The MCU is to movies today what Westerns were to film goers of yesteryear - the only action game in town. But just imagine if Rio Bravo, The Searchers, A Fistful of Dollars and The Wild Bunch were all part of this grand narrative that culminated in a single film! In Endgame they have created what might be the last cultural phenomena film will ever have, something that everyone feels they have to see. If you're choosing to sniff on the sidelines, well, I feel sorry for you. The rest of us are having the time of our cinematic lives.
The MCU has accomplished a whole lot and it's very impressive that they created a cinematic universe so successfully. Sure they're not very thematically challenging, and not every one is as good as Guardians of the Galaxy or Black Panther, but I get the feeling that they actually care to make the best popcorn flick they can and weave everything together in a coherent fashion. Isn't that why we watch these movies? I'll happily go to the arthouse cinema to watch a great indie one day and then see a couple of guys in armor bludgeon each other while their friends try to stop a giant skybeam for whatever reason the next. And you know what, Marvel may tap the director of that indie to direct a future flick. In high school I remember watching movies like Van Helsing and Catwoman and Daredevil during the summer. The worst MCU movie will never be as bad as Catwoman. Let MCU keep going!
Not sure why my comment came through with question marks because i emphatically meant—what Eric Nelson said. He said it so much better than I could
What Eric Nelson said????.
I stopped watching these sad excuses for filmmaking about five years ago and vowed never to support one again. If this is what's passing today as high-caliber entertainment, then film culture and fandom is maybe at the lowest point it's ever been. Do better, Hollywood.
Adam pretends to be Mr Auteur. He once thought that actors in Revenge of the Sith should get Oscar Nominations.
As his punishment, he MUST WATCH THOR THE DARK WORLD!
Also it’s sad that they skipped reviewing most of the great MCU movies and Harry Potter movies.
They need to do a Sacred Cow for Winter Soldier!
Most. I like more of them than I dislike, but I hate more of them (Hulk, Iron Man 2, Guardians) than I love (Black Panther). Taken as a whole, completely competent popcorn cinema, even if I regret what it has wrought on the medium.
I voted that I've seen most of them.
As a comic book lover who has friends who also love superheroes, I go to these movies mostly for the social element and I enjoy them decently enough.
I just wish we had more superhero movies in the world like Spider-Verse.
Eric Nelson - PREACH.
Anyway. Seen them all. Loved most of them. “Ugh, yeah, I’ve seen them all” kind of blows my mind. Can’t fathom the idea of putting myself through anything I don’t enjoy for so long, especially in this day and age when, as so many point out, there’s so much stuff to watch. I mean, I understand if you’re a critic you’re stuck with the chore. But perhaps the biggest gift the MCU movies are giving the world (or at least those who don’t love them) is the potential to examine the hate-watching phenomenon?
Then again, I’ve watched most Del Toro movies hoping to get another Pan’s Labyrinth (and I did, eventually). And I watched every Buñuel movie in the marathon hoping to get anything as provocative as Un Chien Andalou (and I did, eventually). So what do I know.
I've seen them all . . . only cuz of my partner, Lee, who is a completest. Tho he keeps saying he's done after this next one coming out.
I voted for Ugh, yeah, I've seen them all. I had to choose that since I've grown a bit tired of the MCU the last couple of years. Almost every MCU movie nowadays are kind of ok, a bit boring and formulaic. I usually like the ones that do something a bit different like Spider-Man: Homecoming, the Ant-Man ones. The big ones with a lot characters don't entertain me so much.
The best one is of course Captain America: The Winter Soldier... and yes, that should have been one of the movies to vote for in the MCU matchup (or MCU films with Avengers in the title as you chose to set it up as ;)
Kansas City, MO
I have seen them all, but I've been tired of them since about 2015. They all feel so similar, and while not many of them are actually bad, there are very few that are genuinely good. The MCU peaked in 2014 with GotG and Winter Soldier, both of which felt like they were trying something new, but they've stagnated since then. The Disney mediocrity machine I fear will never lose steam at this point.
I’ve enthusiastically seen most MCU movies. I’m with Adam though in missing and never wanting to go back to Thor 2. The only other MCU Ive missed was The Incredible Hulk, however I listened to the Blank Check Podcast patreon commentary of it which seems like the more entertaining route to take anyway.
I've seen all and enjoy about 2/3rds while only really liking about three, but most of that is recent: Thor 3, Black Panther, and Spider-Man: Homecoming top my list. Captain Marvel and Infinity War were both flawed but pretty fun and interestingly crafted films, while their worst (Thor 2, Iron Man 2, Incredible Hulk) are so generic they might as well be made by robots.
