"The Avengers" is the kind of movie made for summer – an epic film with great characters, amazing action and a compelling story.
I have to admit that while I knew "Avengers" would be good, I didn't think it would grab a hold of me the way that it did. I don't think you have to be a fan of super hero movies to get into it either. There is something for everyone.
The story follows a team of super heroes who have been invading theaters over the last couple of years. Ironman, Thor, Captain America and the Hulk are the heavy hitters and the rest of the team is filled out with Nick Fury, Black Widow and Hawkeye.
Now, with all of these characters it would seem like there is too much to focus on. It was a challenge giving plenty of time and dialog to each of them, while still having time to flesh out the villain, Loki.
When narrowed down to the bare essentials, the story would seem to be the cliched arc of "evil guy wants to rule the world." You really get into all of the characters heads though, and the simple story leads to great character moments.
The man behind this elaborate super hero epic is Joss Whedon, the former writer and show-runner for cult classics "Buffy the Vampire Slayer," "Firefly" and most recently "Dollhouse." While I feel that he is an amazing writer, I wasn't sure he was going to be able showcase his talents in a movie. His TV shows gave him whole seasons to get viewers to connect with characters. Movies only give you two hours and some change. I was also worried that he wouldn't be able to handle the transition from small screen to big screen.
I really had nothing to worry about. The dialog is quick – either helping you understand the characters or it's funny. Sometimes both. Whedon also let's the super heroes be super visual with iconic images from the comic books coming to life on the screen.
I don't want to give anything away, but I will say my favorite parts usually involved the Hulk played by Mark Ruffalo. His portrayal of the character in his human form of Bruce Banner is the best I have ever seen. Chris Helmsworth's Thor and Robert Downey Jr. as Ironman were awesome as well. I was least impressed with Chris Evans' Captain America. He seemed to have the least to do and felt a little out of place at times, but I still liked him.
The only thing that I can say I had a problem with isn't really a problem, but I do feel it could detract from enjoying the film. You really need to have seen these characters' previous films or have some kind of idea who everyone is. It is not a requirement because everything is basically explained, but viewers will just have an easier time with enjoying the film.
Either way I recommend "Avengers" for all ages. I can't give it 5 stars on the one viewing I had, but I was really close. On a second viewing, I could easily see myself giving it a 5.
4 of 5 stars
Did you see "The Avengers" over the weekend? What did you think?