Summer Movie Reviews: Now with 100% More Robot Avengers

Avengers: Age Of Ultron 4.5/5

This movie rocked. Spoilers ahead. I don’t know why people were down on it. I read some reviews and they were nitpicking like “Whats the point if we know that they’re all going to assemble again in a few years?” You’re dumb, movie critics.

This is everything you could have possibly wanted in an Avengers movie, and it felt way more like the comic book Avengers than the first film.

The bad:
There were a few little plot strings that bothered me, and it too is nitpicking. Andy Serkis/Claw kind of just disappeared and was there for set up for Civil War and Black Panther. Maybe Dr Cho died, but I thought she didn’t and should have been at the new Avengers Academy at the end so she felt like a real part of the movie. Black Widow/Hulk stuff was fine for the most part, except they’re “Lets run away together and leave everyone else to fight Ultron and save people.”

I would have preferred Ultron to be darker and more evil evil, but he is still a strong villain and we don’t know if he’s actually dead. If you know anything about comics, unless you see a dead body then they aren’t dead. And even if you see a dead body they probably aren’t dead. I have my own theory why he’s alive I’ll share if you ask me to.

I don’t know what it is about Black Widow, but when Joss Whedon is doing the writing/directing I do not enjoy the character. In Cap 2 and Iron Man 2, I quite liked her.

The good:
Basically the entire film. It starts off letting you know exactly what you’re getting. A cool like 2 minute shot of everyone doing their sweet fighting together like the Avengers in the comics/cartoons. Fighting like a team. It was awesome.

Hulkbuster fight. Awesome.

Vision. Awesome. Great comedy as well.

They made Hawkeye interesting! That was so good. And better than that, they gave him a role of his own. He is the “normal guy” on the team.

Linking the two films centered around Loki’s staff and the Mind Stone was a great tidbit for comic nerds that I don’t think non-nerds will quite follow.

We saw heroes saving people. That is huge to making them heroes versus violent fighters.

Ultron’s execution and naivete was spot on. I liked how different his plan was compared to the comics and to other villains. He wasn’t going to destroy the world by shooting it. He wanted to do it by causing a legitimate disaster.

I enjoyed the little plot threads we got to see for Civil War, Ragnarok, and tie-ins to the space alien stuff with Guardians.

The trailer’s do not spoil the whole film. The trailers were basically picked from 2-3 scenes in the first 40 minutes. Also nothing from the end of the movie. Surprise ūüôā

The awesome:
Rotating the cast of the Avengers team gets top marks from me. It keeps things fresh and also keeps the growing the universe. It also allows for them to do more Avengering as Thor and Hulk, in practical terms, limit exactly what the team can do and how often.

Cap, Widow, Falcon, War Machine, Scarlet Witch and Vision make a nice new team with a whole new dynamic.

Plus we know that Iron man, Hawkeye, Thor and Hulk will come back for Infinity War and some of them for Civil War.

Killing Quicksilver and not Hawkeye made me go “Say whaaa!” because it really threw me for a loop. I like that. I guess Quicksilver was really just in there so Marvel could get their hands on Scarlet Witch first.

Other reviews

To come this summer:

  • Mad Max, May 15
  • San Andreas, May 29
  • Entourage, June 5
  • Jurassic World, June 12
  • Antman, July 17
  • Fantastic Four, August 7
  • Hitman: Agent 47, August 28
  • Star Wars: The Force Awakens, December 18

Maybe to come this summer:

  • Ted 2, June 26
  • Terminator: Genysis, July 1
  • Pixels, July 24
  • Mission Impossible: Rogue Nation, July 31
  • Goosebumps, October 16
  • Jen and the Holograms, October 23
Advertisements

Age of Ultron Trailer Reaction and Analysis: OMG

HOLY CRAP! That was my reaction. But lets also look at the trailer and try to find some things. SPOILERS DUH maybe.

