The X-Men Movies Ranked from Best to Worst 2020 (Final) Update

Well, The New Mutants finally made it into cinemas this week, and unfortunately, that means that the X-Men cinematic universe has drawn to a close. It is a sad moment because as you will see from the list below, there were some fantastic films during its 13 film run. However, there were also a couple of stinkers along the way as well. So for the final time, we dive into the world of Adamantium claws, laser eyes, and magnetic powers with our ranking of X-Men films.  

As always with these lists, I don’t rank them 1-10 as I feel that does not adequately reflect my feeling about each of the films and where they fit concerning each other. What we do is the group the movies into categories Fantastic, GreatGood, Okay, and Trash. Fantastic are those films which get as close to perfect when it comes to its impact on me, with compelling characters, stories, and visuals. Great are those films which I thoroughly enjoyed, but they did not move me emotionally. Good are solid films that while they have some issues, they still work and are enjoyable. Okay are films that work, they have some good moments, but you can start to see some of the flaws that almost scuttle the film. Trash are those films which don’t work, whether it is the story, the characters, the visuals, or a combination of all three, they are simply letdowns. Also, within those categories, I have listed the films, not in a ranked but chronological order.

Now I’ll always be comparing the X-Men films to the X-Men Animated Series rather than to the original comics. This is because, for me, we didn’t get the comics where I lived, so this was my first and best experience with the franchise. Also, it has the best theme of the series. All of this led to it becoming my yard post to compare anything X-Men related to. So this, and the fact that personal preference is subjective means that I might have a different order than you, but that is the good thing about reviews because this is where discussion lies. Now there may be some spoilers for you in the list below, but then most of these have been out for a while, so it should not be much of a problem. 

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Map-It: The X-Men Film Series

TL;DR – We map out all the locations of the now concluded X-Men film series

X-Men Days of Future Past. Image Credit: 20th Century Fox

Article

With The New Mutants getting their cinematic release (finally), the entire X-Men film franchise has been brought to a close. Even though the last couple of films have not been stand out performers, this is still sad as this is twenty years of history coming to a close. With that in mind, I thought it would be a good idea to continue to add to our Mapping Project by mapping out the franchise and its thirteen films.

Now when starting this project, I did have a view that this would be a generally straight forward task. I was wrong. This turned out to be much more complicated than I thought given to the ambiguity of some of the locations. At the same time, some like the Statue of Liberty are clearly straight forward. I spent hours trying to nail down the location of places like the Essex House for Mutant Rehabilitation.

With this in mind, I tried where possible to situate things using the locations given in the films, or when that was not possible using the original comics as a source. In some cases, neither of these options were available, so I put them in the most reasonable place I could find. In some cases, these were actually in conflict, and in that point, you have to pick one and move on.

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The New Mutants – Movie Review

TL;DR – A perfectly okay film but a bit of a missed opportunity.     

Rating: 3 out of 5.

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

The New Mutants. Image Credit: 20th Century Studios.

Review

After thirteen films, and running for twenty years, the current X-Men franchise has drawn to a close. Today we review the last movie in the series The New Mutants, though it was never planned or designed to be a swan song it is what it has become. Well, let’s dive into a film that swerves into the horror of what it would be like to wake up one day with powers.

So to set the scene, we open in on a reservation in America when Danielle “Dani” Moonstar (Blu Hunt) is woken up by her father William (Adam Beach) and told to run. All around them, some outside force is destroying the reservation with snow and flames everywhere. William asks Dani to hide in a tree and goes back to help only to be killed, Dani runs form the oncoming storm and crashes down the side of the hill, hitting her head. When she wakes up, she is handcuffed to a medical gurney in what looks like an old hospital. Over the speaker Dr Cecilia Reyes (Alice Braga) askes her to calm down and lets her know she is safe, but that she was the only survivor of her reservation, everyone she knows is dead.  

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The X-Men Movies Ranked from Best to Last (2019 Update)


So Dark Phoenix came out this weekend and it was well, it was at best okay. But it had me thinking that I had not updated by X-Men film rankings in a while. So I thought it would be a good time to reevaluate the list to see if I got it right the first time, and to add some of the films I am missing.

