Avengers: Age of Ultron: Movie Review

I’m a man who likes seeds. I also really enjoy great character performance.

(minimal spoilers ahead)

Director: Joss Whedon, Writer: Joss Whedon, Stan Lee, Jack Kirby, Runtime: 141m, Cast & crew(<link)

Seeds. In the MCU, seeds are what fans crave just as much as “easter eggs”. Though I didn’t see many eggs like Cap’s shield in the first two Ironman movies. The seeds however, are very upfront and yet still underlying need I say the first words Ultron says to Scarlet Witch in the curch or the way she looks at The Vision. EACH. AND. EVERY. TIME (Yea. It was very much there folks. Read your comics). The way this movie is benefitted by the seeds: it sets up, Civil War, Thor: Ragnarok (That might be wrong), Black Panther, and what could possibly be the next Avengers and/or Hulk movie. Which if J.Whedon has any say, it’s not Planet Hulk. The way it does a disservice to the film is that it comes off Ironman 2 -ish in the sense that the movie is more of a bridge to more, rather than a movie of its own doing. In Ironman 2 it basically set up Thor,  Captain America: the first avenger and explains a bit of Incredible Hulk. Those are seeds. It’s great but having to pave way or set up other films takes a toll on a film intended to be a sequel to one of Hollywood’s massive franchises… ever. I felt that once it got to its inevitable end, I said that’s it? which also isn’t a bad thing. I just felt he ws obviously beaten just too easily for my liking. Seeds are awesome.

avengers-age-of-ultron-collageWhedon really knows how to write. I’m curious to know if the announcement of the future to the MCU had any affect on what was intended to be in this movie. He crafted such a brilliant tale of heroes and with the help of his D.O.P., really continued that comic book look and feel. Not everything is as vibrant  looking as it was with its predecessor. I did find its definitely better on a second watch as you can really appreciate it instead of getting lost with the excitement the film naturally brought….  but better in imax.  Since I am somewhat discussing his writing…. what the hell was up with Hawkeye?!? I feel for Renner to do the film, it was deliberately done to give him an over arching story. But the parts with him and his “wife” took me out if the film. Probably because I know how most of his life plays out thanks to Bendis’ Avengers run. But something about it seemed forced vs organic which was a shame given all Whedon has accomplished since joining Marvel. Though Hawkeye’s best moment is the bit with Scarlet around the end.

Age if Ultron comes at you fast. But it works both in favour and does this film a disservice. Comic book movies, namely Marvel, have been known to give a crap about their films.  When casting of RDJ hit media outlets it was their way of saying we care about acting, we care about the story, we simply care about our product. Since that particular casting, the other names to the roles has been stellar since. In James Spader, we have a talent with a voice that instantly captivates. My real first encounter with him was on “The Office” and even from that show (Thank you Netflix) I could see why he was special. I believe I was watching that show as they announced he was casted. His voice a covers a range and it is aptly suited for cold, dry, sarcastic and even terrifying dialogue (of Ultron) to really come across. The best feeling is that this allows for Ultron to be menacing still yet like a child. Like a child who has grown up and held on to his id personality. I can honestly say  (unless said in another review) that not since Darth Vader or that Matt Damon look a like in Breaking Bad, have I felt a fear of what a character might do. The voice acting was really superb and deserves at least one nomination, at the very least, at the MTV movie awards; or the Scream awards. This said, for me, The character really needed a scene of him just observing life. To see if there was a reason to end humanity (If you will indulge me a moment. ..or.skip to the next paragraph) it would have been excellent if they had like Ultron looking at children playing and then an incident led to him on his twisted view on life. I get why it played out the Manner it did though

It’s pretty interesting how they have handled Captain America since his first outing (read into that as you see fit). From a real 1940s Brooklyn kid to a leader amongst gods and men. He didn’t have a stand out performance but his presence is felt and I definitely saw some seeds for civil war when it came to him and Tony.

Tony. RDJ. Love em both. Especially RDJ for walking out of that interview. However I feel like he genuinely pissed me off when Rhodes was getting a wee bit of screen time as War Machine. And all of a sudden its a close up of RDJ and I was like: “honestly … how many frames per second of a contract did thus guy sign?!?” I know he is the poster child but in many ways it’s annoying to have him be the center of attention even in posters. I don’t see the avengers as a band. I see them as a team. And teams don’t always need their star player. Sometimes they need the unsung hero to make the hail Mary play.. you know to lay down on a wire and let the other guy crawl over you.

Black widow seemed to have a bigger role. Even tho she was sidelined by her little bundle of joy. Which I thought the camera team and story handled it perfectly with hiding it. Notice she is shot mostly in close ups in the end, and she exits the story in a believable way. Nicely done again Joss.

Vision. Holy. His look, acting, costume design… so much is right with him. The art direction dept. Just got it right in so many ways. It’s gonna be interesting to see what develops with his character, especially in his last scene.

Hawkeye… I said that already.

Banner. Is sorta the unsung hero of the group who sadly gets to live out his worst nightmare(well sad for him, fun for us). Time will tell how he’s handled next. Maybe(a tad bit of spoiling) an avenger-less hulk film? Just saying, I would read a comic that delves into that aspect of the hulks MCU story.

The way Scarlet Witch is handled was superior to what I would have thought possible. However her brother… wasn’t. Felt like a total waste on him or overall, just handled incorrectly. They should have a dedicated more of the Ultimates (Ultimates 2 to be exact) story line with him. Though I think with him, the reason for his lacking is more legal than anything.

Well.. I think we have reached the end. What a grand way to start the summer movie season. I think i just found a way to start reading comics again.

Bottom line : I was in love with the performance of Spader, loved it more in imax. It’s a tremendous story but it does have a lacking effort in areas.

  • Overall rating of the movie: 8 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 8.5 out of 10,
  • Editing: 8 out of 10,
  • Audio: 10 out of 10,
  • Acting: 8.9 out of 10,
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? Great in Imax. Definitely worth picking up. Hopefully theres a lot of bits stuff and deleted scene as a lot was left on the cutting room floor.THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: the “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

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coolyongelew

Comic nerd. Movie lover Director Gaffer/Lighting Tech D.O.P. Photographer

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