Review – The Avengers

The Avengers in 3D is the ultimate experience for anyone who has ever read a graphic novel or comic book of superheroes. Watching them come to life on the big screen is a visual buffet of Marvel’s longstanding original characters: Thor, Iron Man, Captain America and the Hulk. The Black Widow and Hawkeye, later characters, complete this spectacular piece of art in motion.

In this epic version, the Avengers emerge full force with director Joss Whedon (Serenity, Firefly and Buffy TV series), who has created an exciting, adventurous, and entertaining film. Under the direction of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) of S.H.I.E.L.D. (Supreme Headquarters International Espionage Law-Enforcement Division) the superheroes come together to fight the alien army led by Loki (Tom Hiddleston), Thor’s megalomaniac villainous brother. Flying through the air in a ship with crew reminiscent of Star Trek’s starship Enterprise, the Avengers assemble on this command base as they search for the missing piece to stop the portal for Loki’s army invasion.

The film caters to the antagonism between the superegos as they meet, resulting in affectionate byplay. Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr.) engages in wordy power banter with Captain America (Chris Evans) and clashes with Thor (Chris Hemsworth) at first meeting. Thor and the Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) engage each other in physical combat, matching brute strength. The relationship between Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) gets tested, and there is a hint of intimacy yet to be discovered.

The most refreshing of all the heroes is the Hulk. Mark Ruffalo’s version is much more animated and believable than previous digitalized Hulks (Eric Bana’s and Ed Norton’s). He now has personality, even when he’s throwing villains around like ragdolls. As Bruce Banner he’s deceptively sweet and adorable. The Hulk is gigantic and intimidating, yet his heart shines through unlike in previous films.

Conversely, the conflict between Thor and Loki continue on in its condensed version in this film. Missing the dramatic essence from the film Thor, Loki becomes more evil, losing his humanity in his quest for world dominance. Thor’s scenes seem restrained except when he’s fighting in action.

In the end the Avengers prove they work well together as a team. Even when the two assassins, Black Widow and Hawkeye, can only fall back a little when their friends with superpowers take over, they nevertheless complete the team. Captain America (who still needs a better outfit) truly shows his soldier leadership skills when things go down, and Iron Man becomes self-sacrificing.

The epic look of The Avengers with its gigantic ship, aliens in flying machines and dragon drones, and the sheer super powers released in motion from all its characters, almost makes the film worthy of the Star Wars franchise status. The script is at times surprisingly humorous in both dialogue and visual moment. With a little more heart and pull this would be a 100% perfect movie. We can only hope for more sequels with new villains and maybe a few more superheroes to fulfill the possibility.

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