The 15 Best Comic Book Movies to Stream Right Now

Marvel Studios 2018
Marvel Studios 2018

Superhero movies are ubiquitous, dominating the box office and Blu-ray sales (not to mention this year's awards season) and wrapping up huge swaths of fandom in discussions that last months—or even years—at a time. Streaming services are also ubiquitous, so it makes sense that these two great tastes would taste great together.

If you’re looking for the very best comic book films out there, though, where do you turn? Well, while a great many of the DC Comics-based films in particular have migrated over to the new DC Universe streaming service, and Marvel’s films will likely head to Disney’s upcoming streaming platform in the near future, you can still find some of the very best comic book films on the most popular streaming services. Here are 15 excellent bets (in no particular order).

1. Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

When Marvel promised a comic book film of unprecedented scale with Avengers: Infinity War, they were not messing around. This film, one of 2018’s biggest, was the culmination of a decade of planning, casting, and cinematic storytelling all pulled into one massive movie event. It would be impressive for its ambition and scope alone, but it’s also perhaps the best attempt yet to tell a comic book crossover story on the big screen.

Where to watch it: Netflix

2. Black Panther (2018)

The first superhero film to ever earn an Oscar nomination for Best Picture, Black Panther became not just one of the most successful movies in the history of Marvel Studios in 2018, but a full-blown cultural phenomenon. The film was an instantly quotable, instantly viral sensation, and a year after its release it remains not just an important landmark in the superhero shared universe phenomenon, but a great film that’s unlike anything else in its genre so far. (Though it lost its Best Picture bid, the film did win three of its seven Oscar nominations.)

Where to watch it: Netflix

3. Wonder Woman (2017)

It took far too long for Wonder Woman to finally make it to the big screen, so in some ways this movie was worth watching merely because it existed at all. That it turned out to be this good was almost a bonus, but Wonder Woman became so much more as millions of fans finally got to see it. Director Patty Jenkins and star Gal Gadot made the best film in the DC Extended Universe so far, proving that Diana of Themyscira didn’t need the Justice League around her to become a star.

Where to watch it: HBO Go

4. The Dark Knight (2008)

Still considered by some fans to be the best Batman movie, and even the best superhero movie, ever made, the middle installment of Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy still holds up more than a decade after its initial release. Heath Ledger’s Oscar-winning performance as The Joker remains wicked fun, and the film’s car chases are still among the most dizzying practical effects ever pulled off in a superhero flick.

Where to watch it: Netflix

5. Watchmen (2009)

Before HBO enters the superhero game with its own new spin on the classic miniseries by Alan Moore and Dave Gibbons, it might be worth revisiting director Zack Snyder’s adaptation of one of the most important and influential comic books ever published. Is the film a lavish and devoted exploration of Watchmen’s superhero deconstruction, or is it an overly elaborate fan film that’s a little too devoted to the source material to be interesting as a work of art in its own right? Either way,Watchmen remains a fascinating entry in superhero movie history.

Where to watch it: Netflix

6. Hellboy (2004)

Before he was the Oscar-winning director of The Shape of Water, Guillermo del Toro tried his hand at a comic book adaptation, and he did it with one of the most Guillermo del Toro-esque superheroes out there: A demon (played wonderful by Ron Perlman) who hunts monsters. A reboot is on its way later this year, but the original Hellboy is still delightfully pulpy supernatural fun.

Where to watch it: Netflix

7. Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

Yes, both Hellboy films are on this list, because both Hellboy films are just that good, for very different reasons. Del Toro’s first Hellboy film is a monster-hunting pulp adventure, but for its sequel everything heads into the realm of pure fantasy, as Hellboy and his friends learn of an ancient conflict and Big Red himself moves closer to his destiny. A word of warning, though: This film will make you sad that Del Toro never got to make the third film in his series.

Where to watch it: Hulu

8. The Crow (1994)

Long before superheroes on the big screen became a part of shared universes and billion dollar mega-franchises, The Crow became what is perhaps the ultimate Generation X comic book movie: the story of an aspiring rock star (Brandon Lee) who is murdered by thugs on Devil’s Night, and returns from the dead one year later as a supernatural vigilante to seek his vengeance. Director Alex Proyas’s visuals are gothic perfection, and the film’s soundtrack alone is worth the price of admission.

