Avengers: Age of Ultron
Directed by Joss Whedon
Starring Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, James Spader, and Samuel L. Jackson.
Well, here we are, gang. Phase II of Marvel’s grand cinematic plan comes to close with Earth’s Mightiest Heroes assembling once again. As another critic pointed out, this isn’t so much a sequel to The Avengers as it is a sequel to Iron Man 3 AND Thor: The Dark World AND Captain America: The Winter Soldier. That’s a lot of story to get through. But, seeing all these heroes together on the big screen is always a treat, so I was hoping to get treated once again.
The Avengers have HYDRA on the ropes, and finally manage to recover Loki’s Scepter. Analyzing Loki’s Scepter, Tony Stark sees the keys to creating an artificial intelligence. With an AI, Stark and Bruce Banner can re-start on of Stark’s projects: Ultron, an AI driven army of androids to create “a suit of armor around the world.” Stark and Banner succeed, but Ultron quickly determines that the best way to bring peace to the world is to destroy it. Quickly teaming up with the Maximoff twins (that would be Quicksilver and Scarlett Witch), Ultron puts his plan into motion, but Scarlett Witch’s powers soon rock the Avengers to their very core. Will the Avengers be able to face their demons before Ultron’s plan can come to fruition?
What I Liked
Holy moly! The action sequences are amped up from the last film. Every fight is just bigger here. And that Hulk vs Hulkbuster fight we’ve seen in all the trailers is amazing on the big screen. The characters are good, too. The visions that the Scarlett Witch gives our heroes gives us some good glimpses into their backstories, such as Black Widow’s history. Hawkeye is a real standout this time out, as we learn so much more about him, and his pep talk to Scarlet Witch is great stuff. And James Spader is spectacular as Ultron, as we finally have a villain who can dish out the quips as good as Tony Stark.
What I Didn’t Like
With so many characters, it’s easy to get lost in the shuffle. And as much as like the whole concept of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, too many callbacks to the previous installments and too many set-ups to the next phase can add to the confusion.
A solid superhero ending, setting up the next phase quite nicely.