I watched the early offerings of the MCU; Iron Man, Thor, and the Captain, even one of those Hulk movies. Letting the experience escalate and reach its zenith with The Avengers, which was fun and enjoyable. But after that I had all I desired from the MCU and have not seen a film of theirs since.
Man, I'm such a sucker for the MCU. As a kid from Ohio who added Film Studies as his second major, I was consistently made fun of by my friends for being into movies beyond blockbuster fare (my support of La La Land's bittersweet ending was high treason). The MCU was the great equalizer. My brother who doesn't even LIKE movies--the scoundrel--still keeps up with the MCU. It's kind of incredible how the vacuum of the MCU has drawn in so many casual filmgoers.
I'm certainly not the most enlightened, the most well-versed, the most addicted, or the most intelligent cinephile, but I've been learning more and more that my tastes do not necessarily need to be justified. I'm allowed to enjoy what I want to enjoy. I am allowed to adore Captain America: The Winter Solider yet only mildly enjoy The Rider (which is what might actually compromise my Filmspotting Nation membership). I am not always in control of what films will connect with me or draw out delight from my weary soul. Thus, I've embraced my MCU Fanboy status. Avengers: Endgame might be the single most excited I've ever been for a movie, and I look forward to enjoying Marvel films as long as I can!
Until recently, I'd only seen The Incredible Hulk, which everyone told me didn't count. However, I did see the first 2/3 of Iron Man while on a plane ride.
Then last year I viewed Thor: Ragnarok, because Taika Waititi.
I have seen every single Marvel movie except, The Incredible Hulk. While I have a mild curiosity around Leterrier's take on the super-hero. Knowing that the canon established around that film has been changed in almost every MCU movie since and it's extremely light ties into the MCU (and the fact that it's Edward Norton rather than current Hulk - Ruffalo) doesn't provide much incentive to seek this one out.
I actually watch the entire series of films every year. I understand the criticism but there is something about the movies I love. Only 3 films I have given a rating below 8 out of 10
Hi from Orlando, Kingdom of the Mouse that runs Hollywood. And I'm so glad that you added the 'ugh' choice to this because unfortunately I've seen every single one of them. I say this only because the handful of legitimately good films in the MCU (Ragnarok, Black Panther, Winter Soldier) does not out weigh the majority of meh to bad movies in it.
I've promised myself after Endgame and Phase 3 ends, I'm tapping out. I'll support my friends who still love them but it's exhausting keeping up with all these mediocre movies when there's so many underappreciated great ones each year.
Using the Wikipedia list (https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_Marvel_Cinematic_Universe_films) as a guide, I was fifty percent up until Thor: Ragnarok. While Iron Man is an amazing movie, I had little interest in the earlier films. Even Paul Rudd did not prioritize my seeing Ant Man in the theaters. After Ragnarok, I did go back and checked out Ant Man before the release of its sequel and at least one of the Captain America movies I stumbled across on streaming. And I have seen all the new releases. The coming together of all these characters holds my interest, and I'm curious to see how much of the pre-Infinity War MCU we get back by the end of Endgame. At least we know we get a bit more Spidey and I am looking forward to eating popcorn while watching Far From Home because of Tom Holland.
Mostly commenting to say that I love love love the comment from Eric Nelson below, and I agree completely.
Yes, I enjoy and even prefer more highbrow and arthouse fare, but there's something exciting about a big movie with a big star (or a bunch of big stars). The old days of class Hollywood music stardom are all but gone with the fracturing of studio systems and the diversity of films being released now. This a good thing, to be sure, but it also means it can be difficult to find people in your community who have seen the same things as you (especially for me here in middle America). But while I may be the only person in my office who went to see Gloria Bell a few weeks ago, I can be pretty sure everyone will be talking about the Avengers at the water cooler in a few weeks.
After 10 years of listening to Filmspotting I am certain my willingness to defend the MCU means Filmspotting Nation will grab their pitchforks and head to Wisconsin to revoke my Filmspotting membership card, but I assure you, I’m not fanboy who puts the Madness into March by mindlessly voting hobbits into the Final Four. That said, nor am I someone who can muster up a Kempenaar-level of pretentiousness to quickly dismiss the MCU.
