The Marvel Cinematic Universe: Phase 2

After discussing the first part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe which you can check out at the link below

MCU Phase 1 https://ragglefragglereviews.com/2017/08/06/the-marvel-cinematic-universe-phase-one/

I’m am finally ready to take on the second phase starting with the third movie in the Iron Man franchise

Iron Man 3 (2013)

Iron Man 3 is often considered the worst of the Iron Man films by fans, I believe this to be due to it’s slight change in tone from a fairly dark and semi serious franchise to something a bit more fun and energetic, don’t get me wrong it’s still dark and may be the darkest of the three films.

What stands out to me the most in this film compared to the others is just how much more human they made Tony Stark, before he was just a playboy billionaire with a massive ego but now he’s an engaged man who’s waiting to marry the love of his life but feelings between the two are slowly being torn apart due to an anxiety disorder Tony has developed.

The terrorist attack on America doesn’t help Tony with his anxiety and both him and his fiance Pepper Potts are put in serious danger due to a drug that’s causing people to mutate into unstoppable killing machines putting the entire planet at risk.

Iron Man 3 is a great movie and I don’t understand the hate people have with it, I still prefer Iron Man 2 but this one isn’t too far behind.

Thor the Dark World (2013)

 

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The god of thunder is back and this time he has to save the 9 realms from a dark elf called Malekith, this Thor movie massively changes the tone of the orginal film, the first Thor was an action comedy about how a spoilt god handles life on earth but this time around his main purpose mostly leaves him in space protecting the 9 realms so the comedy aspect is greatly decreased

Without the humour of the original this movie shines in other areas, with all of the 9 kingdoms being the focus the visuals are just outstanding, you can tell that this is where a good chunk of the budget went, I praise the work of the artists and concept art designers for creating such an interesting world it’s stuff like this that really makes the Thor films stand out.

Most of the same actors from the first Thor movie return for the sequel and all of them do an excellent job and each is as lovable and as great as they were before.

With all of these positive things behind it I wish I could say that this film is better than the first but unfortunately I can’t say that, dark world isn’t bad in the slightest it’s just not as fun as the first film, I missed the comedy and I feel like it could have had some more action scenes, the romance and drama was better directed here so at least its got that, not great but not terrible Thor the Dark World is a good Marvel movie and their are much worse films in the MCU than this.

Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Captain America:  The Winter Soldier is the an amazing film and in my opinion one of the best in the MCU, it takes place 2 years after the events of the Avengers and follows Steve Rogers and how hes adapting to modern day life, after an attack on SHIELD Rogers and his colleagues Black Widow and the Falcon have to work together to defeat an unexpected enemy Bucky Barnes who has also had his body experimented on in a similar manner to the Capt.

Winter Soldier is a brilliantly shot film, the action scenes are fast paced but the camera angles used really help to show how great those sequences are, I really like the soundtrack considering how badly it was destroyed by critics due to its over use of electronic sounds, I don’t personally think this is the case but that’s just my opinion.

Either way with its great shots and wonderful cast this is one MCU film you do not want to miss.

Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

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Guardians of the galaxy is absolutely brilliant, its quite different when compared to the marvel movies that came before it due to its less serious tone and eccentric characters, this change worked really well in guardians favour and helped it sky rocket to popularity.

Four intergalactic criminals Peter Quill, Rocket Racoon, Gamora, Drax the Destroyer and a tree called Groot need to become fast friends and work together to help protect a mysterious orb from the powerful villain Ronan the Accuser.

For me one of the best parts of guardians of the galaxy is the visuals and set designs, because the film primarily takes place in space the worlds the film bases its self in are mind blowing, grand in colourful and have creative designs for plant life, architecture and of course aliens.

Guardians of the galaxy is an amazing movie that anyone can enjoy

Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

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After raiding a Hydra base and discovering the staff once wielded by Loki is being used to experiment on humans,  Tony Stark and the rest of the Avengers defeat the Hydra leader responsible Wolf Gang Von Strucker with the help of two of his test subjects a man with super human speed and a woman with telekinetic powers, Tony Stark manages to retrieve the staff and later on Stark and Banner discover it contains an artificial intelligence which stark uses to power his Ultron global defence program, the program becomes sentient and believes it must destroy the human race in order to save the earth and after it gains control of the staff it destroys Tony Starks A.I. Jarvis and using the resources at the hydra base to build an army of robots all hell bent on taking over the planet leaving the avengers to clean up the mess that they essentially started.

