The Story Geeks have voted! Jay, Daryl, and Justin share their lists and react to YOURS!
Here’s a list of The Story Geeks who submitted lists: Ashley Pauls, Michael Gordon, Zach Linton, Ben Coberly, Malachi Ward, Cody Sherer, Mathew Kressel, Eddie Sone, John Pak, Bobby Nash, Nate Labate, David Graham, Cate Esera, Asa Borquist, Anthony Holdier, Tim Posada, Elvis Illescas, Sandra Dimas, Caleb Linden, Mike Rinaldi, Jim Baldwin, Leo Partible, Chris Hayner, Hannibal Tabu, Michael Young, and Isaac Johnson.
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NOTE: This podcast (and blog) was originally released prior to the release of Black Panther and Avengers: Infinity War! After you check out Ashley’s take, if you haven’t listened to the podcast where the rest of The Story Geeks share their opinions… Check it out here!
10. The Avengers
As you listen to the podcast, you may notice that I originally had a different movie in the #10 slot. Since I submitted my original top 10 comic book films, I’ve actually switched around my #10 and my #7 due to the way my personal ranking of the Marvel Cinematic Universe movies has shifted over time. It’s not that I like “The Avengers” any less — it’s just that the MCU has so many great films now, and I feel like several of them have surpassed the original Avengers film. Still, “The Avengers” is just such a fun movie, and I loved watching all the Avengers team up for the first time. It’s the perfect summer blockbuster.
9. Kingsman: The Secret Service
Although I was disappointed in the sequel, “The Golden Circle,” the first Kingsman film is still one of my favorite movies. I love how unabashedly over-the-top this movie is, both satirizing spy flicks while also celebrating them. Some of the action sequences get a little crazy, but it’s all in good fun. Colin Firth plays a perfectly proper British spy, while Taron Egerton is his rough-around-the-edges recruit with a bigger heart than people give him credit for. I always call this my “sick day movie”; when I’m stuck home from work not feeling well, this is the movie I pop in to cheer me up and keep me entertained.
8. Wonder Woman
“Wonder Woman” was such an inspiring film for me. As a female geek, it meant so much to me to see an awesome female superhero starring in her own movie. Gal Gadot is just so perfect for this role, and I love the character’s blend of strength, courage, compassion, and kindness. Chris Pine makes for a great sidekick as Captain Steve Trevor, and I love how their subtle romance adds to the film without creating unnecessary drama. Wonder Woman is definitely the best part of the DC Cinematic Universe right now!
7. Doctor Strange
I originally had “Doctor Strange” in the #10 slot, but it’s since swapped places with “The Avengers” on my MCU movies ranking. I was thrilled when I heard that one of my favorite actors, Benedict Cumberbatch, was going to be joining the MCU, and I think the role of Doctor Strange is a great fit for him. I love how this movie adds a magical, psychedelic dimension to the MCU, and it’s since become one of my favorite superhero origin stories.
6. Captain America: Civil War
I consider this to be an honorary Avengers movie, because even though it’s technically a Captain America film, it does a great job working in all the other characters. This movie adds some shades of gray to the Marvel universe, pitting Iron Man and Captain America against each other as they debate if and how superheroes should be held accountable for their actions. The film is both epic and personal, and the crumbling relationship between Tony and Steve produces some of the MCU’s most emotional moments.
5. The Dark Knight Rises
I feel like I may be the only person on the planet who ranks “The Dark Knight Rises” above “The Dark Knight.” 😉 I can’t argue that “The Dark Knight” is a masterpiece, possibly even THE best superhero movie of our time. Yet, “The Dark Knight Rises” is a more emotionally impactful viewing experience for me. I really like how it rounds out Christopher Nolan’s Dark Knight trilogy, and I love its message of hope in the midst of darkness. The scene where a broken and battered Bruce Wayne finally summons the strength to climb up out of the pit is one of my all-time favorite movie moments; it’s such a powerful display of hope and goodness triumphing over darkness and despair.
4. X-Men: First Class
I love just about everything about this movie. As much as I enjoy the performances from Hugh Jackman, Ian McKellen, and Patrick Stewart in the original X-Men films, “First Class” is my favorite X-Men movie. The retro ’60s setting is super cool, and James McAvoy and Michael Fassbender were excellent casting choices to play the young Professor X and Magento. Their friendship serves as the heart of the film, making their eventual falling out that much more tragic. The film also does a great job portraying Magneto as a sympathetic villain; some of his decisions may be wrong, but the movie illuminates the painful experiences in his past that shaped the man he has become.
3. Captain America: The Winter Soldier
I feel like this is not just a great superhero film — it’s a great movie, period. Adding in elements of political intrigue and a genuinely game-changing plot twist, “The Winter Soldier” is one of the MCU’s most thought-provoking films, forcing Steve Rogers to confront some of his past ideals and his beliefs about S.H.I.E.L.D. It also does a great job setting up some of the conflicts in later films, like “Civil War.” I also loved the team-up with Captain America and Black Widow, and the introduction of Falcon.
2. Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1
This movie is literally SO CLOSE to taking over the No. 1 slot on my list, and actually, it’s probably only the lackluster villain holding it back. “Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 1” manages to be one of the funniest AND most emotional movies in the MCU. The Guardians are, on the surface, a bunch of misfits who have been rejected by the rest of the galaxy. However, their rough edges hide a lot of pain and loneliness. I love how their group eventually becomes a family and they end up saving the galaxy.
1. Iron Man
This is the movie that started it all for the MCU, and it’s still my favorite. Robert Downey Jr. is my favorite actor, and Iron Man is my favorite Avenger, so it’s no surprise this ended up as No. 1. 😉 When I watched this movie for the first time years ago, it felt really fresh and exciting; Iron Man was a different type of hero from the ones I’d seen before. And 10 years later, I still think this is a great film! It’s been really cool to watch Tony’s journey over all the MCU films, and I’m very curious to see how it wraps up in the follow-up to “Infinity War” in 2019.
What are YOUR Top 10? Comment below with your take!