As always with these lists, I don’t rank them 1-10 as I feel that does not adequately reflect my feeling about each of the films and where they fit in relation to each other. What we do is the group the films into categories Fantastic, Great Good, Ok, and Trash. Fantastic are those films which get as close to perfect as we can on this side of Heaven, with compelling characters, stories, and visuals. Great are those films which I thoroughly enjoyed but they did not move me emotionally. Good are solid films that while they have some issues they still work and are still enjoyable. Ok are films that work, they have some good moments, but you can start to see some of the flaws that almost scuttle the film. Trash are those films which just don’t work, whether it is the story, the characters, the visuals, or a combination of all three, they are simply letdowns. Also within those categories, I have listed the films not in a ranked order but in chronological order.

Now for me personally I’ll always be comparing the X-Men films to the X-Men Animated Series, because for me we didn’t get the comics where I lived so this was my first and best experience with the franchise, also it has the best theme of the series. Which led to it becoming my yard post to compare anything X-Men related to. So this, and the fact that personal preference is subjective means that I might have a different order than you, but that is the good thing about reviews because this is where discussion lies. Now there may be some spoilers for you in the list below, but then most of these have been out for a while, so it should not be much of a problem.

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Movie Review – Dark Phoenix (X-Men: Dark Phoenix)

TL;DR – In what might be the last major release of a Fox X-Men film, instead of going out with a bang, it goes out with a meh.     

Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post-credit scene

Dark Phoenix (X-Men: Dark Phoenix). Image Credit: 20th Century Fox.

Review

With Fox being bought by Disney we know that the current X-Men film franchise is going to be reaching its end sooner rather than later, and with the New Mutants film having a difficult production, there is a chance that this is the last time we will see these characters on the big screen. With that in mind, there are many words I have used to describe the X-Men films in the past. There have been the highs of X-2, Deadpool, and Logan. There have been the lows of X-Men Origins: Wolverine, The Last Stand, and Apocalypse. However, today I have a new descriptor for an X-men film, and unfortunately, that word is dull.

So to set the scene, we open with a young Jean Grey (Summer Fontana) back in the 1970s driving with her parents when tragedy strikes and she becomes an orphan. Back in the present day of 1992, the Space Shuttle Endeavour has been hit by a solar flare and the president (Brian d’Arcy James) has only one team he can call. Since the time of Apocalypse, mutants have come out of hiding and the X-Men have become almost celebrities, using their powers, to help save the day. While in space, they discover that it was not a solar flare, but some kind of entity. While Jean (Sophie Turner) is trying to keep the shuttle together, the entity attacks and is absorbed by her. Back on Earth, she seems fine, but slowly they find out that this is not the case because Charles (James McAvoy) did something to her back in the day and that secret just burst forth.

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Movie Review – Venom

TL;DR – There are moments when Venom comes together and is a really entertaining film. However, those moments are spread in-between a dull story with some bland action, and an anti-climactic ending.

Score – 2.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is a mid-credit scene, and a post-credit trailer thingy (that you should totally stick around for)

Venom. Image Credit: Sony.

Review

I don’t think I have seen a film that gave such a bad first impression in quite a while. As a rule, I try to avoid trailers where possible, because of both the spoilers and also because they could taint my view of the film before I have even walked into the cinema. But even with that policy, it was hard to escape the “like a turd in the wind” quote, one of the worse lines of dialogue uttered in a blockbuster film in recent memory. Add to this the filmmakers are trying to build a universe around just Venom, after failing to do the same thing with Spider-Man. All of this was a recipe for disaster. However, walking out of the cinema I have to admit I might have been a bit too harsh on Venom … well, only just a little bit.

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Countdown – My Personal Top 10 Films of All Time List

TL;DR – Today we countdown my Top 10 films of all time; from towns where there are a lot of ‘accidents’, to all forms of Sci-Fi, to do you know the man with six fingers on his right hand, and everything in between.

