Every Superhero Movie Of 2021, Ranked Worst To Best

The film industry continued to face some struggles in 2021 due to the pandemic, but despite the odds, we still managed to get a bunch of superhero films.

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This genre continued to dominate cinemas and streaming services, and while they were many hits, there were also some hard misses. Now that the year has come to a close, let’s take a look at my list ranking all the superhero films of 2021.


Thunder Force

Lydia and Emily walking together in their super suits in "Thunder Force"

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This was another unfortunate bomb for Melissa McCarthy and her director/husband Ben Falcone. Though it featured the talented McCarthy alongside Academy Award-winner Octavia Spencer, the film was released to scathing reviews, receiving a 21% rating on Rotten Tomatoes. Though it is one of the few films in recent years to depict plus-sized superheroes, it still wasn’t able to achieve the success such a premise deserves with its final product. However, Jason Bateman plays a guy with crab hands, so there’s that.


Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins

Snake Eyes wearing his ninja mask in "Snake Eyes: G.I. Joe Origins"

Paramount / Via

While we weren’t expecting anything staggering from a G.I. Joe film, the trailers displayed some promise with its cast and special effects. But despite the performances and its visuals, Snake Eyes still came out the door with mixed reviews, with people criticizing the story and its actions scenes. In the end, this film failed to reach the commercial and critical heights of Marvel and DC with what is supposed to be the start of its own cinematic universe.


Venom: Let There Be Carnage

Carnage in a church in "Venom: Let There Be Carnage"

Sony / Via

This sequel was a vast improvement over the original, as the filmmakers have fully embraced the ridiculousness of its premise and emphasized the wack buddy dynamic between Eddie Brock and the Venom symbiote. At the same time, it features an unforgettably terrifying performance from Woody Harrelson as the villainous Carnage. While it could’ve spent more time exploring the characters and their motivations, it was still a very enjoyable film that proves the potential of Sony’s Spider-Man Universe. And that post-credits scene alone was enough to get us all hyped for what the franchise has in store for us.



The Eternals standing together on an oceanside cliff in "Eternals"

Marvel / Via

This cosmic epic was a flawed but ambitious effort from Academy Award-winning director Chloé Zhao and Marvel Studios. Though it featured many spectacular visuals and thought-provoking themes, Eternals suffered from a convoluted story and having to juggle so many new characters at once. Nevertheless, the filmmakers turned what could’ve been a regular elemental battle between the Eternals and the Deviants into a much more interesting struggle between the heroes themselves. Hopefully, we’ll get to see Zhao improve upon this film as director of a sequel, preferably one featuring a certain “Devourer of Worlds.”


Black Widow

Black Widow standing in the wreckage of the Red Room in "Black Widow"

Marvel / Via

After being pushed back by a year, audiences finally got to see Marvel’s return to the big screen with Black Widow’s long-awaited standalone film. Presenting an engaging story with action scenes that hit like a hammer, Black Widow is a heart-pounding and heartwarming film that serves as a fitting end for Scarlett Johanssen’s run in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. It also gave us our new favorite character in Florence Pugh’s Yelena Belova.


Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings

Shang-Chi in a fighting stance on a bus in "Shang Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings"

Marvel / Via

Following its groundbreaking achievement with Black Panther, Marvel made another step forward in promoting diversity in Hollywood with this blockbuster. As the first Asian-led superhero film, Shang-Chi was an unforgettable introduction to the once-obscure Marvel hero, featuring some of the best action scenes ever seen in a superhero movie. Awkwafina, Meng’er Zhang, and Tony Leung also gave us memorable performances as Katy, Xu Xialing, and the villainous Xu Wenwu respectively.


The Suicide Squad

The Suicide Squad walking through the rain in "The Suicide Squad"

Warner Bros. / Via

James Gunn really went wild with this one. Following the critically panned Suicide Squad, this soft reboot follows the titular team when they are assigned to travel to an island nation and wipe out any traces of the alien starfish, Starro. Paying homage to ’70s war films and its comic book source material, The Suicide Squad elevated the franchise with its dazzling visuals, heartfelt story, and clever humor. And James Gunn proved he can make a great movie about anything.


Zack Snyder’s Justice League

The Justice League standing in the sunset atop a nuclear cooling tower in "Zack Snyder's Justice League"

Warner Bros. / Via

Warner Bros. really struck out when they scrapped this film. After four years of campaigning online, fans finally got to see Zack Snyder’s version of Justice League, and boy, he did not disappoint. Featuring a vast amount of cut material with greater character development and revamped visuals, this director’s cut is an entirely new film that surpassed the much-maligned theatrical cut. 

All in all, Zack Snyder gave audiences a four-hour superhero epic rivaling Lord of the Rings and made it a film truly his own. While Warner Bros. may never #RestoretheSnyderVerse, Snyder’s magnum opus made a lasting impression, and it seemed like a great way for the director to leave the franchise. His film will also no doubt go down in cinema history as the film that shook the industry as a whole.


Spider-Man: No Way Home

Spider-Man standing on a ruined highway in his Iron Spider suit with his four robot arms out in "Spider-Man: No Way Home"

Sony / Via

Aside from Avengers: Endgame, this film was the most highly-anticipated superhero film of all time. Having left audiences on a massive cliffhanger in Far From Home, everyone was eager to see how Peter Parker would deal with a world that suddenly learned he is Spider-Man. On top of that, we got to see villains from past Spider-Man films get pulled into the MCU for an all-out war. 

No Way Home was a bold endeavor for Marvel, as it could’ve collapsed under the weight of its ambitious premise or leaned too hard on delivering fanservice. But somehow, director Jon Watts and Marvel Studios succeeded in creating one of the best superhero films in history. This entire movie is a celebration of what made Spider-Man so great while breaking new ground for the web-slinger, setting the stage for more great adventures with him for years to come.

Do you agree with this list? Were there any movies that you think should’ve been ranked differently? Please let me know in the comments section below.

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