As I sat down to go to bed a couple of nights ago, I couldn’t sleep. My mind was racing and my heart was pounding.
No matter how many times I see certain Marvel Movies, I can’t help but notice new things, think about them for hours after I’ve watched them and be impressed.
On this particular night, it got me thinking about what I would consider The Top 5 Marvel Movies of the last 20 years. From here, I decided to write about it.
The criteria for the list was simple. It had to include movies that were deemed ‘Box Office’ successes, helped launch a franchise and left the audience in awe.
Before I begin, I would like to take a second to recap the movies that have graced us thus far:
- The X-Men films: 1, 2 , 3, First Class, Days of Future Past and Apocalypse
- The Blade movies: 1, 2, and 3
- Wolverine 1, and 2
- Spider-Man in all its variations: 1, 2, 3
- The Amazing Spider-Man 1, and 2
- Daredevil and its spin-off, Elektra
- Hulk and The Incredible Hulk
- The Punisher and Punisher: War Zone
- The two Ghost Rider movies
- Fantastic Four 1, and 2 and its reset 1
- Iron Man 1, 2, and 3
- Thor 1, and 2
- Captain America 1, The Winter Soldier, and Civil War
- The Avengers 1, and 2
- Guardians of the Galaxy
I would say my first choice is a no-brainer and I would easily choose the first X-Men movie. Back in 2000, comic movies were just a thought. X-Men took that thought, pushed it aside and started a revolution. While not the first comic book movie to come out, X-Men gave the world a glimpse as to what would come.
X-Men would begin to teach a new generation of children (and adults) a number of important lessons:
- The value of teamwork.
- That not everyone is the same and that is ok.
- That in the end, Good always triumphs over Evil.
Growing up in the 80’s and 90’s, in popular culture comic books were second nature. Sadly, somewhere along the line, they got lost. Happily, the original X-Men movie introduced a whole new generation to comics.
Not only did X-Men introduce a generation to comics, X-Men paved the way for so many other movies. Without it, we might not have Captain America, Thor, Spider-Man, Iron Man, and so many other likable heroes grace the movie screen.
Was it perfect?
Did it arrive just in time?
Now, the next choice may turn some heads because some might argue that the second movie was far superior to it. What you need to remember however is that the second movie would never have happened had the first one not laid the groundwork for it.
I swayed back and forth with what my selection would be and I made an executive decision that the title for number two would be Captain America: The First Avenger.
I chose this movie, not because of its profitability or its worldwide appeal. I chose this movie because it was an amazing portrayal of the origin of one of Marvel Comics most recognizable characters.
Literally, this movie can and will inspire anybody to want and achieve more. Here we have Steve Rogers, a feeble, weak, unfit for army man take a chance that most wouldn’t. He wanted nothing more than to fight for his country and went to extreme lengths to achieve his goal.
The First Avenger set up Captain America to take his rightful spot as leader of the Avengers in all the subsequent movies.
The movie introduced us to many recurring characters within the Marvel Cinematic Universe including the Red Skull, who by the way, I hope makes a triumphant return to the Cinematic Universe.
Oh, and I should also mention that I am little biased towards the look of the 1940’s.
After Captain America: The First Avenger, the most logical step is to move to 2012’s The Avengers.
Fans of comics have been clamoring to see their favorite heroes come together to thwart the plans of evil. Of course, as I am sure you are aware, evil came in the form of Loki, played by Tom Hiddleston (if you haven’t watched it, was the standout character). To say he was perfect just might not do him enough justice. To think, he originally tried out for the role of Thor. Where would the Marvel Universe be?
Now, I’m not saying that the X-Men movies didn’t do an admirable job at assembling a conglomeration of heroes because they did. The difference between the X-Men movies and The Avengers is that Marvel Studios did it on the grandest of scales.
When The Avengers released, Marvel had done an incredible job of building the characters and hype through each character’s own movie. At the time of the release, fans knew the backstories and histories. This equated to zero time being wasted in The Avengers.
This movie showcased a plethora of unique characters with their unique abilities coming together for a common purpose and it was f@cking awesome. I vividly remember seeing in 3 times in the first 4 days of its release.
If you had asked me anything about the Guardians of the Galaxy before the movie, I might have responded with “Guardians of the What?” This movie took the world by storm and rightfully so. From its writing to its pinpoint storytelling and acting, it was nearly flawless.
Personally, the most memorable thing about the entire movie was the soundtrack. The way the makers matched up very specific songs to very specific moments was/is unrivaled.
This movie made me want to delve further into the Marvel Universe to study the obscure or “C-List” character that was reserved for stories that only a handful of people would want to read.
It introduced the world to characters like the fan-favourite Groot and Rocket Racoon. Who knew that a movie about a talking rodent and a tree that knew only 3 words could be so compelling?
Initially, when the movie came out, I was not too interested in watching it as these characters were not on my radar. In fact, they weren’t even close to it. This movie is one of my true regrets in my Comic Book Movie watching history. I wish I had watched it sooner to see what all the hype was about.
Guardians of the Galaxy proved to Marvel Studios that it could take a chance on some lesser-known characters and if done right, they would pay off in a big way.
My final choice is reserved for another Captain America movie. This movie is the most recent installment in the franchise and arguably the best.
Captain America Civil War came to the world with high expectations and it delivered. Boy, did it deliver! Writing this gives me the shivers just thinking about it. Not only was the movie exceptionally well cast, its flow and pace were spot on. It is one of the longer Marvel Movies, but at no point did I feel as though it was dragging on.
This movie had it all.
What is there not to like about a team of heroes being divided in two for the sole purpose to prove who is right? Just when you think the movie is set to climax, it climbs higher. Like a woman, it has you climaxing multiple times!
There has not been a Marvel Movie to date that has divided its fans quite like Civil War. I can remember talking with my friends or going on Twitter to discuss who was on “Team Cap” and who was on “Team Iron Man.”
Some would call the movie “Avengers 2.5” but I would call it f@cking amazing.
In a moment that was truly special, Spider-Man made an appearance and at the moment, it was obvious that he belonged in Marvel Studio. Plainly speaking, the wait was worth it.
From beginning to end, the movie leaves the fans wanting for more and this coupled with all the above reasons are why it makes it to number 5.
Now it is your turn. What movies would fall into your Top 5?