Sunday, 22 April 2012
REVIEW: THE AVENGERS
Starring: Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Tom Hiddleston & Samuel L. Jackson. Director: Joss Whedon. Screenplay: Joss Whedon
Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, Black Widow, Hawkeye and The Incredible Hulk are finally here comic book fans. 'The Avengers' initiative has assembled (especially in other countries where this film is called 'Avenger Assemble' due to copy-write laws from that 'Avengers' film starring Ralph Fiennes and Uma Thurman). It's hard to believe its been four years since 'Iron Man' bolted up our blockbuster screens back in 2008 but since then we've had a lot of great Avenger movies to Marvel at until this. An 'Iron Man' sequel, 'The Incredible Hulk', 'Thor' and 'Captain America-The First Avenger' where all bold and brilliant back-story movies all leading to this. Now after doing the reverse of fellow celluloid comic series 'X-Men' and having their origin stories first 'The Avengers' are all coming together for the ultimate battle and blockbuster.
By the hammer of Thor this is a great movie and by the shield of Captain America this is one of the best superhero movies of all time. By the metal of Iron Man its certainly the most entertaining and by the ripped shirt of Hulk its definitely the most thrilling. 'The Hunger Games' can take a back seat now and 'The Dark Knight Rises' can wait its turn because right now its 'The Avengers' that is rising and breaking and setting box office records. Its time is now. All those Samuel L. Jackson cameos were worth it (he really IS in everything). Nick Fury has assembled a kick ass team and the gangs all here with some familiar favorite faces too. Geeks and fans who treat comic books like sacred text (stand up) can rejoice, look out for that Stan Lee cameo and wait after the credits as per.
New York City under attack serves as the biggest stage for this movie to be set and looking part like a disaster movie and part like the last 'Transformers' piece the sense of peril is pitched perfectly. The evil, manipulative schemes of Loki (from 'Thor') are back and this time with an army. Once again Tom Hiddleston plays Loki incredibly hamming it up to a Shakespeare level when needed but being seriously sinister for the most part. Chris Hemsworth steps up the bold bravado once again for a Titan strong representation of 'Thor' but the hammer doesn't just drop there.
Of course there's Iron Man played with all the classic charisma and charm of Robert Downey Jnr, but add a little more concern, desperation and that good, deep acting that made Downey Jnr who he is and you really have some character development here. We can't forget the Captain too as Chris Evans once again leads strong as the famous 'First Avenger' with all the pride and honor of a battle-tested soldier. We're just glad they broke the ice. With more screen time Samuel L. Jackson shows just how great he is at bringing everything together as Nick Fury with a little bit of great help from Cobie Smulders as Maria Hill and Clark Gregg as Phil Coulson. While Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow) and Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye) give killer performances as the Avengers super assassins. With this, and a new aim on the 'Mission Impossible' and 'Bourne' series' Renner has really hit the bulls-eye.
The biggest and greenest new addition is Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk. It seems the mean green machine has been played by more people then Doctor Who, from Eric Bana playing Dr. Banner to Edward Norton's recent rebooted turn as Bruce. Still with Norton's blessing Ruffalo really steps in and breaks out of the torn clothes perfectly. His anger is managed incredibly, from his tense and taught acting to being the first actor to actually perform the Hulk scenes...of course with a lot of green screen and leotard. Now wouldn't that be funny to see standing next to a bunch of guys that already look like they're at some strange fancy dress party?
A freak show this special force is not though. From formidable forest battles to city scraping, sky high action the enthusiasm and energy of this ensemble piece is incredible. Sure its not as dark as 'Batman' or as tailored to kids as much as 'Spiderman' but this middle-ground, movie medium makes for the happiest. It's tense and thrilling but also hilariously funny and even moving in parts. 'Buffy' director Joss Whedon has really slayed this one from drawing the tension between the Avengers, all whilst showing the initiative to bring it all together like he was wearing an eye patch. This just all looks so good. Its on trail to exceed 'The Dark Knight' and 'The Hunger Games' at the box office and its already exceeded all expectation. The 'Justice League' better bring it as now we can't wait for 'Iron Man 3' or if they can assemble again 'The Avengers 2'. TIM DAVID HARVEY.