ROAD TO INFINITY WAR DVD MARATHON
Wow ten years! So much for a profound introduction for something that has changed the face of both movies and comics. I don’t usually go in for movie marathons. Like if a new Captain America movie is coming out I don’t have to watch the previous instalments beforehand. But come on how could I not do this one? I’ll admit I found it tough going, not because they are bad movies. But because having to do something to a schedule and make notes at the same time.
If you follow me on Twitter you will know I was concerned I wasn’t going to get them all in on time once my Sunday night timetable went out the window. I was close to giving up on it entirely. But these movies have been such a big part of my life I had to write about them. I have reviewed a few of them since I started this blog but to actually sit down and go through from beginning to end was a once in a life time chance. I mean I can watch them any time but once the next phase starts what I have to say on these last ten years will be old news. As I watched the movies I made bullet points, I was going to transfer these into a big piece but as there is a lot to get through I decided just to clean up the bullet points and post them as such. There is a lot to get through so here we go.
My Rank: 9
Box Office: $585.2Millions
- Iron Man was a brave place to start. The comics weren’t a massive seller. Extremis was two years previous. Iron Man was naturally a big part of Bendis Avengers at the same time.
- If this movie flopped I wonder how much they would’ve persisted in building the MCU?
- AC/DC Back in Black! Golden Oldies in the MCU long before GOTG.
- The story doesn’t waste time getting into the action and a rather faithful origin story.
- I love the original suit as it appeared in Tales of Suspense #39.
- Stark’s parents car crash is mentioned. Is that because its from the comics or to be a building block for Civil War this early?
- Terrence Howard ah!
- You can tell its pre Disney. They go big on playboy image and some light exploitation of women.
- Shame the Ten Rings never panned out.
- Coulson the birth of an icon. How uninitiated we were as it felt like a throwaway scene!
- Robert Downey Jr came to define how Tony Stark was in the comics after this.
- The movie does a good job of condensing years of comics telling the social/political debate.
- Jeff Bridges begins the MCU tradition of two dimensional villains. Its a case of I want what you have but bigger!
- The post credits tradition obviously started here too. Admit it no one knew where it would lead.
- Am I right in think Bendis wrote that scene?
- Now you get excited about the post credits scene because the next movie is already announced and often in production. After Nick Fury teases the Avengers the next movie we get is Hulk! (Again).
- Iron Man is a rather simple but effective movie. Three clear acts, a good origin and a satisfying conclusion. What more do you need?
THE INCREDIBLE HULK
My Rank: 14
Box Office: $263.4Million
- The forgotten building block of the MCU. Still doesn’t feel like a strong start, we had already had one Hulk flop. But then again Marvel didn’t have the X-Men or Spidey.
- So wise putting the origin in the opening credits. But is this a sequel or a reboot? It starts in Brazil and thats where Eric Bana’s ended.
- So glad Ed Norton got to big for his boots as Mark Ruffalo is a far superior Banner.
- Learning to control his anger contradicts ‘I’m always angry.’
- At first viewing I thought the blood on the bottle would go further than a Stan Lee cameo.
- Will we ever see Liv Tyler or Tim Roth again? It took us eight years to see William Hurt as Thunderbolt Ross again. Of course he was going to pass the Sokovia Accords, he’s an ass hole to his own daughter.
- We are also left with the big hanging plot thread of The Leader being teased.
- The Super Solider Serum is mentioned. But it feels skirted around rather than it being part of a cohesive shared universe.
- The university campus scene is still one of the best n the entire MCU. Love it when he kicks Blonsky!
- The blink and you miss it Spidey easter egg is just that, otherwise the whole time line is drawn into question.
- The Stark scene isn’t brilliant seeing as it is the first time they are trying to convince us its all connected. We don’t see either character for four more years!
- I prefer the alternate ending on the DVD. Plus it counts as continuity as it is talked about in Avengers.
IRON MAN 2
My Rank: 15
Box Office: $632.9Million
- The release of this always felt rushed to me. Its like they say “Oh shit we gotta deliver on the Iron Man post credits. It’s too long to wait for Thor, they liked Iron Man throw another one at them!”
- This was only the second time I’ve seen this movie.
