Nostalgia and superheroes are the highest grossing movie genres at the box office in 2022

The big screen continues to attract crowds to movie theaters. Movies such as 'Top Gun: Maverick' encouraged more than one to visit theaters during this year that is coming to an end.

Two years after the coronavirus pandemic, the movie box office seems to be recovering from that severe blow. There are hardly any empty theaters or movie theaters on the verge of closing due to lack of income. Paramount Pictures, Marvel, Disney and Universal are some of the film companies that helped the big screen get back part of the audience it had lost for years, partly due to the rise of streaming platforms.

This year, nostalgia, superheroes, animation and films based on video games were some of the most successful film genres not only in the United States, but also in the rest of the world. However, in the country, the top ten grossing films in 2022 were the following:

10. 'Black Adam' (release date: October 21)

The Paramount Pictures movie starring Dwayne Johnson was one of the highest grossing films. It was shown in 4,402 theaters and grossed a total of $166,873,377 in the United States.

In the movie, Johnson plays the anti-hero Black Adam. His character is pursued by public government official Amanda Waller (Viola Davis) who tries to arrest him after learning of his background. He is aided by Carter Hall/Hawkman (Aldis Hodge) and the Justice Society of America who will stop Adam from continuing to wreak havoc on the city.

The movie is currently available on Prime Video for $25 (or $20 if you want to rent it) and it will be available on HBO Max today, December 16. The movie earned $336.9 million at the worldwide box office, which shows that, despite the fact that media outlets such as Variety indicate that Black Adam generated losses of between $50 million and $100 million during its time at the box office (about seven weeks), it is certain that many people in the country were encouraged to see it.

9. 'Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the movie' (release date: April 8)

The popular video game hedgehog returned to the big screen in style. Sonic the Hedgehog 2, the movie was shown in 4,258 movie theaters in the U.S. and earned $190,872,904 at the U.S. box office.

This time, the movie was set eight months after the events of the first installment and once again featured Sonic as the main character. He did not return alone, like in the previous movie. James Marsden, Tika Sumpter and Jim Carrey reprised their roles as Tom and Maddie Wachowski and Dr. Eggman. The movie also served as an introduction to some of the most beloved characters in the video game series, such as Knuckles and Miles.

The movie, which can be viewed online at Prime Video, Paramount+ and Direct TV, ended with a worldwide box office gross of $405,000,000. It will be followed by a third installment scheduled for release on December 20, 2024. A miniseries starring Knuckles was also announced and will be available on Paramount+ on April 8, 2023.

8. 'Spider-Man: No Way Home' (release date: December 17)

Despite being released at the end of 2021, on December 17, much of its box office total was earned during the first weeks of 2022. Spider-Man: No Way Home was one of Marvel's most anticipated films (despite the fact that it was distributed by Sony Pictures Entertainment) and its strong box office performance came as no surprise whatsoever. During the days it was on the big screen in 2022, a total of 4,336 movie theaters screened it and it grossed $231,808,708 in the country.

Peter Parker (Tom Holland) starred in his third Spider-Man installment facing villains that had already appeared in the previous Spider-Man sagas starring Tobey McGuire and Andrew Garfield such as the Green Goblin (Willem Defoe) or Dr. Octopus (Alfred Molina).

Available on Starz and Direct TV, the movie also featured appearances by Benedict Cumberbatch and Zendaya as Dr. Strange and M.J., respectively, and had a worldwide gross of $1,906,693,477.

7. 'Thor: Love and Thunder' (release date: July 8)

The latest Thor installment made by Walt Disney Studios and Marvel Studios proves that superhero movies are still on the rise. The Chris Hemsworth-starring film opened in 4,375 theaters and grossed $343,256,830 domestically.

The movie takes place right after what happened in Avengers Endgame and begins with Thor going on adventures with the Guardians of the Galaxy. However, when he discovers that someone can use his powers thanks to the hammer, he decides to return to Earth and that is where he discovers that his ex-girlfriend, Jane Foster (Natalie Portman) is the new Mighty Thor.

