10 Superhero Movies That Totally Wasted Their Potential

6. The Green Hornet

By the time The Green Hornet was released, the Marvel Cinematic Universe was already in full swing. At this point in time, most superhero movies strived to match the quality of Iron Man.

At the same time, they also sought to offer up a different experience. That’s where The Green Hornet came into play. Although the budget was still massive, Michael Gondry seemed to want to deliver something lower stakes and lighter. To some extent he did, but he never completely nailed it.

See, The Green Hornet is by no means a bad movie. It’s just not a very good one. Seth Rogen and Jay Chou have tons of chemistry, but that doesn’t excuse a barely-there plot with little to no stakes. It’s understandable to try to provide audiences with something less grandoise, but there needs to be some reason to watch. This all just seems sort of pointless.


7. Venom

Last year’s Venom never really seemed like surefire slam dunk. We were getting PG-13 Venom movie without Spider-Man directed by the guy who brought us Gangster Squad. Yep, there were some warning signs, but there were also plenty of things that sounded promising.

The cast was stacked, the trailers were more hit than miss, and the idea of a shared universe could have worked in theory. It may have been a dice roll, but the movie did have more potential than something like Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance.

Unfortunately, people were right to worry. Venom was not well-received, and it’s easy to see why. It’s a tonally inconsistent mess of a movie that can’t decide whether it wants to make you laugh or gasp. To make matters worse, it feels like the product of a different time period. Sure, the visual effects are lovely, but following so many superhero success stories, we shouldn’t be getting something that feels like a companion-piece to Daredevil.

Regardless, Venom was financially successful. Worldwide, it outgrossed Wonder Woman, Spider-Man 2, Guardians of the Galaxy, and Suicide Squad. In other words, it managed to rake in hundreds of millions of dollars despite the fact that it was a critical punching bag. This means that a sequel is inevitable. The real question is this: can the sequel fix the countless problems seen in the original?


8. X-Men Origins: Wolverine


Some comic book characters are overrated. Wolverine is not one of those characters. One of the most fascinating characters in the X-Men universe absolutely deserved his own origin story. It’s just too bad Gavin Hood couldn’t do the character justice.

Later Wolverine movies were actually pretty solid, but this first go-around was sort of a mess. Silencing Deadpool may be the running joke, but that’s actually one of the more minor problems here. Frankly, they botched Wolverine’s origin by telling a cliché origin story that wastes the more unique aspects of the character. We’ve seen this before, and we’ve seen it better.

Again, it’s great that we eventually got something as good as Logan, but this was not the appropriate way to start a Wolverine trilogy. X-Men: The Last Stand seems to be the series punching bag, but this may very well be the worst movie in the series. Luckily, the X-Men movies are more good than bad, but this is a definite stain on the reputation of the series.


9. Jonah Hex

Jonah Hex

Earning a mere $10 million at the box office, it’s safe to say that Jonah Hex was a financial failure, but box office numbers aren’t everything. It would be wonderful if we could talk about how this movie was actually excellent in spite of its financial woes, but that would be a giant lie. Jonah Hex rightfully earned its status as a box office bomb by being damn near unwatchable.

The 12% Rotten Tomatoes score is actually fairly accurate. This is a muddled mess with bad acting and an overall a lack of focus. Poorly edited action scenes take precedence over any sort of exposition. This means that viewers are unable to care about anything happening on screen because, frankly, it’s all happening a little too fast.

A lot of movies on this list seem as if they were ruined during the editing process, and this is no exception. Jonah Hex feels like a series of random scenes slapped together in an effort to make something that will appeal to teenage boys. Too bad the poor quality of just about everything alienates any potential audience. Overall, this is a movie that will leave everyone unhappy.


10. Hulk


Ang Lee has two Academy Awards for Best Director. He has directed some of the most critically acclaimed movies out there. His brilliant mind has given us Sense & Sensibility, Brokeback Mountain, Life of Pi, and Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon. Basically, this is a man who knows how to make movies, but you might not know that if you’ve only seen Hulk.

In theory, a director like Lee should have been able to deliver a superhero masterpiece, but the sheer amount of ambition caused this movie’s undoing. Hulk wanted to do too much, and that’s not the point of the character.

Audiences went in expecting big explosions caused by one giant green behemoth. Instead, they got a dry, dialogue-heavy drama without interesting dialogue. Maybe this could’ve worked with a different comic book character, but not the massive green killing machine.

The 2008 reboot starring Edward Norton got slightly better reviews because it took a far more straightforward approach. Still, audiences have yet to see a solo Hulk movie that really nails the character. Ang Lee tried to do something really unique this first time around, and while that’s definitely admirable, it didn’t translate to an enjoyable experience.