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Mr. Beaks Reviews THE AVENGERS

Marvel's THE AVENGERS is, if nothing else, a triumph of planning: a smart assemblage of affordable multi-picture deals, "collaborative" movie stars, and a fan-approved filmmaker in desperate need of a hit. It's a massive movie, but not sprawling to the point that the studio will burn through a sizable chunk of its billion-dollar worldwide gross attempting to break even. This is responsible big-budget filmmaking. It even looks responsible! There's not a single shot in the movie that makes you gasp at the go-for-broke scale of the undertaking. That's because there was no gamble. THE AVENGERS is minimum-bet entertainment.

This has been the Marvel Studios way for some time now* - particularly with its 2011 features, THOR and CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER, both of which sensibly primed the pump for THE AVENGERS - but it only pays dividends on the audience's side of things when you can sense an authorial voice. THOR was well cast, but undone by its unconvincingly CG Asgard and muddled storytelling; Kenneth Branagh's presence behind the camera was notable only for the abundance of canted angles. CAPTAIN AMERICA, however, was undeniably the work of Joe Johnston; armed with a well-structured screenplay by Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely, he infused the film with the same gee-whiz, save-the-day spirit that made THE ROCKETEER such a joy.

This was also important in that it established Chris Evans's Captain America as the big-hearted contrast to the ingratiating jocularity of Robert Downey Jr.'s Tony Stark. This, it seemed, was the natural conflict that would serve as the primary hurdle to uniting The Avengers. Given that CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER ended with an unfrozen Rogers confronting the modern day for the first time, Marvel even had an organic way into THE AVENGERS. And in Joss Whedon, they had an ace screenwriter with vast experience in managing multiple story arcs - mostly over the course of a twenty-plus-episode season, but with sufficient studio savvy (he saved SPEED and survived WATERWORLD and ALIEN: RESURRECTION) to earn the benefit of the doubt.

And yet THE AVENGERS is, narratively and emotionally, largely untethered from the previous films. It opens with fallen demigod Loki (Tom Hiddleston) brandishing the tesseract, controlling minds and giving the puny human agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. what for. Realizing they're badly overmatched, Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) starts rounding up his extra-abled A-team, setting off a series of vignettes that re-introduce familiar characters in disappointingly by-the-numbers fashion. Some of the scenes are amusing on their own (it comes as no surprise that BUFFY-creator Whedon immediately evinces an affinity for Scarlett Johansson's Black Widow), but they're also rushed and disparate: Rogers's opening moment gets lost in the shuffle because, being the boy scout of the bunch, he's just not as funny as the others; then again, Robert Downey Jr.'s first appearance as Tony Stark is supposed to be funny, and pretty much face plants. Worst of all, these sequences are dimly lit** and visually flat (not that shooting widescreen would've helped; scope can look like TV in the wrong hands, too). It's a terribly ho-hum kickoff to what should feel like a once-in-a-lifetime event.

The whole first half of the movie hurtles forward at a hectic pace, and only the occasional, effectively-deployed pop-culture reference reminds you that Whedon is at the helm. It's about roughly forty minutes in, during a clumsily-staged confrontation with Loki outside of a German concert hall occurs, where panic begins to set in. This is THE AVENGERS, and they're blowing it. It's small, cheap and utterly devoid of wonder.

There's marginal improvement once Thor (Chris Hemsworth) gets artlessly wedged into the proceedings, though the three-way, forest-felling brawl between the God of Thunder, Iron Man and Captain America is much cooler in theory than execution (again, too dark to enjoy). But with the team all together on S.H.I.E.L.D.'s helicarrier, Whedon finally begins to get his footing both narratively and visually. Presented with just a sliver of breathing room to attend to character, he gets these superheroes relating to each other as real, emotionally-conflicted superheroes might. Even better, Rogers's humorless leadership style begins to grate on Stark, Fury grows weary of Stark's petulance, and Bruce Banner shows flashes of irritation. Then Loki tricks his way out of captivity, and the film suddenly shows signs of blockbuster life with a prolonged action sequence.

