JUMPCUT’s Top 5: Marvel Cinematic Universe

With ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ practically within touching distance, we asked our team to vote on their favourite films in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU). We’d like to make it clear that this list doesn’t reflect any of the team’s personal lists, but is in fact based on the results of a voting system we used. The team would love to discuss their favourite MCU films, so feel free to join in the discussion on Twitter – @JUMPCUT_ONLINE 

Our journey to ‘Infinity War’ started 10 years ago with ‘Iron Man’ as we watched Tony Stark create a suit of metal whilst being held hostage in a cave. Since then we’ve been introduced to a whole range of different heroes, we watched a skinny kid from Brooklyn become Captain America (thanks to a little super soldier serum), a dramatic and never ending sibling rivalry between Norse Gods, a walking, talking stick sacrificing his life for a bunch of criminals he’s known 5 minutes and making everyone cry, only for his son to then make everyone go ‘awwww’, and a King running round in a cat suit to protect his country.

Before we announce our Top 5, we also asked our team to tell us their least favourite film from this iconic universe. The team’s overall pick may not come as too much of a surprise, but there are a couple members of our team who had this film in their personal top 5 lists and are very unhappy about this particular result!

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JUMPCUT’s Least Favourite

Thor: The Dark World

The second film in Thor’s trilogy saw the God of Thunder go toe-to-toe with Malekith (Christopher Eccleston), a dark elf who threatens to bring darkness to the Nine Realms as he wields the power of the Aether. After coming into contact with the Aether, Thor must save Jane, and the rest of the world from it’s dark power. A highly forgettable sequel, which even Christopher Eccleston recently admitted he hated being a part of, and not enough of Jaimie Alexander’s Lady Sif if we’re being completely honest! 

We also asked our team to vote for their most anticipated upcoming MCU film (which has been confirmed) and beating the likes of ‘Avengers 4’, ‘Ant-Man and The Wasp’, and ‘Black Panther 2’ is…

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JUMPCUT’s Most Anticipated

Captain Marvel

This week the cameras began rolling for Brie Larson’s solo film debut as ‘Captain Marvel’. We will of course see Captain Marvel make her first appearance in ‘Avengers 4’, or maybe even ‘Infinity War’ if rumours are to be believed! Either way, we’re excited to see her in action and become the first female superhero in the MCU to have her own solo film (Way overdue Marvel! *angrily shakes fist*). 

Without further a do, here’s our Top 5 MCU films based on votes from our team!

JUMPCUT’s Top 5

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#5 – The Avengers (2012)

I can already hear the trumpets blaring as the camera circles Captain America, Iron Man, Black Widow, Hulk, Thor, Hawkeye as they came together to stop Loki and his chitauri army from invading Earth. ‘The Avengers’ was a box office smash in 2012, four years after we witnessed the start of the MCU with ‘Iron Man’ and the post credit scene that built all our hopes up after we witnessed Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury tell Tony Stark that he wasn’t the only superhero in the world and gave everyone goosebumps when he mentioned the ‘Avengers initiative’. This was it. This was what we had been waiting to see and it didn’t disappoint!

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#4 – Black Panther (2018)

‘Black Panther’ is currently on it’s 5th week at #1 at the box office and is the first film to hold it’s top spot since Jame Cameron’s ‘Avatar’. We first met Black Panther in ‘Captain America: Civil War’ where he became an instant fan favourite. ‘Black Panther’ takes place just days after the events of ‘Civil War’ as Chadwick Boseman’s T’challa is sworn in as King of Wakanda following the death of his father. Killmonger (Michael B. Jordan) has other ideas and returns to Wakanda to challenge T’Challa for the throne so he can run things his way. The film boasts a fantastic cast, stunning visuals, and one of the best villains the MCU has seen. Michael B. Jordan absolutely killed it as Killmonger and is the second Human Torch to be redeemed by the MCU.

