Top 10 Marvel Cinematic Universe Films

It’s baaaaaacccckkk… 

Hey, y’all!  As we all know, the Marvel Cinematic Universal has been killin’ it this year (to be honest, they’ve been killin’ for the last 10 years), and everyone’s still buzzing about Black Panther and Avengers:  Infinity War as well as the upcoming Avengers 4 (working title).  Plus, we recently received the sad news that Chris Evans’s appearance as Captain America in the next Avengers film will be his last.  😭😭  Add that with that fact that Halloween is coming and kids around the world will be dressing up as Iron Man, Captain America, and Black Panther, I figured there was no better time to bring back my top 10 to name my favorite films from the MCU!

Spiderman and Deadpool Dancing (Alt)

By the way, this list only refers to the films in the Disney portion of the MCU so Deadpool, the early Spider-Man films and the entire X-Men series to date will be excluded.  Sorry, y’all.  I still urge you to read on.  Some of my choices may shock you.  BTW, there may be some slight spoilers in this review.  You’ve been warned.

10. Spider-Man: Homecoming

Spiderman - Frustrated (Alt)

I was one of the precious few people that had reservations about Spider-Man joining the MCU, as I mentioned in my 2016 review of Captain America:  Civil War.  However, the more I see Spider-Man in the MCU films, the more I love him, and I thoroughly enjoyed Spider-Man:  Homecoming.  I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again, I love how the MCU reminds us that Spider-Man is actually a teenager and accurately portrays a young Generation Z boy trying to save the world one person at a time.  Plus, I appreciated the fact that Homecoming featured a diverse cast that befittingly showcases the cultural melting pot that is New York City.

9.  Iron Man 3

Iron Man - I'm the Best (Alt)

As I said before, some of my choices will shock you, and right now, I’m sure some of y’all are saying to yourselves, “What in the actual hell?”  In the court of public opinion, Iron Man 3 is not only the worst film in the Iron Man trilogy, but it’s also one of the worst films in the MCU.  In my personal opinion though, I thought the movie was great.  I enjoyed the other two, but this one was my favorite amongst the Iron Man films (stop judging me).  I thought the Mandarin/Trevor Slattery storyline was hilarious and totally unexpected.  There were a ton of other scenes that had me crackin’ up too (i.e.:  Tony’s suit not coming to him immediately after he summoned it), and the storyline with Tony developing PTSD was very interesting.  Plus, the movie falls under one of my favorite genres:   a Christmas movie that’s not really about Christmas (see Die Hard and Trading Places)!

8.  Thor

Thor Winks (Alternate 3)

Anyone that knows me knows how much I love Thor, so naturally, the first installment of his trilogy would be on this list.  At first glance, I thought Thor was going to be a bit on the cheesy side.  However, when I sat down and watched the film in its entirety, I loved it.  My only small gripe is that it moves too fast (the whole movie takes place in the course of two and a half days, pretty much), and we don’t get quite enough Thor and Jane (yeah, I said it), but the creative force behind the MCU more than makes up for that later.  The best things about this film are that I was introduced to one of the finest specimens on Earth, Mr. Chris Hemworth, and we were all introduced to the MCU’s number one villain/antihero, Loki!

7.  Captain America:  The Winter Soldier

Captain America - Does Anyone Want to Get Out (Alt)

When Captain America:  The Winter Soldier was first released in the Spring of 2014, there was a ton of hoopla for the film, and after I finally got to see it myself, I could see why.  I wasn’t sure if I’d like it as much as Captain America:  The First Avenger (yes, I liked The First Avenger), but as it turns out, The Winter Soldier was even better.  Killer action scenes, an intelligent plot and a storyline about how the (brotherly) love between two men remains unending after more than three-quarters of a century go by.  I’m tearing up right now just thinking about it.  Let’s not forget…Cap was even sexier in this installment.

6.  Thor:  Ragnarok

Thor - He's a Friend From Work

As my longtime readers know, I posted an article about Thor:  Ragnarok last year, citing my likes, dislikes and scratch my head moments in the film.  If you notice, the likes far outnumber the other two categories, and the more I watch this movie, the more I love it.  It’s friggin’ hilarious, and I love Thor and Bruce/Hulk’s dynamic.  Yes, I still hate that Thor and Jane broke up, and I don’t like that Thor lost his hair or his eye, but I’ve gotten used to the haircut.  Plus, (SPOILER ALERT!!!) Thor gets his eye back in Infinity War.  Yay!