Whedon only gives the audience a taste of the Hulk on the helicarrier, but it's enough to whet one's appetite for the grand finale, which finds the Avengers throwing down as one in the heart of Manhattan against Loki and his intergalactic minions (aka the Chitauri). Once Captain America starts barking out orders to his charges (as all car-asplodin', skyscraper-crumblin' hell breaks out around him), Whedon lets loose the inner-child, and THE AVENGERS turns into the all-star superhero romp fans have been clamoring for since they flipped open their first comic book. Unlike the earlier set pieces, everything is bright and coherent; the staging may occasionally betray its pre-vis origins (in that the unnatural camera movement calls attention to itself), but then the Hulk will snatch a huge Chitauri-piloted vehicle out of the sky and tear it to shreds like a five-year-old on an apocalyptic sugar rush. That's livin'. It's also a reminder that the Hulk is the most cinematic of superheroes (something Ang Lee already figured out***); a soaring, inarticulate bundle of smash for what used to be a purely visual medium. Take that, awkwardly constructed first hour!

What's never at issue is the quality of the performances. Over the last four years, Marvel has cast every one of its top-tier heroes perfectly, and though Downey threatens to dominate at times, he generally plays point guard, setting up his cast mates with clever Whedonesque quips (Hemsworth makes out surprisingly well in this regard). Ruffalo's Banner is much more puckish than Norton's or Bana's; he enjoys taunting his colleagues with the possibility of a Hulk-out (which results in a terrific third-act payoff). Evans, unfortunately, winds up being the odd man out; he's fine in the film, but his uneasiness with the modern world is reduced to a couple of punch lines. Wonder what happened to Peggy Carter? Forget it. This Steve Rogers has moved on.

After a return to rousing form with CAPTAIN AMERICA: THE FIRST AVENGER, composer Alan Silvestri has gone back to the score-as-wallpaper business with THE AVENGERS, but it's really not his fault. There's no time in the cluttered first act to establish a memorable motif - and he must've been directed to not play favorites by re-invoking Captain America's theme.

Somewhere between Michael Bay's mega-budget sense of scale and Whedon's possession of a brain and a heart, there's a great AVENGERS film to be made. But no studio is going to roll the dice on the emotional integrity of a summer tentpole; they want it made their way, with the benefit of market research. So this is it: an ungainly, but just-satisfying-enough pseudo-epic. Miracles notwithstanding, it's the best possible outcome in this corporate age of risk-averse event filmmaking. Dream to be on time and on budget, kids.

Faithfully submitted,

Mr. Beaks


*Less so with the first IRON MAN, which is a credit to Jon Favreau's predilection for practically-shot action.
**Obligatory 3D caveat: I was seated about ten rows back, house right, from the screen in Grauman's Chinese. The film was projected in Real D, which I far prefer to active shutter (glasses aren't quite as dark, and nowhere near as heavy). People seated in the center of the theater seemed to have less of an issue with the lighting.
***Yes, the father-son conflict was way overstated in his film. So what? Hulk's escape from the military base is gloriously rambunctious in its own right. Most of that movie is insanely underrated.
Readers Talkback
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  • April 30, 2012, 6:07 p.m. CST


    by Kill List Hammertime

  • April 30, 2012, 6:10 p.m. CST

    Beaks while I respect your right to have an opinion...

    by Kill List Hammertime

    ...I gotta disagree. It was fantastic.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:13 p.m. CST

    I'm not sure what to make of this review

    by rakesh patel

    Did we watch the same movie? Doesn't feel like it.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:15 p.m. CST

    First meh review for this movie. At least it's only Beaks.

    by Tikidonkeypunch

    Now if Capone starts to talk shit I'll get worried.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:15 p.m. CST

    In fact I disagree with almost everything you've said.

    by Kill List Hammertime

    Still, we can't all like the same thing. SOMEONE'S gotta nail the ugly chicks.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:20 p.m. CST

    i went and read it again.

    by rakesh patel

    Sorry Beaks I respectfully disagree.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:21 p.m. CST

    I do agree...

    by dj_bollocks

    It feels like a Transformers movie... only with The Avengers obviously...

  • April 30, 2012, 6:23 p.m. CST


    by zegota

    Avenger is decent at best. Ang Lee made a good Hulk film. Talk about troooooolling.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:24 p.m. CST

    I'm actually glad to see a meh review

    by StarWarsRedux

    Not because I'm rooting for the movie to fail, but because hearing all these rapturous Kool Aid drinking accounts just makes me suspect the movie is probably overrated crap. A more balanced take feels a little more promising, especially taking into account how corporate the voice on these things are. <p> <p>And anyway, they don't have the best Marvel heroes, so I could honestly give a fuck.

  • time to quit commenting before i start hulking out.