Thor: Love and Thunder, which is available on Disney+, could be Chris Hemsworth's last film playing the role of the god of thunder. The actor was recently diagnosed as having a high probability of suffering from Alzheimer's and, as a result, Hemsworth decided to pause his acting career momentarily.

6. 'The Batman' (release date: March 4)

Robert Pattinson made his big screen debut as Bruce Wayne and both critics and audiences praised his performance. Screened in 4,471 theaters, The Batman grossed a total of $369,345,583 at the U.S. box office and $771 million worldwide.

Warner Bros. presents us with Bruce Wayne already established as the Dark Knight on the hunt for criminals who threaten Gotham. However, a new killer is on the loose and it is none other than Enigma. He and his unusual challenges will put what could be the darkest Batman to date in more than one predicament although Batman will have the help of Selina Kyle / Catwoman played by Zoë Kravitz.

The Batman, which is currently available on HBO Max, will be the first installment of a trilogy that will also feature two spin-off series that will premiere directly on the aforementioned streaming platform.

5. 'Minions: the rise of Gru' (release date: July 1)

The yellow companions of the villain Gru were also a hit on the big screen. Minions: the rise of Gru played in 4,427 theaters and grossed a total of $369,500,210 for Universal Pictures.

The film introduces us to the villain who started it all when he first meets his later sidekicks, the Minions. Gru is only 11 years old but he is determined to become a supervillain. He sees the perfect opportunity when he receives an invitation to an audition from the Vice 6, a team of supervillains looking for a new member to replace their founder. However, the interview goes wrong and Gru is ridiculed for his young age. But, the boy manages to steal a personal item from the villains of great value and relies on Kevin, Stuart and Bob to protect it.

Universal Pictures, the company behind the film, knows well that this saga tends to bring them revenue (worldwide it grossed 936 million making it the fourth highest grossing film of 2022) and this film is already the fifth in the saga and a direct prequel to Minions, the first feature film centered on Gru's helpers. Currently, the film can be viewed online thanks to Peacock.

4. 'Jurassic World: Dominion' (release date: June 10)

The end of the new Jurassic saga was one of the most anticipated movies in the middle of the year and the box office noticed the public's desire to see dinosaurs on the big screen again. Screened in 4,697 domestic theaters, Jurassic World: Dominion grossed a total of $376,009,080 in the United States alone.

The film introduces us to Owen (Chris Pratt) and Claire (Bryce Dallas Howard) a time after what happened in Jurassic World: Fallen Kingdom, dinosaurs are dominating the entire planet and humans have to learn to live with them. However, living together does not prove to be easy and a new problem will cause Owen and Claire to join forces with the protagonists of the original saga, Alan Grant (Sam Neill), Ellie Satler (Laura Dern) and Dr. Ian Malcolm (Jeff Goldblum) to try to solve it.

Jurassic World: Dominion was the third movie released after the coronavirus pandemic to gross $1 billion and the fourth movie in the franchise to gross that same amount, making it the second highest-grossing film worldwide in 2022. It can be viewed online at Peacock.

3. 'Black Panther: Wakanda Forever' (release date: November 11)

With the passing of Chadwick Boseman, Marvel Studios faced a major challenge: continuing a saga without its leading man. However Black Panther: Wakanda forever, lived up to expectations and became the film company's second highest grossing movie of the year with a domestic gross of $409,810,778 after playing in 4,396 theaters in the country.

The film returns to Wakanda just after the death of its king, T'Challa. This is a blow to the country and especially to his sister Shuri (Letitia Wright) who feels guilty for not having been able to save her brother.

Also starring Danai Gurira, Lupita N'oyongo and Angela Basset who reprise their roles as Okoye, Nakia and Ramonda in the original movie, the movie also takes the opportunity to introduce the Hispanic Tenoch Huertas as Namor and Dominique Thorne as Riri Williams / Ironheart who will continue with their characters in Marvel's Phase 5.

