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jameson (ST)

The Avengers

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Very nice! This movie just *might* be worth seeing in in a theater instead of waiting for the blu-ray/DVD release.

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Loved it. Probably could point out some flaws, but overall, I think it delivered very well. I was surprised at how FUNNY it was! Gonna be a good summer for movies, methinks.

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Yes, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Didn't read comics enough (or at least, not those comics) to be able to pick at any flaws that might have been there. For me, it was just a ton of fun. Will probably be seeing it again this weekend.

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I'm not an Avengers-comic guru, but honestly I didn't spot any glaring flaws either. It might just not have had any. :)

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Avengers is really good, and does more right than it does wrong. It's helped a great deal in that we already know these characters, which means we don't need to press six superhero origins into the same movie; the script is funny in the right spots and the directing, particularly on the close-out 40 minute battle in New York and especially on the extended shot of six superheroes versus an army over all of New York, is excellent.

But there were a few problems, starting with

the fact that the return of Thor to Earth - the thing he cut himself off from in Thor, the entire climax of his character growth from a man who will start a war even though it gains him nothing, to a man who will stop a war even though it will cost him everything? Is handwaved away with "something something dark energy." I knew he was going to return, but I would have hoped that his return would have a bit more heft to it than "hey look, it's Thor." Similarly, Loki's at-length quadruple-cross from Thor is reduced here to "get army, smash mans." Even though he had an army of expendable soldiers, he felt less of a threat here - possibly because the whole thing lost that personal touch.

Likewise, it felt like the only reason Iron Man chose to attack Thor rather than Loki was because we needed a fight scene - or mayyyybe it was Loki's influence, who knows. And Loki's mind control, I'm sorry, is really dumb. You can be broken out of it by getting hit in the head? And no one's wearing helmets whilst building the portal device? Five minutes after that revelation I'd written a better out that kept all plot points in place ("going to sleep," which would explain why everyone looked tired) and shook my head and moved on.

I'm more or less okay with the controversial element of Iron Man nuking an army - the movie Avengers are a lot more kill-happy than their comic-book counterparts. (Even Superman, in the movies, has bumped off a few people. It's just how movie superheroes do.) There were also some great character touches - how the Widow managed to outfox Loki, how Whedon understood that while the Hulk needs that dangerous side, he ultimately has to be heroic if we're gonna like him, something that neither previous Hulk film figured out. And ultimately, what works about the movie is the same thing that worked about Captain America - that there's no real character arc for the heroes, but rather, there's an interaction arc. In Captain America, Steve Rogers is the same man at the end as he is in the beginning - it's the people around him who've changed as they realize that Steve is the hero they need. Likewise, in Avengers, everyone's the same at the end as they were in the beginning - they've just learnt how to work together. The entire movie, really, is a large-scale version of the classic Marvel comics trope: "first they fight, then they team up."

Like I said, it's a really good film. But it's not perfect, and it's not the best superhero film made or the best thing Joss Whedon's ever done, because ultimately it's not really about anything over than shit-go-boom. The Dark Knight asks complex questions about morality and whether you have to become a monster to fight a monster; Cabin in the Woods has pointed questions to ask about the underlying themes of slasher films. It might just be that I'm a year shy of passing out of the "white males, aged 18-35" demographic these movies are aimed at - but I'm at a stage in my life where I want more out of art. The Avengers is a really well done superhero team up, but its chief flaw is that it's too content to be merely that. It may be that just getting Hulk, Iron Man, Captain America and Thor in one film was ambition enough, but I think it could have strove for more.

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Hee hee...it's funny how we crisscross sometimes. Your reaction to Avengers is roughly analogous to my reaction to Cabin in the Woods, and vice versa. (^_^)

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Depends on how you are looking at it IMO. Dark Knight is the better film, yes, but the Avengers is the better comic book movie. At least that is my opinion.

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Don't get me wrong, Avengers is a perfectly cromulent superhero asskicko movie. I can enjoy something while still admitting that it is flawed, a magic trick I wish the majority of the Internet didn't react to like a vampire presented with a crucifix. I just don't agree with people who think it's the greatest superhero movie of all time and I think it could have benefitted from having a stronger theme. Previous Marvel movies and films like Dark Knight proved that you can have a meaningful theme AND lots of face-punching. While I think Avengers succeeds with its ambition of "get all the superheroes together," it did not have to do so at the cost of meaning. Neither The Incredibles nor the X-Men had to sacrifice a meaningful subtext for their ensemble casts, and I'm a big fan of the Kurt Busiek theory that the superhero works best as a metaphor for a struggle that is universal. The Incredibles is about family and social pressure; the X-Men are about meaningful activism and civil rights. The Avengers isn't really about anything other than itself, and how impressive it is that it capped off a twelve hour superhero epic.

Anyways, if you all enjoyed The Avengers - and I did - then consider kicking a few bucks into the jar over at the Hero Initiative. It's no secret that Marvel has a History of problematic relations with its creators, who are not going to be taking home a paycheck from The Avengers despite creating nearly all the elements that are on-screen. It's also true that ownership of these characters is ethically complex - many hands have molded the Hulk, Captain America, Thor and Iron Man over the past five to seven decades. Rather than debating how much, say, coming up with the Cosmic Cube is 'worth,' the Hero Initiative dedicates itself to help out the creators who need its help the most. I donated the cost of my movie ticket. I'd like to ask everyone, if they can spare the cash, to do the same.

