15 Marvel Cinematic Universe films ranked

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3. Iron Man (2008)

Image Courtesy of Marvel Studios for Iron Man (2008)

With no script and a no name character, Shellhead’s first big screen outing shouldn’t have worked nearly as well as it did. However, thanks to Jon Favreau’s clear vision and strong cast members like Robert Downey Jr., Gwyneth Paltrow, and Terrence Howard, it excelled.

It’s definitely a superhero origin story with the typical origin story features, but the film avoids the pitfalls that many run into. It also established a strong character and did something that other films are still trying to attempt: setting the tone for an entire cinematic universe. Not too shabby for a once third-tier superhero.