Movie: The Avengers
Directed by: Joss Whedon
Alright, yes, I am very late to the party for this one. This is mainly because very rarely will I see a movie opening day or weekend, unless it’s a movie I’ve been looking forward to for eons (District 9/Toy Story 3). Another big reason is because I wanted to see it with my Dad on Justin and Dad Movie Date Nights. Of course this is getting a little too personal, so let’s get back to the review. The Avengers follows a group of rag-tag heroes teaming together to beat the snot out of one stuck up brat. It’s directed by Joss Whedon, one who’s work I’ve not seen much of, but he definitely impressed me with this. He had a lot to balance in terms of characters, story and scope and he did it masterfully.
Nathan is probably reeling in joy at those last two sentences. Yes, this is the case of me being wrong Nathan, but I’m still sticking to my principles! I can like the movie, but I won’t gush over him. That last little bit is all I’m going to say about Whedon for the rest of this review! So HA!
I don’t know much about comic books, my only venture into them was buying a few of the Punisher Max issues because I was rebelling against society or some shit like that. Most of my knowledge on the heroes come from the movies or from the inane rantings of my roommate in college. With that, I saw most of the Avengers set-up movies before this, apart from the Hulk one starring Edward Norton. The movie did nice work of giving each hero a little rundown with their own little bit about them in the beginning, this way even someone who went in blind could realize that ‘that one turns green when he’s angry’ and ‘that other guy loves America’. With such an ensemble cast it was unavoidable to not have them clash together and fight for the scene stealer role, but as mentioned above this was still balanced very well. As for the hero that stole the show for me? I’d say Mark Ruffalo as The Hulk, there was something just so inexplicably engaging about his Bruce Banner, I didn’t want to take my mind off of him for the scenes he was there. However there was one character that I enjoyed more, and he deserves his own praise entirely.
Loki. Good God, there is something that Tom Hiddleston does with his character in both this and Thor that made me just love him. I’ll be honest, even with all the charisma that the entire Avengers had collectively I still wanted Loki to win. He is just so damn compelling that I feel like he deserves it so much more than everyone else. I believe his crusade to achieve Godhood, I believe the acidic hate he has for Thor, I just believe everything Hiddleston’s putting on the table for his character. I’m just browsing through IMDB now and I see he is scheduled to be in Thor 2 and I am stoked, I’ll gladly see his Loki again and again; I’d never get tired of it.
The action was nice and there was quite a large spectacle involving the final battle against Loki and his army but for some reason I was still craving more. I’m not sure why, but I just felt let down by the action scenes in this movie, I was entertained by them but I wasn’t blown away by them. There wasn’t any moment in the combat where I thought ‘WOW THAT WAS AWESOME’, which is a shame because that’s exactly what I wanted going into this movie. I knew the action would be enjoyable but I wanted it to be breathtaking, I wanted to feel the fists being thrown right at me. Don’t get me wrong though, I’m not saying the action was bad, it’s very good, I was drawn into it and I enjoyed it a lot, I just craved more.
Although most of my complaints that I would have for this movie are nitpicking there is just one thing that bothers me about superhero movies. I’m aware right off the bat that this is probably a trope of them and is enjoyed by most, but I just absolutely abhor it. I hate when the characters in this movie just snap out random one-liners or joke in an otherwise serious situation. Yes, a joke or one-liner is warranted and they can be GREAT when handled well, but there were moments in this movie where I just groaned over some. There is a big moment where a character (admittingly one I had no emotional connection to) dies and right after a great moment where they show Loki who’s boss they spout off a silly one liner. DO YOU NOT SEE WHAT YOU JUST FUCKED UP?! DO YOU NOT SEE WHAT YOU JUST DID TO A GREAT MOMENT?! Basically what it makes me think is that there is no tension here, I shouldn’t care about the stakes because this is just a group of friends joking around and having fun. Although this angers me, it doesn’t detract from the movie at all, it’s a solid movie with lots and lots of great things.
There is also something very nice about seeing all of these big heroes with big personalities come together into a great movie. I’m sure if I was a comic book fan I’d be absolutely blown away by this movie. I’m a nerd at heart, so I can respect and realize just how good this is, but it’s impossible to hit me as strong as it would otherwise. The movie is polished and clean and a perfect example of filmmaking from all creative and technical departments coming together to make something wonderful .I’d highly recommend The Avengers, it was a blast and a fun theatre experience. Good job [MR. DIRECTOR], you shut me up, I’d watch more of your stuff if I wasn’t such a belligerent asshole.
The Avengers: 8/10