  • I'm waiting to see PROMETHEUS in the theater and that's about it. I can wait for disc on this movie and this review confirms it. But of course I was sick of superhero movies after I saw Raimi's Spider-Man in the theater when it first opened.

  • Kudos I say sir, kudos!

  • April 30, 2012, 6:29 p.m. CST

    As a lover of Ang Lee's Hulk

    by mr.underwater

    I find myself agreeing with Beaks Yikes!

  • April 30, 2012, 6:29 p.m. CST

    "THE AVENGERS is minimum-bet entertainment."

    by Aidan

    Saying that four years ago would get you laughed out of a room.

  • I've been to several different theaters from Regal to a few local indies. They all have lighting issues when it comes to 3D. That's the main reason I will be sticking with 2D for the foreseeable future. No one seems to be getting it right, and for what i have to pay, it's not worth it.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:34 p.m. CST

    Moose alloy - so forget the HUNDREDS of good reviews and talkback confirmation...

    by Kill List Hammertime've stumbled across a negative review FINALLY and thats the one your going with, cos it matches what you predicted? Your a fcking idiot.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:34 p.m. CST

    And I can't spell...

    by Kill List Hammertime

  • And bet on "black" rather than going for a straight, split, or even a street. To which I say "no shit"

  • April 30, 2012, 6:35 p.m. CST

    Too dark? That's what you get for watching a 3d conversion.

    by Farrokh

    I watched the 2d version and it was fine.

  • Contrarian for the sake of contrariness is not a valid critical analysis. I saw this movie last week, and while I agree that until the introduction of Thor it meanders, i never once viewed this as a paint by numbers, risk averse corporate film making. That mindset of yours is very telling. It reads as if you already had your boxes checked. Whedon made it, therefore it will look like a TV movie. Check. Although it did not. And you were forced to add a footnote. Uncheck. Marvel paid for it therefore it must be a corporate cheap-ie. Check. Although the Helicarrier sequence and Final forty minutes shows where the money went. Uncheck. Avengers turned into a joyous and exhilarating movie going experience, one that had audiences on their feet -During the Hulk/Loki scene. You reduced that to complaining about corporate film making. That sounds like an agenda. You are a fan of Ang Lee's earnest failure, that is fine. He tried and failed. But a comic book superhero movie, is by definition not a place to work out your daddy anxiety issues - at least not without a lot of smashing in-between, and that is where Hulk failed. Slow moving and introspective works for dramas, it tends to tick off most folks who were promised an superhero action adventure based upon a man turning into a giant muscled green maniac.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:38 p.m. CST

    I liked it

    by Korrom

    It certainly wasn't the best possible movie and not all I had wished for either, but i liked it. As Beaks said, it probably is the best outcome within the boundaries of todays big studio big budget market oriented filmmaking.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:39 p.m. CST

    And don't forget Lees film had Hulk-poodles...

    by Kill List Hammertime

    ... I mean, fucking Hulk-poodles. But your right, it's great. Fucking hell.

  • Okay, Beaks, sorry that a mainstream blockbuster that is excellent at being a mainstream turns out to be an excellent mainstream blockbuster. Wimp. you're looking for something to bitch about, judging the film on different merits than what is presented on the screen and what you want in your head. That's terrible reviewing which puts the reviewer first and the film second. you're supposed to be impartial, not projecting.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:40 p.m. CST

    I'd give this review more weight if the reviewer didn't like Ang Lee's Hulk

    by Queefer Sutherland

    I love Ang Lee's movies, but he did not understand the Hulk, and other than the battle with the military, this movie was a fantastic piece of shit. Anybody who defends it as "underrated" probably doesn't have the same tastes in film as I do, so I'm thinking I'll like The Avengers quite a lot.

  • boogereater can't stomach that scab-encrusted glob of mucosal detritus.

  •'s evident that Mr. Beaks had unshakeable preconceived notions about "The Avengers" going in, and nothing was going to interfere with his interpreting the movie by way of those notions. That's an unappetizing wad of snot.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:48 p.m. CST

    Exactly What Chances Were They Supposed To Take

    by ChiTownsBest

    This give the audience the Avengers they wanted. What's wrong with that? For once I feel like I was given the story I loved in the comics. Usually, we get unnecessary changes to characters that have been loved for years because the studio thinks it's smarter than the audience.Marvel knows it's audience and is getting better at giving us what we want. The Avengers is the anti-Transformers and was actually good on most every level. There are definitely plot holes, but the movie was so entertaining I really didn't care.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:51 p.m. CST