Where to watch it: Netflix

9. Scott Pilgrim vs. The World (2010)

A rare adaptation for writer/director Edgar Wright brings Bryan Lee O’Malley’s popular graphic novel series to life. Michael Cera is perfectly cast in the title role as an awkward young man who is determined to win the heart of the woman he loves (Mary Elizabeth Winstead) by literally winning video game style battles against her “Seven Evil Exes.” Wright throws every trick in his book at the screen, and the result is a film you can watch again and again.

Where to watch it: Netflix

10. Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

In terms of ambition and pure entertainment value, the Thor films were lagging behind Marvel’s other franchises ... until Ragnarok came along. Directed by the madcap genius Taika Waititi (What We Do In the Shadows), the film takes Thor (Chris Hemsworth, making a strong case for himself as the funniest Avenger) out of his element and into a new world where he must fight for his life, his freedom, and the future of his people. It’s one of Marvel’s funniest films, yes, but also one of its most visually and thematically ambitious.

Where to watch it: Netflix

11. The Adventures of Tintin (2011)

The legendary Tintin stories by Belgian cartoonist Herge got a big screen treatment for the ages in 2011, with a production team that included Steven Spielberg in the director’s chair, Peter Jackson as a producer, and a screenplay from Steven Moffat, Edgar Wright, and Joe Cornish. The film was not a runaway hit on the scale of other comic book films, or even other animated blockbusters. But it’s worth watching just to see how far Spielberg takes the motion capture imagery into the realm of pure adventure.

Where to watch it: Prime Video

12. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)

Writer/director James Gunn might not have topped his first Guardians of the Galaxy outing with this ambitious and even more ensemble-laden sequel, but he comes damn close. Like the first film, the second Guardians installment is packed with memorable jokes, glorious action set pieces, and a soundtrack that just won’t quit. Oh, and one place where it definitely does top the first film is with its emotional ending, so have some tissues ready after all the laughs.

Where to watch it: Netflix

13. I Kill Giants (2017)

If superheroes aren’t what you’re looking for, and you’re also looking for a film that hasn’t been seen as widely as it should, consider this fantasy drama based on the acclaimed Image Comics series of the same name. The story of a teenage girl who’s obsession with Dungeons and Dragons had led her to believe she must battle real giants invading her world, it’s a wonderfully imaginative battle cry for outsider kids.

Where to watch it: Hulu

14. Logan (2017)

Hugh Jackman’s curtain call as Wolverine proved that superhero films don’t need massive budgets, massive casts, or even world-destroying villains to be hits. It also proved superhero films don’t need to follow formulas to be masterpieces, because superhero comics don’t have to either. Jackman’s beautiful performance as a dying version of the legendary mutant is matched only by Sir Patrick Stewart’s turn as a dying Charles Xavier. It’s the perfect sendoff for the man who defined superhero stardom in the 2000s, well before Robert Downey Jr. ever put on his Iron Man armor.

Where to watch it: HBO Go

15. KICK-ASS (2010)

Writer/director Matthew Vaughn’s first adaptation of the works of comic book writer Mark Millar (who also co-created the comics behind the Kingsman film series) came with this dark comedy about what would happen if ordinary people put on costumes, gave themselves cool names, and went out to fight crime. You’ll laugh through virtually every minute, even when you might feel a little dirty for it.

Where to watch it: Prime Video

9 Surprising Facts About James McAvoy

Chris Jackson, Getty Images
Chris Jackson, Getty Images

Whether you know James McAvoy from the X-Men movies or have been a fan since his early gigs on British television, there's no denying that 2019 has already been a very good year for the Scottish actor. In addition to his starring role in M. Night Shyamalan's Glass, McAvoy is set to star in June's Dark Phoenix, will be taking on the role of an adult Bill Denbrough in It: Chapter 2 in October, and will appear in the upcoming TV version of His Dark Materials later this year. And to top it all off, he’s turning 40 on April 21.

