Wednesday, May 06, 2015

Avengers: Age of Ultron (review 2 of 2)

Scarlett Johansson:  Yes, I know that there is a lot of discussion and outcry about the direction her character went in this movie.  However, I don’t care about that crap.  Johansson is sexy and she’s the best female character in the movie.  Her character has an interesting relationship with Hulk/Bruce.  I also like seeing the direction they went with her friendship with Hawkeye.  Speaking of which…
Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye:  I always liked his depiction.  And, they make him even more of a badass here.  He seems to be channeling Green Arrow a bit in this movie too, and I love it.  There is one moment I love involving Scarlet Witch that I won’t give away, but it is a nice callback to the first movie. We also see the another side to him.
Chris Hemsworth/Thor:  There were a few times when I couldn’t understand what he was saying due to his heavy accent.  However, there are some great moments here and there for him with most of them being very funny.
The other thing I liked about this movie over the first one is that this movie knows there is a bigger universe out there.  Most of the support characters for each Avenger makes an appearance and even have a part to play in the third act.  Don Cheadle has a great few appearances as well and a nice carryover from IM3.  Anthony Mackie also has a few appearances too. 
The other thing the movie gets right is the interpersonal relationships between the team members. 
Elizabeth Olsen as Scarlet Witch: You're going to see a lot of her in this movie. I really like where they're taking this character. Well, FOX can use this character as well because she has been on both teams the X-Men and The Avengers.
Quicksilver: Let's get this out of the way. Yes, this version isn't as entertaining or cool like the one from the X-Men movie of last year. However, I am glad they included him into the mix because he too has been both an Avenger and a X-Man. X-Men is his character better, but he's still fun here.
-Man of Steel bashing?: During two major battles, the heroes take the time help bystanders in the cities they're fight in. The movie actually takes time to show people getting caught in the crossfire and the heroes noting it. The Hulk/Iron-Man battle is a great example of this. They show shots of people hurt in the aftermath of their huge battle. We get the same thing in the third act battle.
-FX is pretty good: I think the special effects are breathtaking this time around. Industrial Light & Magic is amazing here.
Danny Elfman and Brian Tyler shared credit on producing the score this time around. It would seem Elfman was brought in at the last moment because Tyler was extremely busy with the score for Furious 7. They're styles mesh fairly well. Tyler is a guy that can morph his style into any composer. He's done everything from Williams to Goldsmith's styles. So, his tracks work well with Elfman's tracks. From what I can hear, Elfman is the one that brought back the old Avengers theme where Tyler brought his Iron Man theme and a surprise appearance of a certain Silvestri's theme from the first movie. Tyler also brought in the main villain theme too. I liked the score overall. I'm more into these brassy loud scores more than the restrained one we got for the Captain America 2 score. I like Cap's score, but it doesn't work for a large movie like this one.
Now, I didn't like that they “tracked” in two or three tracks from the first movie. They stuck out really badly. The worst being the Main Titles from the first movie being used in the end credits. Why was this done?
There are certainly flaws with this movie that seem to appear due to editing. I think this movie could have been better served with an added 15 minutes and a minute cut out of the farmhouse scenes. I also feel Ultron's motives needed to be fleshed out a bit more. The acting is very good all around. The movie carries over threads from Agents of Shield, Cap 2 and Iron-Man 3, and it does so fairly well. Joss Whedon juggled a lot of balls and most of them stayed in the air. DC is going to have to step their game up.
Grade: B+

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