Blog #114: Movie Review: The Avengers

After 49 years of comic books, The Avengers, possibly the most anticipated movie ever, premiered, shattering the opening weekend record at the box office.  The previous record, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, Part 2’s 169 million opening weekend was smashed in a way that would have even impressed the Hulk.  The Avengers took in 207+ million in just three days, becoming the fastest movie to ever reach 200 million domestically, and that’s doesn’t even take into account the opening weekend records it broke in Argentina, Bolivia, Brazil, Central America, Ecuador, Hong Kong, Malaysia, Mexico, New Zealand, Peru, Philippines, and United Arab Emirates.  The Avengers has topped 700 million in just thirteen days of worldwide release.

This was one of the greatest movies I’ve ever seen.  It was perfect.  I honestly can’t think of any way they could have made it better.  Each character’s reactions to their situations, to each other, to Loki, to everything were spot on perfect.  Joss Whedon is a genius.

That’s about all I have without spoilers, but one word of warning.  If you are seeing The Avengers in 3D and you wear eyeglasses, some theaters have special Iron Man 3-D glasses that do not fit over eyeglasses very well.  I had this problem the first time I saw the movie, and had to improvise.  Just ask for a regular pair, I’m sure they’ll have them.

I would love to comment on every single scene in this movie, but I’m going to end up leaving a lot out since it’s really hard to take notes on my phone when you are being bombarded with a continuous string of awesome that would make the Lord of Awesome himself, Michael Bay, stand up and cheer.  I kept wishing I could pause the movie, but I guess I’ll have to wait for the DVD for that.

Spoilers ahead.

As I’ve said in reviews before, the quotes may not be exact.

We start off with Loki.  He’s being given a staff that uses power similar to the tesseract and an army, the Chitauri.  At this point, we don’t know exactly who it is who Loki is really working with, but it’s clear the Chitauri are just pawns.

“We have no quarrel with your people.” – Nick Fury
“An ant has no quarrel with a boot.” – Loki

We transition to Earth where Nick Fury is having Agent Coulson and Maria Hill evacuate an energy research complex, specifically making sure they evacuate all “phase 2” tech.  Once we get to the tesseract lab, we find Dr. Selvig working on the cube, which seems to be malfunctioning.  Hawkeye, agent Clint Barton, is there.  He is only called “The Hawk” once in the movie, and that’s by Dr. Selvig.  It’s Barton, who makes the observation that if everything is fine on their end, the problem must be on the other end.  The tesseract is a door it could be opened from both sides.  Right on cue, Loki shows up.  A short battle ensues and Loki steals the tesseract, but not before taking control of Barton, Selvig, and several agents by touching his staff to their chest.

As Loki flees, Fury pursues him by helicopter, leaping from it before it can crash and getting up without a scratch, as the entire facility is destroyed by the energy of the tesseract, leaving an enormous crater.

What a great opening act!  It sets up the story perfectly without drawing it out.  This leaves so much more time for scenes with the more important characters.

When the Avengers logo comes up it’s more of a generic blocky text rather than the classic style Avengers logo that has been used in the promos.

We find Black Widow held captive and being interviewed by several Russians.  One of their phones rings and it’s Agent Coulson to tell Black Widow that Barton has been compromised.  She proceeds to beat the crap out of the three Russians and heads off to find “the big guy.”  She assumes he means Stark, but he doesn’t.  She’s going after Hulk, though they don’t use his name until later in the movie, always referring to hi as the big guy or the other guy.  If anyone hasn’t seen Iron Man 2, this scene leaves little question that Black Widow is a major badass.  She also speaks Russian, something I don’t think she did in Iron Man 2.  Clearly she doesn’t have a Russian accent, but it’s nice to know she can at least speak it.

Another interesting thing from this scene is that Black Widow says that Stark doesn’t trust her.  I didn’t really get that from Iron Man 2.  If he really doesn’t trust her, I would have liked a scene with the two of them to go into that, but it’s a minor thing.

“What if the other guy says no?” – Bruce Banner

We move to Calcutta where Black Widow confronts Bruce Banner and tells him to come in because Fury needs his expertise in gamma radiation.  This is a very interesting scene.  As badass as Black Widow is, there is little question that she is afraid of the Hulk.  There is a moment when Banner yells at her, and you think the Hulk is coming, but he doesn’t.  It’s interesting that he can seem to be so angry and nothing happens.  That’s explained later.

