The following is a spoiler review of Marvel’s The Avengers, a Joss Whedon film. This review was written in early 2016.
Marvel’s The Avengers was and is a very special movie. For many this film was not unlike a religious experience. You finally saw that these mega-movie events were possible, and Marvel Studios had finally proven that their cinematic universe was built on solid ground, with a fantastically entertaining team at the center of it.
But there are some very noticeable problems with one of Marvel Studios’s very best films, and some of those problems really annoyed me when I rewatched it a third or fourth time. So, in this review I will be brutally honest, and therefore the review does include some spoilers. You have been warned.
Marvel’s The Avengers sees Earth’s Mightiest Heroes team up to save Earth from the wicked Loki of Asgard (played by Tom Hiddleston), who is ready to lead an army of Chitauri warriors into New York City. But their strong personalities make them easy targets for Loki to manipulate and pit against each other. For the very first time, our Avengers assemble.
Now, let’s start with the three problems or issues that I have with the film. I really don’t think the film explains what exactly the Tesseract is, the audience is just expected to get it – and go along with it. And audiencemembers did, but I still think that they could have explained it better.
Also, I’m not a huge fan of how the film begins. The first major action sequence is a somewhat simple car chase at the S.H.I.E.L.D. base, which I found somewhat underwhelming. Now, I’ve heard that some people dislike how long it takes for the Avengers to assemble: That there is too much set-up in this film. But that’s not really a big problem for me, as I really like the scenes where the heroes are briefed on the Tesseract and Loki.
Now, my final issue is something that actually bothers me in a lot of blockbuster films nowadays. The whole hive mind thing has become somewhat of a classical blockbuster trope, and it is one of the most convienient and lazy plot devices out there. It is way too easy to just say that the Chitauri are wiped out when the mothership is taken out.
But I do love this film, and the issues above are just minor gripes that I have with the film. And the greatness of this film all starts with the performances. We had already seen Loki in Thor, where he was an excellent antagonist, and in The Avengers Loki works just as well. Tom Hiddleston’s character has pretty much become the quintessential Marvel Studios villain.
Marvel Studios did a great job of finding the right people to play Thor Odinson (Chris Hemsworth), Tony Stark (Robert Downey, Jr.), Steve Rogers (Chris Evans), Clint Barton (Jeremy Renner), and Natasha Romanoff (Scarlett Johansson). Now, Marvel Studios did run into trouble with Bruce Banner. There were behind the scenes complications with Edward Norton, who had done a great job in The Incredible Hulk, so Marvel had to find the right replacement.
Mark Ruffalo is the perfect replacement, and has since become the guy everyone thinks of when mentioning Banner. He has the right look, and he plays the character perfectly. And a lot of these performances are assisted by excellent Joss Whedon-dialogue.
Joss Whedon wasn’t just the right guy to direct this film, he was also a perfect choice to create dialogue for our heroes. Whedon’s dialogue works especially well with Tony Stark, but there are some really great character moments via dialogue from every hero. Whedon excellently made a film that focused on each and every hero, while it became a solid group film.
One of the things I don’t think this film gets enough credit for is its great musical score. Alan Silvestri did a great job with this film’s score. The score really underpins some of the awesome moments in the film. The great hero-circle shot, for example, wouldn’t have been that great, if it weren’t for the excellent score.
Marvel’s The Avengers is a new classic. It is an epic movie event, with a lot of iconic moments. It is an instant superhero classic, and is one of the best superhero films to rewatch.
9.1 out of 10
– I’m Jeffrey Rex