Bringing you honest reviews of recent releases
When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and it is up to the Avengers to stop the villainous Ultron from enacting his terrible plans.
Robert Downey Jr. – Tony Stark / Iron Man
Scarlett Johansson – Natasha Romanoff / Black Widow
Chris Hemsworth – Thor
Elizabeth Olsen – Wanda Maximoff / Scarlet Witch
Mark Ruffalo – Bruce Banner / Hulk
Jeremy Renner – Clint Barton / Hawkeye
Chris Evans – Steve Rogers / Captain America
Aaron Taylor-Johnson – Pietro Maximoff / Quicksilver
Paul Bettany – J.A.R.V.I.S. / Vision
James Spader – Ultron
What I found to be the cheesiest element of Avengers: Age of Ultron were the random gags various characters threw around during very serious scenes. This movie flowed like the action flick it should, but at certain points slowed down to throw the odd (not very funny) one-liner at the audience. Thor seemed to be the main joker, turning to face a character with his naturally masculine stance, and suddenly spouting a tacky line which shattered his presence on screen and came across as tacky. This movie is either action or comedy, it can’t be both – the element of comedy just doesn’t quite fit anywhere. I actually found myself cringing whenever one of the Avengers strutted across the set and delivered a wisecrack which ultimately ruined the atmosphere (Thor being the main culprit). I think the issue was the script / plot contained no opportunities for natural humour to flow, therefore any gag seemed forced and irrelevant.
Ok, so it’s obvious the main enemy will lose and the Avengers will win – you can tell this just by looking at the poster, you don’t even have to watch the movie. But god, it was hideously predictable throughout Avengers: Age of Ultron who exactly would rise and who would fall. I mean, we can’t have the enemy defeat the good guys can we? In any movie?
The second Ultron was introduced I knew he would cause havoc on the lands, cause one or two shocking explosions, but ultimately meet his end when up against the group of strong-willed heroes.
And although a massive threat to the entire human race (and the Avengers themselves), Ultron was one of the most tame enemies I’ve ever seen in an action movie. So his voice was loud and booming, but other than this the metallic monster didn’t actually wow me in any way. I was sat watching this baddie as though he was any other cast member, delivering his dialogue on screen in a style no different to one of the supporting cast. Bringing in James Spader to complement the cast was a nice touch from the producers though; the old guy is still going strong and voices Ultron nicely. Yes I found him tame, but equally James puts great energy into his performance. I’m half and half on this element.
Brace yourselves for any fight scene during this movie; the action happens quite fast and is constant.
The opening scene confused me a little (am I getting old?) where Natasha and Clint (anyone noticed how the Avengers fail to go by their ‘hero’ names and refer to each other by their christian names?) are caught up in a high-speed chase whilst raiding a Hydra outpost. I sat staring at the brightly-lit screen with my eyes wide, trying to keep up with what was happening to who. And to be honest, I gave up and let the action wash over me. Later on in the movie, more (obviously) speedy action scenes unfold – some of which were dizzying. Explosions, vehicles flying through the air, fast violence, jumping, flying, jumping and flying.. and of course, the classic (irrelevant and unknown) cluster of people trapped in a vehicle of some kind who are swiftly rescued by one of the Avengers mid-fight. The action seemed to unfold full throttle, throwing as much punch at the audience as possible – so if you enjoy sci-fi action played out at high speed, you’ll no doubt enjoy Avengers: Age of Ultron.
If there’s one thing the Avengers are good at it’s being messy.
The previous movie saw half of New York City reduced to ruin, with upturned vehicles, bodies and debris scattered everywhere. The same happens in this installment – shit all over the place. And I’m not sure I liked it. Heroes and enemies whizzing round the screen fast enough to make me feel slightly nauseous mixed with a messy set weren’t overly appealing. I am fully aware this is an action movie, but the characters make too much mess. It’s tedious. I’ve seen other movies containing just as much action that manage to keep a lid on the rubbish – the Avengers however seem to like blowing up cinema screens with a ton of as much shit as they can find.
So Henry Hoovers at the ready guys, there’s a lot of cleaning up to do once the movie is over.
Elizabeth Olsen stars as Wanda (Scarlet Witch), a young Russian lady who holds some incredible powers. Two of which are telekenisis and hypnosis. She allies with Ultron to help cause havoc but as circumstances develop, so do her intentions, and the woman begins to venture down a path of her own..
Elizabeth Olsen really has come a long way hasn’t she. Whenever the actress was on screen during this movie, I was captivated by her presence. Her diverse looks help by adding to her acting talents – she’s kind of funny looking, but manages to maintain a strong performance. As Wanda she uses great lingering wide-eyed facial expressions which add to the overall entertainment nicely. I enjoy Elizabeth’s overall individuality; she can act, has a different look / image to most Hollywood stars, but above all has come a long way since her early career (small parts in The Adventures of Mary-Kate and Ashley, etc.) The first main feature I saw of hers was Silent House (2011) which I must say, I thoroughly enjoyed due to her gritty performance and the fact it was filmed in real time. As soon as I recognised her I wondered what she’d go on to next. And it turns out she’s doing rather well for herself.
Avengers: Age of Ultron includes one or two revelations – of the family kind. When our heroic gang take a short break from defending the earth against Ultron, one of them decides to pay his spouse a visit. And it is revealed this Avenger also has two small children.
..that’s all you’re getting.
I thought I’d pop this teaser in to spice things up a bit, but don’t nip to the toilet during this part of the movie or you’ll miss the surprising revelation I’m talking about.
Avengers: Age of Ultron was full of action, but nowhere near as good as the first movie. Where Marvels Avengers Assembled contained the bustling excitement of our handful of heroes saving the world whilst dealing with personal issues, this installment ended up being quite dull and boring. None of the spirit or colour from the first one was carried over, resulting in a tired display from a number of the actors. Maybe I shouldn’t be comparing the first to the second, but this movie was literally as though the cast sighed, “do we have to?” before the cameras fired up. Add to this that the main enemy was as effective as a Christmas tree on January 3rd, you have a production that I honestly wouldn’t mind if I never saw again.
Scarlett, Jeremy and Elisabeth put in a great performance and grace the atmosphere with the brave, slick attitude it needs, but otherwise the rest of the cast take a firm back seat as it rolls along. By the end, I felt as carefree as Tony Stark himself; how the sloppy bugger shrugs off (quite literally) everything in his life – this is the reaction I had to the movie. I couldn’t give less of a shit about any part of it. Sad but true.
Dull, messy, tame.