Ranking The Marvel Movies

by dirty_dutchman | created - 01 Mar 2011 | updated - 05 May 2013 | Public

All of the films based on Marvel Comics.

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1. X: First Class (2011)

PG-13 | 131 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 7.8/10 X  
65 Metascore

In 1962, the United States government enlists the help of Mutants with superhuman abilities to stop a malicious dictator who is determined to start World War III.

Director: Matthew Vaughn | Stars: James McAvoy, Michael Fassbender, Jennifer Lawrence, Kevin Bacon

Votes: 566,442 | Gross: $146.41M

This film does for the X-Men franchise what Batman Begins accomplished. Everything from the cast to the story, set around the Cuban Missle Crisis, makes this throughly entertaining and a refreshing spectacle.

2. Blade (1998)

R | 120 min | Action, Horror

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45 Metascore

A half-vampire, half-mortal man becomes a protector of the mortal race, while slaying evil vampires.

Director: Stephen Norrington | Stars: Wesley Snipes, Stephen Dorff, Kris Kristofferson, N'Bushe Wright

Votes: 208,991 | Gross: $70.09M

It's a sentimental favorite more than anything. Still, before the big comic book movie boom of the last few years, Blade proved to be exceedingly entertaining as an action movie.

3. Hulk (2003)

PG-13 | 138 min | Action, Sci-Fi

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54 Metascore

Bruce Banner, a genetics researcher with a tragic past, suffers an accident that causes him to transform into a raging green monster when he gets angry.

Director: Ang Lee | Stars: Eric Bana, Jennifer Connelly, Sam Elliott, Josh Lucas

Votes: 226,003 | Gross: $132.18M

I can understand why this one is so unpopular. Personally, I think Ang Lee did a fantastic job of creating a comic book movie that is more of a character study than it is an action movie.

4. The Avengers (2012)

PG-13 | 143 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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69 Metascore

Earth's mightiest heroes must come together and learn to fight as a team if they are going to stop the mischievous Loki and his alien army from enslaving humanity.

Director: Joss Whedon | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner

Votes: 1,075,272 | Gross: $623.36M

I'll give Joss Weadon credit. He managed to take every cliche in the book and make it interesting. Take the sum of all of the Avengers movies to this point and it's exactly what you'd hope for: pure entertainment.

5. The Punisher (2004)

R | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Crime

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33 Metascore

An undercover FBI agent becomes a vigilante assassin and sets out to unleash his wrath upon the corrupt businessman who slaughtered his entire family at a reunion.

Director: Jonathan Hensleigh | Stars: Thomas Jane, John Travolta, Samantha Mathis, Laura Harring

Votes: 134,266 | Gross: $33.68M

Much like Blade, The Punisher doesn't have the same feel as the other Marvel movies. It is dark, gritty and extremely violent. But what else would you expect from the Punisher?

6. Blade II (2002)

R | 117 min | Action, Horror, Sci-Fi

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52 Metascore

Blade forms an uneasy alliance with the vampire council in order to combat the Reapers, who are feeding on vampires.

Director: Guillermo del Toro | Stars: Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Ron Perlman, Leonor Varela

Votes: 173,127 | Gross: $82.35M

Guillermo del Toro keeps the awesomeness of Blade alive, throwing some unique visuals and exciting action into the mix.

7. X2 (2003)

PG-13 | 134 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

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68 Metascore

The X-Men band together to find a mutant assassin who has made an attempt on the President's life, while the Mutant Academy is attacked by military forces.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Ian McKellen

Votes: 445,531 | Gross: $214.95M

X2 continues the story of the X-Men with a bit more patience and intrigue than the first movie. With a superb ending that leaves you hungry for more, it's a shame that hunger has yet to be satisfied.

8. Thor (2011)

PG-13 | 115 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

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57 Metascore

The powerful, but arrogant god Thor, is cast out of Asgard to live amongst humans in Midgard (Earth), where he soon becomes one of their finest defenders.

