Assemble the movie stills! There are a lot of them in here.
Sorry I’m not sorry.
by Karissa Barrows, Editor
If you have not been excited for The Avengers since first hinted at in the Iron Man franchise, you have no soul. Or whatever. Maybe not that extreme, but DUDE. The movie was destined to be either a massively awesome, mind-blowing life experience or the worst 2+ hours of life. As soon as it was announced that Joss Whedon was directing the film, I knew the former would be the case. I went to see the movie after having driven for 16 hours the day prior and still getting up super early that morning, and I was so pumped up afterwards that I was able to stay up for two hours more than normal playing Modern Warfare 3. Seriously. It is that good. I’ll explain why… and try my hardest to be as brief as possible. That’s gonna be hard, considering how much I loved this movie.
Be still my heart.
Ten years in the making, The Avengers aimed to bring in some of the most popular characters in the Marvel Universe – Iron Man (Robert Downey, Jr. – Sherlock Holmes, Tropic Thunder, Due Date), the Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo – The Kids Are All Right, Zodiac, Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind), Thor (Chris Hemsworth – Thor, Star Trek (2009), Cabin in the Woods), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson – Iron Man 2, The Horse Whisperer, The Black Dahlia), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner – The Town, The Hurt Locker, 28 Weeks Later), and Captain America (Chris Evans – Fantastic Four, Scott Pilgrim vs. the World, Captain America: The First Avenger). Fresh off of Thor, the younger brother of the god of thunder, Loki (Tom Hiddleston – War Horse, Thor, Midnight in Paris – I just said in my review of War Horse that he is quickly becoming one of my favorite actors, and he as Loki solidified that), returns after being thrown out of Asgard with a mighty army of creatures from as yet untouched reaches of space, called the Chitauri (the Ultimate Marvel universe version of the Skrull race, more or less), and wreak havoc on the Earth (namely New York City) in an effort to bring humanity to its obedient knees in worship of the younger Asgardian.
Loki appears after the Tesseract, a relatively small, glowing, blue cube of energy first introduced in Thor, suddenly becomes active as the space-wide teleport it truly is within the recesses of a S.H.I.E.L.D. base. Dr. Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgård – Good Will Hunting, Pirates of the Caribbean franchise, Thor), also from Thor, Clint Barton/Hawkeye, and one other S.H.I.E.L.D. agent are hypnotized (for lack of a better term) by Loki and help him to escape with the Tesseract in order to use it to bring the Chitauri to Earth from the other end of the universe.
Say hello to my little friend. Composed of gamma radiation. WHAT!
There better not be no motherf—ing snakes on my motherf—ing plane!
Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson – Pulp Fiction, The Spirit, Iron Man franchise), supported by Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow, Agent Maria Hill (Cobie Smulders – The L Word, How I Met Your Mother) and Agent Phil Coulson (Clark Gregg – The Human Stain, The West Wing, (500) Days of Summer), begins to enact the “Avengers Initiative” to fight this new threat, to the disapproval of the Security Council. The rest of the movie goes as one might expect, with surprises and some of the best one-liners I’ve heard in a movie in a long, long time. I’ll allude to some of my favorites in a minute.
S.H.I.E.L.D. Agents Hill and Coulson
Overall, whoa. If ever there was a movie that lived up to the mind-numbing amount of its marketing, The Avengers is totally it. I was fortunate in the fact that the vast majority of people seeing the movie with me at the April 25th advance screening were big fans, so everything exciting was just a little more exciting; everything funny was hilarious; everything hilarious had people crying; everything tense was making me jump (in particular, during the initial conversation between Natasha Romanoff and Bruce Banner); and everything epic was EPICALLY so. There aren’t many movies I can go back and call a favorite, or in my top 5 of all time, but The Avengers, ladies and gentlemen, is in my top 5 of all time. (I have a condition that prevents me from choosing favorite media. Called indecision.)
Barton and Romanoff sitting in a tree… er, giant flying aircraft carrier….
There was a marked lack of romance, which I’m all for (other than those of us that know Hawkeye and Black Widow are in a relationship later on down the line and could pick up on the subtleties), crazy action, serious suspense, and dialogue you have to be smarter than a 5th grader to follow. Something else I greatly appreciated in the film was the humor. Joss Whedon is well known for his skill with one-liners and visual humor (which is part of what made Firefly/Serenity so freakin’ amazing), and he lays it all down throughout the movie’s entirety. It’s been a long time since I’ve heard an entire audience cracking up every twenty minutes or so, and an even longer time since I’ve heard an audience laugh so hard they almost pee their collective pants. And holy crap, the Helicarrier!!!!
