Everybody walks into a movie theater with expectations, whether they are high, low or you’re expecting nothing, everybody has some sort of idea as to how the movie is going to make them feel. It took everything in my power not to let my expectations for The Avengers to run out of control but as it turns out it wouldn’t have mattered because the film exceeded the wildest expectations I could muster. A nonstop action film seasoned with the perfect amount of humor, The Avengers was everything I expected and more.
Preparations for this film have been in the works for years now as films that can technically be classified as prequels to The Avengers started their release with the first Iron Man in 2008. In The Avengers, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) is finally able to get his Avenger’s Initiative off the ground, pulling together the world’s greatest super heroes to for a world defending team. The ground includes Ironman (Robert Downey Jr.), Thor (Chris Hemsworth) The Incredible Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and of course Captain America (Chris Evans). The group is brought together on their first mission to thwart the thought lost Thor villain Loki’s (Tom Hiddleston) attempt to summon an alien army to Earth. While it took the ego-heavy group of super heroes a while to stop bickering and fighting amongst themselves, watching them single handedly take out an army could already be the best action sequence of the summer.
I had many fears walking into The Avengers, some that I shared with my readers prior to the movie and some that I kept to myself. The fear I was most vocal about was how the third version of the Hulk was going to turn out. Super hero fans have already seen the Eric Bana Hulk debacle, we have seen Edward Norton step up to make a perfect (in my opinion of course) Bruce Banner and then were complete dismayed when he backed out of The Avengers, leaving Mark Ruffalo to take his place. I was nervous about this casting because, when all is said and done, I am not the biggest Mark Ruffalo fan. No matter what I feel about Mark Ruffalo as an actor, he did a great job as Bruce Banner. Nerdy, nervous, quiet and angry all at the same time, Mark Ruffalo’s take on the radiation riddled scientist was in the same vein as Norton’s. Instead of a man that didn’t understand what was happening to him, like Bana played Banner, Ruffalo played the character how he should be played, a brilliant scientist trying to control and understand the beast inside of him.
The other aspect of the film that had worried me was how I was going to believe that Chris Evans could lead such big name actors as Mark Ruffalo, Robert Downey Jr. and Chris Hemsworth. Of the actors that play the Avenger’s characters, Evans is the one I would have chosen last as the leader. A simple combination of writing and acting fixed my issue before it became a problem. Steve Rogers, AKA Captain America, is a man who was frozen and traveled through time. Modern references and our modern, less than moral social attitude are completely foreign to Rogers. His inability to adhere to the cynical standard that modern society and his fellow heroes, Bruce Banner and Tony Stark in particular, have attained naturally makes Steve Rogers the wholesome, moral compass of the group. While the group of heroes end up working very well together as a group, Captain America becomes the leader simply by keeping the group on task an pointing them in the right direction.
As I watched Thor’s cloud of lightning along with Ironman’s full out attack clear the sky of alien ships while Captain America pummeled a small army of foot soldiers and the Hulk decimate a creature fifty times his size, I realized I cannot put into words how much I truly enjoyed this movie. It’s not going to win awards for its acting but it is certainly one of the best actions films I have seen in a long time. Superhero fans HAVE to see this in theaters or you are going to regret it. I’ve always thought that The Avengers comics were an obvious idea for a movie and have been craving this film for a long time. Instead of watching a movie that focuses on one hero, The Avengers our favorite, established characters to create two and a half hours of absolutely epic action sequences. The humor is very reminiscent of the Ironman franchise in that it is dry, sarcastic and placed perfectly throughout the film. While some superhero films tend to let their humor make the dialogue stale and corny, The Avengers uses humor to break up tension, expand characters and even propel the story forward. I give this film a 9 out of 10 and once again urge you to go see it in theaters.