5.  Captain America:  Civil War

Captain America

Hands down, Captain America:  Civil War was the best film out of Cap’s trilogy.   Yeah, he shared the stage with the majority of his Avengers teammates, as well as some new editions (Black Panther, baby!), but that just added to the greatness that is this movie.  I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again, the Russo Brothers handled the ensemble cast beautifully.  The special effects and action scenes were killer (namely the fight at the airport), and the twist involving Bucky and Tony’s parents was a real game changer.  I pretty much figured that Bucky was the one that killed Tony’s parents, but after it was confirmed and watching the aftermath behind it…man, I never would’ve predicted that.

4.  Thor:  The Dark World

Thor - Anyone Else (Alt)

Yes, you read that correctly.  I’m sure this is another “What in the actual hell?” moment.  I LOVE Thor:  The Dark World, and as long as I live, I will never understand why it’s the most hated film in the MCU to date.  It’s true that Malekeith was a weak villain, but to be honest, aren’t most of the MCU villains weak?  Aside from Malekeith being a sorry bad guy, this movie was boss.  Beautiful visuals, Thor and Jane’s love story was explored a bit further, we got to see Loki again (and we watched him fake his death again), and the film took place on Asgard and England!  I’ve always had a thing for the UK.  Plus, Thor was drop dead gorgeous in this movie!  To be honest, this is the movie that made me fall in love with him!  Sorry, not sorry.

3.  Black Panther

T'Challa and Shuri - Wakanda Forever (Alt)

Y’all, believe me when I tell you…Black Panther wasn’t just a movie.  It was an adventure.  Seeing what Africa could’ve been if it weren’t torn apart by colonialism and slavery, the stellar performances, the strong black female characters; Erik Killmonger, the first strong and unforgettable MCU villain since Loki; making “Wakanda Forever” the catchphrase of 2018 (I’m just sorry that we ran it down in the ground so much that Chadwick Boseman hates it now); this film has it all.  I saw Black Panther at the theatre in 3-D earlier this year, and it blew me away.  Everything from the beginning to the end credits is awe-inspiring, and as an African-American woman, I love films that portray my people in a positive light.  The soundtrack was phenomenal, as well.  “All the Stars” was my go-to jam of the year until “This Is America” came out.  Dang…the symbolism in that last statement is eerie…

2.  Avengers:  Infinity War

Thanos 2

It was extremely hard for me to choose between Black Panther and Avengers:  Infinity War for the number two spot.  I saw both movies at the theatre (check out my review of Infinity War that I wrote earlier this year) and each film made me rethink my universe.  However, when I had to dig deep and think about it, Infinity War blew my mind just a tad bit more—just a tad—and won the race by a hair.  Like Civil War, Infinity War handled the ensemble cast perfectly.  I was on the edge of my seat during the entire film, and the ending basically went down in pop culture history.  Don’t worry, I won’t spoil it.  Also, I liked that Thanos wasn’t your typical I-wanna-do-evil-just-for-the-sack-of-doing-it bad guy.  He was a three-dimension character with a purpose that he thought was for the greater good.  Then again, so did Hitler and Jim Jones.

1.  The Avengers

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Come on.  The majority of this list may have surprised you, but are you really surprised that The Avengers took the number one spot?  The movie that’s the second highest grossing superhero film of all time (it’s surpassed by Infinity War)?  The film that changed the game for superhero movies forever?  The project that solidified the MCU as a powerhouse?  Y’all knew better.  I could explain why this movie is number one on the list, but y’all already know why.  If you don’t…watch it.

—Written by Nadiya

Did y’all agree with my list?  Did some of the entries intrigue you?  What’s some of your favorite movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe?  Are you glad I brought my top 10 back?  Let me know in the comments section!

I’m Team Cap! And It’s Not Because I’m a Nerd!

captain-america-civil-war-key-art

Sorry I’m a little late with this post, but it’s been a crazy little week.  My mom had two medical procedures back to back that I had to take her to, and I had to go to traffic court (I was compelled to listen to a certain N.W.A song when I got that ticket)!  Today…I’m just plain tired (and the fact that my female problems began today doesn’t exactly help, either.  TMI?  Oh, well).  So, let’s hop right into it, shall we?  This past Sunday (May 8, 2016), before everything in my life went cuckoo, I watched Captain America:  Civil War at my local movie theatre.  Mark me (as crazy ass Prince Charles from “Outlander“loves to say), this flick was everything the previews hyped it up to be.  When I say that I loved every minute of this film, I mean that I LOVED every minute of this film.  This is the best Captain America movie to date.  That’s right, it even surpasses The Winter Soldier.

