With the release of “Avengers: Age of Ultron” it is only natural to create a list ranking all the Marvel movies so far. Because why have your own opinion when you can read mine, right? From 11 to number one, here is how the Avenger movies stack up in my book.
11.) THOR: THE DARK WORLD
I think this one is universally accepted as the weakest entry in the franchise, and is the only genuinely bad film of the series to date. People said the first “Thor” was forced and felt obligatory (more on that in a second), but this one made its predecessor look like the epitome of Marvel movies and how they should be. It is dumb, noisy and boring, and features a material with a changing list of abilities. It really felt like nothing but a cash grab for the entire runtime. Thank God they’re making a third one, right? [sighhh]
10.) CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER
Many things in this one work, however there are a lot of aspects that simply don’t. It features some fun 1940’s World War II scenery, not to mention the whole scrawny Steve Rogers thing was well-done, but at times felt disjointed, featured a material with a plot-reliant list of powers (seeing a pattern?), and essentially was one big movie trailer for the “Avengers”.
It is a lot of fun, and thanks to director Kenneth Branagh has a nice Shakespearian flare about it. Forget that Loki’s plot doesn’t make sense when you think about it for more than a minute and that most everything that happens is negated by the next film. It still is light years better than its sequel.
8.) THE INCREDIBLE HULK
Before Mark Ruffalo was turning green, Edward Norton starred as everyone’s favorite physicist with an anger issue. The film features a fun villain (Tim Roth’s Abomination) and was the first real hint that the Marvel Cinematic Universe was going to actually come to fruition.
7.) IRON MAN 2
Sure, this film has its flaws and is nowhere near as good as its predecessor, but it is too much fun to hate. Downey’s charm is impossible to resist and let’s be honest: this is still a way better sequel than “Thor 2” (yep, I’m just going to keep bashing).
6.) GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
Now we’re getting into good-near-great territory. When this came out last year, few knew what it was; much less that it was a part of the Marvel Universe. However 9 months and $775 million later, you would be hard-pressed to find someone who hasn’t seen the misadventures of Rocket and Groot. It is random and colorful and just a lot of fun.
5.) AVENGERS: AGE OF ULTRON
It may not be the redefining superhero film some were hoping for, and may feature one of those darn ability-changing materials, but it is honestly hilarious and features some of the most ingenious and entertaining action sequences I’ve seen in a long time.
4.) THE AVENGERS
I’m not a fanboy of this film like it seems most people are, I recognize its flaws (like its darn use of an ability changing—forget it), but it was able to fit six superheroes into one film seamlessly, and was immense fun to boot.
3.) IRON MAN 3
This is where people may scratch their heads and/or get upset, depending on how much of a comic book fan they are. I personally loved this film, thanks in large part to director Shane Black’s writing. It is clever, self-referential and had some nice twists. It’s been two years; let’s stop pretending that one scene ruined this entire movie.
2.) CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE WINTER SOLDIER
I adore this film. I saw it three times in theaters alone. It blew me away. It is everything the first “Captain America” was not, and in all the best ways. It is perfectly directed, cleverly written and immensely entertaining. It could be argued that it could be the top choice on the list, and I would have no arguments. It’s that much fun.
However it is not number one, because that title belongs to…
1.) IRON MAN
And here it is, the one that started it all. I remember seeing the trailers for this one and thinking it looked dumb, and leaving the theater floored. It was nothing like I had ever seen before, and remains, in my humble opinion, the greatest comic book movie ever made (“what about ‘The Dark Knight’?!” Oh, stop with that nonsense). It reintroduced the world to Robert Downey Jr., and seven years later I think we are all the better for it.
There’s my list of the Marvel movies from top to bottom. I am excited to see how “Ant-Man” (the final film in Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe) plays out this July, mostly just because Paul Rudd is the man. However the film I really can’t wait for is “Captain America: Civil War”, which drops next May. Honestly, “Batman v Superman” is cool and all, but I am more pumped to see Iron Man take on Captain America, mostly because that film isn’t being directed by Zach Snyder…