FILM: What makes the Marvel Cinematic Universe so successful?

Marvel has released 16 films in the last 9 years, totaling over $12.5 Billion worldwide in box office sales. That means on average each film makes just under $800 million and has an average budget of of just under $200 million. This is, for all intents and purposes, a money making machine. But how did we get here? How did the MCU become the powerhouse it is today? There are three good words to describe it. Heart, humor, and spectacle.

I believe the epitome of the Marvel formula is Guardians of the Galaxy. It hits all of the right notes, and makes everyone leaving the theatre think they just saw at the very worst a good movie. Guardians of the Galaxy also shows you that while you may get a better experience knowing everything going on you are not forced to live inside the universe to enjoy any one film. Every Marvel film also does a great job of making you care for the characters. This strong character creation and development leads to you being more invested once the action starts to rise.

The action in Marvel films is also something to behold. Usually the entire third act of an MCU film is dedicated to a big, action packed scene. This is also usually broken up with lots of quick witted humor that way people don’t get bored with the action. If I dare to say, Marvel movies have the spectacle of a Michael Bay film, the humor of a dark comedy, and the heart of a decent drama. Overall Marvel films have found a way to strike a cord with moviegoers. While every movie is based in a super hero universe, there’s enough difference between all of them that you don’t feel that things get too stale.

At the end of the day Marvel has a formula that has created hit after hit. While the success may not last forever, I don’t expect it to end any time soon. At the very least, enjoy the ride for as long as it lasts.


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