First, I’ll state the obvious, but often overlooked: Movie stars shine in the MCU. Hemsworth, Evans, Downy, Pratt, Cumberbatch, Larsen—each of these stars are superstars for a reason—and if you want evidence, just watch any of their MCU movies. They’re dramatic, funny, engaging—they light up the screen and bring a charisma that I hope to see any time I walk into a theater. A movie that needs a true star but doesn’t have one is DOA—I don’t care how good your screenplay or cinematography are. We’ve gotten to a point where I can go to any MCU movie and be confident that I’ll be watching a star given material that allows them to play to their strengths. Sure, the third act may be lacking, and the stakes are always beyond galactic clichés. But these are star vehicles that are so much better than what star vehicles used to be (Rocky IV, Conan 2, Beverly Hills Cop 3, need I go on and mention Indy 4?). Give me two hours with any of the Chris-es or with Brie or Samuel L. Jackson in their MCU role, and I know I’ll be reminded of the elixir of life that Hollywood runs on.
I know, my argument can be used to justify Aquaman and Venom—which had great stars who were fun to watch sitting on top of a complete mess of a movie. The MCU is different, but on what follows rests on the work of filmmaker/critic Siddhant Adlakha and his current series of essays on slashfilm.com titled “Road to Endgame” (www.slashfilm.com/tag/road-to-endgame). His movie-by-movie analysis of each MCU film has caught me off guard and challenged me to ask deep questions about my identity, my position in the world, and how the MCU has both encouraged and reconstructed it. Adlakha’s non-American view of the MCU’s use of the military has opened my eyes to my country’s imperialism and helped me and my family of teenagers have meaningful discussion about how those outside America might see Iron Man, Winter Solider and other films differently than we do. If the MCU remained there, I couldn’t in good conscience recommend them, but seeing Guardians 2, Ragnarok, and Black Panther as anti-colonialism course corrections has led to engaging discussions and meaningful course corrections in my own life and my family—which brings me to my last point.
I can’t wait to discuss Tree of Life, Roma, or Scorsese’s Silence with my boys, but that’s still years away. Movies as Prayers is Great, but not accessible for my 10-year-old. The MCU helps me build a film school foundation that is respectable, engaging across all four quadrants, and at times thoughtful.
I know I haven’t convinced anyone, but if you’re going to want my Filmspotting Nation membership card back, you’re gonna have to pry it out of my cold, dead hands.
I've seen almost all of them, but have only really liked about 2, the rest feel a bit like a trip to the dentist. I really enjoyed Spiderman:Homecoming, I think because Peter Parker is a naturally great character, Tom Holland was very well cast, and the film was more of a personal journey as opposed to the Earth blowing up for the zillionth time.
I also loved the first 2/3 of Captain America: Winter Soldier, until it went 'typical Marvel' and lost itself with a boring battle at the end. But before that ending it was pretty great,
Joe from West Lafayette, IN
My vote goes to: "I've only seen a few... And regretted every single one of them."
(In West Lafayette, IN)
I've seen every one of these things, most of them twice, with the lone exception of Captain Marvel. Alas, another casualty of having a 2-year-old and not nearly enough nights out to go to the movies. Maybe we'll try to get it in this weekend and then I'll be back up to 100%.
I think the more fascinating question is when will these movies cease to make money? With many of the founding members leaving after Endgame, is the new crop going to keep people's attention? Spidey & Black Panther seem to be doing well but everything ends, right? Or maybe it'll be team-up cross-over fatigue that wears audiences down and causes them to say "ehh, I'll catch that one on Netflix... if ever." Will another franchise on scale with the MCU siphon away enough of the moviegoing public's attention from Marvel? I guess I'm wondering more about the MCU's "endgame," and who will be the Thanos who snaps his fingers and cuts Marvel profits in half? Metaphorically speaking, of course.
I've seen them all and even though I grew up on Marvel Comics, my allegiance to and appreciation of the MCU was in no way a foregone conclusion. Because they sold all the "good" characters to other studios. I grew up on Spider-man, The Fantastic Four and the X-Men I found Captain America, Iron Man and Thor to be dull as dishwater. (Always dug the Hulk, though.) Putting the second string front and center was a massive risk but they clearly won. Great casting, faith in the core concept - super-humans, not Gods - and making it fun.saved the day. Make Mine Marvel!
I've seen a handful of MCU films with my niece/nephews (mostly as a favor to my sister): Iron Man 1, Black Panther, Wonder Woman, Thor 1 and most recently Captain Marvel. Alas, I was disappointed by BP and WW probably due to all the hype and my disaffection for action scenes that go on and on. That said, I was pleasantly surprised by Captain Marvel. It has some emotional points that worked for me and appreciated the cast (Law and Mendelsohn), female leads and villain twist.
Since Lord of the Rings (Fellowship representing the trilogy) was voted out of Madness, the technology for the Marvel films has not been invented, so these films have never really existed.