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The 10 Most Perfect Superhero Movie Endings of All Time – TheFantasyTimes

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By Jitin Gambhir

The 10 Most Perfect Superhero Movie Endings of All Time



The conclusion of a story is often considered its most crucial element, regardless of genre. In the realm of superhero and comic book movies, the emphasis has historically been on colorful characters, action sequences, and special effects. However, visionary filmmakers have elevated the genre by incorporating deeper themes and messages that inspire and uplift viewers of all ages.

As the genre gained more recognition and respect, filmmakers began to focus more on storytelling, resulting in more thoughtfully crafted endings. While some superhero movies still prioritize special effects and action over storytelling, many have succeeded in creating truly memorable endings. Here are ten superhero films with perfect endings.

Tim Burton’s Batman (1989) was a game-changer for the genre, propelling it to new heights and changing opinions on its potential quality. The film’s iconic ending, featuring the city gathering to shine the bat-signal and reveal The Dark Knight standing triumphantly on top of a building, is pure magic.

Sam Raimi’s original Spider-Man (2002) and its sequel (2004) also have perfect endings. The first film’s ending features Peter walking away from a heartfelt conversation with Mary-Jane, followed by a shot of Spider-Man swinging through the city. The sequel’s ending is even more masterful, with Mary-Jane making the choice to be with Peter despite the challenges they’ll face, followed by a shot of her looking apprehensive about the future.

Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008) may be underrated within the genre, but its ending is a delight. The whole crew quits the agency, and Liz reveals to Hellboy that they’re having twins, with a deliciously wry smile on her face. The film wraps up the story well, with a sense of finality and closure as Hellboy enters a new future as a family man.

Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3 (2023) provides a fitting sendoff for the beloved MCU team of outcasts. Each character’s arc has closure, and as sad as it is to say goodbye, they all fully earned an ending like this.

Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021) features a bittersweet and special ending. Peter makes the difficult choice to request that everyone’s memory of him be erased, demonstrating true growth and love for those he cares about. The ending is both sad and exciting, as Peter steps into his new life as a new Spider-Man.

Logan (2017) was billed as the final chapter in the X-Men saga, and it delivered. The film’s exquisite storytelling, fulfilling character arcs, and poignant themes culminate in a deeply satisfying ending. As Logan literally fights his own demons in the form of a dark clone, the film meditates on themes of grief, pain, and anger. The final shot of Laura taking up Logan’s mantle is a fitting and emotional conclusion to the film and the character’s journey.

In conclusion, while many superhero movies prioritize action and special effects over storytelling, the genre has produced some truly memorable and satisfying endings. These ten films showcase the power of storytelling in the superhero genre and demonstrate that a great ending can elevate a film to new heights.

They say the ending is the most important part of the story. For any story, in any genre. Now, the superhero/comic-book genre on film has historically been known for things like colorful characters, action spectacles, wondrous special effects, and positive and deep themes/messages imbued within, in order to inspire and uplift, particularly children. But because of those stereotypes, for many films in the genre (especially the older ones), the storytelling wasn’t given as much attention.

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But thanks to a handful of incredible (and incredibly successful) films and visionary filmmakers, the genre started to become taken more seriously as time went by, starting from Tim Burton’s Batman in the ’90s, and gradually continuing through the next few decades. The reason was because of the level of quality in the storytelling, the care and passion brought forth by those filmmakers, the use of the characters and stories to touch on deep and complex issues within society, reflections/meditation on the human condition, and plenty of other conversation starters. And as the genre started to get taken seriously – and the expectations became serious – the storytelling was challenged to enhance, and thus, the endings of many films were handled with more thought and care.

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Over time, the excuse of it just being a “superhero” film didn’t suffice anymore to not take the subject seriously, to forego good storytelling (and endings) in favor of “magical” special effects, vibrant costumes, action spectacle, etc., and the industry started to produce more superhero films with care, thoughtfulness, and of course, passion. Unfortunately, though, some of those films in the modern era still couldn’t get a good ending right, much less a perfect one (ahem, Fantastic Four (2015), ahem). Luckily, there are far more of them that did get it right, and some got it REALLY right. Here are 10 superhero films that we consider to have a perfect ending.


Batman (1989)

batman-1989
Warner Bros.