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#3 – Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)

Coming in at #3 is this bunch of a-holes. The success of this film came as quite a surprise to many, but with a catchy soundtrack and some stunning visuals, James Gunn actually did it! Who would have thought that a film with a smack-talking raccoon and a talking stick would bring a tear to your eyes, both with laughter and from pulling at your heart strings. ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ took us to out to the stars where we met a whole host of new races and faces, and it was the perfect set up to learn about the Infinity Stones, which fans  (and Thanos) have been keeping a very close eye out for ever since…

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#2 – Thor: Ragnarok (2017)

Compared the other solo films in the MCU, it’s fair to say that Thor never really got the film he deserved, that was, until Taika Waititi delivered us ‘Ragnarok’. After being left out of the events of ‘Civil War’, many had wondered where Thor had gotten to – but it turns out he had bigger (and greener) problems on his hands! Waititi injected a lot of colour and humour into ‘Ragnarok’ and also blessed us with Jeff Goldblum’s Grandmaster and of course, Korg. Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie was a very much welcomed addition to the ‘Revengers’ team and we’re keeping our fingers crossed Valkyrie doesn’t become one of the many fatalities we’re expecting to be forced to witness in ‘Infinity War’! 

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#1 – Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)

Our #1 may not come as much of a surprise to many, especially because it didn’t feature anywhere earlier in our Top 5 list, but ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ sits proudly at the top of JUMPCUT’s favourite MCU list. With some fantastic fight choreography and the proud owner of one of the more memorable scores of the entire franchise, ‘The Winter Soldier’ kept things grounded (for the most part) as we learned that S.H.I.E.L.D had been compromised and Hydra had their hands on the steering wheel the whole time. But that’s not all Steve Rogers had to deal with, no sir. It also turns out that his best friend Bucky is still alive… and trying to kill him. Steve’s friendship with Bucky has always been at the heart of his trilogy but could Thanos put an end to it once and for all in ‘Infinity War’?

And that’s it! That’s our top five films of the MCU. How does your Top 5 compare to ours? We’d love to here your thoughts over on Twitter – @JUMPCUT_ONLINE

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Black Panther

Year: 2018
Directed by: Ryan Coogler
Starring: Chadwick Boseman, Michael B. Jordan, Lupita Nyong’o, Andy Serkis,
Martin Freeman

WRITTEN BY ANDREW GARRISON

While this is far from the first black superhero movie, it is still very important. Diversity is a gift, allowing us to see new stories and points of view we may have not yet considered. It opens our world to new exciting possibilities. Marvel Studios has grown increasingly diverse over the past decade, but this is the first time a primary non-white protagonist emerges. I was excited about this movie even before ‘Captain America: Civil War’ arrived. I thought Black Panther was a character the Marvel universe needed. Coming into this movie with high hopes, it did not disappoint.

‘Black Panther’ follows the return of T’Challa (Boseman) to his home, Wakanda, after the events of ‘Captain America: Civil War’. He is to be crowned king but must face the mistakes and adversaries of the past and attempt to guide his people toward the right future. This film has the most talented cast that Marvel has used to date. Chadwick Boseman plays the Black Panther very well. He dives into the character and never lets up. The main antagonist is Erik Killmonger played by Michael B. Jordan who delivers a stirring performance. Lupita Nyong’o is incredibly cool throughout this film, she nearly steals the movie from Boseman, which is an impressive feat all its own. You know you are watching something special when the secondary characters feature the likes of; Angela Bassett, Forest Whitaker, Daniel Kaluuya, Andy Serkis, and Martin Freeman. Everyone did wonderful work in their roles.

This film may be fantasy, but it is loaded with profound concepts for the world we live in. Things that needed to be said and heard by the masses were exposed. This movie highlights some ugly truths about our own world. Things we need to accept as issues and then get to work finding resolutions. Granted it is early, but the cinematography, set designs, costumes, and makeup are flawless throughout this film and I hope will receive some award nominations in the future. You don’t just learn about Black Panther and his close circle, you learn about the spiritual, political, and social culture of Wakanda in stunning detail. This is a very fleshed out world, better than anything Marvel has done to date in this regard.

