Guardians of the Galaxy marks Marvel Studios’ tenth release since they decided to go it alone and produce their own movies under the watchful eye of former X-Men producer Kevin Feige.
Much has changed since the release of Iron Man in 2008 of course; Disney bought Marvel for a whopping $4 billion a few years later and Joss Whedon changed the direction of the Marvel Cinematic Universe forever when he introduced Thanos at the end of Avengers Assemble.
Marvel Studios’ movies have now become synonymous with quality, and the shared universe in which these character live is on a scale rarely seen before. While Sony (Spider-Man), Fox (X-Men and Fantastic Four) and Warner Bros. (DC Comics) all scramble to get their houses in order in a bid to achieve the same success as Marvel Studios, they have huge plans which stretch as far as 2019.
Here, we look at the ten movies which have already been released, ranking them from “worst” – which is still better than 90% of other comic book movies – to best.
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10. Iron Man 2
After an incredible first outing for Tony Stark, it’s a shame that the second movie in the franchise failed to reach Spider-Man 2 or The Dark Knight levels of greatness when it comes to sequels which far surpass their predecessors. By no means a bad movie, Iron Man 2’s problem was that Marvel crammed far too much in as they began to lay the groundwork for Avengers Assemble.
Black Widow was awkwardly shoehorned in, as were S.H.I.E.L.D. and Nick Fury. A watered down attempt at tackling Tony Stark’s alcoholism fell flat, and so did a very weak villain in the form of Mickey Rourke’s Whiplash.
Iron Man 2 had plenty of great moments though, including the introduction of Don Cheadle as War Machine and Sam Rockwell’s fantastic take on Justin Hammer. This bloated offering was a low point for Marvel Studios, but still considerably better than many other past comic book movies.