Age of Ultron is a fun movie although it has nothing on the first film, it has a lot of great action scenes and wonderful special effects but it lacks in the more serious moments and it never really drew me in and a movie as big as this really should have, one positive is the soundtrack which is one of the best in the MCU in my opinion its intense and has a the perfect balance of energy and emotion to help it stand out but as a whole Age of Ultron is disappointing to say the least and without the charm of the original this one is nothing more than ok.

Ant-Man (2015)

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Ant-Man is the last film to be released in Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe and as an epic finish to what has been a pretty great release of movies it’s a really good film but I wouldn’t say it’s fantastic.

The protagonist Scott is portrayed by Paul Rudd who was previously known for being in films such as the perks of being a wall flower and the 40 year old virgin, Rudd does a great job at playing the sneaky thief Scott Lang a character with plenty of charisma and genius to make him a very likeable character, a life of crime resulted in Scott being thrown in prison and the movie begins with his release and not long after this we learn about his young Daughter Cassie who wants to spend more time with her dad after not seeing him properly for four years while he was in prison.

Scott Lang an ex thief has not long been released from prison and is finding life on the outside to be very difficult, hes struggling to stay in employment due to his criminal past and keeping a job is the only way that his ex wife will let him see his daughter Cassie, in desperation Scott accepts another job only to find a suit that has the ability to shrink some one down to the size of an Ant. Scott soon discovers that he was chosen to use the suits technology in order to stop a man called Darren Cross from using the same technology to make a super weapon.

Ant-Man has some fantastic effects and cinematography, as you can imagine a film like this uses a lot of CGI but where it may normally look good but not realistic Ant-Man takes this to whole new level allowing the imagery to look almost real, the soundtrack is pretty good but it’s nothing to get excited about none of the music really sticks but it’s still quite fun to listen too, it’s the charm of Ant-Man that really makes it so great, in a similar manner to Guardians of the Galaxy there is no need to take this one too seriously which is obvious once you notice all of the forced clichés and comedic moments and that’s fine in a movie like this, the sillier nature works well for Guardians and the same can be said of Ant-Man an unusual way to end a phase of the MCU but it’s a still good none the less.

Thankyou for reading this brief look at phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com

The Marvel Cinematic Universe Phase One

15470749557_8f2e1e3643_bThe Marvel Cinematic universe is a series of films and television series based on Marvel comics, the MCU consists of many films, television shows and one off productions which make up a new shared universe for the various Marvel properties , the movies and television shows are not released in chronological order so the timeline can get extremely complicated but thankfully the wikipedia page can be read to help you get a better understanding of where in the timeline each movie and TV show takes place.

I will only be briefly covering each movie in this discussion, each phase will be released as part of its own blog and I wont be discussing the shows mostly due to time constraints which I hope that all who reads this will understand.

Iron Man (2008)

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In 2008 we got Iron Man which was the first movie to be released in the MCU now with it being the first movie its not expected to be amazing and to be honest it isn’t but that doesn’t mean its a bad flick, Robert Downey Jr plays the playboy billionaire Tony Stark and no better actor could have been cast for this role, Downey gives a snarky, funny and witty take on the character and it works to this films advantage considering the rather dark nature of plot, the rest of the cast are also well suited to their roles and I have tip my hat to Gwyneth Paltrow who plays Pepper Potts because if it wasn’t for Robert Downey Jr her performance would be my favourite part of this entire movie.

One thing that really helps Iron Man to stand out as a brilliantly shot film is its pacing a characters personality can be explained in just a few moments with the right directing and a consistently good pace, the villain wasn’t too memorable if I am being completely honest Jeff Bridges gives a very manipulative and sly performance for the character of Obadiah Stane but I never really understood the motive behind why he wanted to kill Tony Stark, apart from this Iron Man is a great movie and a good start to the MCU and after it got released fans couldn’t wait for the next film to be released.

