The Big Picture: Ranking the Marvel Movies

MovieBob

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Ranking the Marvel Movies

MovieBob breaks down all the Marvel movies from worst to best.

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JoJo

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Heh, funnily enough there was this exact topic [http://www.escapistmagazine.com/forums/read/18.846641-Rank-the-Avengers-movies] in Off-Topic last week, coincidence or were you inspired by it? Either way interested to hear your thoughts on the matter, not that it really changes my own list which is approximately as follows:

Iron Man
The Avengers
Thor
Iron Man 3
Iron Man 2
Captain America: The First Avenger
Thor: The Dark World
The Incredible Hulk

Yeah, I think Iron Man's interesting lead and humour puts it way above most of the others, whereas the first Captain America started interesting but seemed to descend into a lot stuff happening by the second act. It did end well though, so I'll give it that. I haven't seen the second CA movie yet, so I can't judge that.
 

Fappy

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I loved the film as well (a big fan of the original arc and some of Brubaker's stuff afterwards), but I honestly don't know why this film was called 'Winter Soldier'. Bucky's actual role in the story is little more than a boss-level henchman. His story is only hinted at and left to be explored in the next film. Considering the content of the plot (and some of the stories it borrowed ideas from) I'd have sooner named it something like 'Secret War' or 'Secret Warriors'. Something the evokes the SHIELD/Hydra aspect of the plot rather than Bucky.
 

Frontastic

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Hmm if I had to rank them I think it would have to be:
1. Thor: The Dark World/Avengers
3. Iron Man 3
4. Winter Soldier
5. Iron Man 2
6. Thor
7. Iron Man
8. Cap: First Avenger
9. The Incredible Hulk
 

MovieBob

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Iron Man 3 your 4th really? the worst Marvel film is your 4th "facepalm"

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e3r4FklA4gI


C'mon everyone do your own lists :)

Captain America: The First Avenger
Iron Man 2
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Marvel's The Avengers
Iron Man
Thor
Thor: The Dark World
The Incredible Hulk
Iron Man 3
 

Zontar

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For me, it's:

1) Winter Soldier
2) The Avengers
3) Iron Man 3 (seriously, we are only judging movies as if they where movies, and it's a great one)
4) The first Avenger
5) Iron Man
6) Thor The Dark World
7) Thor
8) The Incredible Hulk
9) Iron Man 2
 

Nimzabaat

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I gotta disagree on Iron Man 3. That felt more like a Brett Ratner contribution to me. The child sidekick dragged that entire part of the movie down. The Mandarin story line could have worked if that had been the plan all along (ie introduce Killian as a minor character in the first two movies) but just came off as a massive let down. It was especially disappointing because they already introduced the alien angle with Thor and The Avengers, having the Mandarin using alien technology would have been a better (ie more gratifying) shock to audiences not expecting it. I mean they were setting up an Iron Man vs Mandarin throwdown since the first movie and then... a fart joke. Fuck you Brett Rat... Shane Black.
 

startrekmike

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I don't know, I mean, I largely agree with the list (though I would put Iron Man 1 a bit higher to be honest) but I just can't help but feel that Bob's love for the 'The winter soldier' is a bit hypocritical.

I have been watching Bob's videos for a good bit of time (a couple of years at least) and it seems like the common thread that he has latched on to as of late is his dislike of "gritty", "edgy" and "dark" movies that "take themselves too seriously" when compared to their source material, especially in comic book/geek targeted films, now, when I look at that standpoint at face value, I can't help but find some serious logical flaws (comics being oftentimes darker than the films based on them, characters like Superman being handled with less levity and "joy" in comics than they are handled in films, etc, etc).

Now, to get back on track, 'Winter soldier' is doing the exact same thing as films he often rails against ('Man of steel', The Nolan Batman trilogy) but he gives it a free pass because he enjoyed it personally, this is why I can't really take his reviews or opinions on films without a pretty significant chunk of salt.

