Short review: It's awesome, go see it right now! 3D not necassry, but very fun. One of the best super hero/comic book movies of all time.
Review by Robyn:
Well I think my jaw is still on the floor after seeing The Avengers. This movie is the best superhero/comic book movie they have made to date. Now granted I said the same thing last year when I saw Captain American for the first time and then I saw X-men: First Class...but I digress.
If you haven't seen any of the lead up films that's OK, this one can stand completely on it's own. Granted it helps if you have seen Captain America, Thor, both Iron Man movies and the second Incredible Hulk. I suppose you can watch the first Hulk movie Directed by Ang Lee staring Eric Bana, but honestly I wouldn't waste the 2 hrs. and 18 min. because in my opinion I will never get that time back! But if you are one who has never seen any of the other movies you can sit through this one and follow the plot just fine. They do enough of a back story on all the characters that catching up is not difficult.
The basic storyline is such. When Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Thor's brother shows up on earth with a rather evil agenda, Nick Fury director of S.H.I.E.L.D played by the fantastic Sam "Mother F%!#ing" Jackson (I couldn't help myself) has to bring together the individuals he has been assembling separately. A very solitary Captain America (Chris Evans), a brilliant and wise cracking Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), two assassins Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Thor (Chris Hemsworth) The God of Thunder, and a very reluctant Bruce Banner a.k.a The Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo). He then needs to try and get these very independent characters to work together as a team, or the world will pay the price. This movie is a non-stop action filled fun ride that should not be missed in a theater setting.
Now being the only girl in this movie reviewing trifecta I am going to speak directly to the ladies for a moment. If you are a girl who thinks this movie and or it's genre is not for you, you maybe very surprised. All or most of the superhero/comic book movies are generally more than just action films. Most of them have very deep back stories and make you want to know more. I'm betting your husband or boyfriend will be thrilled to fill you in!! Most of them also have a love story even if it is brief, it will make you care more for the hero/god/ugly green monster and the actors usually playing the lead will have you wanting to see them in their superhero costume. OK maybe not the Hulk he can stay in his human form, he's much more handsome that way. Also the women in these movies are usually fantastic. Very Strong minded and smart, not just another pretty face put on the screen for eye candy. Take Scarlett Johansson as Black Widow, she is a huge part of The Avengers and holds her own with the boys and kicks ass while doing it. So ladies surprise your husband or boyfriend and ask them to take you to The Avengers, even if it is just the handsome men that get you in the theater I'm betting you will enjoy the ride.
Review by Travis:
This is quite possibly the best superhero movie ever made. The decision by Marvel studios to create an ongoing, interconnected universe is brilliant. With the X-men franchise, you started with the ensemble cast, then went backwards and did origin stories later on. With the reverse concept in place here, you have all the back stories of our heroes and villain out of the way, and as such you can treat this movie like a sequel despite it being the first Avengers film (more are planned). As such, writer/director Joss Whedon is free to have some fun with the characters. And fun is the key word for this movie. It’s a two-and-a-half hour thrill ride that feels half as long as it is.
Firstly, the cast is perfect. Where would the franchise be without Robert Downey Jr.? The only real question was the recasting of Bruce Banner with Mark Ruffalo. I hate the idea of recasting because it destroys the concept of a continuous universe. In this case, I loved the recast. Ruffalo really makes Banner different and unique. He has the intelligence of Tony Stark, but is very reserved and cautious. Seeing these two work together is wonderful. Every character gets equally good screen time thanks to Whedon’s balanced script. Captain America actually does some captaining in this movie! And Thor gets some great fights and great lines. Joss Whedon is basically a big fan and he knows how to give fans what they want. Another strong point I must mention is the humor. Whedon’s comic timing is absolutely perfect. The audience I saw this with was constantly engaged and roaring with laughter during the funny parts. I don’t want to give away any of the lines or moments, but let’s just say it really elevates the movie. All these moments (as well as the sudden dramatic turns) shouldn’t be a surprise to anyone who’s watched Buffy, Angel, Firefly, or Dollhouse. This is top tier film making.
During the climactic end battle, I noticed that this felt a little like Transformers: Dark of the Moon. However, the big difference is the decisions by each director. In Transformers, the final battle was too long to the point it got boring. It was good for a while, but it got too repetitive. In The Avengers, the camera work is exciting and clear. There are extended shots of every character doing something awesome. In the opening scene of Serenity (2005), the camera followed Mal from the bridge all the way to the cargo room in one long extended shot as he passed and interacted with the crew on his way. Imagine a long unedited shot like that, but during a big action sequence where the camera follows someone on the ground to someone on a rooftop to someone flying, and so on, and so on. This is easily the best (and best shot) end battles in all the Marvel movies so far. And again, the humor is there to break up the tension. I could have watched this all day.
I’m not sure what else to say. The critics praise this film. Audiences love this film. They are all right. Do yourself a favor and see this one on the big screen. Good luck topping this one Marvel.
Review by Nate
Robyn is right, it’s not necessary to have seen all the Avengers movies leading up to this one, but it would definitely help, but more importantly...this is the first time anyone has ever tried anything like this. The Avengers movies leading up to this one include, The Incredible Hulk (the Edward Norton and Live Tyler one), Iron Man 1 and 2, Thor and Captain America. All five of these movies have elements leading up to this one, not just the characters of the superhero’s themselves, but also the plot lines, back stories and introductions of villains (Thor specifically introducing Loki, the main villain of Avengers).
And Travis is right, Joss Whedon doesn’t disappoint with his writing and directing. When I heard he was the director, I knew this movie would be character driven with a good story, and not just about the action...and I was right. (One fun thing Joss Whedon did that Travis forgot to mention was Dr. Horrible’s Sing Along Blog...if you haven’t seen it, check it out, it’s just amazing you can find it online or on Netflix.)
Although this isn’t my all time favorite super here/comic book movie (The Dark Knight is still my favorite), and it’s also not my favorite Marvel movie (X-men: First Class still gets my vote for that one), The Avengers is still a close third behind those two. And taking all six of these movies as a whole, this is a series that will be remembered as one of the best planned and executed movie series of all time. Not since Lord of the Rings has several movies felt so perfectly well suited for each other. Not all Avengers movies are equal, I fell asleep in the middle of Captain America (in its defense, I was pretty tired) and although Thor was cool, it wasn’t great, but they’re all worth the watch and hold up well independently and lead up to this grand finale movie with all of the hero’s coming together and arguing, punching each other, and eventually punching the bad guys, and punching each other again a little bit. (I won’t give it away, but the Hulk has one of the funniest scenes in action movie history!)
If you haven’t seen it yet, get to the theater, it’s well worth it. And stay after the credits!
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