- The Arc Reactor is Tony Stark’s Deathstar.
- The first time we see John Slattery as Howard Stark and really you have to question how he got to Slattery from Dominic Cooper.
- The courtroom scene is just farcical. Like it takes away from a real world setting and gives people ammo for how comic book movies aren’t serious.
- Justin Hammer is another wasted villain. Couldn’t been so much more closer to the comics maybe.
- Sam Rockwell absolutely chews the scenery, add in Micky Rourke’s accent and your left thinking really Marvel this is the best you can offer as a sequel?
- First appearance of Scarlett Johanson as Black Widow and it feels underused.
- Her introduction scene feels awkward. Is it Stark flirting with her or RDJ?
- At times the movie feels over self indulgent. “We done wonders with the first one now watch this.”
- The Nick Fury meeting in a diner feels right out of The Ultimates.
- With Fury, Black Widow and Russian villains I feel they missed a great chance to do a modern spy thriller with tech.
- Also how it glossed over ‘Demon in a Bottle’ as getting drunk at a party is disrespectful.
- There is the scene that has now become the Peter Parker retcon.
- The Thor post credits scene was probably the best bit about this movie.
My Rank: 10
Box Office: $449.3Million
- If they could sell the concept of Thor to audiences then they could pretty much do anything.
- I really enjoyed this on its release as I had least expectations of it. Ultimates was my only exposure to Thor.
- A new element is added to the MCU with this movie bringing other worldliness. But theres still science. Boy the MCU loves science.
- Movie has a grand feel. With music, cast, cosmic settings all adding to the gravitas.
- Kenneth Branagh was a good choice to direct as he took subject matter seriously.
- Tom Hiddleston brings his A game right from the start. He doesn’t talk for five minutes at beginning its all facial expressions.
- Natalie Portman brings more seriousness. I hope she is in Infinity War in some form.
- More pieces of the jigsaw as Erik Selvig knows Bruce Banner and first appearance of Jasper Sitwell.
- We get more Coulson and Clint Barton cameo. Its all starting to come together.
- Love the scene where Thor tries to retrieve Mjolnir. Nearly brings a tear to my eye still.
- All the cast have great chemistry. Kat Dennings has some great one liners.
- Like Iron Man it is a rather simple story arc. “Prove your worthy, save the day.”
- The story does go heavy on Norse mythology early on and credit to them for that.
- Loki is only villain with long term ambition.
- Post credits scene is huge as it sets up both Captain America and Avengers. A game changer really.
CAPTAIN AMERICA THE FIRST AVENGER
My Rank: 11
Box Office: 370.6Million
- When you think about it this is really the first movie to deal with out and out super heroics. It is the ultimate good vs evil showdown.
- Another perfect directing choice with Joe Johnston. This is a great period piece which pays respect to its comic origins with more outlandish elements like Red Skull and the tech.
- The Red Skull’s hideout is a good example of this. The over the top nature of it is just perfect. The pulp vibes in the NYC scenes are brilliant.
- Love the opening, right through the Norway scene with its Raiders of Lost Ark reference.
- Anyone can hear Erskine’s speech and understand why Steve Rogers should be the choice for the project.
- Its the little things that make me happy, like how they work in the original costume, shield and cover the Captain America #1.
- Hearing the Hydra motto out loud and the first reveal of Red Skull are fan boy moments.
- The Howling Commandos are underused and not really fleshed out. Which is a shame because there isn’t really anywhere else to use them.
- Watching it back Sebastian Stan isn’t anything special, not like the behemoth he becomes in later movies. He really as lead man potential.
- Another easter egg we will likely never get back to was the original Human Torch.
- I forgot Howard Stark’s flying car would become Lola on Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.
- The final scene really captures the whole man out of time trope. When Chris Evans delivers that ‘I had a date’ line it is a piece of beautiful genius.
- Who ever made the decision to make the post credits scene the trailer for Avengers should have won an Oscar!
My Rank: 3
Box Office: $1.519Billion
- I remember being pretty hyped going to the cinema for this. Finally the wait was over!
- We have had some truly epic, brilliant movies in the MCU since this but it still holds up.
- It seemed almost fitting Coulson opened the action. Along with more brilliant casting with Cobie Smulders as Maria Hill.
