Marvel cinematic universe, all the movies from worst to best (and where to watch them in streaming)

Marvel cinematic universe, all the movies from worst to best (and where to watch them in streaming)

Marvel cinematic universe

In May 2008, the newly formed Marvel Studios released their first film, changing the face of modern cinema. While it also failed to become the highest-grossing superhero film of the year (it was surpassed by Christopher Nolan's Dark Knight), Iron Man was an offshoot that would eventually become an entertainment giant in its own right. Nearly 15 years later, the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) is a sprawling, interconnected network of films and crossovers that has raked in billions at the box office.

But what are the franchise's best and worst films? Is Iron Man 3 better than Iron Man 2? How bad is The Incredible Hulk? How does the latest Thor stack up against its predecessors? We've spent hours debating the merits of Doctor Strange and Black Widow, and the result – plus the hopelessly undermined working relationships – is the definitive ranking of all MCU films.

It takes almost three days to consecutively watch all thirty films of the franchise. Most are already available on Disney+, for those who want to brush up before the release of Ant-Man and the Wasp: Quantumania on February 17th.

30. Eternals

Eternals had an uphill battle ahead, considering that it was one of the first films to be affected by delays due to the Covid-19 pandemic. The first shooting was completed in February 2020, but most of the post-production was handled remotely and re-shoots were done almost ten months later. Adding in the many delays due to theater closures, fans found themselves waiting around three years to see it. But instead of being thrust into the new world of the Eternals – an alien race of immortal superheroes who have lived in secret for thousands of years – audiences were left with an Avengers-esque epic they weren't quite ready for. While the film garnered praise for its lavish visuals, ChloĆ© Zhao's innovative direction, and bringing a new philosophical spin to the MCU, it ultimately felt like a futile exercise.

Watch on Disney+

29. The Incredible Hulk

This mostly forgotten Marvel film came shortly after the success of Iron Man , but compared to the other films in the franchise it proved to be a flop for critics and audiences. Edward Norton proved he could be an excellent Bruce Banner, but according to rumors he asked for more creative control than that allowed by a dense network of films like the MCU. For that reason, he was replaced by Mark Ruffalo before The Avengers four years later (Ruffalo, it seems, was The Incredible Hulk director Louis Leterrier's first choice for the role of the green superhero). The movie looks very dark and bleak compared to Marvel's later efforts and the cgi hasn't aged well. Most importantly, casting such a diverse actor for the role meant that the film's events were largely ignored: several seeds were planted that never bore fruit, and Banner's emotional story or his relationship with Betty Ross (played by Liv Tyler) were never mentioned again, which seems to suit some fans.

Watch on Amazon Prime

28. Iron Man 2

Match, or even surpass, the success of the cinematic predecessor is difficult for any sequel, and Iron Man 2 was certainly not up to the task. Robert Downey Jr. returns as the eponymous superhero and clashes with the US government over concerns about what could happen if Tony Stark's technology falls into the wrong hands. The authorities are so focused on harassing Stark that they fail to notice the arrival of a new threat: Ivan Vanko, aka Whiplash, a Russian physicist who has something to settle with Stark. Mickey Rourke, freshly nominated for an Oscar for his role in The Wrestler, has spent the last ten years criticizing the film and the entire MCU, which has certainly not helped the reputation of this second chapter.

Watch on Disney+

27. Thor: The Dark World

One of the things that one realizes when compiling a ranking of the entire MCU is how low the number of bad films is. Along with his colleagues, Marvel Studios president Kevin Feige has done an extraordinary job. Sadly, this film is one of the few exceptions. The Dark World had problems from the beginning, due to major script revisions and even a change of director. While trying to make the best film possible, the plot – which features Dark Elves, ice monsters and an evil substance called Aether – is not the best. Luckily, Thor was able to pick himself up in 2017 with Ragnarok.

Watch on Disney+

26. Iron Man 3

Whether Downey's latest solo outing as Iron Man marked the end of an era, this can best be summed up as an era of mediocre films starring great talent, something that made closing this trilogy that much less unbearable for fans. The plot of the third film revolves around Tony Stark's PTSD after the Battle of New York, and the Mandarin, a mysterious figure who turns out to be a debauched actor operating out of a TV studio, played with all due respect which deserves the Oscar-winning Ben Kingsley.

Watch on Disney+

25. Avengers: Age of Ultron

The second team-up film dedicated to the Avengers is a joyful jumble where the superheroes begin to make really team. Stark's penchant for mad scientist playing God takes a turn for the worse when Iron Man's alter ego fuses Asgardian relics with artificial intelligence and advanced robotics. The Avengers find themselves having to face Ultron, a Terminator-like abomination with unoriginal plans for the future of humanity (extinction). The fact that Ultron can get a couple of superheroes to side with him and start doing his bidding makes it all the more fun. After the monstrous bot is annihilated and the crazed shrapnel goes the right way, a fleeting glance at Thanos' purple muzzle reminds us that it was probably all part of a bigger plan, kind of like everything that happens in the MCU.

Watch on Disney+

24. Thor: Love and Thunder

With the exception of Spider-Man: No Way Home , critically phase four of the MCU has been characterized from ups and downs. In the case of Thor's fourth solo adventure, not even Taika Waititi could live up to the incredibly high standard he set with Thor: Ragnarok. While Waititi's comic book leanings are still on full display, like Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 before him, Love and Thunder also feels a little too similar to its predecessor to quite stand on its own. That said, Chris Hemsworth is delightful as the flawed and vulnerable God of Thunder, forced out of his retirement to stop a new enemy, Gorr the Godslaughter (Christian Bale), from doing exactly what his name suggests. he. Together with Valkyrie (Tessa Thompson), Korg (Waiiti himself) and his ex Jane Foster (Natalie Portman), who has acquired superhero powers, Thor tries to stop Gorr and discover the reason for his hatred for the gods.

Watch on Disney+

23. Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness

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