  • 00:14 – ¬†opening shots of general panic set the tone well. James Spader’s voice over is menacing and authoritative. Almost sounds regal. Excellent.
  • 00:19 – shot of Ultron(?) getting out of lava. Love this as it gets across the indestructible nature¬†of Ultron.
  • 00:24 – some shots of Cap, Hawkeye and Thor in the area of the place that was panicking. They all look a little haggard and exhausted.
  • 00:29 – Looks like the interior of the Avenjet. Banner is tripping balls. No sign of Stark or Hawkeye in the jet. Banner is using his shirt like a straight jacket it seems.
  • 00:33 – More killer voice work¬†and some shots of a limping and damaged Ultron V1 (we’ll call it V1).
  • 00:34 – “Tangled and strings” I love this theme.
  • 00:40 – ¬†Things get real. Crushes the head on one of the Iron Men/Ultron prototypes.
  • 00:49 – Cap never skips leg day. I’m digging his new suit.
  • 00:55 – Some destruction shots. Guns. A tank. Makes things look hopeless.
  • 00:58 – Banner stumbling around in some woods. Really interested in his plot for this movie.
  • 1:00 – Is that Widow?
  • 1:03 – Ultron working with the “miracle twins” or whatever they were called by Von Strucker. Definitely makes sense if they were captives, and Ultron is looking to cut the “strings” on the world. They’d be willing disciples.
  • 1:06 – Love the design of Ultron’s minions.
  • 1:09 – Thor’s with Cap, Widow and Hawkeye. He drops his hammer. It’s a neat “oh no” style shot.
  • 1:12 – Stark is looking over what looks like Ultron V1/ what is left of him.
  • 1:13 – “This is the end.”- Stark. False. There are plenty of sequels still to be made.
  • 1:15 – Nick Fury. Curious to see what he can do without S.H.I.E.L.D.
  • 1:16 – “Nothing lasts forever.” – Widow. Except you having terrible hair in every Avengers film to date.
  • 1:18 – Elizabeth Olsen/Scarlet Witch screaming in the middle of a devastated courtyard. She isn’t my wife yet but I hope she is one day.
  • 1:21 – HULKBUSTER ARMOR! That is so hype.
  • 1:26 – Widow gets dropped on her Harley to go fight, presumably. Makes me wonder why there is still traffic heading towards where she is going. Robots destroying entire cities isn’t subtle, citizens. Why isn’t she getting people to safety?
  • 1:29 – Quicksilver runs through a robot as Cap takes a seat. Curious to see how they handle his speed powers after Xmen: DOFP and The Flash TV show handling super speed really well.
  • 1:31 – Is Cap geared up in a night club?
  • 1:34 – Who is this guy? He’s obviously someone but I haven’t paid too much attention to the casting and I can’t quite put a name to him.
  • 1:34 – Standard “Chris Hemsworth must be shirtless” scene.
  • 1:35 – Hulk and Widow share a moment. Really wanna know Hulk’s story now.
  • 1:37 – Tank shots. Looked like they were firing blue stuff, which was the Phase 2 weapons/Hydra weapons powered by the Tesseract.
  • 1:38 – Hawkeye still in a goofy outfit I am not on board with yet.
  • 1:40 – Thor grabs Stark by the throat, like Loki did. Looks like this scene is back where Ultron made his first appearance in Avengers Tower.
  • 1:42 – Hulk v Hulkbuster Iron Man – can’t wait to fanboy over this in the theatre.
  • 1:43 – Song plays again. I am so on board with it.¬†I’VE GOT NO STRINGS¬†by Ned Washington/Leigh Harline.
  • 1:46 – Quicksilver running. Tiny bit underwhelmed by what they’re showing his speed to be. He should be basically instant. Other characters look like they’re only at half speed.
  • 1:48 – Why do fruit stands always get destroyed in action scenes?
  • 1:53 ¬†– CAP’S INDESTRUCTIBLE SHIELD OH NO!
  • 1:56 – Dat Ultron design.
  • 2:14 – Making me wait until April is bullcrap.

Enjoy these gifs





Ranking the Modern Marvel Movies, 7-1

Into the best of the best. And quite honestly these movies are more or less interchangeable at the top.

7. X-men: Days of Future Past

Plot holes, shmot holes. It was so great as a turbonerd to see the entire cast, except Nightcrawler, all together. It also replaces all the poo taste left in your mouth from X3 and Origins: Wolverine. Hitting the rest button in such a way is really risky, but they did it in a very satisfying and interesting way while still leaving the door open for both sets of X-casts. I love timeline stories. Enjoyed how it made Wolverine less of THE super hero and more of a dude and put a lot of focus on the rest of the cast. The great layering of social commentary that is so important to Xmen was handled well and the scale/scope was really given its due.

6. Guardians of the Galaxy

One of the best parts of this movie is that it is very accessible. It as easy to understand ¬†for comic nerds and regular mutants alike. Its going to be silly, its going to be convenient, but its going to be fun. The music is perfect. Everyone in the movie does a good job at doing their own thing and hitting their notes. Arguably the best performance comes from Michael Rooker as Yondu. It’s your standard McGuffin plot where the baddy wants it and the good guys¬†are all¬†“No, stop! Bad!” but it’s done in such a hammy and campy yet excellent way of adjusting the standard underdog story formula. Lee Pace nails Ronan the Accuser. In a movie so hammy and campy, the way he plays it straight and simple is an excellent contrast. The camera work and visual design is well done and original, while still holding some familiarity in style for Star Wars and Star Trek nerds. The movie feels up your feels, and it sets up the Marvel space universe so that Nova and Ms Marvel can get their due. Standing ovation for Marvel Studios.