N ow, I know, a film critic relies on opinions as part of the job but that needs to be tempered with a understanding that they are not the only audience, that there opinions should always be balanced with some degree of objective observation, he does this in some films but only ones that don't really fit into his specific interest set, when you get a comic book movie, he goes in with a set of expectations that are not always based on "is this a good film?" and more "does this fit my personal vision of the character?"

So, when he gives 'The winter soldier' not only a free pass but a top spot on his list, I wonder if perhaps it is time for him to get a partner (think Half in the bag, Siskel and Ebert, etc) that can keep him on track, someone that can balance out the bias a bit and provide a means for actual discussion about the films and not just "this movie did not do exactly what I wanted it to do!".

Seriously, Bob, if you are reading this, I think you have reached a point with your reviews (at least your comic book franchise film reviews) where you need someone else to keep you on track.
 

Ashoten

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Bob your 100% wrong about the first and second Ironman movies. The entire 3rd act of the first movie was about Tony having to face his dead fathers oldest friend who had formerly been like a doting uncle but had secretly been betraying him on every fundamental level the entire time. The third act also height-lights that the arc reactor Tony Stark makes to power the Ironman suit is ultimately more important that the suit itself. As Obadiah Stain put it "Looks like you had one last golden egg to give". This is an idea that is ALL IMPORTANT in the greater marvel movie-verse as we see that objects that generate power are fought over much more then the tech that it powers, like oh say I don't know the infinity gems?

This theme is repeated in the second movie as Tonys greatest frustration is embodied in Wiplash who serves as a type of post cold war disheveled Soviet reflection of Tonys 'Merican privileged and opulent life. Wiplash is able to construct his own version of the arc reactor from his fathers work. This sets up two important things. The first is that Tony realizing that his father may have stolen (at least partially) the invention that gives his suit its power and the second being a parallel to the afore mentioned Soviet/America cold war tech stand off. The former leading to character development for Tony Stark as he has to reacquaint himself with who he thought his father was and the later serving as a subtle reminder that once the arc reactor genie (read nuclear) has been let out of the bottle its shadow is a haunting presents that can only lead to an arms race and escalation of conflict.
 

Zontar

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Kumagawa Misogi said:
Iron Man 3 your 4th really? the worst Marvel film is your 4th "facepalm"
Did you actually watch any Phase One movies? Because apart from fanboys who are in the "unappeasable" part of comic book fandom, there isn't much reason to dislike Iron Man 3 while still liking any other comic book movie. Sure it had its problems, but like hell the Mandarin was one of them.
 

Drummodino

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Now that I have seen The Winter Soldier I can post a complete list, which I wasn't able to in the recent thread.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier
The Avengers
Iron Man
The Incredible Hulk (yep, you read that correct)
Captain America: The First Avenger
Thor: The Dark World
Iron Man 3
Iron Man 2
Thor

Yep, The Winter Soldier has rocketed to the top. Such a great film. Apart from that and the Avengers though, my list is very different to Bob's... Which is actually a frequent occurrence so whatever. Different tastes and all.

[sub][sub]Still, Iron Man that low? Criminal Bob![/sub][/sub]
 

V4Viewtiful

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I've yet to see IM3, don't ask I suppose I just wanted it all to play down. After this and Winter Soldier I might watch it this weekend.
 

MovieBob

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1.Iron man - Most well acted well written of the films. Exists on it's own just fine. If you're randomly watching cable and this comes on it's like human instinct to sit down and watch it. The final fight was just awesome.

2.Captain America - Well acted well written, fun nod to george lucas/johnston (indiana jones)films

3.Thor - superbly acted, well directed, Hated the 3 buddy gods casting and design.

4.Incredible hulk - well acted well directed needed more something (gotta rewatch it)

5.Winter Soldier - Bond film with Captain america. Somehow the whole police state thing felt tired. I'm just not that into espionage films I can predict the ending of it trailers. I liked it but rewtaching it is iffy.

6.Avengers - I liked this film but I was forced to rank it low because I hated mark ruffalo as hulk and damned if I can remember anything poignant about it and I saw it a few times. Stuff got smashed.