Next we see the Council with Nick Fury.  Clearly they aren’t on the same page in regards to their plans.  Fury is going ahead with the Avengers Initiative even though the Council is less than enthusiastic.

“At this point I doubt anything could surprise me.” – Captain America
“Ten bucks says you’re wrong.” – Nick Fury

Fury goes to see Steve Rogers.  This is an extended version of the scene shown in the gym at the end of Captain America: The First Avenger.  There is a very funny moment when Steve knocks the punching bag down, then goes over to a row of them on the floor and picks up another.  While he’s punching on the bag we see some flashbacks of his story so far.  Fury shows up and tells him about the tesseract. 

“You have reached the life model decoy of Tony Stark.  Please leave a message.” – Tony Stark

The scene shifts to New York, where Iron Man is disconnecting Stark Tower from the electric grid and making it self sufficient with it’s own ARC reactor.  As he arrives back to the building they have an awesome effects sequence where Iron Man lands on a walkway to the pent house, and as he walks inside of the building, his armor is removed by machinery without him missing a step.  It’s awesome, and far smoother than his removing of the armor in the previous films.

Inside we find Pepper.  I really love this scene with Tony being his usual self and Pepper being much more relaxed than she was at any time in the two Iron Man films.  Almost every scene with Tony Stark has at least one funny line, and this is no exception.  There relationship has clearly progressed, which is important, since we don’t see Tony ogling every female with a pulse like he did in the previous films.

Then Agent Coulson arrives and gives the Avengers and tesseract information to Tony to study.  Tony jokes that his first name is Agent.  (This is important later in the movie.)

“It’s an honor to meet you…officially.  I sort of met you.  I watched you while you were sleeping.” – Agent Phil Coulson

Agent Coulson’s hero worship is so perfect!  It absolutely works with his character, and this scene is hilarious.

We then get a look at what Loki is up to and see him have a meeting with his Chitauri contact.  It becomes very clear here that Loki too is a pawn, but we still don’t know for whom.

“Did he ask you to sign his Captain America trading cards?  They’re vintage.  He’s very proud.” – Black Widow

The helicarrier is spectacular.  I really hope they make a toy of that.  I’ve got to have one.  Once on the bridge of the helicarrier, Steve walks up to Fury, takes out his billfold and hands him a ten without saying a word.  This is one of a bunch of scenes where the whole theater laughed.

Loki and Clint go to Germany to steal iridium that Dr. Selvig needs to construct a device to hold the tesseract so that it can open the portal.  Loki casually walks into a room full of people, knocks out a guard, throws a man down on a table and puts a device over his eye.  The device essentially takes a scan of his eye and sends it to a similar device with Clint so that he can open a door that requires a retina scanner.  A very nice piece of tech.

“Kneel before me.  I said…KNEEL!  Is not this simpler?  Is this not your natural state?  It’s the unspoken truth of humanity that you crave subjugation.  The bright lure of freedom diminishes your life’s joy in a mad scramble for power.  For identity.  You were made to be ruled.  In the end, you will always kneel.” – Loki
“Not to men like you.” – German Old Man
“There are no men like me.” – Loki
“There are always men like you.” – German Old Man

While Clint is making off with the iridium, Loki decides to let his ego run wild and threaten the innocent people in the crowd.  When a German old man refuses to kneel, Captain America arrives just in time to save him.

The fight with Captain America is perfect.  Loki is an Asgardian, and Captain America is no match for him.  The battle plays out perfectly, with Cap refusing to give up, while clearly out of his league.  Iron Man shows up, entering dramatically with ACDC’s Shoot to Thrill blaring.  He puts Loki down with one blast (or it might have been a punch, I don’t recall) and threatens him with all his weapons if he gets up.  Loki surrenders as Cap and Iron Man share a very curt greeting.

“You are pretty spry for an older fellow.” – Tony Stark

Aboard the shuttle back to the helicarrier, it becomes very clear that Steve doesn’t really like Tony.  It’s hard to tell if Tony doesn’t like Steve or just doesn’t respect him, probably the latter.

“What’s the matter?  Afraid of a little lightning?” – Captain America
“I’m not overly fond of what comes next.” – Loki

Thor shows up and takes Loki from the shuttle.  Iron Man and Cap go after him.

After a conversation between Thor and Loki, in which it is clear that Thor still believes that Loki can be redeemed, he and Iron Man have a badass fight, which only ends when Captain America shows up and survives a direct swing of Thor’s hammer against his shield.

