a crime! It's certainly one of the finest comic book adaptations ever made and is simply one of the best Sci-fi/Action films ever made. Let's hope the strong Blu-ray and DVD sales result in a change of heart from the money men. There's still executive producer Adi 'Dirty Laundry' Shankar's Dredd short to look forward too, let's hope that generates renewed interest in a Dredd sequel also!

Great list guys. Thanks compiling. It's a shame many readers do the old tiresome 'what? No xxxxxx?!', or 'you forgot xxxxx' it's called an author having opinion. Want yours own? Go start your own blog and stop reading this one.

That movie SUCKED.

Alan Moore does nothing but differ.

I'm not really sure what is so ambitious about 'Hulk'. For a film that is basically about a man who turns into a giant green monster when he's angry it really is unbelievably slow, plodding and ponderous. Although if that was the ambition, then mission accomplished I suppose.
I think sometimes you just have to judge the film in front of you and not what could have been. Hulk, despite a very good cast, is just not a good movie.

I cry myself to sleep every night over the Dredd sequel not being made, such a good film!

Nice list. Not sure I can agree with you on Ghost Rider as that was a big disappointment for me, but the rest are good shouts - particularly Mask of the Phantasm - still the best Batman film ever made.

I'd add to the list Man-Thing, a pretty enjoyable straight-to-DVD take on the character. Pretty gruesome in places too.

I'd also add Punisher: War Zone, which I think is far more 'Marvel' that it's Thomas Jane predecessor.

Top 3 are spot on (though one could argue the order for hours). Really enjoyed The Losers and in the same year as Expendables and A-Team, I found it to be the better of the 3. However I disagree with Kick-Ass 2. It was for the most part poor. The action was poorly directed and in a way I remember Matthew Vaughn speaking out against (the whole fast cut, shaky camera way).

But it had those really cool moments. I loved the transitions in form of comic pages.

Yeah I agree I didn't find it funny at all. Also the Losers was really good, Chris Evans stole the show in my opinion.

Some great choices on here, and I totally agree with Hulk in particular. I saw it when I was 13 and remember being a bit disappointed initially, I just wanted to see Hulk smash stuff (which he does a bit) not a load of psychological stuff.

Now that I'm older I can appreciate just how much the film stands out amongst other super hero films (and for good reasons). It really tries to be something more than just a brainless blockbuster, sure it stumbles at times, but you have to commend such risk taking especially in the genre of comic book adaptation. Sure the climax is very WTF and, as I say, it stumbles along the way. But I do still think it's a good film, no masterpiece, but a good film.

Oh and shout out to Thomas Jane, such a shame the sequel to his Punisher never came through, the ending of the film teased such potential, rather like Dredd.

The only one I WHOLE-HEARTEDLY DISAGREE with is Ghost Rider: SoV, that film is AWFUL, it is in fact one of the worst films I have EVER seen.
Although I will give it that its CGI was superb.

On Hulk, I think it is also an awful film IMO, but it is probably the best comic book style film around to date (other than Scott Pilgrim and Watchmen).

Agreed, the Queen soundtrack is one of the main pillars for that movie being what it is. I still get chills when the drumbeat starts as the rocket tumbles toward Mongo.
.
I still have Flash Gordon as my go to movie on a wet weekend. It's like a warm blanket for me. And of course there's Ornella Muti ..................cooooorrrrrrrrrr!

Ornella Muti ...... forget Carrie Fisher in the slave outfit, just watch the film and be floored by pretty much anything that girl wears ...... the little sex minx!

'Hulk' is terrible. I would argue 'The Incredible Hulk' is underappreciated as it's been
overshadowed by the other MCU Phase 1 films, but actually works quite well as an anti-hero/fugitive story.

Hey it's not a film completely without merit. The cast is great and does well with what they're given. And there are a few nice moments. But as a whole, I think it's just a poor experience. I still remember paying £6.00 to see it back in the day on a glorious summer afternoon and thinking I'd wasted my money and the good weather.
Sure it tried to be deep. And that was brave. But it's dull. An expensive summer blockbuster (which it was) about the Hulk should be anything but dull.

