Hard as it is to believe, preview night viewers will be watching Avengers: Infinity War in just 22 days. What began with Iron Man in 2008 and has continued through Black Panther earlier this year, is an interconnected 18-film tapestry that has introduced the Marvel Universe to the entire world and created a host of indelible moments. Some of the best have been the fights (these are comic book films after all) and WatchMojo has put together a list of their 10 best.
The best fights have either been the ones that were deeply personal (Tony, Cap, and Bucky in Civil War or Cap and Bucky in Winter Solider) or were just flat-out battles your inner nerdgeekdork wanted to see (Thor and Hulk in Thor: Ragnarok). The villains in MCU films are rarely the point, but this list was published before Black Panther was released, and I wonder if the Panther/Killmonger fight would have made the list if they had to do it over. WM also considered the MCU’s TV entries and, as no surprise, there’s an iconic fight from each season of Daredevil that justly makes the list. It’s rare in the MCU that the heroes fighting each other isn’t more interesting than a villain showdown. I doubt that’s going to be the case when the entire MCU comes for Thanos and his Black Order, but we’ve only got to wait 3 weeks to find out. So were there any glaring throwdown omissions for you on WM’s list?
Idris Elba is an actor whose career has been equally divided between defining roles on both the big and small screens. A career television actor, Elba broke out in HBO’s The Wire as Stringer Bell and has continued to create and expand one of TV’s best charactes in DCI John Luther for the BBC. Joining the Marvel Cinematic Universe as Asgard’s gatekeeper, Heimdall, gave Elba feature film exposure that has caused the actor’s star to continue to rise. Elba has probably had the best two years of his career over the last two using both his live-action talents in Beasts of No Nation and Molly’s Game as well as the intensity and versatily of his voice in The Jungle Book, Finding Dory, and Zootopia. Hero or villain, TV or film, voice or full presence, Elba commands the attention of audiences, and his best is yet to come. Continue reading Idris Elba’s 10 Best Movies→
For a number of reason, Age of Ultron got a lot of flak from MCU fans for, essentially, not being The Avengers. The film had the thankless task of being a set-up film, masked as a climax film. This is really Civil War Part One. This is the inciting event whose consequences come home to roost in Captain America: Civil War. But the film also had to introduce fractures into the team, introduce a slew of new characters, set up Phase 3 films, and still manage to tell the story of the Avengers fighting their biggest traditional foe. I think it works very well in the larger context of the MCU, and would have just fine on its own had Disney not made one of its very few forays into meddling with the MCU. They felt the film was too long (they have since made longer) and made director Joss Whedon choose between neutering Thor’s storyline, which was the thread connecting the film to the overarching Infinity Gems plot, or cutting the entire sequence at the Barton farmhouse (not much of a choice because cutting that sequence breaks the film). How did that work out? AofU still made a bunch of bank, and angered director Joss Whedon is now directing Justice League and Batgirl for the DCEU. Continue reading My Favorite Scene: Avengers Age of Ultron (2015) *Who Is Worthy?*→
Scarlett Johansson isn’t even in her mid-thirties and she’s already put together a huge resume of quality dramatic, action, and vocal work. Her six outings as Black Widow in the Marvel Cinematic Universe have made her the highest-profile female super hero (who NEEDS HER OWN MOVIE), and is probably the best female action star working today. Her voice is so distinct and versatile that she could float out the rest of her career just doing voice over work (Jungle Book, Her, Sing). She’s been acting since her teens so her resume already has over 50 films to it, and her versatility allows her to do so many different kinds of roles that she’ll no doubt be able to skirt Hollywood’s female age ceiling as her career continues to develop.
It was never even close. The Killing Time Community Film of 2015 by a 40 point margin is Star Wars Episode VIII: The Force Awakens!!! I agree and named it Best Picture when the Renaissance Awards went up yesterday (click here to review). Mad Max: Fury road finished a distant second and The Revenant (which I suppose is the Community’s pick amongst those films actually in the running tomorrow) finished third.
What I thought was great was that every single one of the 15 nominated films got votes. Even if Star Wars wasn’t your favorite film this year, there was a film(s) that will stick with you and I think the breadth of the voting once you got past the juggernaut in first showed that. Tomorrow night is OSCAR NIGHT! Tune in so you can understand what I’ll be screaming about on Monday. It’ll be interesting to see if host Chris Rock addresses Spike Lee’s boycott. I think the thing I’m most rooting for is for John Williams to win Best Score for Star Wars with his 50th Oscar nomination (FIFTY). It may be the last chance for the maestro, and he legitamitely deserves it. Our look back at 2015 has ended (though expect a mega lightning review bomb next week of the films I watched to catch up) and it’s time to begin 2016 in earnest. See you at the movies!
Here are our legacy winners (all PG-13, huh): 2012: The Dark Knight Rises 2013: Gravity 2014: Guardians of the Galaxy 2015: Star Wars Episode VII