8 Superhero Movies NOT a part of the DC/Marvel Universe

Updated: Feb 10

In last times selection, I covered the all too funny Slapstick comedy-genre. This week I decided to go for something a little bit different from my norm. Superhero movies! However, as everyone is more than well aware of all the MCU and DC content, I thought I'd go for films not related to them.

And as I don't think I need to define what the superhero genre is. The rules for this list are going to be pretty straight forward. So as long as the film has people either trying to be heroes, have superhero-like abilities or use equipment like batman. Then nearly anything goes except for the obvious no Marvel or DC content.

Defendor 2009

During the day Arthur, a simple yet likeable man, works within the construction industry. And at first, glance appears to lead a healthy and relatively normal life. Nevertheless, during the night, Arthur transforms into a superhero called Defendor. With no special powers or abilities, he takes his alter-ego out into the night to protect the streets from crooked cops, thugs and captain industry.

A funny, touching and pretty heartbreaking comedy-drama. Defendor manages to be funny and poignant without the need for melodrama. Furthermore, it has the added bonus of not becoming a complete tonal mess.Woody Harrelson is the driving force for this movie, proving once against that's he's an exceptionally versatile actor. Similarly the supporting cast all play believable and interesting characters.

I recommend Defendor to those of you who want a superhero movie with wit, charm and the ability to pull at your heartstrings. But if you're looking for something hilarious or action-packed, then I'd probably say give it a miss.

Darkman 1990

The film follows a brilliant scientist called Peyton Westlake who's discovered a way to produce synthetic skin. The only catch with this new discovery is that the skin only lasts for 100 minutes when exposed to light. Due to an unfortunate quarrel with local gangsters, Westlake is beaten, burnt and left for dead. Which puts him on a hunt to exact revenge on those who burned him.

With all the campy madness you'd expect to from a Sam Raimi flick. Darkman is a unique low budget anti-hero movie that's sadly gone under the radar in recent years. And for those of you who haven't seen this, you'll get an odd sense of deja vu as it's film score is written by Danny Elfman who also brought you the Batman OST.

Darkman is an odd but surprisingly impressive revenge movie. That succeeds, not necessarily because of the action or it's practical effects. But due to its engaging protagonist and the consequences of his actions.

Unbreakable 2000

Miraculously surviving a catastrophic train crash. Security Guard David Dunn learns something extraordinary about himself. Not only was he the sole survivor out of 132 passengers. But he also came out of the accident without so much as a scratch. Catching a lot of media attention, David gets contacted by a quirky comic book specialist who has a somewhat controversial theory regarding Davids brush with death.

A modestly suspenseful movie that's led by some great performances. Unbreakable stands out among other superhero type films due to how it subverts a lot of the genres most cliche and tired tropes. A positive that's become more relevant with time. As I'm sure, a lot of you have experienced superhero movie fatigue at some point in recent years.

However, if you're not interested in slow-paced movies that genuinely take their time, you might find this a bit of a snoozefest as this film is what I'd call a slow burn and then some.

Super 2010

When loser Frank Darbo's wife falls under the influence of a drug dealer, he finds himself unable to cope and utterly powerless. However, with the support of a comic book obsessed teenager, he decides to fight back and suit up as a superhero called Crimson Bolt. With his unstable sidekick BOltie at this side, they beat their way through the streets of crime in the hope of saving his wife, before he loses her forever.

Another underrated hidden Gem that was massively overshadowed by its cousin Kick-Ass. Super

is a funny, violent and action-packed superhero drama. While it shares a lot of similarities to Kick-ass, it is, however, a far far darker and more grounded movie. James Gunn almost perfectly showcases what would happen if a slightly unhinged duo of people tried to be superheroes vs real criminal organisations.

This film may not be for everyone, as it's violence is extremely graphic, Super is worth watching if you want a genuinely original take on the superhero genre.

Push 2009

Set in a world where humans have developed psychic abilities. A secret U.S. authority known as Division tracks down these paranormals to use them for hunting or killing their own kind. The story follows Nick Grant, an unskilled second-generation telekinetic. Who only wants to run away from tragic his past. However, Nick is forced to team up with his own kind when he bumps into a girl that changes his life forever.

A film nowhere near as bad as the rating suggests. Most of Push's negative reviews all say that the movie is either confusing or haves an incoherent back story. But the truth is, the start of the film has little to no exposition, so it's down to you the viewer to connect the dots to this relatively straightforward story.

Push has some very cool concepts in a pretty exciting and well-crafted world. It's an enjoyable and interesting film which uses psychic abilities in a way I wish Marvel and D.C. would take notes from and is 100% worth checking out.

Sky High 2005

Set in a world where superheroes are widely known and admired by society. William Stronghold, the son of the world's most famous superhero duo, the commander and Jetstream. Has his share of anxieties about starting superhero high school. But Will's two biggest problems is that he doesn't actually have any superpowers, that and he's kept it a secret from his parents. Will William become a sidekick or discover that he might just not have what it takes to become a hero.

A fun superhero film made before the genre exploded into what it is today. Sky High is an exciting movie that the whole family can enjoy with its bright colours, original but silly powers and likeable yet cliche characters.

Sure it's incredibly predictable, unoriginal, and corny. But, it somehow manages to pull off a relatable high school experience from a superhero pov that's enjoyable and entertaining. So if you want a pre-marvel Disney movie that's cheesy but fun, then try Sky High.

Mystery Men 1999

In Champion City, wannabe superheroes like Mr Furious and his compadres don't feel as though they make any difference. However, when Champion City's beloved superhero and protector, Captain Amazing, is kidnapped. These would-be heroes must try to save the day by rescuing Captain Amazing and stopping a supervillain who's threatening to destroy the city.

One of my all-time favourite superhero movies. Mystery Men has outlandish characters and quirky gags that perfectly suit a superhero spoof. The cast for this film are all brilliant, the ideas for useless superhero powers are all really creative. And the overall story while not precisely what's I'd call groundbreakingly original- gels together with its characters and comedic timing almost flawlessly.

If you don't like slightly crude humour or silly events, then maybe you might not like it. Yet, if you want to see a superhero movie with a fun comedic spin, and likeable characters then Mystery Men might be the movie for you.

Chronicle 2012

Follows Andrew, a troubled high school student who uses a camera to film his everyday life. Andrew and his two only friends Matt and Steve, stumble upon a mysterious hole in the forest that leads to them developing special ESP powers. But things take a dark turn after they learn how to use and abuse their new abilities — leading to events that will turn their lives upside down forever.

Technically almost more of a supervillain rather than hero film. Chronicle is one of those found-footage movies that take full advantage of the sub-genre as it doesn't use just one camera, which adds a lot more depth to its action scenes. Another thing I like about this film is how it starts as a light-hearted teen comedy but then slowly turns into something entirely different.

Chronicle, while a little bit predictable and not exactly what I'd call a perfect movie. Is still a fast-paced, engaging film that's overall a good watch especially if you want to see a movie about superpowers from a different viewpoint.


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I'm a lover of movies, and generally anything for the big (and little) screen. Including most online streaming platforms such as Netflix & Amazon. I try to make my Youtube videos my fellow movie buffs and enthusiasts. By creating consistent movie reviews, Video Essays & Movie Genre Suggestions. I also make monthly videos on What’s coming out on Netflix, Amazon to help my subscribers make suggestions for what they want me to review etc.