Countdown

Recently I watched the CineFix crew countdown their Top 10 films, and it had me thinking what are mine? Now it was at this point where I of course naturally spiralled as how can you reduce thousands of films that you have seen into only a Top 10. Just before I threw my hands up in resignation and chucked in the towel I happened to catch an episode of Movies with Mikey on how he determined the best sequel. With this in mind I wondered if there was a set of criteria that I could use to categorise the films into a list that I would be happy with, and after some work, I came up with the following criteria that work for me.

  • Films that are beautifully constructed
  • Films that mean something to me
  • Films that are always re-watchable
  • Films that have added to my love of the craft of cinema

With this criterion in mind I went through all the likely candidates and with a bit of a struggle I think I have been able to come to a final list, well at least until I change my mind next week, which is always a chance.

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TV Review – Adventure Time: Come Along With Me

TL;DR – This is a beautiful end to a strong series, it might feel a bit rushed at times, but it packs an emotional punch and is one of the best series finales that I have seen

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

 

Adventure Time: Come Along With Me. Image Credit: Cartoon Network / Frederator

 

Review

I grew up in the 1990s and like any child of that era, I am deeply protective of our cartoons like Gargoyles, Aaahh!!! Real Monsters, X-Men, Captain Planet, Beast Wars, and more. I also found, like every generation before me and every generation from now on, that the next generation of animated shows from the 2000s never lived up to the same standard (spoiler alert it was because I was not a child anymore). However, for me and many other people, there was one show that was the exception to the rule, and that was Adventure Time. This was a short 15-minute show based in an absurd world of candy people, post-apocalyptic imagery, annoyed lemons, and lumpy space princesses. However, it was also a show that was beautifully animated, well written, a touchstone for a lot of people, and actually grew up with the people that watched them. For me, I loved the world building that happened mostly through visual cues, and writing that was both emotionally resonate but also didn’t treat the younger audience it was targeted at as being unintelligent like so many other children’s focused entertainment both past, present, and future has/will do. Unfortunately it got a bit hard to find the show in Australia and I was left to pick it up every time a DVD got released but a couple of months ago I found that Stan had the whole series and I binged about 3 seasons of episodes, to go to the end just in time to find out the next episode was to be its last. So today I being a look at the end of a phenomenon that for many are their first real TV show love, and boy what an ending it was.

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Movie Review – Incredibles 2

TL;DR – This is a fun ride back into the world of 60s spy film and superheroes, the story does not always work but the animation and setting more than make up for it.

Score – 4 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – There is no post credit scene

Content Warning – There are a couple of sequences that could be dangerous for people that suffer from epilepsy.

Incredibles 2. Image Credit Disney/Pixar

Review

Back all the way in 2004 Pixar was in its golden era where each film released by the studio was better than the last and in that moment we got The Incredibles. It was a fun romp through the world of superheroes four years before the Marvel Cinematic Universe launched the flood of superhero film into the world. The original was this fun mix of a 60s spy film with the trappings of a modern superhero film and to this day stands as the closest we will get to a decent Fantastic Four film on the big screen. Now I quite liked the first film, but it wasn’t the huge cultural touchstone for me like it was for a lot of people. So when I heard they were finally doing a sequel to it I was less in an ‘it’s about time’ frame of mind but more ‘hmm that might be a bit of fun’ and overall I do think it was all a bit of fun.

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Movie Review – Deadpool 2

TL;DR – Takes everything that worked in the first film turns it up to 11 and then gives it real emotional stakes.

Score – 4.5 out of 5 stars

Post-Credit Scene – there are two mid-credit scenes

Deadpool 2

Review

Back in 2016, there was this little film that could that exploded out into the zeitgeist of the film world. The first Deadpool (see review) was a passion project for all involved because it took years to get it greenlit, indeed, it took test footage being leaked to finally convince the studio to start it, and even then they cut the budget drastically before shooting because they had fears about what an American R-rated film would make at the box office. Well as we know it make bank at the box office and now we get to see the fruits of that decision with Deadpool 2, well also it probably helped convince 20th Century Fox to finally let them do Logan (see review) as they really wanted, so thanks for that too. So today we are going to look at the follow up to the merc with the mouth, can they capture that same feeling that exploded out on screen both literally and metaphorically, well let’s dive in and see.

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