Greetings! My name is Steve-O. You can just call me Steve-O. Most people do. I am probably one of the biggest Star Wars nerds you could find when it comes to knowing about the lore and characters of that universe. I am unique in that I am one of the fans who brazenly claims to love the Prequels and Special Editions no matter what kind of ire that gets me from the so called ‘purists’.
My other interests include the following universes: Marvel characters, DC characters, Firefly, Mass Effect, Assassin’s Creed, Battlestar Galactica, Tomb Raider, Game of Thrones, Star Wars the Clone Wars, Vikings, Arrow, Flash, Agents of SHIELD, Supernatural, Transformers, Terminator, TMNT, The Bourne series, Elder Scrolls, Dragon Age, Kingdoms of Amalur, World of Warcraft, Star Wars the Old Republic, Guild Wars 2, The Matrix, and so on and so forth.
And now onto my very first review since its only been out a week and I see no one else has gotten to it on the website: Avengers Age of Ultron FULL SPOILER WARNING IF YOU HAVE NOT SEEN THE MOVIE STOP READING NOW
Joss Whedon’s Sophomore outing is a celebration of the achievement the MCU movies have been pushing forward since the universe’s inception since Iron Man in 2008. You can tell the love and care that went into this movie and even though as the internet is apparently saying that Joss Whedon didn’t exactly get what he want, he still accomplished an excellent second Avengers movie, while a few minor issues were noticed by me who is usually pretty biased when it comes to my favorite movie universes, all in all the film works better then the first one days in this reviewers opinion. Ultron (voiced by James Spader) is a fantastic addition to the slew of Avengers villains. Created by Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) within the film, with the help of Bruce Banner/HULK (Mark Ruffalo), Ultron comes onto the stage with all the right amount of bile and hatred for the human race most megalomaniacs have when wanting to destroy the worlds population.
The difference being that Ultron is actually somewhat convincing in his pragmatic and endearing approach on how to achieve that goal. Like Loki, he has an undeniable conviction and while his actions are unfathomably horrendous (For a Pg-13 movie anyway) you can’t help but see why he is doing what he is doing.
A highlight in this movie is the character of Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and the introduction of his family, you get insight to the character that you usually only get in the big solo outings of the three main central characters of Thor, Iron Man, and Captain America. The fact that he has a wife and children and still does what he does makes him far more interesting then the treatment he got in the first Avengers film. It was a refreshing set of scenes when the Avengers get to the farm he and his family live on and I liked getting to know him since we got to know the others already in stand alone films.
The second highlight is the surprising romance between Natasha Romanoff/Black Widow (Scarlett Johansen) and Bruce Banner/Hulk. A lot of people disagree with me but I thought it worked quite pleasantly and any feminist point of view that it made her look ‘weak’ because the Hulk was like her ‘big masculine protector’ apparently didn’t notice all the kick ass things Black Widow does in the film to hold her own.
Thor, Cap, Iron Man, and Hulk obviously all get their screen time. Tony’s personal journey into why he creates Ultron in the first place is interesting as he is still plagued with thoughts of failure and still has slight PTSD from the alien invasion of the first Avengers film that we saw play out in Iron Man 3 as well. Captain America is more established as the de facto leader of the Avengers and seems to be still keeping in the back of his mind that he wants to find Bucky someday but one thing at a time as saving the world obviously comes first. I like they continue the trend of his parkour-like fighting style they showed in Winter Soldier and the butting heads with Stark over Ultron and the other mistakes Tony makes in the movie is a good segue and foreshadowing into Captain America Civil War where the two will be going head to head in similar fashion over the facet of ‘Enhanced super human registration’ if the movie follows the same reasoning as the comics.
