It’s officially the start of summer blockbuster season and following closely behind “The Hunger Games” is this massive green monster that has hit the floor running by bringing in a $300 million haul before it even arrived in the United States! Fanboys and comic junkies have been craving for this momentous occasion ever since it was hinted in Iron Man I that
Dr. Evil…er…I mean, Nick Fury was gonna bring together the greatest fighting team of superheroes the world had ever seen and LO & BEHOLD! Here it is! Now the BIG, GREEN QUESTION…Does it hold up? If you’ve read all the reviews…absolutely! It’s big, it’s loud and it packs quite a punch! But wait! It ALSO has a good script, a great villain (Tom Hiddleston reprises his role as “Loki” from last summer’s “Thor” with a glee that makes him ALMOST the best reason to see the movie!), a lot of characters in tights and silly outfits and…Scarlett Johansson. Oh…and the JOLLIEST green giant you’ve EVER seen that TOTALLY steals the movie!
So…what’s it about? Well…that’s a good question! And thankfully, unlike some summer superhero blockbusters that seem to be all about the CGI effects (Transformers) or can get bloated with too much talking (Green Lantern) or that don’t live up to the hype (Wolverine), THIS film DOES live up to the hype by allowing our cast of characters to have some personality. Here’s the lineup…
- Captain America (Chris Evans) – the frozen super-soldier who has been dethawed in the 21st century. He’s lagging a little bit in the past but is catching up quickly and has got a new fan base that has him feeling good about himself. Oh…and he has a cool shield.
- Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr) – the brilliant multi-gazillionaire Tony Stark who has created an iron suit that was showcased in 2 previous films that not only highlighted his amazing ability to create just about anything and make it work, but who also has a sarcastic wit and smartass personality that is unrivaled in the Marvel universe.
- Thor (Chris Hemsworth) – the demigod who has found his humility among the human race and who cherishes a woman here on Earth. This, in turn, makes him want to protect our kind from mass destruction (thankfully). He’s got a big hammer and he knows how to use it!
- The Black Widow (Scarlett Johannson) – a super spy who can kick your ass and all your buddies also. She may or may not have psychological issues…just so ya know.
- Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) – a sharpshooter with a bow & arrow. Also good at hand-to-hand combat.
- Hulk (CGI) – one ugly, green muthaf$%@er who will kick ANYONE’S butt and he doesn’t seem to care one way or another WHO you are. Good guy, bad guy, whoever…you get in his way? He’ll take you out. The hard way.
So there you have The Avengers. So now…how does this ragtag team of superheroes band together and for what reason? Well…let me try to explain without giving away too much…
Loki, Thor’s brother, has banded together with an alien race to try to take over the world. He needs the glowing blue box (last seen in “Captain America” last summer) to open a portal that will allow the alien race’s army to enter our dimension and take over Earth. Needless to say, Loki succeeds and then…well…
A WHOLE LOTTA AWESOMENESS HAPPENS!!! In what has got to be one of the greatest action scenes ever we get to see all of our beloved heroes take on the alien baddies in Manhattan! Things get so out of control that the United States decides to drop a nuclear bomb on the city in hopes of cleaning it all up! Will our heroes rescue the city and defeat the bad guys?
Does Iron Man wear a steel banana hammock?
Uh…I dunno about that. Aaaanyway…that is the meat of the movie and it is every bit as spectacular as everyone is saying it is. The effects are dizzying, the character development is pretty damn good for a summer action flick and it moves at a pretty good clip, keeping the action first and foremost despite there being a couple of scenes that probably could have been cut but…whatever. It’s summer movie making at its best and with the death of a major minor character and a post credit hint at a sequel, there are a few surprises to keep all the fans salivating for the next installment of Iron Man/Thor/Captain America/…
Ok…hang on…let’s discuss the REAL reason you should see this movie. He’s big. He’s green. And he TOTALLY steals this flick from the slick talkin’ Tony Stark. It’s The Hulk’s film, no matter what anyone tries to tell you and Mark Ruffalo as the green giant was perfect casting! If you’ve seen the 2 previous Hulk films, you know what I’m talking about. There was something missing from those movies. I don’t know if it was the character development or the way they made Bruce Banner seem too whimpy or what, but in THIS movie, they treat Banner as if he’s a ticking time bomb, and that makes the wait to see Hulk one of the pleasant surprises. It takes a while but when it DOES happen…it’s awesome! And come to find out…the Hulk has a sense of humor! Who knew?
So is it the greatest superhero film EVER? Uh…I could argue that it’s not. My brother and I BOTH agree that “Watchmen” is our benchmark for superhero movies. But it’s more of an adult superhero film (hellooooo big blue penis. Where was the banana hammock for THAT dude? Yeesh…) so I don’t know if you can compare the two. And then you also have “The Dark Knight” and “Ghost Rider” (just kidding). “Avengers” is all about the action and even though there is plenty of it, it also includes lots of humor and lots of good writing. Oh…and the director, Joss Whedon, does a great job of letting ALL the characters stand on their own merit, never once becoming caricatures or too “cartoony” and this makes it all feel realistic in its own way.
Go see “Avengers,” buy some popcorn (but no soda. This flick is LONG) and kick back and enjoy the start of a long action blockbuster summer. This is very much worthy of your hard-earned bucks!
Overall Rating: A