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How to watch the Marvel movies in order

Here’s a chronological guide to the Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) in order

If you're doing a Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) marathon in 2021, you'll want to know how to watch the Marvel movies in order. On this page, we will explain how to watch the Marvel movies in both chronological and release orders, laying out exactly how the MCU timeline actually works. We'll also show you how Disney Plus TV shows like WandaVision and The Falcon and the Winter Soldier fit in to the run of events. 

The easiest way to watch the Marvel movies in order these days is Disney Plus, which has the majority of the films streaming in 4K. It's also set to be the home of Black Widow on July 9, when it launches concurrently on the streamer – for an additional fee, via Premier Access – alongside a theatrical release. Finally, after waiting more than a year, we'll get to add Natasha Romanoff's solo movie to our Marvel movie binge!

In addition, this is a busy year for Marvel on the TV side. WandaVision was only the first canonical Marvel TV show on the service. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier began on March 19, 2021, Loki begins in June 2021, and Ms Marvel and Hawkeye are expected to release in late 2021 as well. Other upcoming Marvel originals include Moon Knight, She-Hulk, Armor Wars, Ironheart and Secret Invasion. You'll find them all listed further down this page.

Black Widow aside, too, more new Marvel movies are launching in 2021 – Shang-Chi and Marvel's Eternals are set for later in the year. That means this list of the Marvel movies in order will soon grow considerably.

You've got two main ways to watch the Marvel movies in order: the chronological order, kicking off with Captain America: The First Avenger in WW2, or the release order, which begins with 2008's Iron Man and the introduction of Robert Downey Jr as Tony Stark. Both have their advantages, really – it mostly depends what kind of fan you are, and what matters to you more.

With Phase 4 underway starting with WandaVision, we've got many more years of great new superhero stories ahead. Think of the overall MCU like a big, extremely expensive TV show – where story arcs and character moments can take years to pay off, but taste extra sweet when they do.

Let's start your Marvel movie marathon...

How to watch the Marvel movies in order: chronological order

A Marvel Cinematic Universe (MCU) timeline is likely the thing you're searching for. Here's how to watch the Marvel films in chronological order, beginning with Steve Rogers' origin in WWII with Captain America: The First Avenger, and ending with Peter's high school trip in Spider-Man: Far From Home. The incentive to watch the Marvel movies in this order is straightforward: you'll see events play out as they happened, from Red Skull's pursuit of the Tesseract, all the way up to the demise of Thanos. If you're curious when WandaVision is set, it comes after Endgame but before Far From Home – you'll find it below, too.

Here's the chronological viewing order of the Marvel movies:

  • Captain America: The First Avenger (takes place during WWII)
  • Captain Marvel (takes place in 1995)
  • Iron Man (takes place in 2010)
  • Iron Man 2 (takes place after Iron Man)
  • The Incredible Hulk (time unspecified, pre-Avengers)
  • Thor (takes place six months before Avengers)
  • The Avengers (takes place in 2012)
  • Iron Man 3 (takes place six months after The Avengers)
  • Thor: Dark World (post-Avengers, pre-Ultron)
  • Captain America: Winter Soldier (post-Avengers, pre-Ultron)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (sometime in 2014)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (after Guardians)
  • Avengers: Age of Ultron (takes place in 2015)
  • Ant-Man (takes place in 2015)
  • Captain America: Civil War (post-Ultron, pre-Infinity War)
  • Spider-Man: Homecoming (post-Civil War, pre-Infinity War)
  • Doctor Strange (takes place in 2016)
  • Black Panther (takes place in 2017)
  • Thor: Ragnarok (post-Ultron, pre-Infinity War)
  • Avengers: Infinity War (takes place in 2017)
  • Ant-Man and The Wasp (ambiguous, but fits nicely between IW and Endgame)
  • Avengers: Endgame (starts in 2017, finishes in 2022)
  • Spider-Man: Far From Home (eight months post-Endgame)

WandaVision, meanwhile, actually takes place mere weeks after Endgame. The Falcon and the Winter Soldier, which is releasing now, is confirmed to be set six months after Endgame – so both shows take place before Spider-Man: Far From Home if you're factoring those into your marathon. Here they are:

  • WandaVision (three weeks after Endgame)
  • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (around six months after Endgame)

With Black Widow coming in July 2021, we'll update this list at release – it's already been confirmed the movie takes place after Captain America: Civil War, but we won't add it until you've actually got the chance to see the movie.

Avengers movies in order

Avengers: Infinity War was the first of a two-part finale to Phase 3.  (Image credit: Marvel Studios/Disney)

Marvel movies in order: release date

Looking to watch the MCU movies in release order? You'll need this list, which begins with Iron Man in 2008 and ends in 2019 with Avengers: Endgame and Spider-Man: Far From Home. Watching the Marvel movies in release order is a better option if you want a nice nostalgia trip, and you'll see how the MCU films are supercharged after the Disney acquisition with bigger and better budgets. 

The MCU story was meant to be enjoyed in this order, after all. We've also included the future MCU Phase 4 release dates below for your reference, updated as of March 2021 with Loki and Black Widow's release dates.