The music throughout this film is aesthetically pleasing, perfectly sewn into the film at the right moments. Combine that with excellent sound and CGI, and you have a film that is well-made all around. There are humor and action throughout, but the humor is tamed. It knows when it can be funny and when it needs to be serious. (Think ‘Captain America: The Winter Soldier’ and not ‘Thor: The Dark World’.) The film mixes in periods of drama and character development with intense actions scenes. Marvel has gotten a bit more brutal in recent years. The violence was still very much PG- 13, but it was very much fitting of that rating. When the action goes down, it is some of the most impressive I’ve seen from any superhero film to date.

While I enjoyed ‘Black Panther’, it does have a few issues. Anyone familiar with these Marvel movies over the past decade knows they have some flaws. Without spoiling anything, this movie carries on a recurring Marvel issue regarding the fate of it’s villains. This by no means ruins the movie, but it is a fact that Marvel isn’t going unnoticed amongst fans.

While I tried to avoid a lot of news about this film, I was hearing a lot of hype for Killmonger as Marvel’s best villain. He has a compelling story, but there was so much of it glossed over. I wanted to know more about this character and he never fully developed as I hoped. There are a couple of decisions the movie makes that I didn’t like. I felt Marvel had built up something and then wasted a great opportunity. While not often, sometimes the camerawork would be erratic and hard to follow. ‘Black Panther’ wasn’t just a Marvel superhero movie, it was a rattling of the cages type film. It spoke a lot of truth that we often sweep under the rug about the world we live in. It raises awareness and then offers the global society an olive branch. ‘Black Panther’ is well-crafted in every sense of the word. Director Ryan Coogler continues to astound, and this may be the most beautiful Marvel movie made yet.

ANDREW’S RATING: 8.8/10

Marvel Unleash First ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Trailer

“An unprecedented cinematic journey ten years in the making and spanning the entire Marvel Cinematic Universe, Marvel Studios’ “Avengers: Infinity War” brings to the screen the ultimate, deadliest showdown of all time. The Avengers and their Super Hero allies must be willing to sacrifice all in an attempt to defeat the powerful Thanos before his blitz of devastation and ruin puts an end to the universe.

Anthony and Joe Russo direct the film, which is produced by Kevin Feige. Louis D’Esposito, Victoria Alonso, Michael Grillo and Stan Lee are the executive producers. Christopher Markus & Stephen McFeely wrote the screenplay.”

It’s finally arrived! After months of fan speculation, numerous fake pictures and screenshots of release dates, Marvel have unleashed the first official trailer for the third ‘Avengers’ film, ‘Infinity War’.

The star studded film brings together every hero we’ve met in the last 10 years, including Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, The Guardians, Black Widow, Hawkeye, and Black Panther. They’re all coming together to take on the Mad Titan, Thanos, who we’ve seen very little of and only ever really been teased about the threat he poses to Earth. Last time we saw him he grabbed his currently stone-less Gauntlet and declared “I’ll do it myself”.

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In the first post-credit scene, Thor, Loki, Valkyrie, and the Asgardians come face to face with a humongous ship. Fans speculate that ship belongs to non-other than the Mad Titan himself, and that this will tie in with the beginning of ‘Infinity War’.

The heroes also feature in the latest Vanity Fair issue, which includes photos of how some of the heroes will look in the film, but as many have noticed, some costumes (and weapons) don’t seem to match what we know going into ‘Infinity War’, which could mean that the Russo Brothers have plenty of surprises up their sleeves.

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The Avengers Trilogy Teaser Posters

The First ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ Reactions Are In!

The first reactions to Taika Waititi’s ‘Thor: Raganarok’ are in and the majority are hailing it as a hit! Whilst the review embargo is yet to be lifted, the social media embargo lifted a few hours ago!

A number of reactions hail MCU newcomer Tessa Thompson, who plays Valkyrie, as the standout in the film, with Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk also getting his fair share of love. Cate Blanchett is also being praised for her role as Hela, with lots of critics admiring her role as the big-bad and that she looks like she had a lot of fun doing it.