    I seriously cannot understand anyone who has enjoyed Ang Lees Hulk

    by rakesh patel

    an hour into it watching it.. and then he fights...dogs. I watched that movie 1 and a half times. once in the cinema and felt gutted. tried giving it another go watching it on tv, got to the dog scene again, gave up. hulk fights what at the end again? ghost nick nolte cloud dad? fucking hilarious. / i knew i should have stopped reading this thread.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:54 p.m. CST

    Dream to be on time and on budget, kids.

    by Winston Smith

    Ain't that the truth nowadays. Oddly, though, I disagree in this particular instance, I loved The Avengers and the imagination and wonder and awe it had. But as a whole I do agree with the idea behind your review, just not for this film.

  • April 30, 2012, 6:56 p.m. CST

    Yeah transfer the sentiments to something like Battleship...

    by Kill List Hammertime

    ...which was fuckng atrocious and you might have something.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:01 p.m. CST

    hmmm *spoilers*

    by notspock2

    I've seen it a number of times with different audiences and it's played differently each time- I can see that a review like this was inevitably going to come from someone. And you know what, fair enough- in each screening there were people who weren't swept up for the ride... I don't agree with some of the criticisms, I think the intro's to the characters were pretty much the only intro's they could have and were very entertaining -I loved Black Widows scene, Starks intro, Banner freaking out Black Widow with a joke and thought the Dialogue throughout them was great. The only things I thought really needed fixing were the pre credits sequence, and they REALLY needed to make clearer that LOKI was manipulating Banner/Hulk on the Helicarrier because people seem not to have picked that up.-it's suggested but i think it needed to be hammered home a bit more.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:03 p.m. CST


    by TallanDagwood

    I have no doubt that there will be detractors of this movie, some legit some probably working for the Distinguished Competition. There are legitimate pacing issues in the first, say 20 minutes of the movie where Whedon works very hard to provide the Black Widow a back story, and until Thor shows up you do feel it is a bit off. But after that it -with apologies to Mr bay, transforms and becomes epic. There are scenes I will not spoil, that are what fans of these characters have wanted to see for decades. It is not a perfect movie by any stretch, but Beaks' criticisms seem to be far more agenda driven, than critical thought. I do not hate Ang Lees earnest failure as much as I am greatly disappointed by the opportunity he wasted. That movie set Marvel back by a decade

  • April 30, 2012, 7:06 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    If there's anything by the numbers here is this review. It's so much a stereoptical "take some risks" review that actually got me laughing. The Avengers are getting public and critical acclaim for a reason, and the reason is that's an honest to God blockbuster that indeed took a hell lot of chances, hell it's ballsy from beginning to end, or are you telling me that all these characters together aren't a hard sell? Or that you've seen the mid credits scene coming or more than that, do you really think someone that isn't an ubber Marvel geek got who that was? Tell me more how Ang Lee's Hulk is a great movie or Nolan's Bane is amazing because noone can understand what the hell he's saying. This is clearly a review of someone that was already set to hate on this movie, and rave like the second coming a growling Bane. Ten bucks that Beaks will use this bullshit about taking chances to review TDKR.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:07 p.m. CST

    Ang Lee's Hulk - Very Underrated

    by sakinnuso

    Ang Lee totally got The Hulk. He definitely took some missteps. I hated Hulk Poodles, and the final battle was absurd. The rest of the movie was so much better than The Incredible Hulk that I don't understand why comic fans love the latter and hate the former so much. Incredible Hulk was just empty CGI action. Ang's Hulk had that incredible San Francisco payoff with the end transformation/ standoff. Very dramatic. Guess i'm biased. I've only enjoyed a couple of episodes of the Bill Bixby TV show (that episode with 'the other hulk' is absolutely amazing), I hated the 90's cartoon, and LOVE the 80's cartoon which was much darker in tone and score. All of my opinions on the Hulk are in the extreme minority. John Byrne had a couple of good issues vs. The Avengers. Peter David had a mostly marvelous run culminating in the impressive The End, and Greg Pak's Planet Hulk was probably the last good Hulk Story I've read. I don't get most fans...

