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The Avengers (3D)

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The Avengers Movie Poster

Location: Inox Theatre in Pune

Date: 1st May, 2012, Tuesday

Company: Anmol Agrawal

My rating: 22/25

The Review:

Let me jump right to the point: The Avengers has it all. Six superheroes for the price of one ticket: Iron Man, Thor, Captain America, Hawkeye, Black Widow and the Hulk. Writer-director Joss Whedon had lot of expectations to fulfill and he did so with panache. The plot is age-old – good vs. evil dog fight. Loki (Tom Hiddleston), the banished demigod, hates his brother Thor (Chris Hemsworth) and as Earth is under Thor’s protection, he lusts to destroy it with help from an alien army. As head of Strategic Hazard Intervention Espionage Logistics Directorate (oh that’s S.H.I.E.L.D. in short), Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) has one last choice before he can unleash a nuclear deterrent. Bring in the Avengers, a group of superheroes who are lonely and cranky and can’t work together as a team. (A hint of every HR manager’s problems today, eh?).

Ok not to divert from the issue. So world is under annihilation threat. That’s your signal for unleashing the action. But not before Whedon lets the characters undergo the group forming stages. He shows us how our superheroes’ special powers which seems an advantage in this cruel world have alienated them from the very same. As a result, they’re lonely, cranky and, emotional failures not ready to trust each other, lone warriors wary of giving up the control.

Everyone pitches in a scrumptious performance here. Robert Downey Jr. continues with his witty one liners from the past Ironman movies into this script as well. It’s fun to watch when he gets into verbal tussle with Chris Evans (Captain America). And though Downey has a commanding screen presence, he doesn’t hog the limelight much. Hemsworth’s Thor gets his comic lines too at the expense of his teammates to be. Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner), the expert arch¬er and Natasha, a.k.a. the Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), a killer in gymnastics and martial arts too show their exquisite skill sets. And their short chats suggest something of their past acquaintance. (Hmm, a hint of a complicated back story, may be a script for next movie?) And don’t underestimate Clark Gregg’s role. As Agent Phil Coulson he does evoke some laughter from the audience.

Mark Ruffalo surprisingly is a refreshing cast in what seems to be third in as many as past 10 years for the Hulk myth. Playing the adorable and reserved nuclear physicist Bruce Banner, he knows better than to draw attention to himself amongst the other muscular bodied men of the team. Banner infuses an untidy warmth and wit to the role whose character has a dangerously repressed anger issues. He brings out a measure of depth in Tony Stark character and his verbal sparring with Downey is as much pleasure as Downey’s tussle with Evans. His ‘punch’ lines at crucial moment in the film lift his character to a new high and it’s hard not to cheer when Hulk thrashes Loki while the latter is in middle of delivering his ego inflating lines.

Any superhero flick is only good as its villain. And Loki (Tom Hiddleston) puts up an expected powerful performance. Wit, trickery, intuition and crazy daring, the role required it all and the British actor did bring it out all and much more. Super effort.

As a whole, the movie is vastly entertaining; but not because of the action scenes but for what each character brought to the table in form of natural acting earlier in the film. The action sequences look standard and nothing new, except for one running shot where the stars were seen finally fighting as a team. When I first saw its trailers, I was excited and have eagerly awaited it since then. The day finally came. And I loved it. Don’t expect out of the world action. It’s in line with other superhero movies. But their chemistry together is a heady mixture and whatever people might think, they do look an unstoppable force. Go watch it, revel in it and enjoy the superhero experience.

A note about 3D. Action is not in your face. So watching it in 3D can be given a skip. 2D will do just as fine.

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