5. X2

For one whole year we had the gold standard for comic book movies.¬†Now, we just have the benchmark for every Xmen film for eternity to aspire towards. I don’t think I can pick anything out in this movie that wasn’t excellent. Nightcrawler’s implementation was perfect. Still might be Hugh Jackman’s best Wolverine performance to date. Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart could not have possibly done any better in their roles. And Brian Singer was able to nail the subtext/social commentary while balancing it with the action and avoiding some annoying and preachy movie with special effects. The expanded cast of mutants was great to see and even though many had only a scene or two, it was worth it and not at all cluttered.¬†What a joy to watch.

4. Iron Man

This and Batman Begins are the holy grail of super hero origin stories. Just nailed it. One of the best parts is that the relationship with the villain is established early in the movie versus “meeting” them halfway through. This film launched Marvel into the universe they are in now and has launched Tony Stark as a character much the same way that Jack Sparrow became as big/bigger than the films. There is excellent chemistry between characters and they trade witticisms like real people versus comedy characters. Iron Man is as perfectly cast as any movie on this list. Robert Downey Jr nails the rockstar flippancy of Tony Stark, as well as the character arc from playboy to responsible playboy. Lastly, Iron Man is basically the only Avengers era movie where the hero kills and it isn’t cheap.¬†That is an accomplishment in super hero fiction.¬† Jeff Bridges was an excellent cigar munching fatcat. The ending serves as an excellent contrast of motives. Best of all? They got the suit right. Nothing could have saved this if the suit was wrong. A++

3. Spider Man 2

Stop smashing your keyboard that this is not #1. From here up, its literally a case of 1a, 1b ad 1c. This stole the mantle from X2 as the gold standard and took almost a decade to topple/be met. It has every element from the comics that makes Spider Man so great. The angst, variety of emotions, goofiness, melodrama, romance, and intensity and has it all spun (like a web!)¬†together expertly. Every scene is a perfect compliment to every other scene and fully reached and surpassed the potential that anyone could have forseen for the super hero “genre” of movies. The only thing, and this is minor, is that Kirsten Dunst still just isn’t up to par with the rest of the movie but she still holds her own well. Toby McGuire perfectly captured Peter Parker in this movie in a way I’m unconvinced Andrew Garfield ever will. I haven’t even touched on Doc Oc yet, which was masterfully done. The train scene, pictured, is my favourite scene from any Spider Man movie. The perfect Spider Man movie.

2. The Avengers

The fact that this movie didn’t crash and burn is unbelievable. Just think about the task at hand here, then realize that they pulled it off and the only crap scenes in the entire movie are when awkward dialogue about “red in my ledger” is brought up. The rest? Flawless, especially the smaller character dynamics that only someone familiar with the cartoons/comics would recognize. Such as the various bromances, who has animosity with who, character pairings, etc. It hits so well on so many little things. Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk steals the show and satiates a lot of the hunger for a solo Hulk film.¬†I never understood a lot of the hype behind Joss Whedon but with this film I got it. The little things are done as well as the big things and the character interaction all seems so natural. Its long, but it never feels as long as it really is and everything in the movie, and other¬†bits from other films, come around in a nice full circle here to make a completely satisfying and exhilarating experience.

1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier

One of the things that is so impressive about this movie is how different it feels compared to The Avengers, Thor: TDW and Iron Man 3. There is a lot more plot and considering how heavy it is into espionage and thriller, versus CGI action movie, it had to be that way. You’ve got double and triple crosses, Nazi’s, a boatload of assassins and politics. You’re also taking a guy who’s only powers are incredible fitness, a shield and punching dudes really really hard and taking him so far and away from the ground-level hero that you’d expect the execution to fall apart. Except it doesn’t. The action is a great blend of CGI action (Falcon) and dude-punch-dude (Cap/Widow). Evans delivers Captain America so well, and the rest of the cast supports him and the movie in their unique way. Lastly, it established Cap as a moral compass globally and not just as America man fighting for America and the American Way for all of America’s interests of protecting and promoting America.

Marvel movies 29-19

Marvel movies 18-8

Ranking the Modern Marvel Movies, 6-1

UPDATED WITH GUARDIANS OF THE GALAXY CLICK HERE

Into the best of the best. And quite honestly these movies are more or less interchangeable at the top.