  • April 30, 2012, 7:08 p.m. CST

    So I guess you liked "Bring it On," more, Mr. Hack?

    by nothingasitseems

  • April 30, 2012, 7:08 p.m. CST

    FINALLY a clear headed review.

    by Chuck_Cobra

    While overall I think the movie was fantastic, I agree with everything BEAKS says, and I noticed the missed opportunities throughout the movie. I feel like time will tell, after all the excitement calms down, or with multiple viewings more people will see the flaws.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:08 p.m. CST

    Well that's just, like, your opinion man.

    by Tikidonkeypunch

  • April 30, 2012, 7:09 p.m. CST

    Beaks does it again...

    by Zakari Paolon

    Every time you review a movie, you intro with a couple of paragraphes and then you run through the entire fucking movie almost beat for beat. There are other ways to talk about a movie before its (North American) release, see: every other review of the film out there. You're a good writter, but man you do this every time...

  • April 30, 2012, 7:09 p.m. CST


    by MooseMalloy

    They need their own movie.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:10 p.m. CST

    Bad CG Asgard in Thor??? DAFUQ?

    by Player01

    Asgard in Thor looked fucking fantastic. Its one of the things that SOLD the universe of Thor. BEAKS STOP FUCKING TROLLING. That is all.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:12 p.m. CST

    Never thought in a million years that I'd agree with Beaks...

    by Cagliostro

    But right on. 'Tis an ill wind that blows no minds.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:13 p.m. CST

    I agree, Beaks. My Review (light spoilers).

    by tyler_turden

    I found the first half unreasonably dark (I thought it was a projection fuck up) and I was blown away by the first half. All of my issues can be found here as i don't want to spam up the feed.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:13 p.m. CST

    Oh! And Beak's Review...?

    by sakinnuso

    Honestly, Beaks is probably dead on. i'm as excited as the next man for the midnight screening, but everything Beaks says seems apparent in the trailers. New Marvel is very content with the low gamble. Every movie since Iron Man 2 has felt that way. Just cost-efficient enough, just funny enough, just enough acceptable CG action - where the movie will be profitable. The only difference with this movie and the previous Marvel flicks (post Iron Man 2) is Whedon's sharp dialogue, love of the material, and the awe of seeing these characters interact. Still going to see it opening night. I grew up Marvel. However, I fully expect the movie to be EXACTLY what Beaks said, but enjoying it for what it is...the best you're going to get in tightly controlled economic filmmaking. That's probably not a bad thing. It's not FANTASTIC, but it's a smart way to keep making these movies.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:14 p.m. CST

    I saw the movie 2 hours ago...

    by julia

    OMG!!!!!! ...TOTAL GEEKGASM!!! AAAHHH... Oh and stay away from youtube. they have some leaked scenes. pity americans have to wait 3 more days LOL.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:14 p.m. CST


    by grandmoffpenis

    Finally, you say. So out of all the numerous positive reviews, you are blindly choosing to ONLY listen to one lukewarm review? Sounds like you have blinders on, my friend. Why don't you just watch it and decide for yourself rather than ignoring the majority to listen to a lone voice of dissatisfaction?

  • April 30, 2012, 7:15 p.m. CST


    by grandmoffpenis

    Forgot to add that I was responding to Moosemalloy.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:16 p.m. CST

    Ang's Hulk

    by tyler_turden

    Also I FUCKING loved Ang Lee's Hulk. I saw it five times at the cinema. I know parts of it don't work (the end) but when it hit (and THAT score) I flipped. I think it is soooo underrated.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:17 p.m. CST

    I saw it last week

    by grandmoffpenis

    and I totally disagree with just about everything Mr. Beaks says. And as someone else pointed out, him inferring that Ang Lee's Hulk was more a creative success than Avengers makes me highly dubious of his opinion at all. Though there was some awesome visual styles that Ang Lee did with his Hulk film, for the most part it was definitely a failure.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:18 p.m. CST

    See what happens when you open a movie over-seas first --

    by MooseMalloy

    -- Gee, I'm so sorry, I haven't seen THE AVENGERS yet 'cause I'm in MUTHAFUCKIN' AMERICA! Ya' know... NYC, Stan Lee and all that other shit! Good thing I'm not giving the studios my money on this one.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:18 p.m. CST

    Saw it here in uk on first night......

    by Sbate001

    Had high hopes for this since the announcement that Whedon was at the helm and it doesn't disappoint. Great start to the summer season. My full, spoiler free review can be found here

  • April 30, 2012, 7:20 p.m. CST

    Sometimes the masses are right

    by grandmoffpenis

    I wonder if Mr. Beaks is, like someone else said, a contrarian. A lot of people are digging the shit out of this film, and cynics usually will intentionally not like something liked by the masses so that they appear to be smarter and see flaws that the rest of us plebs do not. