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For The 'The Avengers' Assembly – Our Top Ten Superhero Movies Of All Time

Karl Heitmueller
May 3rd, 2012 9:00am EDT
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As the Avengers finally assemble, bringing the biggest superhero movie yet to the big screen, we have to ask: Of all these darn superhero movies, which ones are the best? Luckily, we can also answer that question we just asked ourselves. Let the debate commence!

The Shadow

10) THE SHADOW (1994)

A lot of movies could’ve taken this spot on the list, but for the sake of mixing things up, I’m going with this oft-dismissed adaptation of the classic radio / pulp / comics hero (many will argue he’s not a superhero, but he fits the criteria). Director Russell Mulcahy crafted a moody, stylish art-deco period piece and the story (in which the Shadow battles the would-be world conqueror Shiwan Khan, nicely played by John Lone with a fantastically over-the-top Tim Curry as one of his minions) displays a deft balance of old-school melodrama and humor. The film’s considered a campy trifle by many fans of the character, but its real problem—and it’s a big one—is a horribly miscast lead; the smart alecky Alec Baldwin is incapable of conveying the kind of chilling dominion personified by Orson Welles in the 1930s radio show. If “The Shadow” featured a more fitting star (imagine Daniel Day-Lewis or Rutger Hauer), it would probably be held in higher regard.

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