Whenever you watch a Marvel movie, there’s one thing you can be sure of: It’s going to have at least a couple of great fight scenes.
The latest installment, Captain America: Civil War debuts Friday, September 2 on iTunes, with a new exclusive “Expanded Extras Experience” (everything from “making of” featurettes to gag reels to deleted scenes). Fans will be treated to behind-the-scenes moments from a film with memorable dust-ups pitting friend against friend, hero against hero, and will be forced to choose a side in this raging conflict with hugely impactful ramifications.
In celebration of the release of Civil War and in anticipation of upcoming Marvel film Doctor Strange (whose debut also gets teased with the never-before-seen video, Open Your Mind: Marvel’s Doctor Strange on the Civil War iTunes release), here’s our ranking of the seven most epic battles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe (so far).
7. Thor Vs. Malekith – Thor: The Dark World
After Thor (Chris Hemsworth) uses Loki’s trickery to draw out the dark elf Malekith (Christopher Eccleston), a brawl ensues across multiple dimensions while they battle for the very fabric of reality itself. With Malekith fueled by the ancient power of the Aether, and Thor doing everything he can to try and stop him, it’s a nonstop display of mind-bending, otherworldly power whose scope simply can’t be contained to a single world. (That includes the dynamite, last-minute save by his hammer, Mjölnir.)
This epic battle is also not without its charming moments. Like the time when, amid the massive, reality-altering battle, Thor patiently boards the subway back to Greenwich in order to catch back up with Malekith mid-fight.
6. The Battle Over Xandar – Guardians Of The Galaxy
Armed with one of the all-powerful Infinity Gems, Ronan The Accuser (Lee Pace) descends on the planet of Nova Prime with the intention of destroying it. Meanwhile, Peter Quill (Chris Pratt), has managed to rally the Nova Corps, Yondu (Michael Rooker) and The Ravagers, and the rest of the Guardians, all under the promise that he’s not “100 percent a dick.”
As Ronan’s ship, the Dark Aster, slowly breaches Nova Prime’s atmosphere, there’s a showdown between sisters Gamora (Zoe Saldana) and Nebula (Karen Gillan), a surprising display of Groot’s (Vin Diesel) branch-growing ability, (along with a slightly improved vocabulary), and an impromptu dance-off between Quill and Ronan that ends up saving the day — albeit indirectly.
It’s a soaring, swashbuckling, over-the-top spectacle unlike anything we’ve seen on Earth (or Asgard, for that matter). Not bad for a movie about a bunch of ragtag intergalactic criminals whose upcoming sequel has already got us excited.
5. The Elevator Fight – Captain America: The Winter Soldier
A number of the MCU’s biggest brawls have spanned time, space, and other worlds, but this sequence in The Winter Soldier proves you can thrill fans with an ingeniously staged action scene in a small space with the right kind of choreography.
With SHIELD collapsing and quickly being overrun by hundreds of sleeper HYDRA agents, everyone’s allegiance is called into question. Well, everyone except Captain America’s (Chris Evans), who starts an elevator ride solo before each stop finds him increasingly surrounded by his newfound enemies.