- Using Loki is a nod to Avengers #1 and I was familiar with the Chitauri from Ultimates.
- Ah the great Hawkeye shafting begins!
- The Black Widow intro scene is precisely why we need a Black Widow solo movie.
- I liken Coulson’s reaction to Cap to the same way comic readers feel seeing all this on the big screen. I mean seeing a Hellicarrier rise for the first time!
- Seeing the trinity fight I still one of my highlights of the entire MCU. Its punctuated with humour and when the hammer hits the shield is icing on the cake.
- Like wise Hulk vs Thor (round 1 as it is now) a true fanboy moment, Hulk trying to pick up Mjolnir is fun.
- Coulson’s death has kind of lost its impact and it is a glaring why his return has never been addressed in the movies.
- Stark’s constant prodding of Banner to ‘let the other guy out’.
- The finale is yet to be matched in the MCU in my opinion. Yes there have been impressive scenes but as an all out action finale it is untouched.
- The balance of giving all the heroes decent amounts of screen time right up to the iconic image of them facing down Loki is amazing.
- Anyone notice how the end is eerily similar to Dark Knight Rises? And in a way what Stark does is brutal. In the comics they would never nuke an alien race without panels of dialogue.
- So we waited all this time for The Avengers to assemble and then mid credits boom they hit us with something else to wait for… Thanos!
IRON MAN 3
My Rank: 17
Box Office: $1.215Billion
- My least favourite of all the MCU movies. So much so I didn’t even bother re watching it for the marathon.
- Shane Black is so over hyped as a director. What he went for in this movie for me didn’t fit in with either of the Iron Man films or what was happening between Avengers movies.
- Like why does he blow up all his suits then by Age of Ultron he has created an Iron Legion?
- It really isn’t anything like Extremis. I know none of the movies are like the comics so why bother.
- Too much time out of the suit. Come on RDJ you know what you signed up for!
- Surely they still could’ve done Mandarin without being terribly racist?
- They had the chance to do the first female villain and they decided against it.
- I hate that Pepper has to be the hero! Its not a sexist thing I just think its lazy story telling.
- I have two positives: The finale with all the suits and the reveal of MIA being AIM.
THOR THE DARK WORLD
My Rank: 16
Box Office: $644.6Million
- The feel of a very stereotypical fantasy movie introduction.
- I learnt after just five minutes of viewing Loki is the highlight.
- The Vanaheim scene is good as we get to see The Warriors 3 in their pomp.
- Chris O’Dowd in a Marvel movie!
- Erik Selvig has been a brilliant addition to the MCU. Surprised he has not made a more successful transfer to the comics.
- Darcy is brilliantly funny… again.
- Everything in this sequel feels bigger, like the sets, costumes, score plot and Asgard itself. I feel as if its not bigger and better though. Maybe for my tastes the blend between sci-fi and mythology is off.
- The Infinity Stones are only referred to as stones and we are into Phase 2. The Aether is fluid as well.
- Malekith is the worst MCU villain of them all.
- The final battle has some good visuals and few gags but is all over rather quick and easy.
- We get one of the most in depth mid credits scenes. Finally called Infinity Stones too! I guess we can assume now that cocoon isn’t Adam Warlock.
CAPTAIN AMERICA THE WINTER SOLDIER
My Rank: 1
Box Office: $714.3Million
- Still my favourite of the whole lot. A Cold War style thriller in the MCU come on!
- Love the addition of Sam Wilson, Mackie has great chemistry with Evans. The List is a nice addition to the man of of time thing.
- All the signs to a great movie are there early on. The barbershop quartet line, no parachute, they even made Batroc cool.
- Makes complete sense having Black Widow as a co star. Essentially a movie version of an old Marvel Two in One.
- We also get some much needed Nick Fury back story. Should his death of stuck?
- The movie moves at a real pace. We go from the Fury car chase to the Cap/Winter Soldier rooftop chase. Oh and when he catches the shield!
- With all of S.H.I.E.L.D’s resources why does Fury go to a local hospital?
- Sitwell is an ass hole, it’s so obvious hes Hydra.