I just do not get the hate that is pointed at Scott Pilgrim. Yes Cera can be pretty one-note most of the time, but he is great in this. In fact the whole cast is spot on with Alison Pill and Chris Evans (albeit briefly) particularly standout and Kieran Culkin almost walking away with the entire thing.

My personal favourite: A History of Violence :)

I don't think the end makes sense in the film. The whole point in the book is that the countries of the world unite in light of an extra terrestrial threat. In the film, they keep the line from the comics 'The Superman exists and he's American' and show Dr Manhattan fighting alongside US forces in Vietnam. He's clearly identified by the rest of the world as an American citizen (or weapon), so when these attacks take place, who is the rest of the world going to look to for answers or possibly see as responsible? Yeah they think he attacked an American city as well, but the rest of the world is still going to want to know what made him do it and how the American government had no inclination. Were they not monitoring him or his mental state at all? Even if some countries gave them a pass, many would see it as confirming their fears/dislike of America. Ozymandias may as well have just used the technology to carry out the attacks and took credit for himself. It would still be an American citizen with means beyond anyone else carrying out the attack. It doesn't make sense.

The Spirit was one of the most painful viewing experiences of my life. An utterly inept and incoherent mess. The only reason that film should be remembered is so Frank Miller never gets to direct again.

The mother-lovin' Rocketeer! Yes! Not forget to mention it was really faithful to the source material at a time when nobody making movies usually bothered to be.

I would have also put The Shadow on this list.

So true. Will always love the man's work but my god, he's an cantankerous old hypocrite.

Watching Scott Pilgrim as a Toronto resident was a real thrill. We have American movie companies on our streets all the time, with Toronto acting as a stand-in for New York, Boston, Chicago etc...So to actually see a major budget film revel in Toronto locations (some of which, like Lee's Palace, no longer exist) was a rare delight. That, and I enjoyed it thoroughly. I even thought the film did a better job of developing Knives's character than the original book did!

Please stop using the term "underappreciated" in your lists. It's terribly subjective and seldom justified.

I watched it at the movies alone, and at first I was like "why is this sin city looking movie devoid of fanfare?" That question was answered promptly. Cuz it SUCKED

Unpopular? Uncool as deemed by the general population? Or as my cousin calls me, lame?

I'd also say there was a fine line between an "under appreciated" and a "cult" movie - especially where Flash Gordon is concerned.

... great to see Hulk on the top spot. It's one of my favorite adaptations and putting aside the terrible visual effects, it's the only movie that treated the character with respect and that had something more to say than popcorn fights and funny one-liners

... P.S. I love many of the films on this great list, and personally I'd add The Phantom as well :)

Its supposed to be a parody of Frank Miller's style

I have a real soft spot for Supergirl, at least the making of it.

I had a summer job in 1983 at Pinewood Studios as van driver/ staff for the catering department. I had to keep the cast and crew topped up with tea, coffee and snacks, so saw a lot of the filming, and chatted briefly with some of the cast. The sets were wonderful, and the large outdoor action scenes were fun to watch. Along with Top Secret and tv movie The Last Days of Pompeii being filmed on adjacent lots it was a time I will never forget.

However, to call the finished film of Supergirl underappreciated is a delusion. It's a stinking turd that cannot be polished however hard you rub. And it really hurts me to say that.

Agreed, Thim, I would have put the Phantom for all that! By all rights it should be on this list. Nic cage just gives me a headache now.

Hulk was absolutely horrible to watch. His direction was way too literal, and made me feel like I was watching Batman in the 60's.
As for Dredd, what I feel went against it was it was released so close to 'Raid: Redemption" and was too similar in story and not nearly as well done.

The second Ghost Rider movie is awful - dull, plotless, poor special effects, and embarrassing acting. And I can't forgive the first Hulk movie for that dreadful ending. Marvel did the right thing by pretending it never happened.

I still can't quite believe that I live in a world where Scott Pilgrim is seen by the masses as anything other than a fantastic comic book movie.

Hmm, two things I'd quibble with here. Firstly Flash Gordon's soundtrack is surely both iconic and an integral part of the movie!

