Saturday, April 28, 2012

The Avengers

Year: 2012
Director: Joss Whedon
Cast: Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Jeremy Renner, Scarlett Johansson, Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson

Plot: Tony Stark, Steve Rogers, Natasha Romanoff, Bruce Banner, Clint Barton and Thor, the God of Thunder are brought together by Nick Fury to form The Avengers. Their first mission: stop Loki.

Review: The buildup for this film started at the end of Iron Man, when Nick Fury made his first appearance and mentioned the Avengers Initiative. That was four years ago and now we have all six heroes in one film.

I have to give a huge amount of credit to Joss Whedon for pulling off what seemed impossible. I mean, how do you have so many superheroes in one film and make them all equally important? How do you give them a threat that is as formidable as they are? How do you make this film work from start to finish? Whedon did it, and I can safely say he's one of the best writers working today. It is his sublime writing and excellent direction that steered The Avengers to being a great success.

Whedon, knowing full well that The Avengers is about a group of individuals and not just one person, gives enough attention to all the heroes, thereby making it easy for the audience to root for each of them without feeling that certain ones are dispensable. He also realises that the film can get weighed down by its lengthy runtime and potentially complicated goings on, so he fills the script with sharp witted dialogue to keep the audience in stitches. If you've seen Whedon's Buffy TV series, then you'll know what you're in for. As a result, the film breezes by without any of us feeling the 142 minutes watching it.

As for the action, well you won't be disappointed. In fact, you'll want more when it's done. The level of carnage you'll see rivals the stuff Michael Bay did in the last Transformers flick, and dare I say it, it's more fun in this film. Buildings get levelled, there are explosions all over....basically the second half of the film is one adrenaline pumping ride, and it's so much fun.

So who's great amongst the cast? All of them actually. Maybe Jeremy Renner gets a bit less screentime than I would have hoped, but at least he makes a lasting impression with his role as Hawkeye. As I mentioned, there are plenty of funny lines in the film, mostly from Downey Jr and Clark Gregg, who plays Agent Coulson. I must also give credit to Mark Ruffalo, who is splendid as Bruce Banner. I'm not taking anything away from Edward Norton, in fact I loved Norton's performance, but Ruffalo is good enough to make me forget Norton was Bruce Banner once. Johansson, Evans and Hemsworth prove they're not just easy on the eyes, they're pretty good actors too. And Tom Hiddleston is impressive as Loki. Despite being just one individual, he proves to be a match for The Avengers, physically and verbally.

I literally have no complaints about this film, except having to sit next to two ladies in the cinema who kept laughing at all the jokes. Really, The Avengers is that good. It's worth going back for, and I haven't been this thrilled about a comicbook film since X2. Bottom line is, you need to see this. (5/5)

P.S.: Wait for one last scene as the credits come on. Fans of the comicbook will get a kick out of this.  

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