Director: Joss Whedon
Release Date: April 26th 2012
Nick Fury (Jackson) brings together Earths strongest superheroes in an attempt to prevent Loki and his alien army from enslaving the earth and stealing the Tesseract.
This year for Geek Pride Day I decided to revisit Avengers Assemble (heretofore referred to as The Avengers) the film that brought all the Marvel superheroes together for the first time and without its success, the MCU wouldn’t be the global juggernaut it is today with Avengers: Endgame becoming the highest film of all time. Geeks are now the mainstream.
There have now been 16 feature films and multiple TV series since The Avengers came out back in 2012 and given the events in Endgame re-watching it feels like somewhat of a homecoming, going back time when everything was a little more simple, the characters hadn’t been beaten down by the events that followed in the subsequent movies and unlike with DC’s Batman Vs. Superman, The Avengers works perfectly as a stand-alone film or a starting point despite there being five films in the cinematic universe to come out before it
Whereas most of the villains in the MCU are pretty forgettable, but Tom Hiddleston’s performance as the long-haired Demi-god Loki has the distinction of being one of only two memorable villains in the MCU, his sibling rivalry with Thor (Hemsworth) and his daddy issues set up in the Thor stand-alone movie meant that his motives were a lot more fleshed out than most of the antagonists that had come before and unfortunately until Thanos any that appeared afterwards.
It’s hard to imagine anyone better to play lick arms dealer turned tech entrepreneur Tony Stark/Iron Man than Robert Downey Jr, who exudes charisma throughout and is the perfect counterpoint to the idealist boy-scout Captain America (Evans) and the pompous yet well-meaning Thor, with all three sharing a hugely enjoyable and sometimes funny fight scene in the woods as the group got off to a rocky start.
Ruffalo’s incarnation of the Hulk/Bruce Banner was a definite marked improvement on both Eric Bana’s and Edward Norton’s previous portals, giving Bruce’s side more heart and playing the conflict up perfectly, while his Hulk is just as destructive as you would hope for.
For some reason however the MCU has never been good at developing female characters into more than just another member of the team, with Scarlett Johansson’s Black Widow the perfect example of this, with an interesting backstory and great skill set, she is criminally under-used and becomes a supporting player, how she never got a solo film I’ll never know.
I understand why Marvel sticks to a uniform look at films, but sticking to it as rigidly as they do in terms of camera angles and CGI and formula ends up feeling more than a little boring at times, this is where I wished Whedon had taken a leaf out of DC’s book and taken a few more risks in terms of style, as there are very few shots from the film that are particularly memorable.
With The Avengers you know you’re getting a well made solid film, filled with decent action sequences, plenty of comedy and a bit of heart, but you can’t help but feel that they could have done more with the characters to truly make it a memorable film.