- I spotted a continuity error: When Zola mentions Hydra orchestrating world events a newspaper with Howard Stark’s death comes on screen. But the picture of Howard is Dominic Cooper not John Slattery.
- Project Insight reminds me of an issue of Global Frequency by Warren Ellis.
- Did anyone else think Natasha might die during this? Particularly during chase with Winter Soldier.
- Love the Maria Hill rescue scene. Cobie Smulders plays it so matter of fact.
- The Winter Soldier costume is pretty bad ass.
- Another massive post credits scene adding depth to the ever growing MCU. Strucker and ‘The Twins’!
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY
My Rank: 2
Box Office: $773.3Million
- This movie really caught everyone by surprise. It ended up having mass appeal outside of comic book fans.
- In a way it took away the after taste of the Star Wars prequels. Also I was questioning whether they needed to make Episode VII now!
- The opening dancing scene sets the tome for the blend of action and fun to come.
- Compared to The Avengers they are a more morally grey set of characters. They end up in jail and then break out.
- Such a well cast movie! Glen Close in a Marvel movie!
- I can watch Zoe Saldana in anything. She owns being green.
- I really wanted The Collector to be the main villain.
- Ronan gives Malekith a run for his money in the bad villain stakes.
- In the first part of the movie it very much feels like they are taking their lead from Rocket, before clear leadership switches to Quill in the final act.
- How do they get away with incorporating a dance off into the dramatic finale?
- They really do function better as a team than The Avengers.
- Post credit scenes are nothing groundbreaking but are in tone with the movie.
- I mean Howard The Duck proves the MCU can do no wrong.
AVENGERS AGE OF ULTRON
My Rank: 7
Box Office: $1.405Billion
- I was underwelhemed when I first saw this at the cinema. But since then it has really grown on me.
- Because we are so familiar with all the characters now the opening scene is just fun it doesn’t have to be story heavy. That slo-mo group shot!
- The use of bad language joke is well over used.
- The Iron Legion should have been established in Iron Man 3.
- Why bother introducing Strucker just to kill him of screen and so early?
- The party scene feels like it came right out of The Ultimates, especially the bit with Mjolnir.
- The banter between Stark and Banner is fun but all the science behind Jarvis,Vision and Ultron gets a bit much.
- We get seeds for Black Panther laid seven years before its solo flick. The path to Civil War starts here too with in team fighting. Elements of of Avengers Disassembled with the Scarlet Witch too.
- Fury should have a small cameo like this in every movie. I do feel they gave Hawkeye way too much to do as a way of saying sorry for the first movie.
- Sokovia is the new Tesseract. Nearly everything in Phase 2 and 3 has some link to it.
- Once all the character stuff is done the final act just re-delivers on the first movie. Big action with it continuously cutting between the cast.
- The end scene with the ‘New Avengers’ felt very much like an X-Men movie.
- After we got a solid 5 minutes of Thanos in GOTG this mid credits scene really added nothing but a small laugh.
My Rank: 4
Box Office: $519.3Million
- Like with Thor I went in with very little (pun intended) expectation. So of course I really enjoyed it!
- I knew a little bit about Hank Pym in the comics but nothing about Scott Lang. It turned out a good way to go as Douglas is a class act. He makes all the science sound believable.
- After all the sequels it made a fresh change to back to an origin story.
- Love the 1989 scene with the old unfinished Triskelion. Middle aged Peggy Carter is a fox by the way.
- Hope grew on me after multiple viewings, Darren Cross is an ass hole.
- Love how Luiz describes the heist the Scott as ‘the perfect little job.’
- We need a young Hank Pym solo movie. If not that then at least a longer sequence in the sequel.
- This movie is at its strongest when it is being a heist movie, it is so much fun it doesn’t matter another Marvel villain falls flat.
- The Sam Wilson scene is a good addition. Mackie sells it more than an other member would have.
- Death of Ant-thony is perhaps MCU’s most tragic.
- Avon Barksdale and Gyp Rossetti as cops!
- The final train track sequence is the pinnacle of how fun this movie is. Its perfect.
- Seeing Hope get the suit is pretty kick ass.
- You feel a little cheated with the post credits scene when you see Civil War and see it again.
