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

HBO Is Offering Nearly 500 Hours of Free Content, From The Sopranos to Succession

Matthew Macfadyen and Nicholas Braun talk business and omelettes in Succession.
Matthew Macfadyen and Nicholas Braun talk business and omelettes in Succession.
Peter Kramer/HBO

If shelter-in-place orders have you burning through your streaming service selections, HBO might be able to help. The premium network has just announced nearly 500 hours of content will be made available for free beginning Friday, April 3. In a press release, the channel said that content would be unlocked via HBO NOW and HBO GO without a subscription. Viewers can expect a mix of HBO’s original series as well as documentaries and catalog movie titles. For original series, viewers can select these nine shows:

  1. Ballers
  2. Barry
  3. Silicon Valley
  4. Six Feet Under
  5. The Sopranos
  6. Succession
  7. True Blood
  8. Veep
  9. The Wire

Documentary and Docuseries titles include:

  1. The Apollo
  2. The Case Against Adnan Syed
  3. Elvis Presley: The Searcher
  4. I Love You, Now Die: The Commonwealth v. Michelle Carter
  5. The Inventor: Out for Blood in Silicon Valley
  6. Jane Fonda in Five Acts
  7. McMillion$
  8. True Justice: Bryan Stevenson’s Fight for Equality
  9. United Skates
  10. We Are the Dream: The Kids of the MLK Oakland Oratorical Fest

Movies are from the Warner Bros. library and, unlike The Sopranos, are mostly family-friendly. They include:

  1. Arthur
  2. Arthur 2: On the Rocks
  3. Blinded By the Light
  4. The Bridges of Madison County
  5. Crazy, Stupid, Love
  6. Empire of the Sun
  7. Forget Paris
  8. Happy Feet Two
  9. Isn't It Romantic?
  10. The Lego Movie 2: The Second Part
  11. Midnight Special
  12. My Dog Skip
  13. Nancy Drew And The Hidden Staircase
  14. Pan
  15. Pokémon Detective Pikachu
  16. Red Riding Hood
  17. Smallfoot
  18. Storks
  19. Sucker Punch
  20. Unknown Title To Be Announced

The shows can be viewed directly without a sign-in on the HBO GO and HBO NOW websites or via their apps. (The services are nearly identical, but HBO GO is typically included with a cable subscription; HBO NOW is a standalone streaming service.) If you’d like to sample the full range of HBO series like Game of Thrones, The Outsider, or Curb Your Enthusiasm, the channel is offering a seven-day free trial.

According to the press release, the programming will be available to watch without subscribing through the end of April.

Which Fictional Character Are You? This Online Quiz Might Give You an Eerily Accurate Answer

Peter Dinklage's Tyrion Lannister is the unofficial king of witty side comments. Are you, too?
Peter Dinklage's Tyrion Lannister is the unofficial king of witty side comments. Are you, too?
Kevin Winter/Getty Images

While watching a TV show or movie, you might find yourself trying to draw parallels between you and a certain character you’d want to be. If you’re like many viewers, it’s probably one of the heroic ones—the handsome private investigator with a tortured past and an unerring moral compass or the fearless queen who builds her kingdom from nothing and defends it to the death, etc.

But which character would you actually be? Openpsychometrics.org, a site that develops personality tests, has a new online quiz that might give you an uncannily accurate answer. You’ll be confronted with a series of 28 questions that ask you to pinpoint where you fall between two traits on a percentage-based spectrum. For example, if you’re more playful than serious, slide the bar toward the word playful until you’ve reached your desired ratio. The ratio could be anything from 51 percent playful and 49 percent serious, to a full 100 percent playful and not a single iota of seriousness at all. Other spectrums include artistic versus scientific, dominant versus submissive, spiritual versus skeptical, and more.

Once you’ve completed the quiz, you’ll find out which fictional character your personality most closely matches from a database of around 500 television and film characters. To pinpoint the personalities of the characters themselves, the quiz creators asked survey participants to rate them on a series of traits, and those collective results are then compared to your own self-ratings.

If you scroll down below your top result, you’ll see an option to show your full match list, which will give you a much more comprehensive picture of what kind of character you’d be. My top two results—which, ironically, were the same as Mental Floss editor-in-chief Erin McCarthy’s—were The West Wing’s C.J. Cregg and Joey Lucas, suggesting that we both have a no-nonsense attitude, a perfectionist streak, and an apparent aptitude for national politics that (at least in our cases) will likely go unfulfilled.

The fictional twin of managing editor Jenn Wood, on the other hand, is Game of Thrones’s Tyrion Lannister, unofficial king of witty side comments and all-around fan favorite. This was not surprising. As runner-up, Jenn got her personal hero, Elizabeth Bennet, which, in her words “makes me feel better about myself.” (Jenn has Pride and Prejudice-themed “writing gloves,” which seems important to mention.)

Take the quiz here to find out just how much you have in common with your own personal (fictional) hero.

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