Top Ten Marvel Cinematic Movies
In 2008, direct Jon Favreau decided to cast forgotten Hollywood actor Robert Downey Jr. as Tony Stark in his Iron Man movie. Audiences weren’t sure what to expect from the first movie in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, but what they were treated to was the start of something special. I think its fair to say that Iron Man revitalized not only Robert Downey Jr.’s career, but also gave rise to Marvel Studios as a box office powerhouse.
There have been a dozen movies so far in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) with qualities ranging from amazing to passable. Today, we are going to look at the the ten best Marvel movies. And for clarities sake, these are only the movies officially in the Marvel Cinematic Universe. So as awesome as Deadpool was, that movie would be a subject for a different list.
Top Ten Marvel Cinematic Movies
10. Iron Man 3
As much as I enjoyed Iron Man, the sequels have never really lived up to the greatness of the first movie. While I enjoyed Iron Man 2, that was mostly due to the inclusion of War Machine. The rest of the movie was just OK. Iron Man 3, despite it’s gaping plot holes, really gave us some great movements. such as the Automated Suits and the great twist with The Mandarin.
I’ve never been a huge Thor fan, but I thought they did a good job with his first movie. Instead of slogging us through another origin story, Thor instead gave us a fall from grace storyline that really helped develop his character. Seeing him come to grips with what his life has become, and then his return to power, made for an entertaining movie. And the Hawkeye cameo was great, as this was the first time we saw that character in the MCU.
I didn’t have high exception for Ant-Man. A movie starring Paul Rudd as a B-List superhero had mediocre written all over it. Yet the movie was surprisingly entertaining. Ant-Man had a good amount of the patented MCU humor and Rudd did a great job with the character. Despite never being much of an Ant-Man fan, the movie worked out well as a MCU side story. This gives me high hopes for the upcoming Doctor Strange movie this fall.
7. Avengers: Age of Ultron
The Avengers gave us the first big team-up between these larger than life superheroes. They returned with Age of Utron, a story adapted from the comic book arc of the same name. While Age of Ultron was far from perfect, I did introduce us to a few new characters, namely Scarlett Witch, Quicksilver, and Vision. I definitely liked the new characters, and the origin of Vision was cleverly worked into the movie. Despite James Spader’s always brilliant acting, the movie still felt a bit bloated.
6. The Incredible Hulk
Even though a movie starting this green monster was released only 5 years earlier (Ang Lee’s Hulk), Marvel Studios still felt like the Hulk needed a reboot. Edward Norton was cast as Bruce Banner in this great story about our favorite out of control monster. In my opinion, The Incredible Hulk was leagues better than the Hulk, so I’m glad they did a reboot. Surprisingly, after the movie, a rift between Norton and Marvel Studios caused Bruce Banner to be recast in favor of Mark Ruffalo for future movies. To be honest, I think this ended up working out better for everyone as Ruffalo made a great Banner and Norton was able to work on other projects more suited to his talents.
5. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Finally free from having to tell an origin story most people knew anyway, The Winter Soldier really let Captain America stretch his legs. It gave us a great movie about how Hydra had secretly infiltrated SHEILD at the highest levels. The movie was filled with some great action, plot twists, and even new characters, like Bucky Barnes as The Winter Soldier and Falcon. I was never a big fan of Captain America: The First Avenger so I was actually quite surprised at how good Captain America: The Winter Solider was.
4. Iron Man
The movie that started it all, Iron Man has a special place in my heart. I’ve always loved the character and Robert Downey Jr. absolutely nailed the role as Tony Stark. It felt like the role he was born to play. True, we had to endure another origin story, but as far as beginnings go, this one was quite enjoyable. While the battle with War Monger at the end wasn’t exactly inspired, the rest of Iron Man was highly entertaining.
3. The Avengers
Teased since the first Iron Man movie when Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) showed up to talk with Tony about the “Avengers Initiative”, fans have been waiting for The Avengers for a long time. And the first superhero team-up definitely didn’t disappoint. We got loads of action, super hero’s fighting both each other and invaders, and even got a tease with Thanos at the end. There was a chance for the movie to feel overloaded with this many heroes, but director Joss Whedon managed to pull it off and give us an exciting movie. Even with this many large personalities in the movie, I felt like each character still had time to shine on their own. The Avengers was the blockbuster we had been looking forward to for years.
2. Captain America: Civil War
I loved Captain America: Civil War. We actually have a full breakdown on our thoughts, which you can read here, but suffice to say, they managed to take one of my favorite story arcs from the Marvel Comics and fit it into a 2 hour movie. Obviously, it wasn’t as large or encompassing as the comic version, but that airport battle was an absolute treat. Two sides of absolute powerhouses threw down in one truly amazing battle. We aslo got our first appearance of Giant Man, something I was definitely not expecting. And thanks to a deal worked out with Fox, Spider-Man briefly joined the movie in one of the best portrays of the web slinger ever.
1. Guardians of the Galaxy
It wasn’t too hard to pick our #1 MCU movie. Even though Guardians of the Galaxy could have been a colossal disaster, with a movie starting a talking raccoon, a tree that only says the same tree words, and a unproven Chris Pratt as the star, director James Gunn delivered with this one with room to spare. Pratt proved he was a bankable leading man, with the story having both action and the trademark MCU humor. We also got our first taste of a more cosmic Marvel Universe as this one took place on other planets. Even the soundtrack delighted viewers as many of these old, classic songs had a brief period of revitalization as the movie brought them back to the limelight. I loved everything about Guardians of the Galaxy and can’t wait for the next one.