The other is Mask of the Phantasm. Everything I've heard about its reception in cinemas always points to WB not having a clue how to market it. At the point it came out superhero animation was considered something for young children only. The show had only been on for a year and it hadn't had time to build an audience. Which is a shame because it's utterly superb and incredibly confident with the bulk of the story effectively being a love story. The voice cast is, of course, awesome with both Conroy and Hamill already utterly at home in the skin of Batman and Joker respectively. Should be much higher up the list IMO as it's a gem that anyone even remotely interested in the Bat should seek out immediately followed by the rest of the DCAU.

I agree. I don't care about Dr Banner's state of mind. I just wanna see "Hulk smash". And its a comic book at the end of the day, so who wants all that nonsense.

Its called a discussion. And if they didn't want you to comment there wouldn't be a section to comment on.

I agree absolutely fantastic film. It remined me of the AD200 comics, not that horrible Stallone rubbish.

I WON'T HEAR A WORD SAID AGAINST QUEEN'S SOUNDTRACK FOR FLASH GORDON ALTHOUGH I DO APPEAR TO HAVE READ SOME WORDS SAID AGAINST IT BUT I WILL JUST PRETEND I DIDN'T.

Good list.

I tried with Scott Pilgrim. I really tried. I mean, Edgar Wright, for goodness sake. But no. Unwatchable.

I'm a bit puzzled to find that huge slice of camp Flash Gordon on the list yet Van Helsing so idly dismissed. Which isn't to decry Flash ('a-aaaaaaa') but rather to reinforce what mindless, B-movie fun Van Helsing is. It's all they could do to restrain Richard Roxburgh from chewing the scenery as Dracula, and Alun Armstrong's Italian accent is one for connoisseurs of whatever that was he was doing in The Mummy Returns.

Repeating crossbow, anyone?

Thanks for that. My lunchtime as been spent on google searching for Ornella Muti pictures, she is still looking good.

Oh good lord yes!

Ahh The Rocketeer... Jennifer Connelly in that white dress... No idea what else happened in that movie. Nah, just kidding. In a time where superhero movies were lacking heart, I actually loved The Rocketeer. Plus Timothy Dalton camping it up, was a splendid surprise to see him in Hot Fuzz playing practically the same role :)

... And Brian Blessed's beard!!! Cooooorrrrrrrr!

Actually I think my warm blanket comment applies to his beard alone!

Over time Dr Manhattan gradually gave up being human, which probably would mean that his American citizenship also went with it. He was more Martian by the end of the film.

So Frank Miller decided to parody himself in an adaptation of a fellow comic book writer's work? I remember reading an interview around release where he talks of his respect for Eisner and the original script. I haven't actually read any of Will Eisner's 'The Spirit' so I can't comment on how close it is to that, but If it is Frank Miller parodying himself (and I don't believe for a second that it is. It seems somewhat disrespectful to adapt someone else's work but make it all about taking the piss out of your own writing) it's not a very well observed parody and shows no insight into what's made Frank Miller such a horrible prejudiced and ignorant writer for the last 20 years of his career.

You might see that as a viewer of the film, but within the world of the film the leaders politicians and people of other countries around the world, especially countries that have bad relationships with America aren't going to think 'Well we'll let America off for that one. He probably doesn't consider himself an American citizen anymore.' they're going to think 'Did that crazy yank just carry out a massive global terror attack?' or something to that effect. The extra terrestrial element is key and Dr Manhattan was introduced to the world as an American super being. After lording it over everyone using his power, I think realistically the rest of the world are going to expect them to accept some responsibility.

I think people hate it for being too hipster but I think it is just a brilliantly inventive film. Personally I really like Michael Cera (probably be cause of AR) and this is one of my fave comic book films easily. More originality in 5 mins than most action/comic book films manage in their entirety,

I cried a little yesterday when I heard they were making another Riddick and Dredd get's ignored.

Here's the deal with Ang Lee's Hulk movie
I paid to see Hulk Smash. Instead all I got was 2 1/2 hours of anger management.

I know what you mean with Scott Pilgrim, I watched it at the cinema and came away cold. I re watched it at a friends house and it's better than I remember. I don't know whether I was having a bad day the first viewing or if I just glossed over it's flaws the second time round.

ahh The Phantom...classic...campy...fun!

