Everyone enjoys a good movie marathon. Whether your streaming all John Hughes ‘80s romantic comedies, the Disney animated classics, or movies from a series like Harry Potter or Lord of the Rings, it’s always fun to get together with friends, family, or just your pet and watch a string of movies in a row. Many fans have had this idea for the films of the Marvel Cinematic Universe in the past, but never before has it been as popular as it is leading up to Avengers: Endgame. Here’s how you can do this on your own time.
Avengers: Endgame comes out on April 26
The highly anticipated (and soon to be record-breaking) movie Avengers: Endgame is almost here. It will see familiar heroes such as Iron Man and Captain America join up with newer faces like Captain Marvel and Valkyrie to reverse the effects of the Decimation, as seen in Avengers: Infinity War.
The film is the culmination of a little of 10 years and a total of 21 movies that make up the MCU. After this, things are going to change at least a little — some of the heroes we’ve come to love will be gone, and Marvel Studios has said it will be doing away with the traditional “phases” as we’ve seen until this point.
There are official and unofficial marathons being held worldwide
The events of the previous films will have an effect on what happens in Endgame. In fact, there have even been rumors that some of the highlights of the older movies, like the Battle of New York in The Avengers, will be revisited using time travel. So it’s more important than ever before to be up-to-date on your Marvel knowledge.
Lucky fans in New York, Chicago, and San Francisco have the opportunity to buy tickets for a three-day movie marathon in which all of the previous films will be screened. This event even allows you to see Endgame a little early. But given how only three theaters in all of the U.S. are doing this, you better get on it quickly if you want to attend one!
Here’s where you can watch all of the MCU movies to date
The good news is that you can obtain all 21 of the MCU flicks yourself, and spend quite a bit less than the $125 ticket price for the official movie marathon. If you don’t own any of them on DVD, Blu-Ray, or digital download, here’s where you can find them:
Phase 1: The first phase consists of the first two Iron Man movies, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, Captain America: The First Avenger, and the first team-up film, The Avengers. Unfortunately, it will cost a little if you want to watch any of these (save for Iron Man 2, which is available with the basic Hulu membership). The others can be rented via YouTube, iTunes, Amazon Prime (in some cases), Redbox, or another service you typically use, for $2.99-$3.99 each. If you have the upgraded Hulu Live, you can watch The Incredible Hulk, Thor, and The Avengers there.
Phase 2: The second phase features Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Guardians of the Galaxy, Avengers: Age of Ultron, and Ant-Man. All of these can also be rented using some of the services listed above. Hulu Live has all but Winter Soldier and Age of Ultron.
Phase 3: This is the most extensive phase, which will have 10 movies when completed. The first two, Captain America: Civil War and Doctor Strange, used to be on Netflix, but have since been removed. At the time of publication, the next five films were available on the streaming service: Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Thor: Ragnarok, Black Panther, Avengers: Infinity War, and Ant-Man and the Wasp. Spider-Man: Homecoming also falls in there somewhere, but due to its Sony licensing, was not part of the Netflix deal. The only other film that comes before Endgame is Captain Marvel, which is still in some theaters.
What order should you watch them in?
This is the big question. Many will choose to watch them in the order in which they were released, as seen above. This is how AMC will likely show them as well. However, die-hard fans may prefer to watch them in the chronological order of the events shown. If you’re interested, here is that order, though it is not exact, given that not all of the movies feature actual dates:
Captain America: The First Avenger (1940s), Captain Marvel (1995), Iron Man, Iron Man 2, The Incredible Hulk, Thor, The Avengers, Iron Man 3, Thor: The Dark World, Guardians of the Galaxy, Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2, Captain America: The Winter Soldier, Avengers: Age of Ultron, Ant-Man, Captain America: Civil War, Spider-Man: Homecoming, Doctor Strange, Black Panther, Thor: Ragnarok, Ant-Man and the Wasp, Avengers: Infinity War.