With Avengers Endgame less that two months away (holy shit) I figured I would try to list my favorite Marvel movies throughout the last 10 years. I am talking strictly Marvel Cinematic Universe movies here too, not those Sony/Fox knockoffs.
My plan is to watch each of the movies I’m ranking right before I type the blog about said movie. So, counting from 10-1, here is where we’ll start!
10. Avengers: Age of Ultron
This is a very polarizing movie within the Marvel fandom. A lot of people look at this film as a giant overstuffed mess. Basically saying its used just as a giant cinematic way to move the narrative within the MCU and nothing more. Well, I don’t agree with that. I literally just finished watching the movie and I gotta say…it’s a lot better than I remembered. I almost moved it up a bit on my list!
Now, don’t get me wrong. This movie is not without faults. Let’s just start with the main one: Quicksilver. Well…not the character himself, who is actually really really good throughout the entire flick. No, I’m talking about killing him off unnecessarily at the end of the movie. I mean what the hell guys! You take a character with so many possibilities like Quicksiler, AND YOU KILL HIM IN ONE MOVIE! Unforgivable. Marvel very rarely EVER makes mistakes with their movies, I can probably count on one hand all of them, but this was senseless.
Since we are on the topic of bitching about this movie, I’ll get my other main flaw out of the way too. The main villian, Ultron. Don’t get me wrong, James Spader does a fantastic job playing the voice for him. I’ve always loved listening to him talk, especially in The Office, but something is just…off about the character. He’s kinda all over the place. He comes onto our screens very menacing. Almost as if we’re watching a scary movie even. But then somewhere during the middle of the movie he basically just becomes a C level baddie who gets a few funny quips in here and there. Watching that trailer you would think that Ultron is this dark, scary foe, but in reality, he’s KIND OF just like every other villain with a few flashes of being great. All in all he is a fine bad guy, but you just sort of expect a little more with an Avengers movie. The character just feels like a slight missed opportunity…like we were sold one thing from the trailers and got a slightly different version of it.
Okay, now that we have that out of the way, let’s talk about the fun stuff! This movie sets up and introduces SO many important things with the MCU its ridiculous. For starters, you got Vision. Vision is a badass if we’re being honest. The guy is a mind meld of Tony Stark and Bruce Banner but has the powers of an overpowered superhero basically. There is also another minor detail that gets introduced along with Vision, the Mind Stone. The bright yellow gem that essentially powers him, and also inevitably causes his demise. His first scene is awesome too. How he sees Thor with a cape and instantly makes himself one is subtly one of the funniest parts in the movie and also a legitimate way to explain why a robot has a cape. And then you have the jaw dropping moment when he picks up Thors hammer, Mjolnir. I legitimately gasped when I saw this in theater, as did basically everyone else in the room. RIP Vision.
We also get mention of Wakanda finally when Banner is trying to find out where Ultron could be and what he’s doing. Its kind of given as a comedic line with Bruce mispronouncing ‘Wakanda’, but if you know anything about the MCU, Wakanda and the Vibranium there is a gigantic part of this universe going forward.
Tony Stark is vital to the MCU, but you start to see just how vital in some foreshadowing here as well. When Scarlet Witch messes with Starks mind, he sees every one of the Avengers dead. Then Captain America grabs his hand and says “You could’ve saved us….” As much as it sucks to say this, this is some clear foreshadowing that Stark is going to sacrifice himself during Endgame in order to try to save everyone. He is going to remember this vision and make that ultimate sacrifice. Which is going to SUCK to watch. But it makes too much sense.
Another big part with these visions is what Wanda makes Thor see. He actually sees Vision for a split second and then sees probably the most important things in all of the MCU: The Infinity Stones. This eventually sends him on a quest at the end of the movie to try and find out what is going on with these stones and why they are all popping up now all of the sudden.
There are a few other quick little tid bits mentioned in this movie as well. At the big party at Tonys house, you have Falcon mention he is still working on his and Caps ‘missing persons case.’ Which is clearly a reference to the Winter Soldier. You also get to see more of the budding conflict between Steve and Tony, which comes to a head in Civil War. My favorite easter egg though, that we didn’t even know was an easter egg until now, was a simple, throwaway line from Tony: “That up there…that’s the endgame..” He literally SAID the name of the Avengers movie coming out! Was it intentional by the directors/Marvel Studios at the time? Were they thinking that far ahead? Who really knows, but I like to think they were. It makes it more cool that way.
Lastly, probably my overall favorite part of the movie was when everyone was trying to lift Mjolnir after the party at the beginning of the movie. The best part was when Steve got up to do it and the hammer budged a little! The look on Thors face was priceless. BUT, I have seen a theory about this and I kinda believe it. What if Steve could actually pick up Mjolnir!? Hear me out, the hammer can only be picked up by someone who is worthy, right? Who is going to be more worthy than freaking Captain America??? But there’s a reason that Rodgers couldn’t completely pick up the hammer. He was still hiding that secret from Tony about how the Winter Soldier killed his parents. I mean you can’t be COMPLETELY worthy when you are holding onto a secret like that right? My guess is that in Avengers Endgame we get to see Steve wield Mjolnir…which would be INSANE!
Age of Ultron did a good job setting up the future of the MCU while also introducing a couple new characters, foreshadowing future events, all while giving us a pretty entertaining movie. Was it the best movie done by them? No, not by a long shot. But it receives unnecessary scrutiny from die hard Marvel fans and I will not stand for it!
P.S. Here are a few other quick cool moments I liked in the movie:
- The scene at the beginning when the whole team is fighting and comes across the screen at the same time gave me such a nerd-gasm
- I like the subtlety of Cap getting hit by Quicksilver at the beginning of the movie and flipping a few times but landing on his feet. Reminds us that he has those reflexes to always land on his feet.
- They lay it on thick with the Natasha/Banner relationship in this movie. Probably more so than any other movie they are both in.
- Stan Lee getting drunk and screaming “EXCELSIOR!” as he’s being carried out of Tonys house is hilarious. Man, RIP.
- Ultron, within minutes of being born, learns all about our planet and decides he needs to kill all humans. Kinda funny…and sad.
- I wish Marvel had the rights to the X-Men characters at this point because the origin stories of Scarlet Witch/Quicksilver are SO much better than what they had to do for this movie. I mean, they’re the children of Magneto!!
- The involvement of Hawkeyes family seems VERY forced. I mean, I get why they did it, but still, its just seems out of place.
- You get the new Avengers Facility in this movie too.
- The Hulk vs Hulkbuster fight was awesome to watch unfold
- God damnit, I swear to GOD if they don’t let Captain America say “Avengers Assemble!” one time before he dies, I’m gonna kill someone.
- “Fine, I’ll do it myself…” Thanos is coming baby!