“Let me know if real power wants a magazine or something.” – Nick Fury

Fury puts Loki in a cage he had designed for the Hulk that could be dropped from the ship if the Hulk ever got out of control.  They think that would be enough to kill the Hulk.  Loki goes into typical caged super villain “you’ll all be destroyed” speech.

Then things get interesting.

“I’m a huge fan of how you lose control and turn into a giant green rage monster.” – Tony Stark
“Thank you.” – Bruce Banner

“I don’t think we should be focusing on Loki.  That guy’s brain is a bag full of cats, you could smell crazy on him.” – Bruce Banner
“Take care how you speak.  Loki is beyond reason, but he is of Asgard, and he’s my brother.” – Thor
“He killed eighty people in two days.” – Black Widow
“He’s adopted.” – Thor

We now have the whole team together (minus Hawkeye).  This scene is great, with Tony Stark being his usual smarter than anyone else in the room self.  Essentially all they can do is keep trying to find the tesseract, so Tony and Bruce head to the lab to do just that.

The rest of the time on the helicarrier jumps between scenes a lot, so I’m going to have to summarize it a bit out of order.

Stark and banner have some great scenes in the lab and are suspicious of Fury’s true motives.  There is also a very nice moment when Tony tells Banner about the shrapnel in his chest.  Cap shows up and argues with them about their suspicions about Fury, but is convinced enough to go looking in the hold of the ship.

Agent Coulson tells Thor that Jane Foster was given a mission in an out of the way place and is safe.  That’s all we hear about her, but she apparently has no idea that Thor is on earth.  (More on where I think this will go later.)  It’s a great scene with the two of them.  Almost all the heroes have a scene or conversation with Agent Coulson, and the reason why becomes apparent later.

“Loki is a prisoner.” – Iron Man (I think)
“Then why does it feel like he’s the only one on this boat who wants to be here.” – Nick Fury

There is a great scene where Loki appears to be getting to Black Widow, but she’s just playing him to discover his plan, which she does.  Loki intends to unleash the Hulk.  One of the interesting things about this scene is that we’re not sure how much of what Black Widow tells Loki is true.  Later scenes suggest it was, and this is our Black Widow back story.  Very nicely done.

“I put a bullet in my mouth and the other guy spit it out!” – Bruce Banner

Next we have an argument in the lab with everyone (the five Avengers and Nick Fury) sniping at each other.  The above line seems to end the argument.  Do they really mean to suggest that the Hulk is immortal?  Could be interesting.

Clint Barton leads an attack on the helicarrier, which is certainly one of the best parts of a movie that was constructed entirely of one best part after another.

“What’s it look like in there?” – Iron Man
“It seems to run on some form of electricity.” – Captain America
“Well you’re not wrong.” – Iron Man

Cap and Iron Man, working as a team go to repair the helicarrier’s damaged turbine.  Black Widow is with Hulk as he turns, and there is a wonderful moment as he is turning where he looks t her, and she can see the pain in his eyes.  She runs from the Hulk until Thor shows up and fights him.  That’s epic.  Black Widow goes after and eventually subdues Clint.  Thor is outmatched against the Hulk, but their battle is epic.

“Target angry!  Target angry!” – Pilot Who Had A Really Bad Day

A plane is sent to fire at the Hulk from outside the helicarrier.  It does, so Hulk jumps out of the carrier and starts tearing the plane to bits. The Hulk falls and we don’t see him for a while.

“The humans think us immortal.  Should we test that?” – Loki
“Move away, please.  You like this?  We started working on the prototype after you sent The Destroyer.  Even I don’t know what it does.  Do you wanna find out?” – Agent Phil Coulson
[Loki stabs Agent Coulson in the back.]
“Nooo!” – Thor
[Loki drops the cage.]
“You’re gonna lose.” – Agent Phil Coulson
“Am I?” – Loki
“It’s in your nature.” – Agent Phil Coulson
“Your heroes are scattered, your floating fortress falls from the sky.  Where is my disadvantage?” – Loki
“You lack conviction.” – Agent Phil Coulson
“I don’t think I…” – Loki
[Agent Coulson presses the trigger blasting Loki through a wall.]
“So that’s what it does.” – Agent Phil Coulson

Thor goes to see Loki just as Loki is escaping from the cage.  Of course, we now learn that Loki was never there, it was one of his duplicates.  Thor is trapped in the cage and Loki is ready to drop him after pointing out that Asgardians can in fact die.  Agent Coulson arrives with an experimental gun, but the real Loki appears behind him and stabs him.  Loki drops Thor from the helicarrier and while beginning to go into a longwinded speech Coulson pulls the trigger and blasts him through a wall.

