The Avengers – Review (A)20.04.12 # Review # 9 Comments
Our The Avengers Review.
Director: Joss Whedon
Starring: Robert Downey Jr, Samuel L. Jackson, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth
Release Date: UK – 26th April / US – 4th May
From the moment Samuel L. Jackson’s Nick Fury stepped out of the shadows in 2008′s Iron Man and informed Tony Stark that he was part of a much bigger universe, audiences have been anticipating the day that Earth’s mightiest heroes would unite onscreen, and the wait is finally over.
Having occupied the fringes of previous Marvel movies, the superspy agency known as SHIELD assumes a more prominent role in Marvel’s The Avengers (known in the UK as Avengers Assemble). When god of mischief Loki materializes before Nick Fury and his trusted operative Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), stealing the powerful Cosmic Cube and threatening global domination, Fury knows it’s time to call on the superheroes he’s been keeping tabs on in order to fight back. Having personally defrosted Captain America (Chris Evans) and despatched the indefatigable Agent Phil Coulson to rope in Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr), it’s down to Hawkeye’s partner Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) to recruit Bruce Banner, the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo). Director Joss Whedon brings us the best Hulk yet in The Avengers, and it starts with his introductory scene. The tension is slowly building towards the first inevitable Hulk-out later in the film, with Black Widow – who we’ve seen deal with some shady underworld types nonchalantly – deathly afraid of having to deal with the angry version of Dr Banner. Banner, meanwhile, is confident and apparently has some degree of control. It’s a fun scene that kicks off a fun portrayal; Hulk is a horrible prospect, a force to be reckoned with and, eventually, really exciting to watch.
Once Banner is brought in, the SHIELD Helicarrier is boarded. It’s the centre of operations for the team and where they go about devising their plan to bring Loki down. With Captain America wanting to do things the old fashioned way, Iron Man breaking every rule he can and Banner just trying to keep his head down sparks soon fly, and that’s before Thor actually flies in with literal sparks. One of the highlights of the first Iron Man movie was watching the armour come together and show off its capabilities with a few hiccups along the way, which is similar to what we’re treated to here as the Avengers come together, only this time Robert Downey Jr has more talking back to him than a computer. The whole ensemble cast has great chemistry, which is amplified by writer-director Joss Whedon’s distinctive dialogue and characterization. Humour and pathos is coming at you from all directions, and it’s easily what makes the film so good, but The Avengers doesn’t skimp on action – it opens with a chase and ends with a city-wide battle against alien species the Chitauri. Although in the comics these aliens are scheming shape-shifters, here they’re little more than cannon fodder, it’s Loki that does the heavy lifting in the antagonist department, and while his motivation isn’t quite as complex as it was in Thor, he proves to be a formidable foe nonetheless.
The Avengers have assembled in an insanely fun film that fully exploits the potential of having these characters share a screen, resulting in the most enjoyable Marvel movie yet, and one of the most entertaining superhero movies out there.