CAPTAIN AMERICA CIVIL WAR
My Rank: 5
Box Office: $1.153Billion
- All we wanted in Phase One was The Avengers to assemble. Now in Phase Two we wanted them to fight.
- Kind of brave to have it as a Cap movie and not the third Avengers.
- The only MCU movie I have seen twice at the cinema.
- It always bugged me Caps team at the start isn’t Caps team from the end of Age of Ultron. So it makes it obvious who will side with who.
- Crossbones gets the Baron Von Strucker award for a popular comic book villain joining the MCU just to die in act one.
- Apparently that Stark tech might play a part in the future.
- The trailers focused on our heroes fighting because this movies strength is in it being a continuation of the Winter Soldier story.
- Sebastian Stan is brilliant, love to see him as Cap.
- The most comic book movie of the MCU. What I mean is the Peggy funeral would have been like a solemn opening to an issue, Zemo’s plotting would have closed out each issue till his plan is revealed.
- It also just dropped Black Panther and Spidey into the action without much back story. I liked it but it could have alienated more casual viewers.
- The airport fight is everything it could and should have been.
- “Okay tiny dude is big now. He’s big now.”
- Love the epic slow mos in the Cap, Iron Man, Bucky fight at the climax.
- Would really like to see Zemo again. Potential to break the curse of Marvel villains.
- Best Spider-Man on the big screen. The costume! The eyes!
- Big Location Titles!
- The last line of the movie is actually foreshadowing Infinity War not the Sokovia Accords when Black Panther says “Let them try.”
My Rank: 12
Box Office: $677.7Million
- I liked this movie more than the critics did. Who cares it is essentially Iron Man with magic.
- The opening is fantastic and it draws you in with action before settling in for all the magic explanations.
- Maybe they made Strange too arrogant? And I’ll just gloss over the bad accent.
- It only took them eight movies to do an origin story so faithful to the source material.
- Some of the magical elements may seem hokey to a non comics reader. But they cover this with outstanding visuals.
- The Ditko inspired trip is a highlight.
- There are a lot of pentagrams for a Disney movie.
- They found a way to do a politically correct Wong, why couldn’t they have done the same with Mandarin.
- I like how his costume came together as the movie went on. The cloak is the most Disney element of the MCU.
- Kaecilius had potential to be a very good villain. He actually had very different motivations to any one in MCU so far.
- Love the fight scene in the Sanctum. After a another viewing you realise for people with magic abilities there is a lot of running!
- Total respect for going for the ending they went with rather than a big battle.
- Two of my favourite post credit scenes as they move things forward for two story lines.
GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY VOL 2
My Rank: Joint 6
Box Office: $863.8Million
- Went to this with huge levels of anticipation and it largely delivered.
- These two movies are kind of in a pocket universe of the MCU.
- I would have no issue with James Gunn over seeing the future of Cosmic MCU.
- Another great musical intro. Who care Baby Groot is essentially a toy commercial.
- It gets straight into the swing with music blaring and the Milano flying.
- I did find Ayesha and her people a little too comedic.
- It doubles up on everything that made the first movie a success. I don’t want to say there were too many jokes, but some jokes were in odd places.
- The music was a little more left field this time round.
- Who’d have thought after two movies we would all care so much for Yondu? Admit it we all cried for Yondu!
- Even though the Guardians now have a following outside of comics there were still some deep cuts, mainly Stakar and the Adam Warlock tease.
- Nice to see James Gunn burrowing the idea of Stan Lee being a Watcher from someone online.
- After a tear jerker of an ending the four post credit scenes are both fun and leave you with things to look forward to.
My Rank: 13
- I didn’t actually see this one at the cinema and didn’t rush to buy the DVD.
- The initial trailers put me off. To me it felt like the Sam Raimi Spider-Man with Iron Man. After all the good work in Civil War it felt a step back… then I watched it and I was wrong.
- So glad we didn’t have to sit through the whole Uncle Ben, discovering his powers story again. We had that monologue in Civil War and that was all we needed.
- Hey Ho Lets Go! The Ramones man!
- Its the simple things like Peter going to a deli and ordering his favourite sandwich. He is a kid from Queens after all.
- Seeing as it didn’t have an origin story element maybe it was half hour too long.