The film's box office results are still tentative as it is still in theaters. For this reason, it is not yet available online, but everything seems to point to it arriving early next year at Disney+.

2. 'Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness' (release date: May 6th)

Benedict Cumberbatch starred in the second installment centered on the Marvel Studios character and did so accompanied by Elizabeth Olsen who reprised her role as the Scarlet Witch after starring in one of the company's best series, Wandavision. The tandem grossed $411,331,607 in the United States after being distributed in 4,534 theaters nationwide.

The film directly follows the events of what happened in Spider-Man: No Way Home. The Multiverse is practically in ruins and only Doctor Strange (Cumberbatch) can save it. To do so, he will have the help of America Chaves (Xochitl Gomez), a young girl who has just discovered that she is capable of crossing the different portals that connect the Multiverse and who will join Strange to try to save it. However, what Strange doesn't know is that he will have to face an old friend: Wanda Maximoff/Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) who sees in the destruction of the different universes the perfect opportunity to remake her history and, thus, recover what she lost in Wandavision.

Available now on Disney+, the film was the most profitable for Marvel Studios this year, grossing $955,009,776 at the worldwide box office. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness also served to demonstrate that the marriage between films and television series may be the next big challenge facing the well-known film company.

1. 'Top Gun: Maverick' (release date: May 27)

Undoubtedly the surprise at the box office came from Tom Cruise and his return with Top Gun: Maverick. The sequel, which returned 36 years later of the first part's release, attracted nostalgic moviegoers to the 4,751 U.S. theaters that screened it and grossed a total of $717,404,191 only in this country becoming  the fifth highest-grossing film in history in the United States.

The film, like the first part, returned to focus on one of the Navy's best aviators, Pete Maverick Mitchel (Tom Cruise). He, after more than 30 years of service, finds himself where he always wanted to be, pushing the limits as a brave test pilot and avoiding a promotion he doesn't want since he would have to give up flying. However, age begins to take its toll and he is assigned to the Top Gun academy to train elite pilots for a dangerous mission in hostile territory. There, Maverich encounters young Lt. Bradley Bradshaw (Miles Teller), the son of his late friend Goose (Anthony Edwards who appears in the film via archival footage).

Paramount Pictures rises to the top 1 not only in the United States, but also in the rest of the world. Top Gun: Maverick was the most successful movie in 2022 and grossed a total of 1.48 billion dollars worldwide.

That may be the reason, perhaps, why, despite premiering in May, it is not yet available for viewing on any streaming platform. However, the wait ends on December 22. That will be the date on which Paramount+ will get the worldwide distribution rights.

Special mention: 'Avatar: the way of Water' (release date: December 16)

2022 will end on the big screen with the much-anticipated worldwide release of Avatar: the way of Water, the second movie in the saga based on the planet Pandora. Although it hits theathers today, December 16, predictions are good. In September, Variety in collaboration with Cinelytic, predicted that the movie could gross a total of $649 million in the U.S. alone. The figure would not be enough to be the highest grossing film of the year, but it would be in second place if expectations are met.

The American publication is not the only one that predicts a good result on the big screen for James Cameron's new movie. Shawn Robbins, chief analyst at Box Office Pro believes the movie could open in the U.S. with a first-weekend gross of between $150 million and $189 million. This figure is well above the $77 million that the original movie grossed in its first weekend at the box office. This figure was confirmed days before the movie’s premiere by Variety which claims that the film will gross $175 million in its first weekend in the U.S. alone.

Avatar: The Way of Water follows Jake Sully (Sam Worthington) and Ney'tiri (Zoe Saldaña), the stars of the original. They formed a family and are doing their best to stay together. However, they must leave their home and explore the regions of Pandora when an ancient threat reappears.