Marvel’s The Avengers wows its way into comics-to-film history as one of the greatest popcorn flicks of its era. Aided by a universe filled with already iconic heroes, Marvel Studios pulls off the impossible with a movie that includes heaping doses of comedy, character, and carnage. The age-old question concerning this cinematic team-up has been how one could balance the larger-than-life heroes along with their respective actors. That question is answered here -- and how! Along with mega moments of action, filmmaker Joss Whedon skillfully pairs up the motley crew, crafting unity out of strife in scenes that aren’t all fought on the battleground. Primed to entertain, The Avengers is better than all of the Marvel pieces put together and should prove to be a home run for audiences around the globe.
Taking center stage this time is Nick Fury (played once again by the note-perfect Samuel L. Jackson), leader of the peacekeeping agency known as S.H.I.E.L.D. Fury, along with former Russian spy Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), recruits a super team to combat the villainous Loki (Tom Hiddleston), the brother of Norse god Thor. When the devilishly devious Loki reaches Earth and possesses S.H.I.E.L.D. team member Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) while stealing an inter-dimensional artifact, the world’s mightiest heroes are called in to handle the situation. Thus, Captain America (Chris Evans), Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), and Thor (Chris Hemsworth) must learn to work together alongside outlaw scientist Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), who can track down the artifact’s gamma signals when he’s not hulking out into a giant green monster.
Throughout the picture, Whedon smartly has the characters work with and against each other, creating compelling scenes that range from quiet to bombastic. Many a fight is had between team members, but it’s the rousing finale that dishes out exactly the kind of geek nirvana that has never been achieved on a level this high before. Not only are the visuals fantastic, but there is a healthy amount of comic relief to keep the smile from ever leaving your face. At a time when Batman scowls through self-serious crime dramas and millions of people pay to witness yet another substandard geeky event movie, The Avengers is a high-cylindered reminder of what joyfully heightened escapism really feels like. This is a film to high five to, one that demands playground reenactments. This is the mighty Marvel movie people have waited for -- and you will be amazed at just how much it rocks. leave a comment --Jeremy Wheeler