I agree I didn't find Hulk funny, but I don't think it was a comedy.

This is a terrible list. half of the things here aren't even movies, Most of them get exactly the credit they deserve and the rest are just awful. One what planet are Generation X, Supergirl, and The Punisher not getting EXACTLY what they deserve. Even Tank Girl is a dated mess in line with movies from that same period like Johnny Mnemonic,

And then i am kind of offended that movies like The Rocketeer and Dick Tracy fall so low on this list. But Scott Pilgrim, which has exactly the appreciation it deserves is right up there on the top.

This is just completely useless and virtually unreadable. Constantine as Number seven? WHAT? IT WAS TERRIBLE. When a movie is just barely better then Spawn then you have a problem.

And FFS American Splendor Might have been based on parts of the comic, but it was based on his life, not the comic strip...yes, i get it...its an autobiographical comic strip, but it was based on his life, not the comic.

And on what planet is The Mask "unappreciated"? is it as popular as it used to be? NOPE. Was it overrated in the 90's...YUP. Its always been a terrible movie and just because people grew up and don't like it now doesnt mean its "not appreciated".

Most of these choices are just baffling. Its like someone just assembled a list of movies that didn't do well at the box at the box office, with the puzzling exception of The Mask, and said, "meh, we haven't made a list in a while, lets cobble this crappy one together".

The fact that you could come up with 25 "underappreciated" ones made me suddenly realize that, wow, there actually have been quite a few comic book movies in general. Amazing how the genre has grown over the years.

Kick Ass 2 was crap. That's probably why it didn't do very well.

Hulk bash(slang for sh$t)

Oh it's a parody alright

I could not agree more. They can't have Dr Manhattan be an agent for the US Government and then use him as a common enemy for everyone to rally against (including the US). It just doesn't make sense.

It must have been too hard/expensive to CGI the alien, otherwise it is just screenwriters' being cute and under thinking things.

Uh-oh, he's figured out our editorial process! Quick everyone, scarper!

I don't see how "V For Vendetta" is underappreciated when everyone consider it a masterpiece...

On the other side, Ghost Rider 2 ?? Seriously ? It made the first movie look like a masterpiece in comparison. The first one wasn't great but at least delivered some cool action scenes, good sfx, and the plot was decent.
The second one was inconsistent with the first but wasn't a reboot either... Sorta sequel set in a parallel universe, weird, there were too many WTF moments, and too few scenes with the Rider himself. In other words: it sucked !

I personally don't see what was so great about Dredd, it was just a random basic action movie set in a cheap version of the Dredd universe. The Stallone version was way funnier, more epic, and more sci fi, with a much better plot.

No "The Phantom (1996)"? I mean, I know it's not one of the finest, but you include Mystery Men and Tank Girl but not the Phantom?

The Mask and V for Vendetta are not underappreciated, What are you talkin about buddy? Have you been under a rock?!!!!!!!!!!!

The Mask made over $100 million at the box office. I think it was appreciated just fine when it came out. Now, it may have been placed on the back burner as newer creations have come to light, and yes, Son of Mask may have tainted the memory, but the movie did just fine when it hit the theaters.

I would definitely agree with Hulk being number one. I liked the story. I thought the father-son relationship was mythic, like in the Christopher Reeve Superman films. But at the same time the father had a perverse realism. Jennifer Connelly's portrayed Betty's sadness beautifully. I heard that Eric Bana isn't proud of it, but I think he's great!

I'm surprised that you failed to mention The Shadow with Alec Baldwin and Penelope Anne Miller. And what about Sin City?

I agree with you about GalaxyQuest. It's in my dvd collection right alongside Star trek. One of the best spoofs ever (along with Airplane)

The Punisher really is an excellent revenge movie, I have no idea how accurate it is (or isn't) to the comic book, but it really stands up as a movie in it's own right.

Sorry, no, Punisher: Warzone was the far better Punisher film. Stevenson was the perfect emotionless Castle. Jane's version was far more mopey - not a traditional Punisher.