Let’s start the list with the aforementioned film that, arguably, propelled the genre to new heights and changed opinion on its potential quality. Tim Burton’s Batman is a great, classic example of the genre and was a game-changer. But for all the things it’s constantly praised for, It’s easy to overlook what a memorable, iconic ending it had.

After his final showdown with the Joker, the city gathering to shine the bat-signal, Vicki Vale walking and being met by Alfred, the camera panning from the dark alley and all the way up the building to reveal The Dark Knight standing on top, by his signal in the sky, and all backed by Danny Elfman’s immortal score – pure magic!

Spider-Man (2002)

Tobey Maguire in Spider-Man (2002)
Sony Pictures

Sam Raimi’s original Spider-Man was another game-changer that, arguably, kick-started the next decade of super-hero obsession! And it, too, has an iconic ending. The way Peter walks away after his heartfelt dialogue with Mary-Jane, the camera closeup through his eye to reveal the end sequence of Spider-Man swinging through New York City, perching momentarily by the American flag, then swinging right into the screen – absolutely timeless!

Spider-Man 2 (2004)

Crates Haze in Spider-Man 2 (2004)
Sony Pictures Releasing

Sam Raimi’s sequel is considered one of the best superhero movies – and sequels – ever. So it’s no surprise that it also has a perfect ending, like the original film. Peter finally gets his wish in a heartfelt, cathartic scene when Mary-Jane appears and makes the choice to be with him, regardless of the challenges they’ll face.

The scene then starts rolling out into the city in another amazing swing sequence that is expected to end the film, since it seems like the best way to do so… but with the final shot, in fact, coming back to MJ looking on, her facial expression not smiling or happy, but sad and apprehensive, with an awareness of the difficult road she chose and a sense of foreboding about the future, in a nice foreshadowing nod to the audience about the struggles they’ll face in the next sequel. And that final shot elevates the ending from great to masterful!

Hellboy II: The Golden Army (2008)

hellboy 2 the golden army
Universal Pictures

Guillermo del Toro’s Hellboy films are vastly underrated within the genre, but particularly, the sequel is one of the best ones ever made. Everything about it is phenomenal! From the acting to the humor to the costumes, makeup, visual effects, and everything in between. And the ending was absolutely a delight! The whole crew quits the agency and Liz reveals to Hellboy that they’re having twins, with a delicious and wry smile on her face and then Big Red giving that dumbfounded expression as the frame freezes, and “I Can’t Smile Without You” starts playing into the credits.

Utterly charming, original, creative, and hilarious… and despite popular wishes for there to be a third film madethe ending actually wraps up the story well…with a sense of finality and closure at the thought of a retired Hellboy going into a new future as a family man!

Related: Black Superheroes We Want to See on the Big Screen

Guardians of the Galaxy Volume 3 (2023)

The Guardians of the Galaxy team up.
Marvel Studios

The third Guardians film was an incredible sendoff to our beloved MCU team of outcasts, as a whole. But the way it ended things for the characters really couldn’t have been better, more fitting, or more bittersweet. From Rocket stepping up into his destined role as the new leader, to Nebula and Drax finding new purpose and happily celebrating in song & dance with everyone on Knowhere, Mantis finally breaking out in her independence and into uncharted waters, Gamora finding new family among the ravagers, and Peter returning to earth… each character’s arc had closure.

Each one had growth and new purpose. And as sad as it was to say goodbye… they all fully earned an ending like this.

Spider-Man: No Way Home (2021)

Peter and MJ kiss in Spider-Man: No Way Home.
Sony / Marvel Studios

A gargantuan film for sure, Tom Holland’s third outing has been praised already in every way possible. But the way it ends things is truly bittersweet and special. In the coffee shop, Peter has the opportunity to reunite with MJ and Ned, but decides against it as he sees how much more peaceful their lives are without him. With this action, Peter finally shows true growth. In the previous two films, he was still a kid, still reaching for adventure and mischief, still bumbling through life and love in the usual, conflicting, teenage way.

