Captain Obvious' Review of The Avengers
This is it. The Avengers have assembled. After seeing the movie at a Thursday midnight showing, I'm here with my review. Are Earth's Mightiest Heroes truly mighty? Or does this crossover seem disassembled? Stop reading the puns and hit the jump to find out.
After 4 years of solo movies, post credit scenes, Marvel has finally assembled Earth's Mightiest Heroes on the big screen for the first time ever. Was it worth the wait?
The answer is a smashingly yes.
The plot is Loki has made a deal with a shadowy figure (stay after the credits to find out who) that will give Loki an army of Chituari invaders to conquer Earth in exchange for the Tesseract(A.K.A the cosmic cube from Captain America) After that, Loki finds his way to Earth, steals the tesseract, and turns several SHIELD agents including Hawkeye and Dr. Selvig into his slaves. Nowhere to turn, Nick Fury is forced to activate the Avengers Initiative; assembling Captain America, Iron Man, Thor, and the Hulk to stop Loki before he unleashes his wrath on Earth.
With this many characters, the film could have easily fallen apart and succumb to disappointment. Enter the God of Geeks, Joss Whedon. When he was announced to write and direct this movie 2 years ago, I knew it was in good hands. Whedon is able to take an ensemble of characters and give each of them their moment to shine and develop. It's definetly the case here as the movie feels neither underwheled or overstuffed. Not to mention his natural talent for witty dialouge that comes out of characters playing off each other.
There is not much left to say about each cast member as most of them they have appeared in their own films. They fit their roles perfectly and it's hard to imagine anyone else playing them. Robert Downey Jr. was obviously born to play Iron Man. Chris Evans is totally believable as the leader of the team. Chris Hemsworth brings a godly behavior to the role of Thor and Mark Ruffalo ends up being the shining star of this movie. Stealing every scene he is in, he gives a nerdy and calm performance as Bruce Banner and a gleeful performance as the Hulk, outdoing any actor who has portrayed Banner on the big screen. Scarlet Johansson is a much more alive and stronger as Black Widow than the version she played in Iron Man 2. As for the villain role, Tom Hiddleston is a force to be reckoned with. He is as menacing and devilish as he needs to be.
But just because they're working together, it doesn't mean they have to like it. Aside from the action sequences, the best parts of the movie is where these characters with egos as strong as their powers clash. Whether physically or verbally, just watch them interact is so much fun because they have such great lines to work with. Even though they don't like being around each other, the audience does.
The movie is 2 hours and 22 minutes long, so in that time, there can't be just people sitting in a room. That's where the action comes in. Whenever an action sequence starts, it literally looks like a comic book come to life. Everything about the action is perfect, There's humor, character moments, and fantastic comic book action that tops every action scene in every superhero movie ever made. Sorry train scene from Spider-Man 2, but the Helicarrier scene was all kinds of awesome. Whedon's directorial style allows all of these elements to mix and help each other thrive. There is never a dull moment during the action and they audience is kept in amazement and intesity as it feels like even the heroes are in danger themselves, which is something that has been lacking in previous Marvel Studios productions.
However, the movie does have it's flaws. Despite having said earlier that every character gets their moment to shine, one gets the short end of the stick and that character is Hawkeye. While Jeremy Renner is great as Hawkeye, he spends most of the movie being Loki's slave, so he doesn't get to do much until he is free for the final battle. Also, at the end of Thor, the God of Thunder destroyed the Bifrost bridge to stop Loki, which in turn trapped him in Asgard forever. Here, Whedon doesn't go much into detail on how he got back, so it makes Thor's ending seem redundant. Also, the plot is fairly simple-The Avengers must come together to stop Loki. Not that great of a plot. Finally, it would have been nice to see Cap deal with his struggle of adapting to the modern world and the thought of never seeing his loved ones again. Instead, we get one scene of Cap reminiscing about his life before being frozen for 70 years, then he is quickly caught up in the conflict of the film. Hopefully we get more into this in the Captain America sequel.
However, all of these flaws are forgivable because the movie is so damn entertaining. It's everything a summer blockbuster should be and it's what The Amazing Spider-Man and The Dark Knight Rises will have to live up to.
The bottom line is The Avengers is easily one of the best superhero movies ever made. It's witty, humorous, action-packed, character-driven, and at times emotional. Now that the summer movie season has started with a bang, it feels like we are in for some truly great movies in the months ahead.
*There is one scene during the credits and one after. The first one is something no comic book fan will want to miss.
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