7.Thor 2 - I think they needed to make malak more sympathetic. I think they could have done more with Thor settling the 9 realms. Natalie portman started to get on my nerves. She obviously did not want to be in this film.

8.Iron Man 2 - Micky rourke kept this film out of last place. It was just kinda blah. Black Window was forced(sidenote I think I finally started being ok with Scarlett as black widow in Winter soldier. She was window dressing in the rest of the films.).

9.Iron Man 3 - maaaaaan this film bored me to tears and I really like shane black. It was a complete rehash of Ironman getting his shit together in Iron Man 2. Hated the mardarin twist. They ripped off the Zeke Stain storyline which was a million times better. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Zeke_Stane I wish they'd just made that film instead.
 

MovieBob

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Hmmm... so marvel is 9 and almost 10 films in to it's extended universe.

DC is....huh.. maybe 1 film in perhaps 2...

I'm not saying DC is lagging behind buuuut...
 

MovieBob

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Iron man three was a frustrating film, it kind of fell apart pretty spectacularly in the 3rd act.

For me the list is;

Avengers Assemble
Cap; The Winter Blah
Iron Man
Cap: the first Blah
Thor
Iron Man 2
Thor; The Dark World
Iron Man 3
The Incredible Jack's left kidney.
 

Draconalis

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Here's my ranking.

1) Iron Man
2) The Avengers
3) Iron Man 2
4) Thor The Dark World
5) Thor
6) Winter Soldier
7) Iron Man 3
8) The First Avenger
9) The Incredible Hulk



Iron Man 3 was a huge and terrible disappointment. Not worth of 4th, in my opinion.
 

Gizmo1990

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I mostly agree with this list I would go

The Avengers
Captain America: The Winter Soldier
Thor: The Dark World
Iron Man
Captain America: The First Avenger
Thor
Iron Man 3
The Incredible Hulk
Iron Man 2

The big problem I had with Iron Man 3 is that the Iron Man armor seemed to be nerfed simply so the House party protocol could be put in. This is armor that went toe to toe with Thor and alien laser guns but the extremis guys were ripping it apart like paper? Way to make Iron Man armor alot less badass Marvel.
 

Ryan Hughes

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I've always liked Chris Evans as an actor, ever since Not Another Teen Movie. When he took the role of Human Torch, I was disappointed, and thought it was a waste of talent. But he has really nailed the Captain, because despite his looks, he has this dopey, even dorky nature that he is not afraid to let shine through in the character, and this is what really makes the Captain work in the Marvel Universe and really grounds out what could have been the most problematic member of the Avengers to get right.
 

danimal1384

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I completely disagree with you putting Iron Man 3 so far up there. In fact, I would put if way down there. The movie completely drops the ball in the end, with the 3rd act just being an absurd spectacle with zero stakes or interest. Removing Pepper's power and Tony's heart shrapnel in the end neuters both of them, and leaves the characters with no where to go. Tony's "arc" in this movie comes to an abrupt end when he solves his panic attacks by "just building something" under the advice of the kid... Wait, isn't that what he was doing the whole time?!

I'm not going to get into the whole Mandarin thing, but whether you like it or not, it's still just as much of a waste to a villain as Malekith in in Thor 2; serving no purpose within the struggles of the characters, rather just an obstacle to overcome with a "twist" because "why not".

Tony's interaction with the kid remind me that Stark is actually an awful person, and turned me against the character. His attitude and self-righteous behavior are charming when he's doing it to people who can take it and even give it back, like Pepper does. But pit it against a pretty much defenseless and nauseatingly Disney child, and it comes off as cold and cruel, which is the reality. Whether or not that was meant to be the point, Tony lost me at that point and never got me back.

And with this movie, the character of Tony Stark has nowhere else to go, losing his suits, and more importantly, his HEART. The character hits a dead end with Iron Man 3, and after seeing it, I agree that he needs to ship on out and not come back. I DON'T want Tony Stark anymore.