Movie review: The Avengers
Blockbuster: The Avengers is in cinemas nationwide now.
There are so many reasons why The Avengers shouldn't work.
Writer/director Joss Whedon needed to cram six Marvel heroes and the deranged Norse god Loki into this $200 million movie, still make sure it made sense, and stay true enough to the comics to keep himself from ending up on the hit list of every fan.
Add the worldwide hype and it just didn’t seem possible.
Impressively, The Avengers not only works, but is one of the most purely entertaining superhero movies to grace the big screen.
A huge part of this is thanks to Whedon, making his return to directing feature films for the first time since 2005’s Serenity.
The Avengers could have been a film focused on Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr) or Captain America (Chris Evans), but Whedon makes sure everyone gets their moment of glory.
Without giving too much away, eye-patched agent Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson, now in a main role) brings together the Avengers, who must stop Thor’s brother Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and his army from enslaving humanity.
Downey Jr’s Iron Man is, of course, a standout with his running quips and oversized ego, while fans will love seeing him duke it out against Australian Chris Hemsworth (in his role as Thor) and against goody-two-shoes Captain America.
Some characters are a surprise too – Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) who, let’s face it, was pretty dull in Iron Man 2, is the opposite here.
Slick, elusive and dangerous, she’s given some great martial arts sequences, particularly one against the arrow-slinging Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), a rogue agent who holds his own despite being a lesser-known character.
The beauty of Whedon’s writing is that Iron Man isn’t the only one throwing out the hilarious one-liners, which leads to the biggest surprise – Hulk (Mark Ruffalo replacing Edward Norton, who replaced Eric Bana).
The big green guy with serious anger management issues gets some of the best and funniest moments, which make a character who just came off as OK in other movies, a firm favourite.
Meanwhile, thanks to the genius of Marvel and their previous movies, Whedon doesn’t have to spend an hour introducing the heroes – meaning more time for them all to squabble like invincible children.
The script is brilliant, but the special effects don’t disappoint either, with two particularly exhilarating sequences aboard a flying fort and throughout the city where most of the action is set. The Dark Knight Rises and The Amazing Spider-Man had better be on top form, because The Avengers is a blockbuster that lives up to its hype.
>> Review by Caris Bizzaca
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Avengers assemble: a huge cast of Marvel's top characters combine in The Avengers.