“What Do I Most Want to Rewatch” Ranking of the MCU movies

So, I’ve now mostly caught up to the MCU movies — at least the ones that are out on DVD — and so I thought it might be good to do a ranking of them from best to worst. Now, I’m going to steal a line from Chuck Sonnenberg and not try to rank them on the basis of which movie is objectively best. No, I’m going to rank them strictly on personal interest: which of them _I_ like the best. And, in fact, given that this is me and one of my main criteria for movies is whether or not I’d watch it again, I’m going to rank them with the primary criteria being which of them I most want to rewatch when it comes time for me to look for a movie to watch, with some other factors coming into play when the ranking is close.

Note that I’m only doing the MCU movies, and not Marvel movies as a whole, so this leaves out the X-Men movies and Spider-man movies, including Homecoming (because I haven’t seen it yet). I’m also not going to talk about “The Incredible Hulk”, because I haven’t seen it, either. If I was doing all of the Marvel movies, Deadpool would win by a landslide.

1 – Captain America: The Winter Soldier

As a movie, this is the one that I most want to rewatch, although the ending can drag a bit. It has good character dynamics, an interesting plot, a plot that ties into the overall plot of the MCU movies well, a plot that also has a strong personal connection to Cap, good new characters, and interesting revelations about some existing characters. It gives Maria Hill a chance to show off, Black Widow a chance to develop, and develops relationships between Cap and Falcon and Cap and Black Widow (the “Secure the engine room, then find me a date.” “I’m multitasking.” exchange is both funny and revealing) and even Cap and Fury. The action works well, the drama works well, and the movie hits the right notes with its humour, too, cracking the right jokes at the right times. Again, other than the ending dragging, it’s a good movie and one of the reasons that I think they actually managed to do Captain America right.

2 – Marvel’s The Avengers

Building off of the characters that were already established, this movie is just a plain fun movie to watch. The action works, the jokes work, the drama and interpersonal dynamics work. The plot is serviceable and Loki makes an interesting villain. One can nitpick over its flaws, but at the end of the day it’s really just entertaining.

3 – Captain America: Civil War

I don’t like it as much, and the ending drags even more than the ending to “The Winter Soldier”. But the action scenes are good and I really like the interaction between Vision and Wanda. It’s probably an average Avengers movie, which is how I consider it to be as opposed to a Captain America movie.

4 – Avengers: Age of Ultron

This carries on a lot of the themes from “The Avengers”, and so gets a boost from that. It’s also the bridge from “The Avengers” to “Civil War”, which makes it a movie that I rewatch when I want to watch those two movies again. But on its own it’s okay, decent, kinda entertaining. There are some good lines and scenes, but at the end of the day it just doesn’t do as much for me as the other three movies do.

5 – Guardians of the Galaxy

This movie is mostly a sci-fi comedy romp, which makes it entertaining to watch. But it is mostly disconnected from the greater MCU, which means I have no other reason to want to watch it, and the second movie isn’t as entertaining, so I have no reason to want to watch it as a precursor to watching that one. So I watch it when I’m in the mood for it, specifically, and it’s entertaining enough that that does indeed happen relatively frequently.

6 – Thor

I like the movie, but most importantly I also like “The Dark World”, which means that I get some push to watch it when I want to watch both. Unfortunately for it, I don’t care for either of those two movies as much as I like the other ones on this list, thus it has to be placed beneath them. It’s good, but not that good, and the movie that follows it is also good, but not that good.

7 – Captain America: The First Avenger

I found the movie okay the first time I watched it and liked it better the second time I watched it, but it has one major, fatal flaw: it’s not as good as “Winter Soldier” is. Well, okay, there’s another, probably more fatal flaw: I don’t need to watch it to follow “Winter Solider” or “Avengers”. Thus, watching it only makes me think about watching them instead, which means that I tend to think of that ahead of time and so go watch one of them instead. Good movie, but not as rewatchable as the others.

8 – Iron Man

Of the Iron Man movies, this is the one I like. However, the other movies appeal to me so little that not only do I generally not want to watch them, when I do think it might be nice to watch the entire trilogy having to watch the last two movies turns me off the idea. Which means that I rarely decide that I want to rewatch it, even though mentally I do think that it would be nice to rewatch it on occasion. It’s kinda like Mass Effect in that regard: I’d like to watch the first movie again, but that means watching the other two to watch the entire arc, and I don’t really want to watch the entire series just for what I liked about the first one.

9 – Ant-Man

I keep forgetting that I have this movie on DVD. The movie itself is good enough that it should probably be higher on this list — it should likely overtake “Iron Man” — except that it has no necessary link to any other movie that I own and anything else in the MCU. I just did rewatch it and it was fun, but that’s all it really is. It’s not good enough to be watched on its own and there is no reason to watch it to watch the better MCU movies. So, again, I keep forgetting it exists, which is why I don’t rewatch it. Duh.

10 – Thor: The Dark World

I like the movie, but it falls into the low end of “Good” just above “Meh”. That means that I don’t really have any reason to actually watch it specifically. So I only watch it when I watch “Thor”, and sometimes not even then. It doesn’t make me want to watch “Thor” again, and isn’t a movie that I need to watch if I myself decide to watch “Thor”, so it only comes into play when I want to sit down to watch “Thor” movies. And the third one is not appealing enough to make me do that.

11 – Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2

As I commented when I watched it, it tries to do way too much, and nothing from the first movie really pushes you to watch this one. In short, it’s “The First Avenger”, only not as good a movie. It’s a “Meh” movie with little link to the other movies I have.

12 – Thor: Ragnarok

The same thing applies to this as applies to “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2”: it’s a “Meh” movie that you don’t really need to watch to understand any of the other movies right now, and the other two movies don’t provide enough of a lead-in to make me care about watching the entire “Thor” trilogy. My impression of this might change when I rewatch it to get the parts I slept through, but the fact that I haven’t done that yet is a pretty damning indictment of it as a movie that I want to rewatch [grin].

13 – Doctor Strange

This is a solid “Meh” movie that I don’t need to watch for any of the better movies, since it came after them. There are serious problems with it and it isn’t the Doctor Strange movie I was hoping for. Right now, I have no idea when I might watch it again.

14 – Iron Man 2

I have no interest in watching the last two Iron Man movies, but this one is higher on the list because it is the first appearance of Black Widow and that interests me enough to consider watching it again, even though when I do I usually regret it.

15 – Iron Man 3

Since Black Widow isn’t in this movie, I usually just regret it when I rewatch this movie. I don’t think either of the movies are bad, but they just don’t really interest me.

16 – Black Panther

This movie has the same issue that I have with “The Force Awakens”: the more I think about the movie, the less I like it … which is what generated my long thoughts on the movie (which don’t even mention that I found his suit being entirely bulletproof a detriment for a melee combatant). I didn’t enjoy the movie the first time I watched it, liked it less the more I thought about it, and so have almost no desire to ever watch it again. It’s also disconnected from the main MCU and has no initial movie to drive a desire to see the next stage in the arc. I am as likely to watch it again as I am to watch TFA … or, actually, less so, because I might watch that when I watch all of the Star Wars movies, and that is not going to happen for “Black Panther”.

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