6. X-men: Days of Future Past

Plot holes, shmot holes. It was so great as a turbonerd to see the entire cast, except Nightcrawler, all together. It also replaces all the poo taste left in your mouth from X3 and Origins: Wolverine. Hitting the rest button in such a way is really risky, but they did it in a very satisfying and interesting way while still leaving the door open for both sets of X-casts. I love timeline stories. Enjoyed how it made Wolverine less of THE super hero and more of a dude and put a lot of focus on the rest of the cast. The great layering of social commentary that is so important to Xmen was handled well and the scale/scope was really given its due.

5. X2

For one whole year we had the gold standard for comic book movies.¬†Now, we just have the benchmark for every Xmen film for eternity to aspire towards. I don’t think I can pick anything out in this movie that wasn’t excellent. Nightcrawler’s implementation was perfect. Still might be Hugh Jackman’s best Wolverine performance to date. Ian McKellen and Patrick Stewart could not have possibly done any better in their roles. And Brian Singer was able to nail the subtext/social commentary while balancing it with the action and avoiding some annoying and preachy movie with special effects. The expanded cast of mutants was great to see and even though many had only a scene or two, it was worth it and not at all cluttered.¬†What a joy to watch.

4. Iron Man

This and Batman Begins are the holy grail of super hero origin stories. Just nailed it. One of the best parts is that the relationship with the villain is established early in the movie versus “meeting” them halfway through. This film launched Marvel into the universe they are in now and has launched Tony Stark as a character much the same way that Jack Sparrow became as big/bigger than the films. There is excellent chemistry between characters and they trade witticisms like real people versus comedy characters. Iron Man is as perfectly cast as any movie on this list. Robert Downey Jr nails the rockstar flippancy of Tony Stark, as well as the character arc from playboy to responsible playboy. Lastly, Iron Man is basically the only Avengers era movie where the hero kills and it isn’t cheap.¬†That is an accomplishment in super hero fiction.¬† Jeff Bridges was an excellent cigar munching fatcat. The ending serves as an excellent contrast of motives. Best of all? They got the suit right. Nothing could have saved this if the suit was wrong. A++

3. Spider Man 2

Stop smashing your keyboard that this is not #1. From here up, its literally a case of 1a, 1b ad 1c. This stole the mantle from X2 as the gold standard and took almost a decade to topple/be met. It has every element from the comics that makes Spider Man so great. The angst, variety of emotions, goofiness, melodrama, romance, and intensity and has it all spun (like a web!)¬†together expertly. Every scene is a perfect compliment to every other scene and fully reached and surpassed the potential that anyone could have forseen for the super hero “genre” of movies. The only thing, and this is minor, is that Kirsten Dunst still just isn’t up to par with the rest of the movie but she still holds her own well. Toby McGuire perfectly captured Peter Parker in this movie in a way I’m unconvinced Andrew Garfield ever will. I haven’t even touched on Doc Oc yet, which was masterfully done. The train scene, pictured, is my favourite scene from any Spider Man movie. The perfect Spider Man movie.

2. The Avengers

The fact that this movie didn’t crash and burn is unbelievable. Just think about the task at hand here, then realize that they pulled it off and the only crap scenes in the entire movie are when awkward dialogue about “red in my ledger” is brought up. The rest? Flawless, especially the smaller character dynamics that only someone familiar with the cartoons/comics would recognize. Such as the various bromances, who has animosity with who, character pairings, etc. It hits so well on so many little things. Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk steals the show and satiates a lot of the hunger for a solo Hulk film.¬†I never understood a lot of the hype behind Joss Whedon but with this film I got it. The little things are done as well as the big things and the character interaction all seems so natural. Its long, but it never feels as long as it really is and everything in the movie, and other¬†bits from other films, come around in a nice full circle here to make a completely satisfying and exhilarating experience.

1. Captain America: The Winter Soldier

One of the things that is so impressive about this movie is how different it feels compared to The Avengers, Thor: TDW and Iron Man 3. There is a lot more plot and considering how heavy it is into espionage and thriller, versus CGI action movie, it had to be that way. You’ve got double and triple crosses, Nazi’s, a boatload of assassins and politics. You’re also taking a guy who’s only powers are incredible fitness, a shield and punching dudes really really hard and taking him so far and away from the ground-level hero that you’d expect the execution to fall apart. Except it doesn’t. The action is a great blend of CGI action (Falcon) and dude-punch-dude (Cap/Widow). Evans delivers Captain America so well, and the rest of the cast supports him and the movie in their unique way. Lastly, it established Cap as a moral compass globally and not just as America man fighting for America and the American Way for all of America’s interests of protecting and promoting America.

Marvel movies 28-18

Marvel movies 17-7