But by making the biggest sacrifice in this film by requesting that everyone’s memory of him be erased, and sticking by that decision in the coffee shop scene, Peter did something he hasn’t done before, making the hard choice for the good of those he loves, and growing into the Peter Parker we all know and love. It was truly sad and heartfelt. But he’s also starting his new life now, getting his own apartment, and once again, stepping out of that window, and once again swinging into the world as a new Spider-Man now. The ending is both bittersweet and at the same time exciting for what the future holds for our beloved web-slinger now. A perfect way for this trilogy of films to close.

Logan (2017)

Hugh Jackman in Logan (2017)
20th Century Fox

A film that was billed as the swan song for the most popular cinematic X-Man, of course, had absurdly high expectations of how it would end his long and torturous, but incredible journey, and boy, did it blow those expectations out of the water. It had everything fans wanted, and everything they didn’t know they did. Exquisite storytelling, deep poignancy, contemporary resonance, fulfilling arcs, action, and heavy berserker violence (finally!), sadness, grief, meditation, quiet emotion, and even a few surprises.

Logan had been fighting with himself internally his entire life, and in a wonderfully fitting third act, he now literally fought himself this time, a dark embodiment of who he is, as if all of his pain, hate, anger, and demons manifested externally into his cold and calculating clone – again, deeply poignant and poetic. And after Laura gave her stirring speech, that last shot of her changing the cross to an X and the camera closing in on it; the ending of a lifetime.

Related: Why None of the Old X-Men Cast Should Return in the MCU

The Dark Knight Rises (2012)

The Dark Knight Rises
Warner Bros. Pictures

Another momentous, grand finale that had god-like expectations! The Dark Knight Risesas a whole, may not have quite cleared the incredibly heavy bar that was already set for it, but it absolutely delivered on being a pitch perfect sendoff to The Dark Knight of his generation. The ending had everything audiences hoped for, and then some, brought home in an epically thrilling and emotional fashion. There are very few films – and we’re not talking just superhero films here – that are able to match the catharsis of the last five minutes of this film.

Avengers: Infinity War (2018)

Thanos in Avengers Infinity War
Marvel Studios

As the first of a two-part finale that brought almost the entirety of the MCU together, and was supposed to close the door on roughly a decade of complex storytelling, there were only so many ways people expected for the penultimate chapter to end – and not made easy either by the endless barrage of rumors, leaks, theories, and gossip that permeated pop culture for months and months in the lead up to its release – so it was more important, rather, HOW the end would be executed rather than the content, of which, much of was already guessed.

And still. When it came…no one could be prepared. This was one of the darkest and most impactful endings of the MCU, and even though it was obvious that most of the characters who seemingly “died” would return for the true end, there was still a certain shock and awe that vibrated throughout after Thanos snapped his fingers in that iconic moment, reverberating with every character that started to turn to dust before our very eyes, disappearing into nothing.

There was a cold stillness infecting every frame that came after the snap, as the body of another fan-favorite character withered away, and another, culminating in the still heartbreaking scene of a young Peter slowly vanishing in the arms of Tony Stark, and finally, the genius last sequence of Thanos retreating on an unknown planet, looking out into the sunset in contentment with the music playing as the film ends. Something about it all is still haunting, even today. Maybe it’s because this is one of the few films where we see the villain win, and the film ends with his face, or maybe, it’s just because of the genius of the Russo brothers and their directionas well as the acting, that made it as memorable as it was.

Avengers: Endgame (2019)

Captain America & Peggy Carter Avengers: Endgame
Walt Disney Studios Motion Pictures

This was the end of an era. The end of a decade’s phase. The end of not one film, but an entire saga of interconnected films, arcs, characters, and stories. No one knew how it should be done. No one could imagine how it would be done. And yet, after all these years and wonderful experiences watching these stories unfold, characters come together, and everything culminating in breathless fashion, leading into a final act that now sits firmly within cinema’s iconic showdowns, after everything, it ended as it should have; with closure, victory, peace, the passing of a few torches, and with a final end scene that was sincere, dignified, and beautifully simple.

Because again, it earned it. The characters earned it. The rest of the film was so huge and grand in storytelling and scope, that for the curtain call, why not come back down a bit and make things a little simpler and smaller? Why not end with one of the main characters slow dancing with his beloved… in a beautiful, emotional, peaceful, and cathartic sequence that everyone can feel for, relate to, and simply smile at? That’s something the audience earned.

And looking back, we can’t imagine a more perfect way to end the film, and the Infinity Saga.

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