8 Marvel And DC Superhero Movies That Deserved A "Best Picture" Nomination At The Oscars

There's a lot of buzz surrounding the possibility that Spider-Man: No Way Home could score an upset win at this year's Oscars, but which Marvel and DC movies from the past at least deserved a nomination?

It's hard to think of a film genre more successful than the superhero one. Sure, we still get the odd dud, but for the most part, things just keep looking better and better for our favourite comic book characters, so why do they still not receive any serious awards attention?

The likes of Joker and Black Panther have come close, but neither of them managed to walk away with the "Best Picture" gong at the Oscars. Now, all eyes are on Spider-Man: No Way Home.

These awards obviously aren't the be-all and end-all, but are a stamp of approval in Hollywood. Many comic book-based pictures have been every bit as critically acclaimed as the type of films that frequently clean up come awards season, and it's pretty mind-blowing that a superhero movie has never won.

Looking back over the dozens of superhero movies that have graced the big screen over the years, which of them were most deserving of the "Best Picture" Oscar? We hope Spider-Man's latest adventure will be the first, but here, we take at the movies that at least deserved to be nominated.

To take a look at what made the cut, simply click on the "Next" button below!

8. Logan


Logan may not have been the "Old Man Logan" adaptation some of us were hoping for, but there's simply no denying that it delivered a superb ending to Hugh Jackman's tenure as Wolverine.

Director James Mangold played a little too fast and loose with continuity here and there, and the whole "X-24" idea worked better for some fans than others (it should have been Sabretooth, right?). Looking beyond such minor nitpicks, though, and as a film, Logan was outstanding. Beautifully shot with stunning performances from Jackman, Patrick Stewart, and Dafne Keene, this was excellent on many levels.

The movie was nominated for "Best Adapted Screenplay," which appeared to be opening the door for comic book adaptations to be recognised in a new way. That sadly hasn't been the case and it felt like something of a consolation prize when it was worthy of a "Best Picture" nod.

7. The Avengers


Joss Whedon's decision to shoot The Avengers in an aspect ration more suitable to a TV show probably didn't help this movie's chances come awards season, but let's face it, the Academy looks down on the genre, so it was likely never going to be considered anyway. Regardless, while this may seem small in scale by today's standards, if you were around for this in 2012, you'll know it was a game-changer.

Finding the right balance of action, humour, and drama that the Marvel Studios releases have since become known for, The Avengers effortlessly made history by bringing together heroes from different movies, putting them together, and making it work in a way that broke box office records.

The special effects were also incredible, and while the way the Chitauri invasion was handled wasn't exactly perfect, Whedon's script was smart enough that it deserved to be recognised. Whedon's star has fallen in recent years for obvious reasons, but if you let your mind wander back a decade, you'll no doubt agree that this movie should have received some plaudits.

6. Spider-Man 2


Eighteen years after it was first released, Spider-Man 2 remains one of the greatest superhero movies of all time. Spider-Man was very good, but by the time the sequel rolled around, Sam Raimi had found a winning formula that put the web-slinger on the map in a truly spectacular fashion. 

Featuring groundbreaking visual effects, powerful performances from its leads, and a screenplay as complex and funny as the best Marvel Studios movies, Spider-Man 2 did not disappoint.

In 2004, this sequel's technical achievements were as groundbreaking as Jurassic Park and Titanic's, while every actor really gave it their all. There's also a charm and tone Raimi brought to this movie - while attempting to recapture the magic of Stan Lee and Steve Ditko's early stories - that feels like a love letter to both the character and New York City. Alas, the Academy ignored all of that.

5. Captain America: The Winter Soldier


There's a lot to love about Captain America: Civil War, but as great as that movie was, The Winter Soldier arguably beats it when it comes to being worthy of a "Best Picture" nomination. Joe and Anthony Russo didn't just exceed expectations here, they blew them away, and we were left with a superhero movie that not only delivered in terms of action and spectacle, but also on an emotional level.

Captain America: The First Avenger brushed over Steve and Bucky's friendship fairly quickly, but this movie managed to make things right with just a single flashback. As The Winter Soldier mercilessly beat Captain America, a bloodied Steve telling his old friend that he's with him "till the end of the line" really packed a punch and delivered a powerful statement about friendship and trauma.

The whole idea of a "Popular" movie category at the Oscars was quickly shot down, but this feels like a movie that would have easily won in that award, as it did everything that sort of blockbuster should. Throw in the performances and espionage thriller elements, and we'd go with "Best Picture."

4. The Dark Knight


Heath Ledger may have won a well-deserved posthumous Oscar for his role as The Joker in The Dark Knight, but the fact that the movie was snubbed caused an uproar and led to the rules being changed so that more movies would be given the opportunity to receive a nomination (sadly, that's made little to no difference over the past fourteen years).

While it may not be the most comic book faithful adaptation on this list, The Dark Knight is still a damn masterpiece, and one of the best blockbusters to ever hit the big screen.

Christopher Nolan pretty much revolutionised the industry with his use of IMAX cameras for some of the best sequences ever put on film (that bank robbery was a thing of beauty), while it wasn't just Ledger who delivered an incredible performance here. The fact that this movie didn't score one of those coveted gold statues is probably one of the biggest mistakes ever made by the Academy, and if something like this can't win the big one, what will? 

3. Superman: The Movie


Superman: The Movie may not look like much by today's standards, but at the time, it was truly groundbreaking. The movie promised to make audiences believe a man could fly, and it did.

Christopher Reeve delivered in a big way here for a relative unknown, while impressive performances from the legends like Marlon Brando and Terrence Stamp ensured that the Man of Steel's first real big screen adventure made a mark. While the movie received nominations for Best Film Editing, Best Music (Original Score), and Best Sound Mixing (it even received a Special Achievement Academy Award for Visual Effects), Superman was not given a Best Picture nod.

That's a damn shame. Perhaps people at the time didn't realise just how special this movie was, but it's since become clear. Just look at the impact this has had on both the Superman mythos and pop culture as a whole?

2. Avengers: Infinity War


We've talked a lot about Earth's Mightiest Heroes here, but what makes this effort from the Russo Brothers worthy? From a technical standpoint, the work that went into creating Thanos was filmmaking at its finest, while the emotional impact of Gamora's death and half the universe being snapped out of existence left a lasting impression on moviegoers in a way not many titles do.

Fans and non-fans alike spent a year talking about what the fallout from Avengers: Infinity War would lead to, and there really aren't many Oscar-winners we can think of that had the same staying power when it comes to the consciousness of paying moviegoers. We're not suggesting the 2017 release should have necessarily won "Best Picture," but it deserved to be nominated. 

After all, it was a damn good film in its own right that made us laugh, cry, and cheer. The Russo Brothers excelled themselves here, but would go on to outdo even this just one year later...

1. Avengers: Endgame


If Avengers: Infinity War was great, Avengers: Endgame can only really be described as perfect. An incredible celebration of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this is a movie that probably shouldn't have worked. After all, it involved even more characters than its predecessor, a potentially confusing time-travel story, and a battle so huge in scale that it could have easily become a jumbled mess.

Instead, Joe and Anthony Russo delivered a three-hour movie that flew by, showcasing countless fan-pleasing moments, hard-hitting emotion, and action unlike anything we've seen on screen before.

This was truly phenomenal filmmaking, and more of an experience than a blockbuster. Setting aside the technological achievements on display, Avengers: Endgame boasted a compelling story and epitomised everything great about the blockbuster experience. If that doesn't sound like a "Best Picture" candidate to you - while Bohemian Rhapsody does - we really don't know what to say.

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