I can tell you why Kick Ass 2 didn't find its audience: it was a terrible movie. I loved the first one. I loved everything about it. I was completely repulsed by the second one. I did not find it funny, unlike the first one. I found it reprehensible. It seemed to be trying too hard.
On the other hand, I am not one of those who disliked Ghost Rider 2. I actually thought it was a big improvement over the first one! So what do I know.

I have not seen The Phantom, but since Wiki-ing it I definitely have an interest in it!
Yeah, I'm not really the biggest Nic Cage fan.
I like him in National Treasure, Lord of War and The Rock, that's about it.

Oh and Kickass! Ha

Two words...Barb Wire

Agreed. Plus Con-Air.

Swamps Thing anyone?

Kickstarter: The Savage Dragon. Sin City style. Black and white, him bright green, other heroes and villains in technicolor too. Starring the Stath. And biker bars moustache.

I am going to be honest. Of the original 4 Batman movies, I think Batman Forever is second, of course to the original. I think Batman Forever gets grouped together with Batman & Robin's epic badness and gets overlooked. It has the shots of the camp that would take over in the next movie, but it has a heart to it with the delving into Bruce's psychology and the death of the Graysons.

Just wanted to point out that Turtles Forever is NOT the sequel to the CGI TMNT movie. It is basically the series finale of the TV series from the early 2000s

Turtles Forever was great for my nostalgia. I loved it and recommend it to anyone who grew up with the original cartoons. V for Vendetta was great but I'd love to see a more faithful adaptation including more of the government structure which added so much to the atmosphere of the novel. Glad Spirit of Vengeance made the list, definitely not perfect maybe not even great but was leaps and bounds over the first film (except for the scene where he is carrying the kid whose face is right next to the Rider's flaming skull.) Hulk deserved what it got. It had a few brilliant moments but on the whole the movie just isn't good. Dredd should absolutely be numero uno.
Solid list DoG.

Oh, come on! Battle Royale 2, here's an underappreciated movie.

It's pretty much everyone's personal favourite, that's why it's not on the list.
Fantastic movie, indeed.

But The Punisher was a better film.

WHAT?! That movie is an abortion of abomination, and vice versa! So disappointing. That new teacher or whatever (it's been years and I only watched it once) was in no way comparable to Beat Takeshi, and Shuya... Shuya sucked. Maybe it was way too soon after 9/11, but I don't think the message in that movie would have changed. By now. It was none too subtle. No disrespect, I mean this, but apparently this movie is over-appreciated by ONE. Different tastes, I get that, but I just don't see how somebody can like part 1 AND part 2. Terrorism and kids killing each other are... nothing... alike...

Touché, sir.

It made my 6 yr old daughter want to be a rock star after seeing the "forbidden Planet Monster" fight the snakes, in the battle of the bands. She wanted an electric guitar for Christmas :)

I watched them close together and although the plot is identical they are entirely different films, and Urban just nails Dredd. The thing about the Raid is the action was superb but I just didn't care about the plot becuase the characterisation was so flimsy. Dredd painted a world and a set of characters brilliantly I thought. AND ITS FREAKING DREDD FFS, without Stallone Slurring "Er erm der Low!". YES IT STILL HURTS!!

I enjoy it too, whilst still being a massive fan of Moore. When you consider the script was written concurrently with the comic - simply spinning a story out from Moore's uncompleted ideas - the bad adaptation aspect of it is far easier to swallow.

They make movies in Toronto?

Yes, The Phantom! Aside from adding magical powers to the ring, that film got so much right :-)

That Scott Pilgrim and Dredd didn't make millions upon billions of dollars and that Adam Sandler remains an A-list Hollywood star is, I'm fairly certain, one of the signs of the Apocalypse, quite apart from being utter balls.

Good job not acknowledging any of the huge problems with your article and instead focus on the last sentence I wrote. Journalism at its finest.

Kick-Ass 2 was awesome! I don't know what your problem is.I cant wait till Kick-Ass 3 gets made.