“It’s okay boss.  This was never going to work unless they had something to…” – Agent Phil Coulson

Nick Fury finds Agent Coulson near death.  Agent Coulson uses his final words to tell Fury that the team needed something to bring them together.  I hate that Agent Coulson had to die.  I thought he was a great character.  I think back to Tony’s comment earlier about a life model decoy and I wonder if there is a chance we could be seeing him again.  This is my favorite Samuel L. Jackson scene.  The normally unflappable, badass, eye patch wearing Nick Fury is visibly shaken by Agent Coulson’s death, the loss of his right hand man.  He calls out over the radio that Agent Coulson’s down and we see everyone still on board reacting.  Agent Maria Hill says that medics are on their way, and Fury says they were already there, and they called it.  They my not have known it yet, but this is the moment the Avengers were truly born, and it leads to my favorite line in the whole movie.

“I lost my one good eye.” – Nick Fury

So, Thor fell to earth and barely escaped from the cage.  Hulk landed very much alive.  Black Widow has a heart to heart with Clint, whose taking what he did under Loki’s spell quite hard.  This leaves Steve and Tony on the bridge with Nick Fury.  I like the way they set this up.  This is certainly an arguable point, but to me, more than any others, Iron Man and Cap are there heart and soul of the Avengers.  Once they are on the same page, the rest will follow.

Fury lays out everything about the Avengers initiative and admits that they were developing weapons from the tesseract to combat global threats.  He tosses Agents Coulson’s Captain America trading cards, covered in his blood, onto the table, telling them that they were in his pocket.

Steve and Tony have a conversation in the chamber where Colson died, finally putting their differences aside.  They realize the only place where they can be planning to open the portal with the tesseract is Stark Tower.  They suit up and along with Clint and Natasha take a shuttle and head for New York. 

“Those cards, they were in Coulson’s locker, not in his jacket.” – Agent Maria Hill
“They needed a push.  They found it.” – Nick Fury

As the Avengers converge on New York, Tony Stark arrives first.  He tries blasting the tesseract enclosure, but an energy field prevents him from affecting it.  Dr. Selvig is briefly knocked out by the blast, which is important later.  Tony lands, his equipment removing his heavily damaged Mark VI armor, and heads inside to get a drink and have a talk with Loki while Jarvis finishes readying the Mark VII armor and we get one of the best dialogue scenes in the whole movie, brilliantly delivered by Robert Downey, Jr. and Tom Hiddleston.  It’s so good.  I need to quote the whole thing.

“Please tell me you’re going to appeal to my humanity.” – Loki
“Uh…actually, I’m planning to threaten you.” – Tony Stark
“You should have left your armor on for that.” – Loki
“Yeah, it’s seen a bit of mileage.  You’ve got the blue stick of destiny.  Would you like a drink?” – Tony Stark
“Stalling me won’t change anything.” – Loki
“No, no, no!  Threatening.  No drink?  You sure?  I’m having one.” – Tony Stark
“The Chitauri are coming, nothing will change that.  What have I to fear?” – Loki
“The Avengers.  It’s what we call ourselves, sort of like a team.  ‘Earth’s Mightiest Heroes’ type of thing.” – Tony Stark
“Yes, I’ve met them.” – Loki
“Yeah, takes us a while to get any traction, I’ll give you that one.  But, let’s do a head count here.  Your brother, the demi-God; a super soldier, a living legend who kind of lives up to the legend; a man with breathtaking anger management issues; a couple of master assassins, and you, big fella, you’ve managed to piss off every single one of them.” – Tony Stark
[Tony surreptitiously puts on the bracelets to summon the Mark VIII armor.]
“That was the plan.” – Loki
“Not a great plan.  When they come, and they will, they’ll come for you.” – Tony Stark
“I have an army.” – Loki
“We have a Hulk.” – Tony Stark
“I thought the beast had wandered off.” – Loki
“You’re missing the point.  There’s no throne, there is no version of this, where you come out on top.  Maybe your army comes and maybe it’s too much for us, but it’s all on you.  Because if we can’t protect the Earth, you can be damned well sure we’ll avenge it.” – Tony Stark
“How will your friends have time for me, when they’re so busy fighting you?” – Loki
[Loki touches his staff to Tony’s chest and you hear it clank against the ARC reactor a couple of times.]
“It should work.” – Loki
“Well, performance issues.  You know?” – Tony Stark
[Loki throws Tony across the room.]
“Jarvis, anytime now.” – Tony Stark
“You will all fall before me.” – Loki
[Loki throws Tony out the window.  Tony summons the Mark VII armor and flies back up to where Loki is standing.]
“And there’s one other person you pissed off!  His name is Phil.” – Tony Stark