As I’m sure you all have heard by now, the movie is basically about the gubment (yes, I wrote that on purpose) drafting The Sovokia Accords, which are basically restrictions on superheroes.  Apparently, there have been way too many casualties in New York (The Avengers), Washington, DC (The Winter Soldier); and Sovokia (Avengers:  Age of Ultron), and unfortunately, during one of Cap’s mission within the film, even more innocent lives are lost.  The powers that be decide that folks with special abilities need to be reigned in.  My thing is this:  instead of blaming The Avengers, shouldn’t the big wigs be looking at the bad guys for causin’ all of this shit?  As Martin used to say, “Don’t start none, won’t be none.”  Anyway, my boy Tony Stark is all for the accords, especially after finding out about a young man that was killed in Sokovia.  However, Cap is against the accords, hence the beginning of the “civil war.”

This movie was great.  The actual plot is a lot more fleshed out and elaborate than what I described, but I’d hate to give away too much of the film.  You all really have to go out and see it for yourselves.  The action and the special effects don’t disappoint, either.  I only saw a few CGI moments that were clearly CGI in the first few minutes, but later on in the film, everything is pretty much flawless.  By the way, there’s a certain CGI’ed moment with Robert Downey, Jr. that’ll floor you.  What I really loved about the movie was the way the characters were handled.  Unlike Avengers:  Age of Ultron,  all the good guys weren’t fighting for screen time.  They all had their time to shine and it moved along smoothly.  We get to know Vision and Scarlet Witch a little bit more (they’re so cute together!), and Black Panther’s intro to the MCU was pretty badass.  This film was my personal introduction to Ant Man, and I love him now!  Now more than ever, I have to see the Ant Man movie whenever I have the chance.  When I first heard that Spider Man was joining the MCU,  I was totally against the idea.  I always felt that Spider Man and the X-Men should stay with Sony, and The Avengers should have the MCU all to themselves.  However, when I saw Tom Holland’s portrayal in Civil War, I’m more than happy to say I was dead wrong.  No one can beat Tobey Maguire’s rendition of Spidey in my eyes, but this new kid comes damn close.  Along the way, most of us have forgotten that Spider Man is actually a teenager, and this new rendition plays that fact up to everyone’s delight.  Once again, describing it won’t do the performance justice.  You have to see it.  Another thing that has to be seen to be believed is the big fight between Tony’s team and Cap’s team at the airport.  That showdown was hot to death.  My only gripe is that Thor was missing.  I love Thor.

As far as the actual civil war is concerned, I’m team Cap, just as the title reads.  Don’t get me wrong, I can definitely see Tony’s point of view, but Cap brings up an interesting tidbit in the film that totally has me on his side.  He mentions to Tony that the government has their own agenda from time to time, and if they’re dictating what The Avengers can and cannot do, there may come a time that they’ll send the team off on a mission or call a mission off not for the good of the people, but for the good of their own objectives.  Also, who the hell puts restrictions on superheroes?  That’s the craziest shit I’ve ever heard of in my life!  Another reason I’m not on Tony’s team is because the Sokovia Accords were basically drafted by Betty Ross’ dad, Col. Ross (at least, I think he’s a colonel), who’s always been a jackass, anyway.  And like I said earlier, why are The Avengers being blamed for all these civilian deaths?  If Loki, Ultron, and all these other so-and-so’s didn’t do their dirt in the first place, there wouldn’t be any civilian casualties!

So, if you loved The Winter Soldier and The Avengers, but were just a tad let down by Avengers:  Age of Ultron (me!), please check out this movie.  Don’t be like my mom and be turned off by Captain America and Iron Man fighting each other (seriously, she can’t stand the fact that they had to square off against each other in this film…she’s pissed about Superman and Batman going against each other, too).  When you watch the film, you’ll see why things transpired the way they did.  Trust me, it’s well worth your time and money.  Besides, Captain America gets hotter with each film!  Has anyone else noticed that?  They really have some sexy men in the MCU (especially Thor)!

—Written by Nadiya

Have you seen Captain America:  Civil War yet?  What did you think about it?  Was it the best Captain America film in the franchise (or in the MCU), or did you think it was overhyped crap?  Would you like to see Cap and Iron Man go against each other, or does the very thought of it make your stomach turn?  Did you miss Thor as much as I did, or was his absence a welcome relief (forget you if you feel that way…just kidding!)?  Give me your thoughts!