Sunday, 22 April 2012

Review: Avengers Assemble


Possibly one of the most highly anticipated film of the year, I was lucky enough last week to attend a multimedia screening of Avengers Assemble, eager to see what all the fuss was about.

Not being a fan of, or had even watched, any of the films which lead up to this, I had expected to be thrown into a two and a half hour long comic book fest, filled with jokes I didn't get, and plot lines I couldn't make sense of.

Luckily for me, only one of the two was true.

The story kicks off with Loki (the one with the horns) making his way into SHEILD, a government agency, via the Tesserac, a blue shiny thing that holds the potential to take control of the world and also acts as a passage way from another dimension into this. In response to Loki's relocation to Earth with the intention of killing us all, as well as hijacking some faces which will be familiar to Marvel fans, Nick Fury gathers Iron Man, Thor, the Incredible Hulk, Black Widow, Hawkeye and Captain America to sort him out.

Pause for Laughter

One of the elements which made this film so watchable were the frequent breaks for laughter which continued throughout, a product of the double layer of battles, not just the age old battle of good and evil, the Avengers vs. Loki, but the bickering and bantering which goes on between the re-imagined superheroes themselves, separates this film from "just another superhero flick".

A numerous points during the film do we pause for Tony Stark to wise crack his counterparts, or for the self awareness of Agent Coulson's fan-boy to come across and create some subtle, ironic humour. The result is that the two hour geek-athon is noticeably missing those dragging moments films of this scale and length tend to have. A statement which we'll have to wait to see whether the other two blockbuster superhero films to be released this year, The Amazing Spiderman, and The Dark Knight Rises, will be able to match.

Another unique element of this film is the role that the female character, Black Widow as played by ScarJo, plays in the narrative. From the outset Black Widow proves herself to be intelligent, physically strong and persuasive. At no point during the film is there reference to her physical appearance, nor is there an inkling of a romantic relationship between herself or any of the other male characters. Even when she needs to extract information from Loki, it isn’t through her physicality that she achieves this, but through her dialogue. And how many other female leads in blockbuster films can the same be said for?


Overall I’d say this film is well worth a watch even if you’re not a comic book fan, or are even familiar with the franchise which surrounds this film. Whilst I’m sure knowing about all the ins and outs of the characters back stories would help you in really getting 100% out of the experience, as well as appreciating the real comedy behind the quips, it stands its ground without and the clever script, special effects and cinematography of the climactic battle all impress.

I give this film 4 stars.

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