Warning SPOILERS Ahead
A New Age is Upon Us
Marvel fanatics rejoice! The day is upon us. The biggest movie of the year, Avengers: Age of Ultron, has finally been released! But is it everything we’d hoped for?
Its been 3 years since we’ve seen the team assembled. The movie is not slow to start and kicks off with an exciting tracking fight scene with HYDRA and Earth’s Mightiest heroes. The Avengers are infiltrating Baron Von Strucker’s HYDRA base to retrieve the Chiauri Scepter (Scepter used by Loki in the original Avengers.) Hydra has been attempting to use the power within the scepter to experiment on volunteers and create weapons.
The fight is pretty much over before it started as The Avengers easily roll over HYDRA and Von Strucker surrenders hilariously. Some friends I talked to were a little beat up that Von Strucker didn’t have much to do in the MCU, but I feel like it needed to be done in order to bring on the true threat, Ultron.
In this opening scene we also got a first look at Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch. The two volunteered to be a part of Von Struckers experiments and were given gifts. The film did a decent job of explaining their back story and their hatred for Tony Stark (A Stark Missile killed their parents when they were children.) First they side with HYDRA, then with Ultron, then after discovering Ultron’s evil scheme to destroy the humanity, the become Avengers.
James Spader did a marvelous (get it?) job at voicing the psychopathic robot. Going into the movie, I thought the voice wouldn’t match, but the end results was near perfect. Ultron appeared to be more human in his mannerisms than machine, and I think that was a good twist on the character.
I enjoyed watching them use their powers and though both Elizabeth Olsen and Aaron Taylor-Johnson did a great job bringing the twins to life as Avengers. Scarlet Witch was given more depth than Quicksilver. Quicksilver was a little underdeveloped. He had some good scenes, but nothing that really stuck out for him like it did in Fox’s incarnation of the character in X-Men: Days of Future Past. So when his death came at the end of the movie, we weren’t really too attached to him and didn’t really tug on your emotions. In fact I felt more loss sorrow for Scarlet Witch losing her twin brother.
Scarlet Witch’s powers were showcased really well. There was an awesome scene where she mind controls Thor, Cap, and Black Widow, and we take a look into what fuels their fear. This could have been the best part of the movie. We got a deep look into each of the characters minds and just how truly different and unique they are in their own right. Aside from mind control, her telekinetic abilities were sick! It added a new dynamic to the team and something we haven’t really seen yet in the MCU. Scarlet Witch’s powers were awesome and she might be the best new addition (although The Vision was my favorite.)
Speaking of The Vision. Paul Bettany nailed the role. He looked awesome, his acting was great. In my opinion he IS the best new addition to the team. From the moment he broke out of the containment to the very end, he just owned the role. Can’t wait to see what is in store for Vision in future MCU movies and Avengers: Infinity War.
The film used a great mix of comedy and drama, as most MCU films do. However, it wasn’t overly corny as some MCU movies are. Hawkeye had an improved story in Age of Ultron and was a fan favorite. Much different than his just supporting character act in the original. They even played into the “nobody likes Hawkeye” joke and had him joke about himself several times in the movie. Whedon knows what hes doing and I’m sad to see him leave (but thank Odin we have the Russo brothers on for Infinity War!)
As mentioned before, the tracking shot at the beginning was intense. We got to see every character use their abilities in their own unique way. The Hulk Vs Hulkbuster fight was “Incredible” (pun intended) and I’m sure this scene alone will have a large effect on the Civil War storyline. Destruction seems to follow the Avengers and I’m sure there are tons of pissed off people all over the planet. Seeing 2 Avengers duke it out and destroy a city doesn’t get you very well liked.
Much of the movie was also just a rehashing of the original (not saying that is a bad thing.) In Avengers, the heroes fight an army of Chitauri aliens. In Age of Ultron they fight an army of robots. In Avengers, Loki used mind control, in Age of Ultron, Scarlet Witch used mind control. In Avengers we had a giant portal in the sky impending doom, In Age of Ultron we had a giant city in the sky impe…… You get what I mean. Still, the movie was incredibly entertaining and had loads of easter eggs and things to look forward to and setup Phase 3.
Speaking of easter eggs, we got to see Ulysses Klaw for the first time. I’m certain he will be returning in the Black Panther movie scheduled for 2018. We also had The Vision save Scarlet Witch from the disintegrating city. For those of you who know the back story of The Vision and/or Scarlet Witch, these two fall in love and get married. Something I’m sure they will play upon in the future MCU movies. War Machine made an appearance at the end also and helped out a good amount. This was great and it looks like Rhodey will have a bigger part in the next installment, along with The Vision, Scarlet Witch, and “late to the party” Falcon. Then of course, at the end… THANOS! Fully equipped with an empty Infinity Gauntlet. Thanos is tired of everyone failing to collect the stones for him, and so it looks like he’s ready to do the dirty work himself.
While I thoroughly enjoyed Age of Ultron, there were some things I disliked. There was this whole weird scene with Thor where he had to go grab Eric Selvig and travel to this mystic pond for guidance. It just didn’t really make sense, or they did a shitty job of explaining it and it stuck out of the movie. The original cut of the movie was a half hour longer, so I’m sure some explanatory scenes were the ones that had to get left out. Still, this scene just seemed weird and unfitting. Then we had a strange romance between Black Widow and Hulk/Bruce Banner. It wasn’t terrible, but it was kind of unexpected and I feel like that caught the viewers off guard.
Age of Ultron never had a chance at capturing the magic the first movie gave, I feel like there was much less buildup to Avengers Age of Ultron. All of the individual stories didn’t really play into the sequel and that took away from it a little. However, it Age of Ultron does seem to be kick starting Marvel’s Phase 3. While it may not compare with the original, Winter Soldier, or Guardians, the movie was very satisfying and holds a firm place in the top 5 MCU movies. I wouldn’t be surprised if we start to see some Empire Strikes Back-esk endings for the Phase 3 movies, since Thanos is now out to build the Infinity Gauntlet.