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Tech The best and worst superhero movies in the Marvel Cinematic Universe, ranked according to critics

Here are the best and worst movies in Marvel's gargantuan, lucrative cinematic world, according to the critics on Rotten Tomatoes.

  • Published: , Refreshed:
"Black Panther." play

"Black Panther."

(Disney)

The Marvel Cinematic Universe has been a cash cow for Disney since it kicked off with "Iron Man" in 2008.

The franchise has made over $13.5 billion worldwide to date, and that number will rise drastically this weekend when "Black Panther" opens, as is projected to break some box office records.

Critics seem to love the MCU, but they especially are in love with "Black Panther." The movie currently has a 98% ranking on Rotten Tomatoes.

Check out where that ranks among the 18 movies in the MCU, according to critics on Rotten Tomatoes:

18. "Thor: The Dark World" (2013)

18. "Thor: The Dark World" (2013) play

18. "Thor: The Dark World" (2013)

(Disney / Marvel)

 

Critic score: 66%

User score: 77%

What critics said: "The 'Crocodile Dundee II' of superhero films — in a good way!" — Slate

 



17. "The Incredible Hulk" (2008)

"The Incredible Hulk" — released June 13, 2008 play

"The Incredible Hulk" — released June 13, 2008

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 67%

User score: 71%

What critics said: "In close-up the Hulk is more cartoonish than scary, but when he's ripping armed vehicles to shreds? Kewl." — Houston Chronicle

 



16. "Iron Man 2" (2010)

16. "Iron Man 2" (2010) play

16. "Iron Man 2" (2010)

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 73% (certified fresh)

User score: 72%

What critics said: "It's easy to talk about what 'Iron Man 2' doesn't do, but what it does do is so full of energy and genuine enthusiasm that it's hard to imagine anyone walking out unhappy." — CinemaBlend

 



15. "Avengers: Age of Ultron" (2015)

47. "Avengers: Age of Ultron" (2015) play

47. "Avengers: Age of Ultron" (2015)

(Disney)

 

Critic score: 75% (certified fresh)

User score: 83%

What critics said: "In the moments where it all comes together, like the sure-to-be-iconic Hulkbuster sequence, this is the very model of what Marvel's been chasing since day one." — HitFix

 



14. "Thor" (2011)

14. "Thor" (2011) play

14. "Thor" (2011)

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 77% (certified fresh)

User score: 76%

What critics said: "Though it may not leave a lasting impression once the lights go up, Thor is lighthearted and thunderously good fun." — USA Today

 



13. "Iron Man 3" (2013)

44. "Iron Man 3" (2013) play

44. "Iron Man 3" (2013)

(Disney)

 

Critic score: 80% (certified fresh)

User score: 78%

What critics said: "Beyond all the explosions and action set pieces and 3D wizardry, you can still hear a writer with a distinctive, entertaining voice." — Flavorwire

 



12. "Captain America: The First Avenger" (2011)

12. "Captain America: The First Avenger" (2011) play

12. "Captain America: The First Avenger" (2011)

(Disney/Marvel)

 

Critic score: 80% (certified fresh)

User score: 74%

What critics said: "You are not in for a giddy, winking, high-flying summer fling. And that's OK — there's something appealing about such an old-fashioned approach." — AP

 



11. "Ant-Man" (2015)

50. "Ant-Man" (2015) play

50. "Ant-Man" (2015)

(Marvel/Disney)

 

Critic score: 82% (certified fresh)

User score: 86%

What critics said: "This is the sort of movie where you see the effort and say, 'thank God.'" — Grantland

 



10. "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" (2017)

10. "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" (2017) play

10. "Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2" (2017)

(Disney)

 

Critic score: 83% (certified fresh)

User score: 88%

What critics said: "The reunion of the Guardians cements Pratt's mega-stardom." — New York Observer

 



9. "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (2014)

9. "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (2014) play

9. "Captain America: The Winter Soldier" (2014)

(Disney/Marvel)

 

Critic score: 89% (certified fresh)

User score: 92%

What critics said: "It knocks down a lot of the infrastructure the previous films had created, and it does so in a way that feels organic and refreshing for the Marvel world at large." — The Atlantic

 



8. "Doctor Strange" (2016)

8. "Doctor Strange" (2016) play

8. "Doctor Strange" (2016)

(Disney)

 

Critic score: 90% (certified fresh)

User score: 86%

What critics said: "See it in 3-D IMAX, people, and you're in for the hallucinatory headtrip of the year." — Rolling Stone

 



7. "Guardians of the Galaxy" (2014)

7. "Guardians of the Galaxy" (2014) play

7. "Guardians of the Galaxy" (2014)

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 91% (certified fresh)

User score: 92%

What critics said: "Blessed with a loose, anarchic B-picture soul that encourages you to enjoy yourself even when you're not quite sure what's going on, the scruffy 'Guardians' is irreverent in a way that can bring the first 'Star Wars' to mind." — LA Times

 



6. "Captain America: Civil War" (2016)

6. "Captain America: Civil War" (2016) play

6. "Captain America: Civil War" (2016)

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 91% (certified fresh)

User score: 89%

What critics said: "This is the best Marvel movie so far." — Uproxx

 



5. (tie) "Thor: Ragnarok" (2017)

5. (tie) "Thor: Ragnarok" (2017) play

5. (tie) "Thor: Ragnarok" (2017)

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 92% (certified fresh)

User score: 88%

What critics said: "Perfectly acceptable as an action movie but inspired as a comedy--which is probably where the Thor franchise should have been aiming from the start." — The Atlantic

 



5. (tie) "Spider-Man: Homecoming" (2017)

The MCU beyond 2019 is less certain — but we know Marvel has release dates set until 2022. play

The MCU beyond 2019 is less certain — but we know Marvel has release dates set until 2022.

(Sony)

 

Critic score: 92% (certified fresh)

User score: 88%

What critics said: "This is the Spidey movie we've been waiting for. It's also the best Spider-Man movie of the bunch." — Newsweek

 



5. (tie) "Marvel's The Avengers" (2012)

1. Avengers Assemble ("The Avengers") play

1. Avengers Assemble ("The Avengers")

(Marvel)

 

Critic score: 92% (certified fresh)

User score: 91%

What critics said: "A spectacle in the grandest sense of the word." — MTV

 



2. "Iron Man" (2008)

2. "Iron Man" (2008) play

2. "Iron Man" (2008)

(YouTube/themoviechannel)

 

Critic score: 94% (certified fresh)

User score: 91%

What critics said: "It's an exemplary comic book fantasia." — LA Weekly

 



1. "Black Panther" (2018)

1. "Black Panther" (2018) play

1. "Black Panther" (2018)

(Disney/Marvel Studios)

 

Critic score: 98% (certified fresh)

User score: 93%

What critics said: "'Black Panther' is one of the best superhero movies of the century." — Chicago Sun-Times