I would’ve chosen the Navy over the Air Force for this mother.
I’m sure all of you will have your own favorite moments, but I want to run through a few of my own.
Best Action Sequences
- Loki, Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America in the woods. (Also should be included in moments of hilarity.)
- Car chase through the tunnels under the S.H.I.E.L.D. base.
- Big culmination fight scene. Obviously.
- Iron Man/Tony Stark and everyone, pretty much throughout the whole movie. “Guys, I’m bringing the party to you!”
- Tony Stark and Bruce Banner.
- Agent Phil Coulson and Steve Rogers/Captain America.
Best Moments of Hilarity
- Iron Man/Tony Stark, again pretty much throughout the whole movie.
- Thor and Hulk right after taking down a Leviathan.
- Opening Black Widow interrogation scene.
- Captain America giving orders to the NYPD.
- HULK AND LOKI. OMG I died. As did the entire theater.
Hawkeye’s idol = Batman? Helloooo, DC/Marvel crossover!
Steve Rogers: “There’s only one god, ma’am. And I’m pretty sure he didn’t dress like that.”
Rando whose name I can’t recall: “What is that, a statement?”
Steve Rogers: “No. A promise.”
Thor: “Take care how you speak. Loki is beyond reason, but is of Asgard, and he is my brother.”
Romanoff: “He killed 80 people in two days.”
Thor: “…He’s adopted.”
Steve Rogers: “All right, listen up! Until we can close that portal up there, what we need is containment. Barton, I want you on that roof, eyes on everything. Call out patterns and strays. Stark, you’ve got the perimeter. Anything gets more than three blocks out, you turn it back or turn it to ash.”
Clint Barton: “Want to give me a lift?”
Tony Stark: “Right. Better clench up, Legolas!”
Steve Rogers: “Thor, you’ve gotta try and bottleneck that portal. Slow them down. You’ve got the lightning – light the bastards up. You [Romanoff] and me, we stay here on the ground. Keep the fighting here. And Hulk?” [Hulk looks at him. Rogers grins.] “Smash.” [EPIC ENSUES!!]
(That last quote also qualifies as probably my favorite moment in the entire movie.)
The Hulk begins to realize himself. Just before beginning to SMASH.
As movies tend to have these days, especially superhero-related ones, there are scenes during and after the credits (so be sure to stay!!). The scene at the very end of the credits was not included with the advance screening as they had only just finished filming said scene and were still in post-production for it, but both scenes give rise to a future Avengers film. Everyone in the theater at the first (and what was the only at the time) post-credits scene gasped and said something along the lines of “OH MY GOD, DUDE, YES!!!” You’ll see why. Mark Ruffalo, who in my opinion is the best Hulk to date, signed on for six Marvel films, so we’ll see how many of those feature the entire group. On that subject, please, dear Lord, let Joss Whedon sign on for every film in all capacities in which he acted for The Avengers. He accomplished, in his directing, screenwriting, and screenplay capacities, what many thought to be the impossible in a BIG way.
Gwyneth Paltrow (Se7en, Shallow Hal, Iron Man franchise) returns as Pepper Potts! HUZZAH for continuity!!
One of the biggest things that blows my mind the most about the movie as a whole is that, thanks to some hard work by Joss and his team, it functioned as a feature for every single character/entity – literally everyone gets their due. The Avengers was Iron Man 3, Thor 2, S.H.I.E.L.D./Black Widow/Hawkeye 1, a brand new The Incredible Hulk, and Captain America 2. There is reportedly a Nick Fury film coming out, so you could say that Avengers served that purpose as well, separate from just a focus on S.H.I.E.L.D. as a whole. I have never seen a director/production team/movie pull that off. I honestly don’t know if anyone has even tried, simply because of the magnitude of how much it would suck if you got it wrong. This is seriously not something any moviegoer wants to miss. If you’re not a moviegoer, such as myself, make the exception. Now, if you’ll excuse me, I need to go watch the movie at least ten more times. You probably will too after you see it the first time. Which you ABSOLUTELY MUST DO. NOW. GO.
You said WHAT about Jane!?!
ComicsOnline gives The Avengers an incredibly enthusiastic
5 out of 5 major kickings of evil ass.
WHY ARE YOU STILL HERE AND NOT AT THE MOVIE THEATER!?
Assemble on back to ComicsOnline.com for more Avengers and Marvel news and everything geek pop culture!