Sunday, April 26, 2015

How Does One Write About The Avengers Sequel And Not Give Away Any Spoilers

I managed to catch a look at the latest Avengers sequel and found myself enjoying it more than I thought I would. I expected much of the same tone and visuals from the first film and it certainly looks and feels like the same team created both movies. After seeing how Daredevil was handled on the small screen one quickly realizes that the Avengers is a whole different animal. Everything here has to be big and loud and showy and with all those demands, Joss Wedon has still managed to created another winning adventure with these high profile Marvel characters.

If I had a complaint it would be that first attack that starts the film. It was thrilling to be sure but too often did I notice the difference between reality and CGI. Cap throwing his shield was particularly poorly done. It's seemed unfinished to me and looked out of place when it should have blended seamlessly into the live background. At other times, the big fight scenes seem cut too short and the cuts came at me too fast to follow at first. And remember, I have a brain trained by MTV. I thought that prepared me for this kind of quick adventure. Maybe I am getting old.

The film has to jumble additional characters which is something that director Joss Wedon does best. Each character has their own special moments that often made me smile as a comic book fan. However, the film suffers from being as safe and predictable as a superhero movie can get. Marvel has a HUGE franchise at stake here and they were not going to take chances with this property. I was shocked by the fate of one character who would only have added to future adventures.
Because of this micro-management, the middle dragged a bit for me but everything really does pick up whenever Ultron is on the scene because a victory against him is never assured. James Spader may seem a weird choice for the voice of Ultron but I loved his acting choices and how he didn't speak like a robot would be expected to speak.
The 'birth' of the Vision was also a nice scene. Not exactly as per comic book canon but very clean and without any fuss of a complicated origin set-up. I wasn't even sure if his powers would be identical from the comics and cartoon but that mattered little when I saw him in action. He can do ONE thing that no other member of the team can and that ability I will not spoil for you.

The cast is uniformly excellent and really seem to be having fun with characters that have now become their own. I never forget that these people are not only teammates but friends. I really liked the interaction between Scarlett Johanson's Black Widow and Mark Ruffalo's Hulk. Once again Scarlett Johanson brings heart to the film. Like everyone else, she is not left unchanged by the experience of Ultron. That kind of character development is rare for such Hollywood blockbusters. With all the control the studio had over the project it's amazing that such moments found their way into the final cut.

This film also carries the burden of introducing conflict between Captain America's and Iron Man's differing philosophies of peace and how to achieve it. The seeds of the next Avengers movie CIVIL WAR have been laid out. Iron Man failed with Ultron and almost cost the life of the planet. Cap won't let him do that again.

I also enjoyed the Scarlett Witch and Quicksilver. So much more I want to say about the twins but that would venture too close into spoiler territory.
Overall I enjoyed it quite a bit and any of my complaints are going to rightfully seen as petty. This will be a HUGE movie this summer and you will have a good time at the film - not as good as Guardians of the Galaxy but better than the last Iron Man.


Lauren Farrow said...

Thanks for the review!

I think CGI can effect the quality of a film when it is not done well. It's good to hear that the CGI in The Avengers is done well enough not to be a dealer breaker. From what you write it sounds like the movie is very good, so I am happy the quality holds up.

Yeah, I think the Avengers has the same challenge of Game of Thrones. There are so many characters and so it is hard to put the necessary focus on each one but still keep the story-line cohesive. I'm glad to learn from your review that they pull it off!

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

Especially with all the little trails they have to leave for the future Avengers movies and all the rest of the Marvel movies to be released. Sacrifices from the comics had to be made but as a long time comic fan I was happy with the result. Strong women characters who carry the day also is never a part of these kind of genre films. It's nice to see how important the girls are in this one.

Debra She Who Seeks said...

Thanks for keeping this spoiler-free! Although I'm sure I'll have encountered every spoiler going by the time I go see this movie a month from now after the crowds die down. Why, oh why, am I such an introvert? Then I could line up with everyone else right on May 1st, LOL!

Cal's Canadian Cave of Coolness said...

Nothing worse than a crowd of people at a theatre. If I am with my own crowd then it's okay but not with just another person. That is as bad as going to a movie by myself.

JBond said...

Although it was, indeed, spoiler-free I waited until after I seen it wit my own eyes to read it. 3D IMAX worked better with the few opening sequence CGI moments you mentioned. Nevertheless, you're spot-on as usual, King Cal! Thanks for the review.