This could really be shortened to like 6-8 under appreciated films. The rest are truly that awful and are forgotten with good reason

And you have no brain because Kick-Ass 2 was awesome!

they did and and that is one of the many great things about the movie (:

shaky cam shaky cam I hate hearing that complaint! there was not even that much in Kick-Ass 2 and sorry man but Kick-Ass 2 was awesome and there was a lot more story wise then the first and it was definitely better then the comic book version of Kick-Ass 2.

Its a damn tragedy what happened to that Dredd 3D movie....that was the closest cinematic iteration of the character...well ever, and no one saw it...not even any of us. Shame.

Tell me about it. 'Scott Pilgrim' is basically the quintessential comic book film, revelling in being an adaptation of a comic book/graphic novel series in its visuals and direction, and celebrating geek and indie culture. The casting is spot-on, the story is simple and yet has its own deeper meanings and details and the music is simply amazing.

And I think it't the only film I know of which has an alternate ending which completely changes the meaning of the film (Knives being better after, all as shown in the team-up vs. Ramona being the one and worth starting over with) but is still just as satisfying.

Great list, makes me want to revisit quite a few of them. Though I'd say quite a few of them aren't under appreciated in my house. Flash Gordon is a stone cold classic.

Journalism at its finest? Sir, you flatter me!

It's appreciated but is it appreciated as a comic book adaptation? That's sort of what I was aiming at. Plenty know it's a great film, outside of avid comic book readers, nobody is really aware it's an adaptation IMHO.

The problem is that there is more to the hulk than hulk smash. ... Hulk a really good mention on this list... respect to the writer.... got guts....and taste

You're forgetting the fact that it's implied that Ozymandias also attacked American cities, thus creating a common bond through grief, etc.

Come on guys, 'Hulk' is just not that good and deep down we all know that. Time to stop fighting its corner!

Imo Hulk is way superior to The Incredible Hulk... felt the characters and the story .... and the idea was way more engaging

True.

To be honest, I too only watched it once years ago. I should give it another go.
All I really remember is that, while of course not as good as the first one, there were a few interesting ideas and some risks taken, not just a rehash of the first movie. Also, I was aware of some terrible reviews, so I wasn't expecting much.
Maybe my opinion will change, but after watching it the first time, I thought people were excessive in their critics.

If you mean he's a hypocrite for slagging off films he's sold the rights to, you're mistaken. The only films made of his works are the ones to which he doesn't hold the rights and because of their often questionable quality he refuses to accept any money for them and demands his name removed from the credits in order to distance himself from them.

Maybe for you, but I don't want a brooding 2 hour long pysch evalution of a 8 foot green mutant with father issues.

Dude I was such a battle Royale that I learned every student's name. I've since forgotten almost all of them but my point is, part 2 was not the masterpiece it's predecessor was. It's a high bar anyway.

I'm not. I address it directly in the post your replying to. Does anyone really believe that all the worlds governments will react with the rationality and restraint you're crediting them with? I'm not blasting the film overall, I think it's okayish, but the end doesn't work.

Then I completely agree. The first one is way better than the sequel.

To be fair the article says "Comic Book Movies" not adaptations, so American Splendour is fair enough. Also argualbley Scott Pilgrim just gets recognition amongst a certain community but not much further a field, hence why it could be seen as being unappreciated.

Shaky cam is a legitimate complaint about movies whether you like hearing it or not. So many films of late have covered over boring fight scenes and car chases by using shaky cam to try and suggest excitement and danger. Kick Ass 2, while not the worst offender, had (for me anyway) some really boring fight scenes when compared to the first one. The final battles pacing was lacking. I haven't read the comic book so I don't know about the story bit.

What about the two that werent even movies? Turtles Forever was originally just a multi-parter from the TV series.

How about the two that weren't even comic books: Flash Gordon and The Rocketeer. They both earned comic strips or books later but werent based on an existing story. And the Rocketeer doens;t deserve to be down there with Generation X and Supergirl.

And about Supergirl, how is that a "faithful retelling" of her story? There is a reason why it is considered one of the worst movies ever made.

We both seem to agree about Scott Pilgrim....like I saidm it gets exactly the kind of audience it deserves. so it is not under appreciated.

