Directed by: Joss Whedon
Release Date: May 4, 2012 (Wide)
Rating: 9.75 out of 10
Review by: George Beremov
Sorry Nolan fans, but Marvel’s long-anticipated superhero gathering, “The Avengers” easily outshines pretty much every other entry into the hugely popular genre, and that includes the amazing “Dark Knight”. Yes, it’s that good.
In “The Avengers”, Nick Fury director of an international peace keeping agency called S.H.I.E.L.D, brings together a team of humans with extraordinary powers, including Iron Man, Captain America, Hulk, Thor, Black Widow and Hawkeye, to form The Avengers and help save the Earth from the villain Loki and his fearsome army.
The effectiveness of the otherwise familiar story lies in the ideal balance of its script. Not only the screenplay is smart, humorous and wonderfully-written, but it respects its many characters and allows them to develop equally and shine on their own. The pacing is quite brisk, yet slow when needed, but the movie never loses its steam and remains engrossing from start to finish.
Technically, “The Avengers” delivers and then some. Whedon’s direction is so stylish, diverse and accomplished, it’s hard to belive that this is only his second feature film. Some of the scenes seem impossible to shoot, but at the same time feel effortlessly-executed. Action-wise, the movie has so many highlights it’s hard to mention just one. The fight between Thor and Iron Man, featured in the first half of the movie, is nothing short of spectacular, and the action scene that includes Hulk’s first transformation remains as one of the most memorable. Also, there’s one particular sequence during the final battle, where the camera ‘jumps’ over from one Avengers member to the next, showing them kicking asses with style, that is so exciting and brilliantly-shot, it will literally blow you away. The rest of the action is first-rate as well, and the CGIs are astoundingly polished and pretty much flawless, apart from the 3D, which is quite good, considering it’s a post-conversion, but at the same time rather unnecessary.
The cast is superb in their roles. Samuel L. Jackson can do no wrong, and he gives yet another strong performance as Nick Fury, despite his limited screen time. Chris Evans does a far better job as CaptainAmericathan he did in Marvel’s last year blockbuster of the same name, adding an edge and roughness to his character. Australian hunk Chris Hemsworth makes up for the late appearance of Thor with a strong screen presence and solid acting. Mark Ruffalo plays ‘the incredible’ Hulk for the very first time, and yet he nails the performance and does justice to his character. Scarlett Johansson is great as the sensual yet dangerous Black Widow, and the future Jason Bourne, Jeremy Renner, also delivers as Hawkeye. However, Robert Downey Jr. as Iron Man is the one that steals the entire show, thanks to his genuine wit and undeniable charisma. Tom Hiddleston didn’t leave a big impression in 2010’s “Thor”, but here, he turns in an unbelievably strong performance as the malicious villain, Loki.
Bottom line: Clever, amusing, perfectly-balanced, skillfully-shot and jaw-droppingly action-packed, “The Avengers” is the ultimate dream come true for every single fan of the genre, and arguably the best and most spectacularly entertaining superhero movie ever made.