Skip to main content

The Best of the Marvel Cinematic Universe


Since 2008 the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) has developed into a carefully constructed and delicately linked cash-cow that's expanded masterfully over the span of 14 films. And with the universe's 15th installment, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, slated to dominate the box office on May 5th, I'm devoting April's Movie List of the Month to the best of Marvel's expansive series (March's list). Full disclosure, I'm not a comic book fanatic who's examining the universe from such a nerd-centric standpoint. Instead, I'm detailing the MCUs most entertaining films.


Honorable Mention: Captain America: Winter Soldier, Iron Man 2 and Thor


#5. Ant-Man (2015)


I've always had a soft spot for Paul Rudd and the comedic actor's venture into the superhero genre felt effortless with Peyton Reed's Ant-Man. Rudd stars as cat burglar Scott Lang who's recruited by Dr. Hank Pym (Michael Douglas) to assume the identity of Ant-Man, a special suit that gives its wearer the unique ability to shrink in size but increase in strength. While Ant-Man doesn't feel all that essential to the MCU, the film's laugh-out-loud humor and strong supporting performances from Michael Pena and Corey Stoll help solidify the effort.


#4. Iron Man (2008)


Before the MCU reached the enormity which it now possesses, it began as a vision that hinged heavily on its pioneer endeavor, Iron Man. Leading star Robert Downey Jr. immersed himself in the role of billionaire tycoon, Tony Stark, and the rest is history. With Iron Man, it became abundantly clear that the MCU formulaic approach would consist of comedy and action, both in heavy doses. Tony Stark's arrogant and snarky attitude is a natural fit for Downey Jr. who introduces audiences to the amazing armored suit that helps lead to the creation of The Avengers.

#3. Captain America: Civil War (2016)


Some of the MCU's finest moments come from ambitious storylines that were executed exceptionally. One such moment occurs in the pivotal third isntallment of the Captain America saga, Civil War. Following the devastating effects of Ultron from the second Avengers film, two sides form pitting superhero against superhero in an unforgettable showdown. Captain America (Chris Evans) and Iron Man (Downey Jr.) battle over the mystery surrounding Steve Rogers' old friend, Bucky Barnes all while a new foe emerges. Civil War stands as a climactic entry in the MCU and one that doesn't fail to impress.


#2. Marvel's The Avengers (2012)


A handful of years ago, it was a daring attempt for the MCU to bring together a wide collection of superhero's in Joss Weedon's The Avengers. This final installment of the well-chronicled "Phase One" takes shape as Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) heads an international peace-keeping agency that requires the assistance of Earth's greatest superhero's when Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and his alien combatants threaten our planet's existence.  The Avengers was a bold film that Weedon and company handled with extreme care, and it's overwhelming success shattered barriers that sent the MCU on an unbounded upward trajectory.


#1. Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)


If you're wondering what separates James Gunn's Guardians of the Galaxy from the rest of the MCU, there's no simple answer. Personally, I felt that the film's quirky humor was unlike anything else the MCU offered. Chris Pratt's portrayal of Peter Quill is wonderfully complemented by his misfit collection of sidekicks who form an unlikely bond to become the Guardians of the Galaxy. Ronan makes for a compelling villain, something that the MCU often struggles to develop, as James Gunn takes the audience on an entertaining thrill ride with a fantastic soundtrack. Guardians of the Galaxy separated itself as a step above the rest which makes its upcoming sequel one of my most anticipated films of the year.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

ATHIRAH (2016) REVIEW : Urgensi, Relevansi, dan Intimasi dalam Film Biografi

Urgensi, kata yang tepat dan selalu menjadi poin menarik di setiap film-film tentang seseorang atau biografi. Menilik tujuan seperti apa yang ingin diwujudkan lewat beberapa sineas setelah menyelesaikan proyek film biografi. Beberapa poin ini memang terkadang masih terkesan bias, karena masih ada kepentingan politik yang berusaha ingin disampaikan. Memang, film sejatinya bisa digunakan sebagai alternatif penyampaian pesan, film memiliki misi dari pembuatnya. Sehingga, metode ini kerap digunakan sebagai medium untuk membangun atau mengembalikan sebuah citra.
Juga ada Relevansi, kata yang tepat setelah menonton sebuah film biografi. Apa yang berusaha dibangun dan ingin disampaikan oleh menonton akan berdampak pada bagaimana seseorang memiliki paradigma dengan sosok tersebut. Dua poin itu juga yang membuat Riri Riza ingin mengabadikan secara visual tentang sosok Ibu Jusuf Kalla bernama Athirah. Memoir tentang Athirah telah pertama kali dituliskan ke dalam bentuk buku oleh Albethiene En…

The Glass Castle

Destin Cretton is anything but a household name. Yet, the gifted filmmaker turned heads with his massively overlooked 2013 drama, Short Term 12. The effort bridged together Cretton's singular story and vision with the remarkable acting talents of Brie Larson. Since then Larson has gone on to win an Academy Award (Room), but her career comes full circle in her latest collaboration with Destin Cretton in the adapted film The Glass Castle.

Told non-chronologically through various flashbacks, The Glass Castle follows the unconventional childhood of gossip columnist and eventual Best-Selling author Jeannette Walls (Larson). Prior to her career as a writer, Walls grows up under the dysfunctional supervision of her alcoholic father (Woody Harrelson) and her amateur artist mother (Naomi Watts). But as Jeannette and her siblings begin to mature and fully comprehend their squatter-lifestyle and impoverished upbringing, they must work together to escape the clutches of their deadbeat parents.


The Best Performances in Christopher Nolan Films

Like a writer pushing his deadline, guest-writer Greg Rouleau has stepped in to deliver the first of a three-part Movie List of the Month featuring the magnificent Christopher Nolan just before the calendar changed to August (June's list). To begin the upcoming movie list series Greg begins by highlighting the Top 10 performances featured in Nolan's film catalog. Here's a look at the selections:



#10. Matthew McConaughey - Interstellar (2014)

The apex of the “McConaissance” came when McConaughey, fresh off an Academy Award win for Best Actor, signed on to star in Nolan’s big-budget sci-fi epic, with an ensemble that included its fair share of Oscar winners and nominees.  Heading this cast in impressive fashion, McConaughey’s Cooper perfectly embodies the rural American family man who can’t deny his dormant thrill for exploration when he’s chosen to lead a team through a wormhole in hopes of discovering a new home for Earth’s inhabitants.  Coop’s great balance of heart, herois…