I actually saw The Avengers (or The Avengers Assemble in the UK) last week. I have only just calmed down enough to write about it. It is awesome and you should go and see it.
End of review.
Ok, here’s the plot. Loki, the Norse trickster god strikes a deal with some aliens who promise to provide him an army. He then steals a blue cube of power thingy that can open a gateway between Earth and where the aforementioned aliens hang out doing whatever they do when they aren’t invading Earth. They then invade Earth. The only people that have a chance of stopping this dastardly plan are The Avengers – a group of superheroes reluctantly brought together by Nick Fury and S.H.I.E.L.D. Things then kick off if a spectacular fashion.
The story is good and pretty much fills its function as a vehicle to get things going. The plot never lags, is well paced and manages to explain what’s going on while allowing for plenty of set pieces where powerful characters bash the shit of things and each other.
The main concern held by myself (and others) was how The Avengers was going to balance its cast of larger-than-life, naturally-attention-grabbing characters. It seemed like a hefty task to be able to bring them all together without a few just feeling chucked in and having no real purpose except background filler. This doesn’t happen at all. Whedon makes each one of the superheroes feel pretty essential to the plot and they all seem to get plenty of airtime and character development. It is hard to tell which character is the coolest as they all come across as being pretty damn brilliant. Even Captain America, whom I had hated as a kid.
Where The Avengers really shines though, is in the action sequences. At first they don’t exactly get on and there are awe inspiring fights between Iron Man/Thor/Hulk/Captain America and so on. You really get to see what makes each individual so powerful and they really belt the shit out of each other. Then there are the main battle sequences which are even more impressive. Spectacular leaps to mind. Especially in 3D. Each character shines as they team up or have solo battles. The action is superb and made superber by the 3D and by the end you genuinely feel that what you have just seen is probably the superbest superhero fight sequence ever. Just imagine going ‘Holy Fuck that’s awesome!’ for about an hour and you are close.
All of the films leading up to this one were pretty good. Not a dud among them. The Avengers is the best of the lot. Even unfriendly Londoners were clapping and cheering and that hardly ever happens in the cinema here. I was excited when I first saw it and I am excited just thinking about seeing it again. In a 3D cinema. In London. That kind of expense tells you all you need to know. Go and see The Avengers and see it in 3D.