Walt Disney Studios Films
Don't get me wrong, people, I really enjoyed The Avengers; I rather quite liked it. Granted, not as much Iron Man or Captain America, but equally as much if not more so than Thor, and definitely much more than Iron Man 2 and The Incredible Hulk.
But in the wake of the tidal wave of gush for Joss Whedon's superhero blockbuster based on the Marvel comic books, I've decided rather than write another positive review for the film, I'd stem some of that gush -– let some air out of the tyres, so to speak –- by countering with some of the quibbles I had with The Avengers.
Warning: this post does contain spoilers, so if you have yet to see The Avengers, particularly my North American readers, then I'd suggest you read no further.
Subtitles required: No, not in the scenes where Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) is being tortured by Russian weapons dealers but in the film's opening sequence. I couldn't understand a word the bad guys – Chitauri? Loki? Bane? – were saying. Auto-tuned much?
Speaking of Black Widow, her two major fight scenes -- the first with the Russians, the second with Hawkeye -- are edited in such a way that you really don't see what's happening. Not quite Bourne-style editing but frustrating just the same.
The set-up takes far too long. Granted Whedon has to establish all four characters but given that each has had their own film (or two), there's no need to spend that much time on it. And if you haven't seen the preceding Marvel films, why would you want to see The Avengers?
Captain America: I really enjoyed the 2011 film and the character of Captain America, but he seemed to be a bit of a soft cock in this film. Maybe that's what 70 years on ice (literally, not the drug) will do to you. And his line that there is 'only one god' seriously rubbed me the wrong way.
The Hulk's invincible now? Unless I missed something in the previous attempts at a Hulk film, I wasn't aware that the giant green guy with anger management issues couldn't be killed. So if that nuclear missile took out Manhattan, Hulk would be the only thing left standing? (P.S. I loved the Hulk in The Avengers; he gets the film's two best and biggest laughs.)
The Chitauri: when the alien race invades Earth (well, Manhattan) in the film's battle-packed final third, the action is somewhat undermined by the Chitauri bearing a striking resemblance to Spider-man villain, the Green Goblin, or, to be even meaner, the rubbery monsters from TV's Power Rangers.
Um, guys, why not just kill Loki? Too easy? Ruins Marvel's plans for Thor 2? I'm pretty sure Asgard has not signed the Geneva Convention with regards to the treatment of prisoners so there's no reason why the Avengers couldn't just kill the demi-god psychopath. Nothing personal, Mr. Hiddleston.
Like I said, these are minor quibbles and more to keep the gushing in check. I'd highly recommend you see The Avengers on the big screen (though not in 3D, there's no need despite the very good post-conversion), and not just if you're a Marvel fan.
It's smart, fun, blockbuster filmmaking which unlike, say, the recent Battleship, doesn't insult or assault you in the name of entertainment.