AND FINALLY...I am back at American Splendor. Its not a "comic book movie. It is at best an biopic that happens to coincide with the strip> Now I will default in saying that it does use the strip OCCASIONALLY as source material. However, it's primarily sourced from Pekar, not his strip.

Without a doubt

Hell Boy selling bottles of Jack for the express delivery to nob-head faces. Genius.

Yeah he was kind of a mix between hellboy and professor x, minus powers of course.

Green Lantern was underappreciated

The first ghost rider was way better than the sequel! Are you kidding me...man...the sequel was just boring...it picked the most dullest location in Europe and barely had enough action especially for the guys that made crank...and this coming from the guy that defended the first one as a fun popcorn/action, cheese horror, comic pop movie..like the first one was fun...so you'd think part 2/reboot was made for me...nope...it wasn't fun...just eh...my friend fell asleep in the theater watching it lol

ROCKETER , DREDD, and HULK!!!!! ARE THE MOST UNDERRATED FILMS , AND ARE INCREDIBLE FILMS , THE PEOPLE IS WRONG !!!!, look at they worship justin bieber and miles cyrus, they are the future and the future is wrong...

Great marketing eh ;-). I agree Watchmen should be added. still would have liked to have the big alien to have been included in the film but the directors cut is still good.

I agree would have been better to have kept the Alien in.;-)

Enjoyed the Mask of Phantasm, different slant to the origins story. ;-)

Glad to see Ang Lee's Hulk in the list. I think it is a good film and it was never a flop. It still made over £240 Million just not as much when compared to Spiderman the year before. I recall going to the cinema with no expectations other than the TV series (which has its own merits of course) and came away,happy and entertained.

That's funny, by commenting about these articles you just described your lame opinions perfectly.

Creep

Huh, only just noticed that and I really didn't think it was there before... Assuming you didn't just edit it in, my bad

I still don't agree with you, mind; human beings have a natural instinct to band together with those they share a common bond with. If a US national who was once human but has now become so superhuman that he is essentially no longer human and therefore arguably an alien who had previously been allies with some members of said human race attacked the a sufficiently wide ranging selection of representatives of the human race, then he would most likely immediately be ostracised.and suspected (probably with minimal doubt) as the one responsible due to his alien characteristics. It's a classic scenario with countless other examples in literature, films and real life (9/11, for instance), although admittedly few if any of these other events took place on such a massive worldwide scale.

P.S. Unless you are using word-to-speech software, you won't hear it anyway.

American Splendor was nominated for an Oscar in the "best adapted screenplay" category, so whatever your interpretation is, the film industry disagrees. Also Flash Gordon debuted as a comic in 1934 and the Rocketeer debuted as a comic in 1982, so I don't know what you're even talking about with those two. And TV movies still count as movies.

A lot of these aren't underappreciated at all. Two or three might fall into the category of 'most folk didn't know this was based on a graphic novel'.
Some definitely lose a lot from the big screen to small. Scott Pilgrim in particular. The tunes rumbling away were teeth rattling. Was awesome. Watched it around a chums months later and felt like I'd let him down with a poor choice.
On a similar note; took me a while to pin down why Kick Ass 2 failed to hit the heady heights of the original. The soundtrack was weak for a start. No songs complimented the narrative, and hit girl's story was a tepid rip off of Mean Girls. Kick Ass gaining muscle and skill kind of goes against the point too. A bit like Chris Tucker learning martial arts in Rush Hour 3. Was a real shame. Imagine if the fans got a Dredd sequel as average. Still, it's proof that Matt Vaughan+Jane Goldman+Take That(on occasion)=cinema gold.

Tank Girl? No
Just No.

Nope sorry, Batman Forever was a disgusting happy-meal of a film.

Unbreakable!

30 Days of Night was pretty good also and that doesn't get much love.

Still found it more entertaining than Batman Returns, which was too wrapped up in Tim Burton's vision and darkness to appeal

I agree, i hated returns, it was weird....penguins with missiles strapped to their backs? lol

I agree about Returns, it was weird....penguins with missiles strapped to them? lol

The problem with that is the film establishes that Dr. Manhattan is the linch-pin in the American Defence that is essentially keeping a nuclear strike against America at bay, (i.e the clock til midnight, and the talkshow talking about how the Russian's won't attack while Dr. Manhattan is around.)

