Sunday, June 9, 2013

The Avengers (2012) Blu-Ray

Rating: 6 out of 5 puny gods smashed

Plot Synopsis:  The biggest badasses of the Marvel cinematic universe come together to fight off an alien invasion.

The Good:

-A very nice opening.  We get a brief plot dump to show aliens and who they have on their side.  What the tesseract is and what’s going to happen.  This is followed by an introduction of characters and establishing the momentum of the story.

-“Nothing harmful, just low levels of gamma radiation.” “That can be harmful.”

-Good into to Loki.

-I’ll take now to talk about Hawkeye since he’s the first Avenger we see.  I really like movie Hawkeye, he reminds me of the Ultimate universe version of Hawkeye.  He’s not a circus punk, he’s a military man and I like that.  I really enjoy the comic version of Hawkeye, right now the Hawkeye comic is one of my few must reads.  But I think this was a better Hawkeye for the movies.  I really like Jeremey Renner’s performance and I really enjoy this version of the character.  It’s something different, it’s something fun to watch.  You don’t HAVE to be needlessly shackled to one version of a character.  How boring is that?  I like what they did with him and by having Loki turn him we get a nod to the comic in how Hawkeye started as a villain before becoming an Avenger.  It gives the character a sense of burden going forward and an explanation of why he would join.

-“I am burdened by glorious purpose.”

-I like that we start with Nick Fury, Maria Hill, Phil Coulson and Hawkeye.  Those are the people welcoming us to the movie and not Tony Stark.  He in fact gets introduced second to last but this isn’t the Tony Stark movie, it’s The Avengers.

-The Black Widow interrogation is awesome.  It shows how bad ass Widow is, her interrogation methods and her physical prowess as she goes from tied to a chair to beating everyone up.

-Dropkick in to kip up is always badass especially when it’s followed up by a hurricanrana.

-Bruce Banner, third world doctor…

-Mark Ruffalo is amazing as Bruce Banner.  His body language, the way he talks, everything about the character is just fantastic.  He shines in the role.

-I like that Bruce always refers to the Hulk as “The Other Guy”.

-Bruce and Widow have a great scene together.

-Cap punches apart one heavy bag just to grab another and go back to punching.

-Pepper Potts never looked sexier than in her opening scene.  Paltrow isn’t given a whole lot to work with but she makes the most of it and she looks damn good doing it.

-The gantry that pulls off Stark’s suit as he walks down it.

-They should go through and digitally insert Mark Ruffalo into the scenes of the Incredible Hulk movie.  With really poor green screen.

-Coulson with Captain America.

-The reveal of the Helicarrier is really quite impressive.

-I like how everyone eyes Steve Rogers.  You can tell people are impressed by him.

-“SHIELD has no shortage of enemies.” So who are the mercenaries helping Loki?  AIM?  Hydra?  The Maggia?  SHIELD does have a lot of enemies.

-Loki in his formal wear and how his spear turns into a shillelagh.

-All of Loki’s speeches are awesome.

-The Cap/Loki fight followed by Iron Man arriving to AC/DC’s Shoot to Thrill.

-The Cap/Thor/Iron Man three way melee is pretty awesome.

-I like the subtle Christianity of Captain America.  They don’t make it real obvious but when he mentions there only being one god it makes he seem wholesome and American.  I thought it was a nice touch.  Also calling Black Widow ma’m.

-Tony gets angry when Cap questions his heroism.

-Hawkeye invades the helicarrier, a great scene, especially him shoot his arrow and hitting the hull.

-Bruce talking about his anger.

-Hulk v. Widow and finally Hulk v. Thor.

-Widow v. Hawkeye.

-The New York battle.  It’s incredibly long but doesn’t at any point get tedious.  They are able to change things up enough to keep you involved and interested through the whole 45-60 minute climax.

-Coulson goes out like a badass.

-Cap teaming with Stark to make repairs to the carrier.

-How Hawkeye leads the insurgent team.

-They show two different types of Hulk transformations.  One, involuntary, caused by physical and emotional stress.  A more rabid, destructive version of the Hulk, one that lashes out at everyone and everything.  Then there’s a controlled transformation done voluntarily by Bruce that shows a much more controlled Hulk able to form strategy, focus and follow orders.

-I want those blueberries.

-There are several NBA style shot blocks.  Cap shot blocks a grenade and Hulk gives a flying swat to a Chitauri

The Bad:

-…I didn’t know Bruce was a medical doctor.

-When Widow pulls a gun during her conversation with Bruce her body posture is all weird.  Why are her arms so extended and her head bent so far back?  It’s a posture of fear, understandable, but she’s also a hardened professional so you’d think she could put up a front of fearlessness.

-The new Cap suit looks a little ridiculous.  They should have followed more of what the one in the Cap movie was.  Something more military and less stupid spandex.

-How do you jump out of a plane wearing a parachute and find your way to where two people are fighting in the middle of the woods.

-Stark calling Thor a tourist.

-“You want me to put the hammer down?” I like it in that it shows that Thor still has an anger management problem.  That he can still be impulsively violent.  He didn’t know if that would kill Cap but in that moment of battle lust he didn’t care.

-Cap finally understands a reference.

-There are too many great quotes and great moments to document them all.  It’s best to just watch the movie.

-Coulson’s fate.

-They telegraph Stark’s “heroic sacrifice” a bit too much.

-I’d stick around to see both after credits sequences.  I thought they were both pretty great.

The Ugly:

-“People might just need a little old fashioned.”  I bet they do Phil, I bet they do.

Final Thoughts:  I’m going to do something different here.  I stopped taking notes at the point where Black Widow talks to Loki.  I find myself just wanting to watch the movie and taking notes makes that hard to do.  So I did some notes from memory but I’m enjoying this movie.  You need to check this movie out if by some miracle you haven't already.  I've heard that some people really don’t like this film and I don’t know why.  You have to be a particularly nit-picky, contrary, fun hating person to not like this movie.  The only reason to not love this movie is if you don’t want to be one of the “sheeple” who buys into what “the man” "sells" "to" you.  This is THE comic movie of comic movies and it has totally changed the future of comic movies.  This movie has created the idea of a shared movie universe.  No longer will there be no connection between comic movies and slowly Marvel is buying back all the scattered franchises so they can make a continuous, persistent universe that will make movies more than what they have been in the past where each movie is a totally isolated world with no impact or connection to any other world.  You need to see this movie.  It’s well written, well-acted, it looks fantastic, the characters are great and it’s very well-paced for a 2 ½ hour movie.  Plus it changed everything so you should see it just for that reason.

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