It’s no easy task making one of the most arguably buzzed about and anticipated films in franchise history. It would be a major undertaking doing even half of what The Avengers does. We have six main characters that need to be fleshed out and have their stories told, a villain that actually has to represent an apocalyptic threat in both action and tone, and millions of fanboys and fangirls eagerly awaiting to see if it can be pulled off. Fortunately for the viewer, it’s pulled off just enough.
The Avengers does very well in assembling all six characters. Their stories are told in equal measure, where each and every one of them get to shine at one point or another. It’s what we’ll call the “reciprocal” approach to filmmaking when it comes to ensemble casts. It’s only fair that if everyone gives their time to the role, the role should naturally give back. It’s rarely seen in ensemble action films, but here it’s done wonderfully.
In particular, Scarlet Johansson as Black Widow and Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye. Let’s not forget, these are the only two who haven’t had their own movies, so it was only fitting they shined, surprisingly, just a little brighter than the rest. Every single actor finally feels like they are working, which hasn’t really been the case since the original Iron Man.
The phrase “one of the best superhero movies of all time” is being thrown around. I can’t nearly go that far, as the film seems a little cluttered in direction at times. Where the cast is stellar in their respective roles with what they are given, Joss Whedon (director) makes a few strange choices throughout the film. There are countless minor moments here that left me scratching my head. Iron Man was just in one area, then suddenly appears out of nowhere somewhere completely different. The same thing can be said with Thor and numerous action sequences that just don’t quite add up. Where is Loki getting these bad guys from? It feels like many transition shots were left on the cutting room floor for time. Granted, it’s a minor setback. It’s still glaring to the overly critical.
The Avengers falls somewhere between The Dark Knight and the Transformers franchise. It’s not nearly as good as the previous, but not even close to being as stupidly done as the latter. All things considered, The Avengers is a total blast from start to finish, with a completely fine attempt at a story and some much needed character development throughout. If only the writers would learn to get rid of the cheesy dialogue during battle sequences, this could have been even better.