In celebration of McAvoy's big day—and even bigger year—here are some things you might not know about the Golden Globe-nominated actor.

1. He was raised by his grandparents.

James McAvoy was born in Glasgow, Scotland, to a psychiatric nurse and a builder. However, his parents split when he was seven, and because his mother was in poor health, McAvoy and his sister went to live with their maternal grandparents. While his mother lived with them on and off throughout his childhood, McAvoy hasn’t spoken to his father since he was a kid.

2. He considered becoming a priest.

McAvoy was brought up in the Roman Catholic church, but that wasn’t the reason he considered becoming a priest. Long before he decided to go the drama school route, he considered entering the priesthood because he thought it would give him an excuse to travel the world.

"I wanted to be a missionary, but it was only because I wanted a free ticket to go and explore the world," McAvoy told The Telegraph in 2006. "I realized I was using God and religion to get my kicks so I knocked that on the head."

3. He married his on-screen love interest.

Anne-Marie Duff and James McAvoy attends the Suffragette Premiere during the Opening Night Gala during the BFI London Film Festival at Leicester Square on October 7, 2015 in London, England
John Phillips, Getty Images for BFI

While working on the UK version of Shameless in the early 2000s, McAvoy met his on-screen love interest and future wife, Anne-Marie Duff. The pair started a relationship that they kept very private, and married in 2006. They went on to also star in 2009’s The Last Station together, but McAvoy later announced he would no longer be working with his then-wife.

"You have to weigh it up against how much of a headache it would be. It exposes you to a lot of questions," he told USA Today in 2011. "I'm very big in saying that I don't agree that if you put yourself in the spotlight, you have to accept it. I do think that if you work together as husband and wife, you're kind of asking for it." Ultimately, the couple split in 2016.

4. Acting was never his plan.

In addition to the priesthood, McAvoy considered a few others careers before he settled on acting. In fact, acting kind of happened by accident. While speaking to The Guardian in 2006, McAvoy explained that it wasn’t until director David Hayman came to his school to speak about the entertainment business that he knew he wanted to give it a go. He was so sure, in fact, that he reportedly approached Hayman after the talk and asked him for some work. (McAvoy's first credited role was in 1995's The Near Room, which Hayman directed.)

“I always believed that I never wanted to be an actor; I only did it because I was allowed to do it and I had to do something,” McAvoy explained. “I felt as if my career just happened to me. I hadn't actually engaged in it. I suppose I felt totally disempowered, just by this fate thing.”

5. Band of Brothers was his big break.

McAvoy’s big break came in HBO’s 2001 miniseries Band of Brothers, produced by Steven Spielberg and Tom Hanks. The actor played character James W. Miller in just one episode, but that’s all it took for his phone to start ringing; shortly thereafter, McAvoy scored notable roles on BBC’s Shameless (2004), The Chronicles of Narnia: The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (2005), and The Last King of Scotland (2006). He wasn't the only up-and-comer who made a name for himself with Band of Brothers: Michael Fassbender, Tom Hardy, and Dominic Cooper were among his co-stars.

6. He’s a Golden Globe nominee.

In 2007, McAvoy played Keira Knightley's love interest in Joe Wright’s period drama Atonement, based on the Ian McEwan novel. The role was one of the actor’s most moving performances to date, and scored him a Golden Globe nomination. Although he has wowed audiences in numerous parts since, such as the man with 23 different personalities in 2016’s Split (and 2019’s Glass), his role in Atonement has earned him the most critical acclaim. McAvoy, too, is a fan.

"[T]o find a film that was so epic, sweeping and romantic, yet be intelligent, was nice to me," McAvoy said. "Also the fact that it’s a very classic story, but it’s told in a very contemporary and modern way."