If the attacks by Dr. Manhattan were the only issues at work here, you could make a reasonable argument that the world would band against him.
Instead the world is already on the brink of war, and in all likelihood this is what would push them over the edge. The Russians would have been saying for years that Dr. Manhattan is a threat to them, and this will prove it.
The won't care that America was attacked as well, they may not even know that America was attacked as well.

Their immediate response after being attacked by Dr. Manhattan would be too launch a nuclear war-head in retaliation (remember the scene in the briefing room where the President's Security council discuss how close to nuclear war they are.)

The threat needed to be alien, because the humans needed something so removed from themselves that they would have no choice but to unite. Dr. Manhattan can't be that threat because he is so clearly linked to the American's, especially how he is seen by the world at large. We know from the comics and film that he has grown further and further away from humanity, but the rest of the world would still see him as an American weapon.

Dunno about some of the choices on that list but the fact that DREDD wasn't a box office smash everywhere should make every movie and comic geek who didn't support it hang their head in shame and be forced to watch Electra on a daily basis.

Every Nov 5th when I watch V For Vendetta I'm still amazed this movie got made in the first place considering its content. Yeah it slightly deviates from the novel but what film doesn't. It's still effing awesome.

LOVE The Shadow. Will always watch it when it's on. No better compliment for a a film than that. (Being watched whenever, not by me specifically) ;)

I was totally obsessed with Johnny Mnemonic in the mid 90s, wishing they'd adapt more Gibson (where is my Neuromancer, I've nearly got Elite 4?) but I hold out hope, since there's apparently a Johnny Mnemonic TV series coming ...

Nah I didn't edit it in. We'll just have to agree to disagree. I do think it's an okay film though.

It must be because of the blinding stage glare but everyones always seems to overlook Howard Blake's contribution to Flash Gordon… you know, the guy who actually composed the majority of the score for this film.

I think it's also important to bear in mind that they may well have felt that they had no other choice other than to form an alliance with the US given just how powerful Dr. Manhattan is. The enemy of my enemy is my friend, etc.

They both had a basic plot and I agree that Dredd had a little more depth and actually attempted to make it something more but it couldn't outshine Raid.
Films with basic plots often fall down when trying to be something more.
Face it, no one wants to see Dredd show us a distinction of breaking the law and "outright f**king THE LAW".

Everyone was with you up until the last paragraph.

The Stallone movie was a travesty. Stallone played Judge Dredd (badly) for ten minutes, and then reverted to his well known shlock. It was not funny, was more bloated than epic, used visuals to blind people from the terrible acting and the plot was muddled at best.

Ghost Rider:Spirit Of Vengeance is probably the single WORST comic book movie ever made.
The first one was really dumb, but watchable.
I was stuck on a 14 hour flight with NOTHING to do except watch Spirit of Vengeance. I couldn't do it. It was too boring. I kept zoning out and staring at the seat fabric pattern instead.

Scott Pilgrim, Dredd, Rocketeer, Constantine, V For Vendetta, Mask Of the Phantasm, The Punisher, Mystery Men, and the Daredevil Director's Cut are all good. Some of them just barely good, some of them utterly fantastic.

The Punisher was a waaaaaaaaay better movie.
Warzone is hard to watch.

Jennifer Connelly was really the only great thing about that movie.
If we could go back and redo The Incredible Hulk with Mark Ruffalo and Jennifer Connelly instead of Ed Norton and Liv Tyler....that'd be MAGNIFICENT.

Jennifer Connelly is always magnificent.

Your opinion is even worse than the opinion of whoever wrote this article.

Timecop should be on this list.

Reminds me of MASK OF ZORRO where Zorro slices away parts of Catherine Zeta-Jones' dress - and I can't remember what happened afterwards.

Best see a doctor about that condition Clayton ;)

I thought they looked like power point presentation transitions. It felt incredibly cheap. And when he was on the roof screaming with his fist in the air, so lame.

A matter of taste, as everything visual... I agree with the roof screaming, but I still find the transitions cool, I found it refreshing and pop-art-ish.

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