Phase One 

  • Iron Man (2008)
  • The Incredible Hulk (2008)
  • Iron Man 2 (2010)
  • Thor (2011)
  • Captain America: The First Avenger (2011)
  • Marvel’s The Avengers (2012)

Phase Two

  • Iron Man 3 (2013)
  • Thor: The Dark World (2013)
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier (2014)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy (2014)
  • Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)
  • Ant-Man (2015)

Phase Three

  • Captain America: Civil War (2016)
  • Doctor Strange (2016)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2 (2017)
  • Spider-Man: Homecoming (2017)
  • Thor: Ragnarok (2017)
  • Black Panther (2018)
  • Avengers: Infinity War (2018)
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp (2018)
  • Captain Marvel (2019)
  • Avengers: Endgame (2019)
  • Spider-Man: Far From Home (2019)

Phase Four

  • WandaVision (TV show)
  • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (TV show – March 19, 2021)
  • Loki (TV show – June 11, 2021)
  • Black Widow (July 9, 2021)
  • Shang-Chi and the Legend of the Ten Rings (September 3, 2021)
  • The Eternals (November 5, 2021)
  • Ms Marvel (TV show – late 2021)
  • Spider-Man: No Way Home (December 17, 2021)
  • Doctor Strange in the Multiverse of Madness (March 25, 2022) 
  • Thor: Love and Thunder (May 6, 2022)
  • Black Panther 2 (July 8, 2022)
  • Captain Marvel 2 (November 11, 2022)

The future of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, including TV shows

  • Ant-Man and the Wasp Quantumania (TBD)
  • Blade (TBD)
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 3 (TBD)
  • Fantastic Four (TBD)
  • Hawkeye (TV show – TBA)
  • She-Hulk (TV show – TBA)
  • Moon Knight (TV show – TBA)
  • Secret Invasion (TV show – TBA)
  • Ironheart (TV show – TBA)
  • Armor Wars (TV show – TBA)
  • Wakanda series (TV show – TBA)

Marvel movies on Disney Plus

Marvel movies on Disney Plus.

(Image credit: Disney Plus)

Wondering which Marvel movies are on Disney Plus? The Incredible Hulk and the Spider-Man films are not available on Disney Plus because Universal and Sony own the distribution rights to them respectively. You'll have to buy or rent them on DVD, Blu-Ray or digital if you want a full Marvel movie marathon. 

These are the Marvel movies on Disney Plus in the US, UK and Australia:

  • Iron Man
  • Thor
  • Iron Man 2
  • Captain America: The First Avenger
  • The Avengers
  • Iron Man 3
  • Captain America: The Winter Soldier
  • Thor: The Dark World
  • Guardians of the Galaxy
  • Avengers: Age of Ultron
  • Ant-Man
  • Captain America: Civil War
  • Doctor Strange
  • Guardians of the Galaxy Vol. 2
  • Captain Marvel
  • Avengers: Infinity War
  • Avengers: Endgame
  • Thor: Ragnarok
  • Black Panther
  • Ant-Man and the Wasp

Alongside that, these are the series coming to Disney Plus. Aside from WandaVision, The Falcon and the Winter Soldier and Loki, which had their release dates confirmed at Disney's Investor Day in late 2020 (then adjusted later for Loki), these dates are tentative. 

  • WandaVision (now available)
  • The Falcon and the Winter Soldier (March 19, 2021 - now available)
  • Loki (June 11, 2021)
  • What If...? (summer 2021)
  • Ms Marvel (late 2021)
  • Hawkeye (late 2021)
  • She-Hulk (TBA)
  • Moon Knight (TBA)
  • Secret Invasion (TBA)
  • Ironheart (TBA)
  • Armor Wars (TBA)
  • Wakanda series (TBA)

Marvel movies in order

The Falcon and the Winter Soldier follows Sam Wilson and Bucky Barnes in the aftermath of Avengers: Endgame. (Image credit: Marvel Studios)

Best Marvel movies

What are the best Marvel movies? We've all got an opinion (Civil War, Infinity War and The Avengers are the winners for us) – but below, we've let the people have their opinion, ranking the Marvel movies based on user scores from IMDb. The list gets some things right (Thor: The Dark World and The Incredible Hulk are definitely below-average), and other things extremely wrong (Ant-Man and the Wasp is surely worse than Captain America: The First Avenger?). Curiously, it's a tie between the last two Avengers movies, Endgame and Infinity War, for the best film of the MCU so far.

Best

Worst

How to download Marvel movies

If you want to download Marvel movies, you can save offline copies via the Disney Plus app on your portable device (smartphone or tablet). You cannot download any video via your desktop browser, though.

You'll need enough storage space, but just look for the download symbol on any title in the Disney Plus app:

Click the download symbol on the right, here.

Content you download on your phone will stay in your device's main memory if it doesn’t have an external microSD card slot. That includes all Apple iPhone smartphones, iPad tablets and a few others handsets (like the Google Pixel 3a).

A 1-hour download takes about 400MB of storage depending on your download quality: High quality is six times better than standard quality while medium is 50% better than standard quality (which is the Disney Plus app’s default).

If you're happy to buy the movies, too, say through Amazon Prime, that'll also allow you to download Marvel movies locally.