As I’d hoped, Waititi is being praised a helluva lot for injecting his style into the MCU and into the character, and whilst it does appear that this third ‘Thor’ film is mostly self-contained, I hope that Waititi’s influence and style for Thor stick as we lead into ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ and see Thor team back up with the Avengers, as well as all the other heroes we’ve come across in MCU so far.

A fair number of critics are also hailing it as the best ‘Thor’ film to date!

Below are a selection of early reactions: 

Michelle Pfeiffer And Laurence Fishburne Join The Cast Of ‘Ant-Man And The Wasp’

During their presentation in Hall H, Marvel confirmed that Michelle Pfeiffer will play the role of Janet Van Dyne, mother of Hope van Dyne (Evangeline Lilly) and wife of Hank Pym (Michael Douglas), who we saw briefly in a flashback scene during ‘Ant-Man’. Laurence Fishburne was also confirmed as a member of the cast, and is playing the role of Dr. Bill Foster, aka Goliath. 

Also recently announced as members of the cast are Walton Goggins, whose character still remains unknown, and Randall Park who is confirmed to play S.H.I.E.L.D. agent Jimmy Woo. 

A new logo and some early concept art were shown during the presentation. 

Peyton Reed, who directed the first film, is back in the director’s chair for the sequel which is currently slated for a July 2018 release.

Written by Tom Sheffield

New Details On Brie Larson’s ‘Captain Marvel’

During Marvel’s Hall H presentation they gave some new details on the upcoming ‘Captain Marvel’ film, which will star Brie Larson in the title role. 

We now know that the film is going to be set in the 1990s, meaning the events of this film take place before Iron Man. The rumour of Samuel L. Jackson making an appearance as Nick Fury has also been confirmed, and it was also announced he’d have both eyes at this point. This means it’s a possibility we could at some point see how Fury lost his eye and why he started donning his iconic eye patch. 

Some early concept art was also shown (see tweets below) which depict Larson in her costume and going head to head with the villains of the film, The Skrulls. 

We’re first going to meet Captain Marvel in the upcoming ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ next year, before Marvel’s first female lead film, which is scheduled to release in 2018.

Written by Tom Sheffield

‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Teaser Shown at D23 Expo.

SPOILER ALERT: Below is a description of the new ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ trailer that was just shown at Disney’s expo. The description has been compiled through tweets from fans lucky enough to be attending the expo and witnessed this footage, which hasn’t been released online.

It goes without saying that the description goes into spoiler territory, but is likely nothing that won’t be shown in the trailers to build up the hype. For those that want the teaser and trailers to remain a surprise, close this tab now!

 

 

For those of you still with me, are you ready for your mind to be blown? Here goes… 

  • A wounded Thor crashes into the windshield of the Milano, that Guardian’s ship. 
  • Mantis wakes Thor up. (It’s thought that this could be the first heroes to meet up)
  • Peter Parker is on a bus and something triggers his spidey-sense, close-up of goosebumps.
  • Also shots of Spider-Man in the Iron Spider Suit that Tony offered him at the end of ‘Homecoming’
  •  Captain America is now donning a beard and longer hair.  His suit is also described as being much darker and sleeker.
  • Black Widow is now blonde.
  • Doctor Strange and Star-Lord working together. Strange is producing platforms for Star-Lord to leap from
  • Thor and Rocket interaction
  • Loki gives Thanos the Tesseract
  • Clip of Iron Man, Spider-Man, Doctor Strange, Thor, and the Guardians battling Thanos in space
  • Bucky and T’Challa are leading an army from Wakanda.
  • Clip of Thanos’ gauntlet with a couple of stones missing. He uses the gauntlet to rain fire from the skies. 
Written by Tom Sheffield

Updated Synopsis For ‘Black Panther’ and First For ‘Avengers: Infinity War’ Released

Black Panther was introduced in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) last year in ‘Captain America: Civil War’, and what an introduction it was! We were introduced to T’Challa, who briefly explained the mantle of Black Panther and what it meant to the people of Wakanda. ‘Black Panther’ wrapped filming last month and is set to release on the 9th February 2018. With two more MCU films left to release this year in the form of ‘Spider-Man: Homecoming’ and ‘Thor: Ragnarok’, it is probably a safe bet to assume that one of these will have an end credit stinger linked to ‘Black Panther’ is some way.

