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

Thor: The Dark World Movie Review

Its a dark world indeed.

thor2poster1_largeDirector: Alan Taylor Running time: 120 min Writer: Christopher YostChristopher MarkusStephen McFeelyDon PayneRobert Rodat

Starring:Chris Hemsworth…Thor
Natalie Portman…Jane Foster
Kat Dennings…Darcy Lewis
Christopher Eccleston… Malekith the Accursed

I start with this. I enjoyed the movie. It was just kind of hard to.

Coming from Game of Thrones you would like to think the realm of GoT and Thor would blend seamlessly. Wrong. Now when I heard about this movie at first, it was addressed as being helmed by a female. Sometime later, Alan Taylor took over and gave us this. Now I still believe Taylor is capable of telling us a good story. Just don’t think it’s in a Marvel franchise. Be it direction or editing this movie was terrible.

Each actor felt and looked confused, and uninspired. Outside of Tom Hiddleston, he, as per usual stole the show in a creative way. His character and his style this time around, he displayed even more pain than we’ve seen him previously. A major part to his sadness is *SPOILER ALERT* is when his mother dies, and he’s loosely to blame.* this creates a great sadness and allows for the character to be seen in a slightly new light. A lot of Odin’s lines felt off. And that’s one aspect of the direction that failed me.

The story continues greatly from Avengers, in comparison to Iron Man 3, but it’s not the most direct follow up I would’ve hoped for. But come to think about it Marvel Comics never really did that after a big story arc… Always just kept it moving. One aspect of the overall plot was how involved the villain was. He wasn’t. His entire plot was handled wrong. He was kinda just there versus having reason to care about what he was doing. For an ancient evil with world domination goals, he didn’t seem to be explored as much as I would hope. In place of the villain absence, was the theme of brothers. Brothers at odds, trying to find a common ground. Accepting their “destiny”, if you will, as one being a hero and one the villain. That part of the story was well expected, well explored and well performed.

Thor-2-PosterLet’s talk about the cinematography….. THIS WAS TERRIBLE. Did we learn nothing from Avengers?! And p.s. I watched this movie in a AVX theatre. Now while I criticize the way in which it was shot, I do appreciate the lessons it taught me. Don’t do an entire movie with elaborate sets if you can’t actually build majority of them. For a movie like this, I understand that it’s a different realm so it has potential to look different from the norm but the first movie has such a president that I thought would naturally transcend into the sequel. I felt a lot of parts that were heavy with green screen and/or cgi were so poor looking; it was almost embarrassing on behalf of Marvel as a brand. Key examples of this were when Loki was sentenced for his crimes.
In addition to that the switching from camera to camera was terrible.  The quality changes were so evident and vastly different from each other it became the way of a student project.

Bottom line: it’s not the worst ever movie, but as far as super hero movies go, I’m placing it for a tie with Dare Devil. Or maybe a tie with Iron Man 2, with an edge to Iron Man 2. Mark Millar tweeted that Thor (the first one) was the best of the phase 1 entries (avengers hadn’t come out yet) so this was theirs too lose. which they sadly did in my honest opinion.

 

Ratings for all movies will now be out of ten

  • Overall rating of the movie: 3.1 out of 10,
  • Cinematography: 0 out of 10,
  • Editing: 2 out of 10,
  • Audio: 4 out of 10,
  • Acting: 1.5 out of 10,
  • Theatres or wait for the blu-ray? SKIP IT, download at best.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace”. Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: “LEW System”

– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW

Video of the Day: Thor: The Dark World

THOR-DARK-WORLD-POSTERThor is coming and it’s fitting that its Thorsday (ask the vikings). its short and sweet and really does expand on the world that the Marvel Cinematic Universe has built with the first Thor movie and some of  “Captain America: The First Avenger”. This looks promising and even more action packed than the first one. i wont give anything away, I’m too busy being amp’d for Iron Man 3. P.s, gotta love in the poster, Thor’s hair seems to be staying still in all that wind.

THAT’S IT! Cheers: “To Peace” . Your eLEWsive Thought Provided by: the “LEW System”
– Xavier – @CoolyoNgeLEW