AVENGERS ASSEMBLE (2012)
DIRECTOR: Joss Whedon
STARRING: Chris Hemsworth, Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Samuel L Jackson, Scarlett Johansson, Mark Ruffalo
GENRE: Sci Fi | Action | Comic Book
Comic book movies are always very much hit and miss. For every Dark Knight Rises, we have a Batman and Robin. For every Iron Man, we have The Phantom. And to have an ensemble comic book movie, where three out of the four well known characters have had successful movies on their own, it takes one brave and formidable man (or woman) to put together a movie that doesn’t suck.
Enter the geek god himself, Joss Whedon. He is the real life Nick Fury, who has managed to do the impossible. For this movie could easily have been Iron Man 3 featuring S.H.E.I.L.D and the Avengers.
Whedon proves to the masses, what us faithful followers have known for ages. When it comes to ensemble pieces. Joss is the Man!
Each character in this movie has their own chance to shine. Multiple storylines entwine to create a movie that is riveting to watch. Familiar faces from each of the previous movies crop up, but its far from the “oh they had a part in ‘x’”. Each adds to the multilayered plot.
The vastly underused Black Widow from Iron Man 2played with a certain flair by Scarlett Johansson, is given some pretty meaty stuff. This alone demonstrates Joss’s talent at giving us a strong, kick ass female character, who is more than eye candy or a love interest and can more than play with the big boys. We are given snippets of a back story to Black Widow, that those who are familiar with the character from the comics will recognise and those who are not, enough to make her a much more interesting character.
Most of this is conveyed through her hinted at complex relationship with Hawkeye, played by a cool suave Jeremy Renner. After watching what is clearly a well established friendship between these two characters, I’m hoping they get their own origin movie.
Robert Downey Jr. is now instantly thought of as Iron Man/Tony Stark. He could have easily played the “big star” card and overshadowed the movie, but the new boys to this party are more than a match for the man in the Iron Suit. The banter between Downey Jr and Chris Hemsworth’s Thor is funny to watch. Its like watching siblings squabble over who is the favourite. Hemsworth makes Thor’s naivety at being insulted by Iron Man endearing.
Then there is the “older” sibling Captain America, played by Chris Evans. Here we have a much more human Captain America. He is a fish out of water, a man who has had a sense of moral duty drummed into him. He is a soldier, following the orders of his superiors and it is through Iron Man and to an extent, Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner he begins to question this. While I enjoyed Captain America, it missed something about Steve Rogers. This film rectifies that.
As for Mark Ruffalo’s Bruce Banner/The Hulk, we finally have an actor that can convey all facets of the character. For me he, he even stole some of the film from the others.
As for the actual plot, it has all the telltale signs of a comic book film. No scene is just filler as each is part of a puzzle, which when slotted together gives a fantastic picture. Not once did I look at my watch, which is always a good sign. You can see that Whedon is a comic book fan for he creates such a lavish piece. Small scenes and plot lines from previous films are worked into this film to make it seem organic, even from the Hulk films.
The villain of the film, is Loki from Thor. There appears to be some sort of time leap between the end of Thor and this movie, which makes where Loki has been and how he came to become the leader of a hoard of aliens a bit up in the air. If you can overlook this, then you are fine. I managed to do this with ease. I only took that his motivation was to get back at Thor for what he sees as his abandonment. I did like Loki and was glad that Joss didn’t go for the normal route most comic book movie directors take with the villains of the piece.
My only comment is this. Don’t fork out for IMAX 3D. The film was never filmed for IMAX and was only converted to 3D in post production.
After this, I can’t wait to see what comes next from the Marvel Universe and more importantly Joss Whedon.
Go see this….. Now!!!!!