The newly updated synopsis goes as follows:

“After the events of Marvel’s Captain America: Civil War, King T’Challa returns home to the reclusive, technologically advanced African nation of Wakanda to serve as his country’s new leader. However, T’Challa soon finds that he is challenged for the throne from factions within his own country. When two foes conspire to destroy Wakanda, the hero known as Black Panther must team up with C.I.A. agent Everett K. Ross and members of the Dora Milaje, Wakanadan special forces, to prevent Wakanda from being dragged into a world war.”

‘Avengers: Infinity’ and the as-yet-untitled ‘Avengers 4’ will be what every film in the MCU has been leading up to, and we will finally see Thanos get up off his chair and wreak some havoc himself. We learned during it’s press junket that ‘Guardian of the Galaxy Vol. 2’ ends 4 years before the start of ‘Infinity War’, and with just ‘Homecoming’, ‘Ragnarok’, and ‘Black Panther’ the only films we’ll see before this huge event, we’ve got a lot of ground to cover! 

Avengers: Infinity War Synopsis:

“As the Avengers and their allies have continued to protect the world from threats too large for any one hero to handle, a new danger has emerged from the cosmic shadows: Thanos. A despot of intergalactic infamy, his goal is to collect all six Infinity Stones, artifacts of unimaginable power, and use them to inflict his twisted will on all of reality. Everything the Avengers have fought for has led up to this moment – the fate of Earth and existence itself has never been more uncertain.”

What are your thoughts on the films we have left to see before ‘Infinity War’? Which of the three are you most excited for?

Hela Wreaks Havoc In The First Teaser Trailer For Thor: Rangarok

Right out of nowhere the first teaser trailer for the upcoming third instalment of Thor has been released and it gives us our first proper look at the the tone and plot of the film. 

In this teaser, we see Hela (Cate Blanchett) giving Thor a run for his money as she catches and then destroys his Mjolnir, rendering Thor basically powerless. We also see Hela up against an army of Asgardians, which she the lays waste to.  Subsequently, Thor is captured and made to fight in an arena where he is pitted against fellow avenger ‘The Hulk’ – much to Thor’s delight it would seem! 

As well as a better look at Jeff Goldblum’s Grandmaster and Tessa Thompson’s Valkyrie, we also get our first look at Karl Urban as Skurge and Idris Elba’s return as Heimdall. We also get a couple of shots of Loki, who we know Thor will team up with at some point in the film to try and find their father who is stuck on Earth. 

Since being announced as the director of this film, I’ve had high hopes Taiki Waititi would do Thor justice, and from the look of this teaser I will not be disappointed. Already there are a lot of people on Twitter comparing it to the likes of ‘Guardians of the Galaxy’ in tone and style, but is that necessarily a bad thing? What I’m taking away from this teaser is that Thor is finally going to get the love he deserves from fans of the MCU, where he’s only really shined in the ‘Avengers’ films, and less so in his solo outings due to poor plots and villains. It’s an exciting year to be a film fan, and even more so for lovers of comic book movies. 

What are your initial thoughts on the trailer? Are you sold on Thor’s new tone? 

The official synopsis for ‘Thor: Ragnarok’ is: 

Thor is imprisoned on the other side of the universe without his mighty hammer and finds himself in a race against time to get back to Asgard to stop Ragnarok — the destruction of his homeworld and the end of Asgardian civilization — at the hands of an all-powerful new threat, the ruthless Hela. But first he must survive a deadly gladiatorial contest that pits him against his former ally and fellow Avenger — the Incredible Hulk!

Written by Tom Sheffield