- Really liked Ned, he had all the best lines. It just seems really strange him being Ned Leeds the future Hob Goblin!
- Another strange choice was the approach to MJ. I mean I liked the way Zendaya played the role. She was fun and cocky but it wasn’t MJ from the comics.
- Good to see Happy Hogan again.
- Did anyone ever think Damage Control would be in a Marvel movie and they are used in such a good way.
- Jennifer Connelly as Karen. Is that foreshadowing for the future, Jocasta maybe?
- The Miles Morales tease was so over hyped. If I didn’t read about it online it would have passed me by.
- They certainly threw a lot into this. Two Shockers, Tinkerer, Vulture and a Scorpion tease.
- Anything with Hannibal Buress is worth seeing.
My Rank: Joint 6
Box Office: $854Million
- Underwhelmed is perhaps too strong. But in my opinion the movie didn’t match the hype of the trailer. It was the best trailer apart from Logan.
- May as well of called it Thor: Planet Hulk.
- Hela greatly underused because they spent so much time on the Planet Hulk stuff.
- The whole concept of Ragnarok seems an after thought really, just tacked on the beginning and end.
- I could always have gone for more fights involving Fendris.
- Big applause for all the use of the Jack Kirby inspired visuals.
- I always think that guy behind Grandmaster in arena fight is Mister Miracle.
- Even though I complained there is too much Planet Hulk it is the best Hulk movie we have had.
- I didn’t care for Korg and Meek at all. They are nothing like the comic versions.
- Just ask The Warriors 3 about faithful adaptations. They could a more extreme version of Hawkeye’s shafting!
- We get the Led out in this movie… TWICE! ‘Your not the good of Hammers’ Brilliant moment of Thor landing on the bridge.
- Tessa Thompson kills it. I cringed when she stumbled drunk off the ship but it was all up from there.
- It seems to be the new thing to put the post/mid credits scene from the previous movie into the next movie.
- What is it about two heroes fighting? This movie basically builds to that moment and slows down after.
My Rank: 8
Box Office: $1.318Billion
- Absolutely deserves all the praise it received.
- Loved the animated story at the start explaining the tribes of Wakanda.
- I would happily watch a TV series of young T’Chaka in Oakland. It would be like The Wire meets the MCU.
- This movie can be enjoyed without any of the other MCU movies.
- It doesn’t hold back on Black Panther mythos, a lot of which I wasn’t familiar with.
- At times T’Challa is a secondary character in his own movie. Thats how good Okoye and the Dora Milaje are.
- The casino scene is very James Bond.
- I want more, more and more M’Baku a really enjoyable character whether good or bad.
- Klaw was crazy fun to watch he had good chemistry with Killmonger.
- Killmonger was a villain that Marvel got right. I mean his motivations set him apart from anything we have seen in MCU so far.
- What a find Chadwick Boseman is so charismatic. Future Avengers leader?
- Enjoyed the back story they gave to Everett Ross.
- The mid credits scene was the most yawny of all of them.
Who Dies In Infinity War?
Captain America and Iron Man seem the most obvious choices. Iron Man as it could bring the MCU full circle after he started it all. Cap well because he’s Cap a symbol of everything good. I don’t hear many shouts for the other member of the Avengers trinity Thor. It could happen he has wrapped a successful trilogy and has started in all the team movies. Hawkeye seems to be up there to for obvious choices, but I think its to obvious for it to happen. There are a couple if characters in my opinion walking a very tight line, they are; Gamora, Nebula, Drax and Doctor Strange. James Gunn has said the Guardians line up will be different so Gamora could pay the price for facing her father. Drax could fall short in his ultimate quest and Doctor Strange is in possession of an infinity stone. Even though Vision is too I’m not putting him in there. The stone could be removed and Vision could be a very different character after. I have heard a few claims for Loki but I don’t feel he deserves the redemption. The last big question is is the big death in Infinity War or Avengers 4? Or worse yet one in each! I think death in Infinity War with everything getting so bad for our heroes.
The waiting is nearly over and I can not wait any longer. Excited for this movie and how it leads into Avengers 4 and Phase 4.
About Ian Wells
Ian currently runs the THEBLOGOFCOMICSHOTTOPICS blog. Check him out on Twitter @IanWells87.
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