Director: Kenneth Branagh | Stars: Chris Hemsworth, Anthony Hopkins, Natalie Portman, Tom Hiddleston

Votes: 596,532 | Gross: $181.03M

Thor is an interesting character in the Marvel universe, mainly because he isn't just any other comic book hero: he's the freakin' god of thunder! The movie is dazzling and epic, though it probably should be another half hour longer.

9. Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)

PG-13 | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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66 Metascore

Steve Rogers, a rejected military soldier transforms into Captain America after taking a dose of a "Super-Soldier serum". But being Captain America comes at a price as he attempts to take down a war monger and a terrorist organization.

Director: Joe Johnston | Stars: Chris Evans, Hugo Weaving, Samuel L. Jackson, Hayley Atwell

Votes: 571,808 | Gross: $176.65M

Captain America is an icon, plain and simple. Fortunately, Joe Johnston uses his talent of creating a vintage backdrop to present this origin story the way it should be done. Thanks to a lot of camp and a lot of action, this is a solid entry in the Marvel movie universe.

10. The Incredible Hulk (2008)

PG-13 | 112 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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61 Metascore

Bruce Banner, a scientist on the run from the U.S. Government, must find a cure for the monster he turns into, whenever he loses his temper.

Director: Louis Leterrier | Stars: Edward Norton, Liv Tyler, Tim Roth, William Hurt

Votes: 355,031 | Gross: $134.52M

It isn't vastly different from Hulk, but it is much more lighthearted than the Ang Lee version. Edward Norton plays the part of Bruce Banner well, though he doesn't get much help from Liv Tyler.

11. Iron Man (2008)

PG-13 | 126 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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79 Metascore

After being held captive in an Afghan cave, billionaire engineer Tony Stark creates a unique weaponized suit of armor to fight evil.

Director: Jon Favreau | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, Terrence Howard, Jeff Bridges

Votes: 764,730 | Gross: $318.41M

As pure entertainment value is concerned, it's hard not to like Robert Downey Jr. as the sharp-witted and arrogant Tony Stark. But the movie never seems to "take off" after the first half hour or so.

12. X-Men (2000)

PG-13 | 104 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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64 Metascore

Two mutants come to a private academy for their kind whose resident superhero team must oppose a terrorist organization with similar powers.

Director: Bryan Singer | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, Famke Janssen

Votes: 497,709 | Gross: $157.30M

It wasn't the first Marvel comic book movie, but you might as well say it is. Aside from the Punisher and Blade movies, every other Marvel comic book movie has followed in the same vein as X-Men. The movie itself is good, but not amazing.

13. Iron Man Three (2013)

PG-13 | 130 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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62 Metascore

When Tony Stark's world is torn apart by a formidable terrorist called the Mandarin, he starts an odyssey of rebuilding and retribution.

Director: Shane Black | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Guy Pearce, Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle

Votes: 612,662 | Gross: $409.01M

Kiss Kiss, Iron Man. Shane Black might have had his high points in the 80's and 90's, but he missed the target on this one. As a movie, it is plenty of fun, even if the story is wildly incoherent. It's a step up from Iron Man 2, but a huge step down after The Avengers.

14. Daredevil (2003)

PG-13 | 103 min | Action, Crime, Drama

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42 Metascore

A man blinded by toxic waste which also enhanced his remaining senses fights crime as an acrobatic martial arts superhero.

Director: Mark Steven Johnson | Stars: Ben Affleck, Jennifer Garner, Colin Farrell, Michael Clarke Duncan

Votes: 186,956 | Gross: $102.54M

It isn't easy to defend this movie, most notably because of Ben Affleck. But the story manages to work just well enough to keep your attention.

15. Blade: Trinity (2004)

R | 113 min | Action, Adventure, Horror

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38 Metascore

Blade, now a wanted man by the FBI, must join forces with the Nightstalkers to face his most challenging enemy yet: Dracula.