The next half hour of the movie is epic battle, and way too much to go into detail until I’ve seen it ten or twenty times (I can’t wait for the DVD).  Here are some of the highlights.

“Just like Budapest all over again.” – Black Widow
“You and I remember Budapest quite differently.” – Hawkeye

There is a great scene when Thor and Hulk team up to bring down on of the alien ship/creatures.  After the crash, they stand side by side, and Hulk just throws his arm out to the side and knocks Thor off screen.

“I recognize that the council has made a decision, but since it’s a stupid ass one, I’ve elected to ignore it.” – Nick Fury

The Council decides to nuke New York to stop the invasion, while Fury wants to give the Avengers a chance to stop it.

Loki and Hulk end up in Stark Tower.  Loki decides to start going on about his power and the Hulk being a mindless beast, but before he can even get started, Hulk grabs him by the leg and starts smashing him into the ground four or five times.  Hulk walks away muttering, “Puny God,” as Loki lies embedded in the cement floor giving off a strangled moan.  The whole theater laughed.

Black Widow goes to the top of Stark Tower.  Dr. Selvig was released from Loki’s control when Iron Man tried to blast the cube machine.  Selvig tells Black Widow that Loki’s staff can turn off the machine.  Black Widow retrieves the staff, but they have a new problem.

The Council sends a plane with a Nuke toward New York.  Fury blasts it with a shoulder-fired missile before it can take off, only to discover that it was a decoy.

Fury calls Iron Man and tells him about the missile.  Captain America radios Tony and points out that it’s a one-way trip.  Tony tries to call Pepper, who doesn’t get the call as she sits on the plane watching the carnage unfold on television.  I feel like this was a major bit of character development.  In the first two Iron man movies, Tony is known for how completely self-absorbed he was.  Now he’s thinking about Pepper.  I thought it said a lot about how being Iron Man has changed him as a person.

Iron Man catches the missile and directs it up through the portal and into an alien ship.  Iron Man, running out of power starts to fall as Black Widow turns off the machine and the portal starts to close.  Iron Man barely makes it through the portal before it closes, but he is unconscious and falling uncontrollably.  The Hulk catches him and they land on the ground where the rest of the Avengers gather.

Thor tears off Iron Man’s mask, and he appears dead, until the Hulk lets out a roar and Tony wakes up.

“What just happened?  Please tell me nobody kissed me.” – Tony Stark

“There’s a shawarma place a few blocks from here, I never tried it, but I want to” – Tony Stark

The Avengers go to the top of Stark Tower to find Loki still suffering from his encounter with the Hulk.  Loki elects to surrender.

In the aftermath, we see a bunch of news clips of people reacting to the events.  Stan Lee has his cameo saying, “Super heroes in New York?  Give me a break.”

Thor takes Loki and the tesseract and returns to Asgard.  Captain America leaves on his motorcycle.  Banner and Stark leave together, as do Hawkeye and Black Widow.

The last scene is of Pepper and Tony in the ruined Stark Tower, clearly planning its repair.  As the camera moves away, the only letter in “Stark” that is still on the side of the building is the “A” which happens to be in the familiar comic book Avengers logo font.

During the credits we get a scene with the alien that Loki met with talking about how Earth is far too dangerous to mess with.  Then we see the boss.  IT’S FREAKING THANOS!!!!!!!!!!  Yes, it’s the Mad Titan himself who was pulling Loki’s strings.  Who else would have the nerve to con a god?  Two possible ways this could go.  Eitehr they are setting up Thor 2 or they are setting up Avengers 2.  It’s hard to know since they have been so good at leading one movie into another, you’d think this would be teasing the next film up, which is Iron Man, but that seems unlikely.  It certainly could be Thor 2, with Thanos coming after the tesseract, but I don’t think so.

At the end of the credits there is one more scene of the six Avengers sitting in the shawarma place having dinner after the battle and looking exhausted.  Funny, but it’s of no great consequence, and technically out of order.

