Ladies and Gentleman, I just had the pleasure of watching The Avengers in IMAX 3D, and it could quite honestly be the greatest comic book movie of all time. Some may argue that The Dark Knight will never be knocked from its lofty mantle of well deserved honors in regards to comic book storytelling, but I think I may have just watched its greatest competition. I honestly struggle to recall the last time I had such an exhilarating experience while watching a movie of any nature, let alone my preferred genres of science fiction and fantasy. Joss Whedon and the perfectly groomed cast have managed to craft a gem in The Avengers, and they will be handsomely rewarded for it with out of this world box office numbers. It’s one of those movies that remains with you long after the credits roll, and the fact that I’m writing this review at 3AM is a testament to its magical spell of crafting purely genius geek entertainment.
I wish I could gush about my favorite moment, or the best part of the movie, but that would be an impossible task. The Avengers is as sound as it gets when it comes to both catering to longtime comic book fans’ dreams, as well as providing a damn fine movie going experience for the not so geeky crowd. The writers have crafted a fantastic origin tale (if you will) for The Avengers that rivals any of the top comic book movies of the last three decades. I was absolutely glued to my seat for the entire journey, and felt like a young lad again while watching the movie progress from start to finish.
To me the plot that was chosen for The Avengers couldn’t have been more perfect. Now excuse my lack of an in depth comic book background, but I can’t imagine a better way to bring this infamous band of superheroes to the silver screen. I’m sure the die hard fanboys may have some bones to pick with some of the finer details of the overall story in The Avengers, but from an average comic book fan’s point of view I couldn’t identify a single problem (well there is that Hawkeye fellow) with how this particular Avengers tale played out. From the introduction of each character individually to their first quarrelsome meeting as a team, I couldn’t fathom a more entertaining way to go about it than how it was presented in Whedon’s vision.
Yes it’s as epic as it looks in the trailers
A few tragic events (one in particular, very sad by the way) happen midway through The Avengers, which force the team to finally realizes their potential as a superhero squad. This is the defining moment in the movie, and it ushers in some of the greatest comic book movie payouts I’ve ever seen. When the Avengers finally do assemble as one team it has to be one of the most awesome feelings I’ve ever felt while watching a movie about big green monsters, super soldiers, and men who can fly. I have a new found appreciation for every member of the Avengers who is present in this epic movie, and each one had their own shining moments, but three characters in particular stole the show for me.
The first probably doesn’t count as an Avenger, but I have to point out the brilliance of Agent Coulson. This predominantly behind the scenes character from every Marvel movie up until now really came into his own in The Avengers. He delivered some of the lines that got the biggest laughs at my 12:01 AM screening, and he somehow always managed to bring perspective to the dire situations at hand. Coulson is involved in some of the most critical moments in this film, which range from happy, serious, to sad ones. Clark Gregg really earned his stripes this time around, and I promise you that you’ll never forget Agent Coulson after watching this joyride of a motion picture.
The next character that I found to really excel in The Avengers has to be Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark/Iron Man. Now this probably isn’t a surprise to anyone. Jr. has rocked the whole Iron Man role since his origin story, but even amongst all of the other superstar actors and their superhero alter egos, he still managed to shine in most of the film’s scenes. Plus he gets to use all of those bitchin looking gadgets, so how can a geek argue with his awesomeness?
He truly is the mack daddy of the team
The last character that stood out to me from The Avengers cast is still a complete surprise to me. I have to say that I have a new found respect for a superhero that I haven’t always understood in the past, and this character is Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk/Bruce Banner. The Hulk has gotten a bad rap from his two origin movies for various reasons, and I myself have never given the green rage monster the credit he deserves. I can say that the Hulk is fully redeemed in The Avengers, so much so that I’ve already developed a slight obsession with him. His moments in the movie provide some of the most iconic shots you will see. Not to mention that he also has some of the most hilarious non-speaking scenes I’ve witnessed in a film. The Hulk and I see eye to eye now, and this understanding is a direct result of his excellent use in The Avengers.
I have a new appreciation for the Hulk because of this movie
I guess this wouldn’t be a fair and balanced review if I didn’t bring up the bad guys, and they too performed masterfully. I won’t even pretend to know who the alien forces were that Loki brings to Earth, but I can tell you that the man himself is just as interesting as the good guys. Tom Hiddleston could very well indeed be the best actor in this entire movie. He brought a passion to the role of Loki that wasn’t quite perfected in Thor, but he clearly mastered the role in The Avengers. You could feel that every word he wrote in his opinion piece on the validity of acting in comic book movies was true through his performance of Loki. He nailed the God of Mischievous and made the perfect antagonist for the Avengers.
Hiddleston is Ledger-esque as Loki
If I honestly had to list a complaint about The Avengers it would be a light jab at the character of Hawkeye. I just never felt like he really was part of the team, and Renner didn’t too much to make him stand out. He had some solid action scenes featuring his bow and arrow, but if he wasn’t in the movie I don’t think anyone would have missed him for a moment.
Joss Whedon has easily crafted one of the greatest comic book movies of all time, if not the greatest, in The Avengers. As a fellow nerd and geek you could feel his care towards the art of comic book storytelling exuding from the screen. He managed to take a brilliant cast of actors playing hugely popular characters and made them feel fresh and relevant again. I went into this movie with high expectations, and they were met on every level. I’m not one for paying to see movies multiple times, but there’s a 100% chance that I’ll be seeing The Avengers at least one more time before this early weekend is over. If you feel like this movie has been over hyped then you’re gravely mistaken. From one geek to another I can promise you that this is a film for the ages. I give it an EB 10 out of 10 Buddhas! You’ve been wishing you went to that midnight screening now…
[#ff entbuddha] “Making you a better geek, one post at a time!”