The 5 Worst Marvel Movies

With a never-ending slew of new Marvel films, there are bound to be some we don’t like. And while we understand that not every superhero movie can have the budget of, say, an Avengers: Endgame, fans are owed at least a minimal level of quality. The following films are, in our opinion, the worst Marvel movies.

Iron Man 2 (2010)

Iron Man 2

Following 2008’s Iron Man was no easy feat. Featuring a focused plot, plenty of action, and an excellent performance by Robert Downey Jr., the film is the epitome of dumb fun. Iron Man 2, however, treads more on the dumb side and less on the fun. 

This isn’t to say that the film doesn’t have its merits. Like its predecessor, it features loads of mind-numbing action, and its exploration into the self-destructive lifestyle of Tony Stark is refreshing. However, it tries to cram too much into its already-lengthy runtime. 

Considering that this film was meant to debut much of the cast of the upcoming Avengers films, it makes sense that the writers felt compelled to include so many subplots. However, the overall result is weaker than its individual ingredients.

Hulk (2003)

The Hulk

It still surprises us that Ang Lee, the director of one of the greatest films of the 2000s (Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon), took it upon himself to direct a Marvel film. Being directed by Lee, it’s undeniable that Hulk is beautifully shot. The film’s focus on the tragedy of Bruce Banner’s life, its parallels to the story of Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde, give it a touch of humanity that at the time was rare in superhero films. And Danny Elfman’s score is absolutely stunning.

Sadly, the positive aspects of Hulk end there. The film is simply boring. For Hulk being the titular character, there are surprisingly few scenes featuring him. And we get it. Lee wanted the film to be subtle; he didn’t want the novelty of seeing Hulk on screen to wear off. However, at the end of the day, we don’t typically watch superhero films for their artistry. Fans want to see action, and Hulk is severely lacking in that department.

Fantastic Four (2015)

Fantastic Four

While 2005’s iteration of Fantastic Four could have easily made it to a worst Marvel movies list itself, 2015’s reboot is as bad as it gets. Its attempts to be moody and atmospheric fall completely flat. Its character development is poor. (By the end of the film’s 100-minute runtime, it still doesn’t feel like we truly know any of the heroes.) 

Perhaps the film’s greatest offense is its absolute butchering of one of Marvel’s greatest villains: Dr. Doom. Not only are his motivations vague, but the film decided to stray completely from what made Doom such an iconic villain in the first place. In the comics, Doom never needed superpowers. His diabolical intelligence on its own made him a formidable rival to the Fantastic Four. 

But for whatever reason, the writers of the film decided to give him superpowers. Also, while it may be nitpicky, we must point out that the film’s iteration of Dr. Doom was aesthetically not up to par to that of the comics. It’s hard for us to even picture Dr. Doom without his iconic metal mask.

On top of all this, but the film is rife with continuity errors. Due to the studio being dissatisfied with the final film, a number of reshoots took place. As a result, many inconsistencies can be spotted, most notably changes to Sue’s hair.

Ghost Rider (2007)

Ghost Rider

Ghost Rider is an awesome character, and Nicolas Cage can be an incredible actor when he wants to be. However, he was simply not the man for this role. Perhaps his casting would have been more fitting had the film been released as it was originally intended: a darkly funny R-rated film.

According to Cage, “Ghost Rider was a movie that always should’ve been an R-rated movie. David Goyer had a brilliant script, which I wanted to do… and for whatever reason they just didn’t let us make the movie.”

It’s a shame that we didn’t get the fully realized version of Ghost Rider. What we did get was a boring, incohesive plot that couldn’t have been saved even if the action and CGI had been good (which they weren’t). By and large, this is one of the worst Marvel movies that should have been good.

X-Men Origins: Wolverine (2009)

X-Men Origins

Wolverine is undeniably one of the coolest characters in the Marvel universe. And Hugh Jackman was perfect for the role, balancing Wolverine’s inherent badassery with his poignant desperation. The X-Men films had dropped many hints about Wolverine’s forgotten past, and fans were eager to find out more. Essentially, a Wolverine movie would’ve been hard to screw up. But somehow, this movie managed to be one of the biggest screw-ups in the history of superhero films.

The entire film felt like a terrible attempt at fan service, attempting to cram in as many bad iterations of classic X-Men characters as possible—with Deadpool being the worst offender. Even for 2009, the CGI was laughable: there was absolutely no reason to use (bad) CGI to animate Wolverine’s claws. Above all, the story simply didn’t make sense. How did Logan, a Canadian, fight in the US Civil War?

The film also disrupted the storyline of the previous X-Men films. Apparently, Wolverine had met Cyclops prior to the original X-Men film. Yet somehow, in that film, Cyclops didn’t remember him. This is just one of many continuity errors presented by X-Men Origins: Wolverine.

Thankfully, Wolverine was given another chance at a solo film with 2017’s stellar Logan.

What do you think are the worst Marvel movies? Let us know in the comments!

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