It’s almost hard for me to imagine just how many things I didn’t talk about.  This movie was amazing from beginning to end.

If you read my Avengers preview blog, you’ll recall that I asked a bunch of questions.  I think I’ll answer them.

>Will the conflict between the heroes be real enough to make their coming together meaningful?

Absolutely.  The scene where they are all in the lab arguing was perfect.  They are all reacting exactly as I would expect them too.  Loved it!

>Will Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo and Jeremy Renner be able to hold their own in scenes with Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Hemsworth, and Samuel L. Jackson?

Jeremy Renner didn’t have much direct screen time with the team (other than Black Widow) outside the battles, since he was under Loki’s control for almost the whole movie up to the final battle.  Evans and Ruffalo absolutely held their own.  The scenes with Banner and Stark were some of the best, and Chris Evans plays Captain America with a great presence on screen.  This entire group jelled perfectly.

>Can Mark Ruffalo’s Hulk live up to Ed Norton’s performance?

He surpassed it by many times, but it must be noted that he played Banner differently.  Norton’s Banner was more reserved, while Ruffalo’s Banner seems to have a lot of anger brewing just below the surface.  This makes sense when late in the movie he’s going to have to change into the Hulk and Cap asks him, “don’t you need to get angry?” and banner replies, “I’m always angry.”

>Will we get enough back story on each character to bring in viewers who haven’t seen all of or any of the previous movies?

I think we did.  We go just enough to know who they are without completely rehashing the plots of the previous five films.  We actually got more origin story on Black Widow than we got in Iron Man 2 (which isn’t saying much since we got nothing in Iron Man 2).  The only one who seems to remain a mystery is Hawkeye, who didn’t even really have a codename in the movie (at least I don’t think so, I need to see it again).  I kind of like that they’ve saved that, but you’ve got to wonder when we will find out.  Maybe it’s as simple as he’s an assassin, but these characters usually have far more interesting histories than that.

>Can Loki be enough of a villain to justify the need for the Avengers to assemble?  (We know the answer is no, but fortunately Joss Whedon realized that and gave us the Disir, and together…well, I guess we’ll see.)

Well, it turned out it wasn’t the Disir as had been speculated, but he did have an army.  Clearly Loki alone would not have been enough, as evidenced by Iron Man and Thor being a match for him in battle and Hulk just plain owning his ass.

>How does Thor get back to Earth?  Will this mean he can travel back and forth at will?

This was not clearly answered, but during Loki and Thor’s first conversation after Thor kidnaps him from the shuttle, Loki suggests that Odin would have had to use a lot of dark energy to let him travel to Earth.  This, it seems, is what the tesseract is made of.  At the end of the movie, Thor uses the tesseract to take them back to Asgard.  So, the question becomes, does this mean that he can use the energy of the tesseract to travel back and forth whenever he wants?  Will Odin use some of the energy to give Mjolnir the ability to transport Thor back and forth at will the way he can in the comics (sometimes)?  That would make sense and certainly remove a major issue from Thor 2 so they can focus on the story rather than how he gets to Earth.

>Will we get any mention of what War Machine is up to?

No, unfortunately.  You would think they would at least ask the question, since he would have the power to go toe to toe with Loki.  Hopefully there will be a mention of that in Iron Man 3 and perhaps explain why he wasn’t with the Avengers.  I think him being under the control of the military will be the likely answer.

>Are they going to set up what’s coming in Avengers 2, Thor 2, Captain America 2, and/or Iron Man 3?

I don’t think they did directly, but indirectly, we may have got some clues.  At the end, Banner leaves with Stark, who had offered him a job doing research.  I think another Incredible Hulk movie is unlikely, but having him in Iron Man 3?  That would be great.  Since we already know (or at least strongly suspect) that Iron Man 3 will be the extremis story from the comics, it’s not out of the realm of possibility that Banner could be part of that.

They did give us a starting off point for Thor 2.  They mentioned Jane Foster being moved someplace safe.  It’s certain that after the fact Jane saw footage of the events in New York and knows that Thor was back.  Even knowing that he was here due to a terrible threat, on some level she must be hurt that he came back and didn’t even try to see her after she’s spent so much time trying to reach him.  So that is a likely starting point.