Director: David S. Goyer | Stars: Wesley Snipes, Kris Kristofferson, Parker Posey, Ryan Reynolds

Votes: 144,944 | Gross: $52.41M

This is not how the Blade series should have ended, even though it has plenty of positive moments. Ryan Reynolds has some of the funniest lines, which probably shouldn't be repeated in proper company.

16. Fantastic Four (I) (2005)

PG-13 | 106 min | Action, Adventure, Family

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40 Metascore

A group of astronauts gain superpowers after a cosmic radiation exposure and must use them to oppose the plans of their enemy, Doctor Victor Von Doom.

Director: Tim Story | Stars: Ioan Gruffudd, Michael Chiklis, Chris Evans, Jessica Alba

Votes: 282,051 | Gross: $154.70M

There isn't a whole lot to cling to with this movie, except for maybe a few well-choreographed moments and an extremely hot Jessica Alba.

17. X-Men: The Last Stand (2006)

PG-13 | 104 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

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58 Metascore

An all-out war looms when the discovery of a cure for mutations draws a line between the followers of Charles Xavier and those of Magneto.

Director: Brett Ratner | Stars: Patrick Stewart, Hugh Jackman, Halle Berry, Famke Janssen

Votes: 419,309 | Gross: $234.36M

Again, not a fitting end to the series. While attempting to introduce more characters to the fray, Brett Ratner just convolutes what could have been the best X-Men movie in the franchise.

18. Iron Man 2 (2010)

PG-13 | 124 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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57 Metascore

With the world now aware of his identity as Iron Man, Tony Stark must contend with both his declining health and a vengeful mad man with ties to his father's legacy.

Director: Jon Favreau | Stars: Robert Downey Jr., Mickey Rourke, Gwyneth Paltrow, Don Cheadle

Votes: 578,750 | Gross: $312.43M

This is what happens when production problems and a bad screenplay get forced through just to make money.

19. Spider-Man 2 (2004)

PG-13 | 127 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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83 Metascore

Peter Parker is beset with troubles in his failing personal life as he battles a brilliant scientist named Doctor Otto Octavius.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Alfred Molina, James Franco

Votes: 456,440 | Gross: $373.59M

Calling it the "best" of the Spider-Man movies isn't that great of an honor. Alfred Molina gives the film some character, but in the end it suffers the same problems as the first movie.

20. X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)

PG-13 | 107 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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40 Metascore

A look at Wolverine's early life, in particular his time with the government squad Team X and the impact it will have on his later years.

Director: Gavin Hood | Stars: Hugh Jackman, Liev Schreiber, Ryan Reynolds, Danny Huston

Votes: 401,881 | Gross: $179.88M

When I read the comics as a kid, the thought of knowing Wolverine's origin story would have been exciting. But if I knew it was this, I would have been just as disappointed. Note to Marvel: do Deadpool right or not at all.

21. Spider-Man (2002)

PG-13 | 121 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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73 Metascore

When bitten by a genetically modified spider, a nerdy, shy, and awkward high school student gains spider-like abilities that he eventually must use to fight evil as a superhero after tragedy befalls his family.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Willem Dafoe, James Franco

Votes: 592,336 | Gross: $403.71M

So what's wrong with it? The visuals are annoyingly corny, Kirsten Dunst can't act to save her life, and Tobey Maguire constantly fails to reach an emotional peak. Spider-Man was my favorite character as a kid, but now I see why: he's a character for children.

22. Punisher: War Zone (2008)

R | 103 min | Action, Adventure, Crime

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30 Metascore

Frank Castle, the ex-military man whose family was killed by criminals, who became a vigilante known as the Punisher, goes after a whole mob family and gets everyone except enforcer Billy ... See full summary »

Director: Lexi Alexander | Stars: Ray Stevenson, Dominic West, Julie Benz, Doug Hutchison

Votes: 53,312 | Gross: $7.95M

You know who's not a character for children? The Punisher! I like Ray Stevenson, but this movie is an appalling failure. It's more comic than the Tom Jane movie, but it's still very stupid.

