*SPOILERS AHEAD - YOU HAVE BEEN WARNED*
Wow! I mean WOW!
I've seen The Avengers and I can't stop smiling from ear to ear. Annoyingly in the UK it's been renamed Avengers Assemble because as British people we are easily confused and might mistake it for The Avengers that had John Steed & Emma Peel in. Really?
It's not often a film leaves you on such a high you end up smiling for hours and hours but my word Joss Wheadon's film has managed it. This truly is one of the best Superhero films I've ever seen. Some of you may think I'm overreacting. If you know me personally you will know I take my superhero love seriously so this isn't just a random statement from me. I've been waiting for this film ever since Samuel L Jackson's Nick Fury turned up at the end of 2008's Iron Man (starring Robert Downey Jr.) to tell him about his 'Avengers Initiative'. Since then we have had a new Hulk film, a sequel to Iron Man, A Thor film and finally a Captain America film all leading up to this ultimate moment and I was so excited that it had finally arrived I'd been awake since about 4am waiting to see it the day I went.
Make no mistake in thinking Chris Evans (Captain America), Chris Hemsworth (Thor), Scarlett Johansson (Black Widow) and Jeremy Renner (Hawkeye)are overshadowed by Robert Downey Jr. as this just isn't the case. All of the team have their own little story going on and they all share equal screen time and a vital role to play within the film.
The actor who I'd been most curious about since this film went into production had to be the new fellow to play Hulk. To be honest I'd not heard of Mark Ruffalo before but I'm glad to say he's really great in this as Bruce Banner. You actually believe he is a genius who has his other persona under control until the moment he actually doesn't and becomes Hulk. The Hulk himself looks amazing and is a fantastic sight to look at.
In my honest opinion it's the best depiction of the character on screen so far. I think it helped that Ruffalo himself did the motion capture work for Hulk as it made him even more realistic. It's also cool that Lou Ferrigno did the voice again like he did in The Incredible Hulk. When Thor and The Hulk stop smashing some Chitauri soldiers inside a building, and are standing side by side, The Hulk gives him a backhand, sending Thor across the room. Hilarious! I also enjoyed the smack down he gave Tom Hiddleston's Loki near the end of the film."Puny God!". It's funny how they got all the same actors back from the other films, and it's the new guy that walks away with the film.
This film also had an emotional kick to it. I always get choked up at Superhero films these days but Agent Coulson dying was heartbreaking for me. For a character that has only turned up in past films very briefly it was really a kick in the guts when Loki killed him. He was the last character I expected to die. I suppose that was the point really. Clark Gregg who played him created a memorable character. Strangely enough though I've read that he may be set to return in a possible Nick Fury film and even Iron Man 3. How true this is I don't know but for now I'll take it with a pinch of salt. I can't help but think this would cheapen the characters death.
Joss Wheadon's done a fantastic job as director. He's a huge fan of Marvel characters himself which as turns out makes this film even more awesome. I always find it a bit worrying when a writer, director or producer have a personal interest in the subject matter as they can be blinkered to what THEY want to see on screen and not what could be good for the story. I'm pleased to say this isn't the case. I've only ever watched his Buffy & Angel work but you can see his humour and style coming through in this. I hope he returns to direct the sequel.
And in case you were wondering that was Thanos that appeared in the mid-credit scene of the film. His appearance according to Whedon is setting up the next block of films to star The Avenger cast. Exciting.
At the moment and in my opinion this is the second best comic book movie after Richard Donner's Superman. Note though how I say at the moment. We still have The Amazing Spider-Man and The Dark Knight Rises to hit screens over the next few months. Add that to the fact I change my mind about such things on a daily basis I wouldn't take it as gospel. It's definitely up there though as one of my favourites.