Thor’s personal journey into discovering that Loki’s Scepter in and of itself housed yet another Infinity Stone was awesome because that means in the first Avengers that was why Black Widow was able to cancel out the Tesseract moreso then the fact the scepter was a part of the Tesseracts power when in reality the Scepter itself was merely another infinity stone. His visions of seeing Heimdall accusing him when Scarlet Witch messed with our heroes heads were the most trippy and weird. Even so I heard a lot of Thor’s story was cut out due to timing constraints and studio hooplah so I hope the rumored directors cut adds more to it.
New Characters Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) are welcome editions. Quicksilver is a lot more refined and better well written then the Days of Future Past quicksilver and does a lot of awesome stuff, unfortunately like Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) in the first film, Quicksilver was the ‘Whedon-Sacrifice’ character for the film. However as we know from Coulson in the Agents of SHIELD show, MCU characters don’t necessarily always stay dead. Scarlet Witch is probably my favorite of the two as another well written strong female character similar to Scarlet Widow who over comes her fears at the end to help the Avengers when the two of them realize that Ultron wants destruction, not control and join up when the realization that they were on the wrong side hits. Her powers are the most interesting of the two able to screw with the minds of our team early on making each one see visions of failure and causing self doubt as I said hitting Tony the most in the first scene of the destruction of the Hydra base causing the lead in to Ultrons creation and then hitting the rest of our team later when they went to the arms dealer and Ultron showed up with Quicksilver and Scarlet herself.
And now to the best part of the film for me: Vision. Paul Bettany finally gets his time in the spot light after playing Tony’s trusty Jarvis artificial intelligence in all three Iron Man movies and the first Avengers. Ultron tries to create himself a more flesh and blood robotic body so he can stop using his Vibranium one he creates earlier in the film. However, thanks to Thor’s journey and the Avengers getting to the ‘Cradle’ technology that Ultron is using and Tony’s idea to upload Jarvis into the new body. On top of that,Thor’s timely interruption before the body is destroyed…Vision is created with the voice of Jarvis becoming a new being powered by the Infinity Stone that was inside Loki’s scepter. Bettany plays Vision with the innocence and power of a new being that you’d expect. In fact the best lines he has are after the Avengers stop Ultron from sending a very large city-asteroid (to which SHIELD thankfully shows up in the form of Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) and a Helicarrier with Agent Hill (Cobie Smulders) beside him to save the population), into the Earth. When Ultron is beat up and wrecked Vision shows up before him and they talk about how these people need to be killed or saved and Ultron says, “You are unbearingly naive.” and Vision responds with, “Well I was born yesterday,” and then destroys Ultron for good.
Nick Fury and Agent Hill got their time in the sun as well thanks to the as mention Helicarrier scene. and Andy Serkis is interesting as the weapons dealer Ulysses Klaue during the scene where the Avengers go to try to stop Ultron from getting Vibranium. Also we got to she Rhodey/War Machine (Don Cheadle) Light up the sky as War Machine and help the Avengers out along with scenes of Sam/Falcon (Anthony Mackie) at a party and at the end with full wings when Captain is assembling a new Avengers team.
Now to the complaints: The cut Thor scenes bother me a bit because there was obviously more to his discovery that the Scepter was actually an Infinity Stone. So based on a score out of then I take a point off for that, that wasn’t Whedon’s fault that was more Disney/Marvel studios fault according to Whedon himself.
Not enough screen time FOR War Machine or Falcon, I assume they will be getting more in Civil War since with the cast for that movie is basically Avengers 2.5. Both these characters are great as the only African American team members in a team full of white people and it was great to see them in the movie (thank God that Rhodey wasn’t in that Iron Patriot suit) but they could have done a bit more with them. At least War Machine got to -fight-.
Could have use more Vision but I understand this movie was basically a set up for his creation and birth but he is still my favorite aspect of the film. I only tale .2 point off for that as its a minor thing and can’t really be helped due to story progression.
Acting is great all around. Music is great. Sound effects great.The CGI scenes look fantastic and realistic. No complaints there.
Over all Score is 8.8 out of 10. I call that a great movie.
And that’s it for my introduction and first review. I hope you enjoy my articles in the future here at Nerdrahtio.