23. Elektra (2005)

PG-13 | 97 min | Action, Crime, Drama

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.8/10 X  
34 Metascore

Elektra the warrior survives a near-death experience, becomes an assassin-for-hire, and tries to protect her two latest targets, a single father and his young daughter, from a group of supernatural assassins.

Director: Rob Bowman | Stars: Jennifer Garner, Goran Visnjic, Will Yun Lee, Kirsten Zien

Votes: 76,577 | Gross: $24.41M

This movie could have been a lot better, even more so than Daredevil. But it never attempts to be anything more than a spin-off of something that wasn't that great to begin with.

24. Spider-Man 3 (2007)

PG-13 | 139 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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59 Metascore

A strange black entity from another world bonds with Peter Parker and causes inner turmoil as he contends with new villains, temptations, and revenge.

Director: Sam Raimi | Stars: Tobey Maguire, Kirsten Dunst, Topher Grace, Thomas Haden Church

Votes: 421,154 | Gross: $336.53M

Everything is wrong in this movie. It follows the same formula as the first two. There are far too many characters to create any sort of flow. Above all, they ruined one of the coolest villains in all of Marvel, primarily because they thought Topher Grace could do him justice.

25. The Amazing Spider-Man (2012)

PG-13 | 136 min | Action, Adventure, Sci-Fi

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66 Metascore

After Peter Parker is bitten by a genetically altered spider, he gains newfound, spider-like powers and ventures out to solve the mystery of his parent's mysterious death.

Director: Marc Webb | Stars: Andrew Garfield, Emma Stone, Rhys Ifans, Irrfan Khan

Votes: 489,138 | Gross: $262.03M

The effort is meh. The execution is okay. The acting is appalling. The story lines vanish. The villain is weak. Overall, there isn't much that makes this reboot any different than the train wreck that is Spider-Man 3.

26. Fantastic Four: Rise of the Silver Surfer (2007)

PG | 92 min | Action, Adventure, Fantasy

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 5.6/10 X  
45 Metascore

The Fantastic Four learn that they aren't the only super-powered beings in the universe when they square off against the powerful Silver Surfer and the planet-eating Galactus.

Director: Tim Story | Stars: Ioan Gruffudd, Jessica Alba, Chris Evans, Michael Chiklis

Votes: 225,545 | Gross: $131.92M

Much like Spider-Man 3, this movie tries to do too many silly things that just bring the whole thing down. Whether it's a budget issue or what have you, the poor handling of Galactus was the icing on the cake of disappointment.

27. Ghost Rider (2007)

PG-13 | 114 min | Action, Fantasy, Horror

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35 Metascore

Stunt motorcyclist Johnny Blaze gives up his soul to become a hellblazing vigilante, to fight against power hungry Blackheart, the son of the devil himself.

Director: Mark Steven Johnson | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Eva Mendes, Sam Elliott, Matt Long

Votes: 195,995 | Gross: $115.80M

Marvel has given us so many unique and cool characters. But so many of them will likely be ruined by poor development choices. Case and point: Ghost Rider, a truly awesome character, should never, ever, EVER have been played by Nicolas Cage. Beyond that mistake, the movie is an utter catastrophe from the get-go.

28. Ghost Rider: Spirit of Vengeance (2011)

PG-13 | 96 min | Action, Fantasy, Thriller

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    1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 4.3/10 X  
34 Metascore

As Johnny Blaze hides out in Eastern Europe, he is called upon to stop the devil, who is trying to take human form.

Directors: Mark Neveldine, Brian Taylor | Stars: Nicolas Cage, Ciarán Hinds, Idris Elba, Violante Placido

Votes: 95,672 | Gross: $51.77M

I haven't seen it. Probably better that way.