7. He was slightly tipsy the first time he met M. Night Shyamalan.

M. Night Shyamalan and James McAvoy attend the “Glass” Paris Gala Screening at la Cinematheque Francaise on January 07, 2019 in Paris, France
Kristy Sparow, Getty Images for Disney Studios

Speaking of Split and Glass: McAvoy was definitely in the right place at the right time—and in the right frame of mind—when he first met director M. Night Shyamalan. In a 2017 interview with The Guardian, McAvoy shared how he and Shyamalan just happened to cross paths at San Diego Comic-Con in 2015. "There was a big party, you couldn’t turn around without bumping into somebody off the telly," he said. "My mate Jesse was playing miniature golf in the middle of it. We were getting particularly drunk, and then I saw M. Night Shyamalan. He goes: ‘You’re James McAvoy!’ And I said: ‘You’re M Night Shyamalan! What do I call you?’ I was very drunk.”

Inebriated or not, Shyamalan saw something he liked. One month later, he was on the set of Split (in a role that Joaquin Phoenix was originally set to play, but dropped out of at the last minute).

8. He admires Samuel L. Jackson's no-nonsense attitude.

While promoting Glass, McAvoy participated in a lot of press events with Samuel L. Jackson, and was impressed by what he saw. "I saw examples of what I might be able to do when I got the balls he’s got,” McAvoy said. "That guy does not suffer fools, which is a positive quality. If he gets any kind of question that is in any way not thought out properly, he just drops the F-bomb and is like, ‘What are you talking about? What? What?’ He calls out [the journalist] so hard, and it’s the funniest thing."

9. He credits his success to a lot of luck.

When asked about the secret to his success, McAvoy doesn't mince words: "I got lucky," he told The Talks. "I got so f***ing lucky that I fell into the lap of a director when I was 16 and he gave me a part in a film and my horizons immediately exploded wide with all the weird people in it and all these crazy f***ing actors and directors and artistic people who were from all over the world. Through that one job I met people from England, I met people from America, and I met people from all over the place with challenging points of view and sympathetic points of view to mine. And then I went to a youth theater for six months as well, and that expanded my mind massively. It gave me so much more confidence to find out who I was and not be afraid of who I was simply because I’m in a scenario that I don’t understand ... I got really lucky. I got really, really lucky. It’s been a good ride for me."

Game of Thrones Star Sophie Turner Opened Up About Her Struggles With Depression

Helen Sloan, HBO
Helen Sloan, HBO

Playing one of the main characters on the most popular show currently on television isn't always as glamorous as it seems. Sometimes, the pressures of fame can be too much. Sophie Turner realized this while playing Sansa Stark on Game of Thrones, and has recently revealed how being in the public eye took a toll on her mental health.

Turner took on the role of Sansa Stark in 2011, when she was just a teenager, and she quickly became a household name. Now, at 23, she's come forward to Dr. Phil on his podcast Phil in the Blanks to explain how negative comments on social media affected her self-image and mental health.

"I would just believe it. I would say, ‘Yeah, I am spotty. I am fat. I am a bad actress.' I would just believe it," Turned explained. "I would get [the costume department] to tighten my corset a lot. I just got very, very self-conscious."

Later on, these feelings led to major depression. Turner developed a sense of isolation after she realized that all of her friends and family were going off to colleege while she was pursuing a sometimes-lonely acting career.

"I had no motivation to do anything or go out. Even with my best friends, I wouldn't want to see them, I wouldn't want to go out and eat with them," Turner explained. "I just would cry and cry and cry over just getting changed and putting on clothes and be like, 'I can't do this. I can't go outside. I have nothing that I want to do.'"

The feelings of depression stayed with Turner for most of the time she was filming Game of Thrones, and it's a battle she's still fighting. "I've suffered with my depression for five or six years now. The biggest challenge for me is getting out of bed and getting out of the house. Learning to love yourself is the biggest challenge," she continued.

The actress shared that she goes to a therapist and takes medication for her depression—two things that have helped her feel better.

Between Game of Thrones ending and planning her wedding to fiancé Joe Jonas, Turner may not have the time to take on many new acting roles in the near future. However, we'll continue to see her as Sansa Stark in the final season of Game of Thrones, and as Jean Grey in Dark Phoenix, which hits theaters on June 7.

[h/t: E! News]

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