The Captain America: First Avenger movie is released this Friday and I’m pretty excited. There’ve been a lot of great comic book movies lately. It’s like Hollywood is beginning to realize how much comic book needs to be injected into a movie. Sometimes it’s too much, sometimes it’s not enough. Getting the right balance can be tricky.

I’ve decided to run down My Top 10 Comic Book Movies. I understand that taste is subjective and picking the top ten was really hard. Would I grade it by style, story, or just pure gut reaction? I just went with a “what would I rather see again” judgement. So let’s begin:

10) 300

Frank Miller’s vision captured on screen. I remember people complaining about the slow motion but I think it eloquently made the comic book panel into a movie. Certain elements in a comic you want to freeze frame and look at more closely. Doing the slow motion in the movie was a great choice.

9) Watchmen

The same director of 300 but this time playing with an Alan Moore story. Both 300 and Watchmen were pretty loyal adaptations of the source material, I found the end solution in the movie to be a bit more poetic than in the book.

8 ) Scott Pilgrim vs. the World

What can I say about Scott Pilgrim? The comic is great and remarkably successful for an alternative comic. The director of the movie is the same great director of Shaun of the Dead. The Scott Pilgrim movie was the perfect collaboration between source material and the director’s vision. Strangely, it seemed to intimidate the audience. I heard people say that “the trailer was funny but I don’t know…”

Scott Pilgrim vs. the World also stars Chris Evans, aka Captain America.

7) Spider-man

Spider-man was fun. It really played up the awkward teenage Peter Parker and sold it with Tobey Maguire. The discovering and playing around with his powers was a great scene. Willem Dafoe made a fantastic Green Goblin. It’s one of the great Super-hero movies.

Tobey Maguire was in Spider-man with Stan Lee who was in the Fantastic Four with Chris Evans. That’s one degree of separation.

6) The Losers

This movie came out around the same time as the A-Team movie and is essentially about the A-Team because they are a team of CIA fugitives righting wrongs and clearing their name. Both movies feature the Port of Los Angeles but where the A-Team movie has a bigger budget and bigger-name actors, The Losers has Chris Evans.

5) Thor

Thor was a surprising movie this season. I wasn’t sure if I’d like it but I had hopes that I would. And wouldn’t you know it, Loki stole the show. I really loved the dynamic of Thor and Loki in the movie. Is Loki a villain or just a misguided brother who is used to being powerful but seen as weak (and making that into a strength). Great movie.

Thor also stars Idris Elba who was in The Losers with Chris Evans!

4) X-Men: First Class

Stylistically, this was an amazing movie. It makes perfect sense to set the origin of the X-Men in the 60s because that’s when the origin of the X-Men actually took place. Unfortunately, they had to flub around with the characters and the story a bit but it was still really well done.

X-Men: First Class stars Kevin Bacon who was in Animal House with Donald Sutherland who was in Fierce People with Chris Evans!

See what I did there?

2) Tie between Iron Man and The Dark Knight

This one was the most difficult and therefore I had to declare a tie. I am a big Batman fan and I thought that The Dark Knight was the best executed Batman movie I’ve ever seen and I can’t imagine it any better. The first time I watched it, I was on the edge of my seat and it felt like everything was in slow motion. When I watched it again, I was amazed at how quick everything was. I only managed not to miss anything because I knew what to expect from seeing it before.

Iron Man was also an amazingly executed movie. Robert Downey Jr. was charming and funny and the perfect Tony Stark. The story and action worked seamlessly. As much as I would rank Iron Man in third place and The Dark Knight in second, the lighthearted appeal of the movie brings it up to share the second place spot.

1) Speed Racer

I know. It’s surprising! I remember watching the cheesy cartoon and laughing when the villain jumped out a window to make an escape from a less than dire situation. Since it was originally a Japanese comic, it counts as a comic book movie. I wanted to watch Speed Racer because I was bored and why not.

Wow! It was glorious! High energy. Great visuals. It was a cartoon come to life and it was more than that. The story of the underdog fighting against corruption by not breaking his moral code. When you hear people discuss “real life” and how “sacrifices must be made” or “integrity is over-rated” it was great to watch a movie where the ideology was so fundamental to the strength of the character. It was seriously uplifting.

And Paulie Litt, the kid who plays Spritle, reminds me of a young Shea LaBeouf. He’s great!

I’ll be watching the Captain America movie in the near future and I wonder if it will place in the top ten. Here’s hoping it’s Marvel-ous!

Yeah, that sucked.