The Incredible Hulk (2008)

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The Incredible Hulk is incredibly bad, after watching Iron Man and being so impressed with its production value and pacing, The Incredible Hulk is the complete opposite, the pacing is all over the place and the movie is extremely boring, the actors are ok at playing their roles but I wouldn’t say they were the perfect casting choice, the biggest issue with this movie is its writing, the film is a more dark and grittier version of the The Incredible Hulk and a serious Hulk movie could have worked if most of the film wasn’t just Bruce Banner using his computer, the actual Hulk hardly ever gets any screen time but when it does the film is much more entertaining, the CGI is also terrible when compared Iron Man because at least in that film the computer generated segments looked real but here it looked as if I was playing the Incredible Hulk video game and it really took me out of the only decent part of the film, if I was you I would skip this one and just read a synopsis on IMDB.

Iron Man 2 (2010)

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Taking place a few weeks after the original film Iron Man 2 is the best film yet, where the first film was really well paced and gave us a fantastic cast of characters the same can be said here, the villain in Iron Man 2 is much more memorable than the villain in the first movie and he has a much better motive for performing his actions against Tony Stark, where the last film in the MCU failed due to being so slow and boring Iron Man 2 has a lot more action and fight scenes to look forward too as well as this we get a lot more character development between Tony Stark and Pepper Potts who are having issues in the movie due to how Tony’s ego as Iron Man is ruining their relationship, Iron Man 2 is an excellent movie which makes up for just how terrible the Incredible Hulk was.

Thor (2011)

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After the success of Iron Man 2 there was a lot of hype for a movie based on the god of thunder, Thor is one of the funniest films in the MCU due to its writing, it takes the cliche approach of a person from another realms ends up on earth and hyjinks ensue, many different films have taken this approach and most have failed due to lazy writing but Thor is definitely an acception for the genre, to be honest the best parts of the movie take place in Azgard due to the lush imagery and outstanding CGI but when Thor does get banished to earth the film quickly turns into an action – comedy  and it pulls this off really well with very suptle jokes and quick humour, the villain Loki is one of the most beloved of the MCU and here he isn’t the Loki that we have grown to love just yet as he doesn’t quite have the sense of humour the fans love, but we have the Avengers to look forward to that, either way Thor is an excellent entry in this Phase of the MCU and I highly recommend seeing it even as a standalone film.

Captain America the First Avenger (2011)

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Captain America the First Avenger is one of my favorite Marvel movies period, it’s based in the 1940’s and is filled to the brim with classic 1940’s visuals and set designs which will surely put a smile on anyone’s face who enjoys older films, the film has a lot of great action scenes when Steve Rogers turns into the super soldier Captain America but surprisingly I found that I enjoyed the skinny and weak Steve a lot more, he seemed more real and due to this I felt more emotions towards him, Agent Carter plays a big role in the movie and she quickly becomes the love interest, this film actually has gotten me quite hyped for when I will be reviewing the Agent Carter TV series when we eventually get there during Phase 2, either way Captain America the First Avenger is an excellent movie which introduces many older Marvel characters including the previously mentioned Agent Carter and a young Howard Stark before he fathered Tony Stark, you can watch this film before any others if you wanted too as its chronologically the first in the timeline and I highly recommend doing so.

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The Avengers is one of the most hyped films of all time, when you think about it this entire phase of the MCU was building up to this movie, during the post credits sequence of Thor, Nick Fury shows Eric Selvig the tesseract unaware that his mind is being controlled by Loki and eventually allowing Loki to take advantage of its power, every-other after credits scene saw Nick Fury gathering all of the heroes to help make up the Avengers which are needed to work as a team to stop Thor’s evil brother Loki from taking over the planet.

The movie was directed by Joss Wheaton who is best known for creating the hit show Buffy the Vampire Slayer and he was also a writer of the team that brought us Disney Pixar’s Toy Story, Joss Wheaton did an excellent job directing the Avengers I wouldn’t go as far as saying that its one of my all time favorite movies but its blend of clever comedic moments, awesome special effects and a great cast makes it a memorable time for anyone.

Thankyou for reading this brief look at phase 1 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe

By Padawan

Want me to review a specific game/movie/product or do you have a general question you would like me to answer? if so please email me at ragglefragglereviews@gmail.com