Well, we’ve already ranked the films of the MCU, so now it’s time to rank the X-Men films (I’m not including all of the Fox films simply because no one wants to count the Fantastic Four debacles.) If you count all the films with an X-Man in it, you have 9 total. Ready? Here we go!
9. X-Men Origins: Wolverine
It’s not difficult to place this film. It was just absolutely awful. Between the poor casting choices (why in the world would you cast a member of the Black Eyed Peas? Ever?) and the impeccably dismal CGI on the claws (and everything else), there’s really no reason to watch this. They even sewed the Merc with the Mouth’s mouth shut. They literally removed the one thing about a character that made him famous just to disguise the fact that they couldn’t pay for Ryan Reynolds for more than one scene. It’s a masochistic superhero film that will one day be regarded as a generation’s Batman and Robin, only without the irony.
Official Ranking: 1 sad little broken bone claw
8. X-Men: The Last Stand
Again, not very difficult to place this one. It had poor lines, cinematic choices, and utilization of characters. While finally including more screen time for Colossus and making Angel visually stunning, the damn thing killed off Cyclops, Professor X, and Jean Grey, all in horrible ways. The Dark Phoenix saga was an absolute joke and the “cure” nonsense was done so horribly. Let’s just move on and forget this was thing.
Official Ranking: 2 unnecessarily brutal X-Men deaths and none of them mine…sigh
7. X-Men: Apocalypse
From here on out, all the films are relatively good films, so as we move on, one will just barely edge out the other. The latest X-Men installment takes our 7th spot because of it’s dim addition to the new trilogy. You can read my full review here, but mostly it’s a film with much more spectacle than substance. It sets up for the likes of Sophie Turner and Tye Sheridan to take over, which may be amazing, but we can’t give this movie a pass for what future films might do with it.
Official Ranking: 3 Horsemen short of a great X-Men movie
The first film in the current franchise was phenomenal at the time. It gave all of us fans hope. Director Bryan Singer took a world that was far fetched and made it come to life. He had brilliant casting choices on his side, making it almost impossible for us to see anyone else play Wolverine (and, at the time, Professor X and Magneto). The movie’s downfall was Rogue. She was nothing like the strong, badass woman we had come to know in the comics. She was a mousy weakling that I still like to pretend wasn’t there.
Official Ranking: 4 main mutants that we’ll see for the next 6 years from a franchise with over 100
5. The Wolverine
Not all sequels can improve upon the source material, but this one had nowhere to go but up, in my opinion. Watching Hugh Jackman take on Japan was a much needed fresh look into the franchise. It was the first X-Men film to take place outside of North America (which is really weird considering how racially diverse the X-Men have always been). Bringing in all new characters and creating an interesting mutant world, it’s an absolute shame it’s been all but forgotten by everyone else.
Official Ranking: 5 good reasons not to watch Origins
4. X-Men: First Class
The first film in the new trilogy sparked some life back into the franchise as a whole after The Last Stand and Origins almost killed it. Director Matthew Vaughn created an interesting mix of familiar and new characters that brought back the enjoyment of the films. The first go around for McAvoy, Fassbender, and Lawrence alike, each of them received high praise for their work and the inclusion of Kevin Bacon meant they were not playing around.
Official Ranking: 6 teenage kids picking their own sweet code names
3. X-Men: Days of Future Past
This movie was absolutely fantastic. It merged both original trilogy cast and new trilogy cast, created a detailed and dramatic plot line, and managed to not make time travel as convoluted as it could have been. The new mutants added to the future timeline were so well done that it’s an absolute shame we won’t see them again. Peter Dinklage as Bolivar Trask was a brilliant casting job and finally seeing the Sentinels was a long time coming. If the entire plot didn’t yet again revolve around Wolverine, it would have been that much better.
Official Ranking: 7 amazing mutant plot lines that didn’t screw things up
You have to admit it; this movie was the absolute best. You wanna know why it’s not the number 1 spot? Well it is an overall superior film. It takes the familiar tropes of lost love, revenge, wrongfully disfigured hero and makes them fresh with the humor of the comics. What Wolverine Origins did to destroy the character Deadpool, Deadpool recovered everything lost and then some. It’s quite remarkable how undeniably well done the movie is when translating a character that almost got too bloated for its own good over the last few years. To think this movie wouldn’t have happened if it hadn’t been for the love that the fans and Ryan Reynolds has for the character. I only placed it at number 2 because, while perfectly defining Deadpool, the film doesn’t perfect define the X-Men.
Official Ranking: 8 toasty and sexy chimichangas
1. X-Men: United
The opening sequence to the film maintains what is arguably the best opening sequence of a comic book film to date. After the first film, we were all eager with what X-Men would be included in the inevitable sequel and we were not disappointed. Alan Cumming made a daring Nightcrawler and Kelly Hu’s Lady Deathstrike still shares one of the best fight scenes with our favorite clawed Canadian since. Magneto’s escape from his plastic prison is one of the most brutal death scenes I’ve ever seen and a technologically impressive use of CGI to this day. It was the least annoying Jean Grey and Rogue have ever been, which is a feat all by itself considering. There is just so much good wrapped up in this film that I could go on about it for quite some time.
Official Ranking: 9 BAMFs across the X-Men world (BAMF is the onomatopoeia used to describe the sound Nightcrawler makes in the comics when he teleports, but it works as the acronym too, so that’s cool).
How do you feel about The Grid’s rankings? Did we hit the nail on the head? Where would you change it? Comment below!