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Finally got around to seeing it, & enjoyed it quite a bit. The interweaving of details from the prior Marvel (Avengers-verse) films was a special treat. Definitely will be adding it to my DVD library once it comes out.

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I think your being a little hard on a movie that covers a half-dozen superheros working together, it's hard to give that sort of thing the screen time it deserves, when you have to crunch it down to 2.5 hours or so. I enjoyed the movie considerably, including the scenes after the credits.. like all marvel movies gives a hint of what is to come next.

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I think your being a little hard on a movie that covers a half-dozen superheros working together, it's hard to give that sort of thing the screen time it deserves, when you have to crunch it down to 2.5 hours or so. I enjoyed the movie considerably, including the scenes after the credits.. like all marvel movies gives a hint of what is to come next.

There's other ensemble superhero movies out there, however. Avengers is only unique in that each member of, say, X-Men was not given their own film prior to the ensemble films - and while that saves having to do six superhero origins, both Incredibles and X-Men sidestep that as well (in the former case, they aren't that important; in the latter, "born this way" works for nearly all of them.) Both films have a stronger sense of theme than Avengers does, and I believe that this hurts The Avengers.

Moreover, those movies had villains with more identifiable goals than Avengers does. Magneto lived through one Holocaust and is convinced that another one's coming; Syndrome wants to cheat his way to the public admiration that Mr. Incredible earned. Loki gets a lot of screen time and we know exactly what he's after (maybe too much, considering this is LOKI) but what we know about the Chitari barely fills up a sentence, and they're the ones the Avengers are kicking the high holy snot out of for forty straight minutes. Even if their motivation is just "conquest," at the least we could be informed of some detail that sets them apart. Maybe they're a monoculture and they've rolled as a united front over all divided opposition; the Avengers, initially at cross-purposes, come together and prove that there are many kinds of hero and that differences are not a weakness. Then it'd be monoculture versus multiculturalism, which would be a just-fine metaphor to hang the movie on.

I liked the movie just fine, but it's not perfect.

However, one thing I forgot to mention is this: it was a really nice touch that

Loki presumes he's going to be tortured, and when Nick Fury seemed to not rule it out I squirmed in my seat a bit. But when Widow confronts Loki, she gets the information she's after without laying a hand on him, tricking him into giving up what he doesn't intend. This is A) how effective military interrogation works in the real world, and

B) too often neglected in action movies for a scene where the hero punches the villain until he cracks under torture. This is one element of realism I'm glad to see added to what is essentially a fantasy film.

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I'm with Mike. I loved the movie. I thought it was absolutely fantastic. When I mentioned flaws, I did not mean ultra nerd Avengers comic continuity deviation type flaws. I meant, you know, movie flaws. In fact, one of the most egregious almost certainly occured because they tried to adhere too close to canon:

The 'Hulk goes crazy in the ship' part really seemed nonsensical to me, until later I recalled that this is the first thing Loki does in the book. He fools the Hulk into goin' apeshit on the rest of the Avengers. Well, ok, now it makes perfect sense. Except, see, I knew that. And it still didn't make much sense to me in terms of the story when watching the movie. So, maybe a bit shoehorned.

But that's real nit-picky to me, and since my overall impression was very, very favorable, I figure why go out of my way to jump all over a damn good movie.

Looking that much more forward to Amazing and Rises.

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I've read somewhere and please don't ask for the source, I don't have it, sorry. But anyway - I read somewhere that 9 more Avengers like movies are planned. At least Mark Ruffalo (or whatshisnameagain) signed for 9 more movies in which he'll play the Hulk. Didn't mention if they were full features or just "guest" appearances. Probably we'll get to see more fleshed out background concerning the Chitari and such. I'm not that much of an Marvel/Avengers nerd but I'd still be excited to see anything on the screen which would continue the story. I loved the movie - especially my favourite quote "Puny God"... hrhr...

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Nine?! Hahahaha...damn. Well, uh, best of luck to them. I sincerely doubt anyone, however talented, can keep a franchise going for nine movies and maintain consistent quality. No matter how well said franchise kicks off.

But hey, I can't accuse them of lacking ambition. :)

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They sign the actors to multi-picture deals. That doesn't mean they are actually going to make that many movies. I think studios require most actors to sign deals like that so they can do whatever they want with the character, and in some regards the actor.

Fox signed Jennifer Lawrence to a multi-picture deal to play mystique. Because they signed her before she signed onto play in The Hunger Games Fox can get first dibs on her schedule. I read a couple months ago how Fox agreed to adjust their shooting schedule, but that they had the right to force her to do their picture.

Marvel can use Hulk in any movie they want going forward and Mark Ruffalo will have to go along. I don't think that he'll be in 8 more Avengers or even 8 total movies. These things take a couple of years to be made and I don't think the studio will still be interested in the same actor 20 years from now.

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I'm not sure if I am happy or upset that these movies cost so much that they can't take a chance on "crossovers." There is a small chance with some bizarre team up for :popcorn: but most likely :punchballs: .

If nothing goes wrong today I'll finally get to see Avengers tonight.

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As far as I know, the only one that was signed on for a nine-picture deal to play one character was Samuel L. Jackson, to play Nick Fury, and that was after his cameo in Iron Man 1. And he's already done about half his deal (Iron Man 2, Thor, Captain America, and The Avengers).

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Have to admit, things are going to be good if that trailer is any honest indication. "Never trust the trailer" may be an established trope, but perhaps it will not apply in this case...?

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