There is essentially nothing even hinted at for the rest of them for their individual movies.  Of course, Avengers 2 is almost certainly going to be all about Thanos, but there are lots of options for Thanos stories.  I can’t wait.  (I suppose the could do another movie where Thanos is pulling strings in the background before a direct confrontation, but I think they’ll want to get to the Mad Titan sooner rather than later.)

>Will they devote any time to Captain America’s problems adjusting to the current time?

Not really, just a few mentions of things that show he’s not quite up on present day technology.  Probably saving the fish out of water stuff for Captain America 2.

>How much control does Bruce Banner have over the Hulk?

This is still an interesting question with no clear answer.  He apparently stays angry constantly to keep the Hulk in check.  His first transformation is after an explosion, but the second time, he just decides to turn.  That second time, except for punching Thor once he never threatens any of the Avengers and actually save Iron Man at the end.  He also speaks, though only to say, “Puny God.”  So, it seems he has some level of control, or at least Hulk isn’t completely mindless.  This makes me want a Hulk sequel with Ruffalo more than I did before, I just have my doubts how they would do that.  Incredible Hulk did tease the Leader, but of the six Marvel movies, it was by far the weakest.  I would much prefer to see him with Iron Man for team up badassery.

>With all the characters in this movie will there be any screen time for Agent Coulson?

Seems like such a silly question now.  He’s the real hero, isn’t he?  The man with no powers at all who tries to save the life of a god by standing up to another god.  I kind of hope in Avengers Tower (which I think Stark Tower will become) they have a memorial for him.

>What new gadgets/weapons will Tony Stark have on his armor?

Nothing in particular.  He may have a few more small weapons, but mainly uses his repulsors as always.  Probably saving new armor developments for Iron Man 3.

>Is anyone important going to die?

Rest in peace, Agent Phil Coulson.  You were as badass as any armored, irradiated, juiced, or immortal being ever could be.

>What will Stan Lee’s cameo be?

I think he should have been the security guard who found the Hulk after he fell from the helicarrier.  I still liked what they did, though.

>What will be the in credits and after credits scenes?

Thanos and shawarma.  I wouldn’t have predicted either. 🙂

>Will they have Captain America pick up Thor’s hammer?

No, but I’m hopeful they will in Avengers 2.  I think it’s an important moment in Avengers history.

>Will we get any cameos from other Marvel characters?

Just Thanos (and I guess you could include Jane Foster).  No room for any others, I guess.

>Will they explain why Tony Stark had Captain America’s shield in his workshop in Iron Man 2?

No.  This probably isn’t at all important, but maybe it will come up in Iron Man 3.

Now for a few new things the movie brought up.

Nick Fury not only disobeyed orders from the Council, but also blew up a Shield plane to stop them.  They weren’t happy with him at the end when he let Thor take Loki and the tesseract and the Avengers go their separate ways.  I have to wonder if going forward Fury is going to continue to have problems with them.  Personally, I think at some point they should do a Nick Fury movie, but somehow I doubt it.

Hawkeye’s arrows were awesome, and I loved how he could press buttons on his bow to change the arrowheads.  Somewhere along the way they do need to give us some background on him.  There must be a reason why he uses a bow and arrows, and I’d really love to see it in a movie.  Maybe they could do a Nick Fury, Black Widow, and Hawkeye movie?  That would rock.

I’m sure there are things I should be mentioning and I’ve forgotten.  The movie is so big it’s hard to remember all the smaller details.  If you haven’t seen this movie, do yourself a favor and go see it on the big screen, don’t wait for the DVD.  It has to be appreciated on the big screen.

Thanks for reading!

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About lmb3

I’m 36 years old, and I work in network tech support for a public school system. I am a huge fan of Star Trek, Transformers, Harry Potter, and Marvel Comics as well as numerous other fandoms. I’m a big sports fan, especially the Boston Red Sox and the New England Patriots. I collect toys (mostly Transformers but other stuff too), comic books, and Red Sox baseball cards. I watch an obscene amount of television and love going to the movies. I am hopelessly addicted to Wizard Rock and I write Harry Potter Fanfiction, though these days I am working on a couple of different original YA novels.
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1 Response to Blog #114: Movie Review: The Avengers

  1. Armchair Warrior Needs food badly says:

    I don’t know what I could possibly say that would add to this. As you said, there is so much in a movie made purely of good stuff. I was a bit behind on my ultimates, having to google and find out that the chitari were actually the ultimate universe skrulls 🙂 That glaring gap in my knowledge, I think I will be able to hang onto my geek badge for this movie.

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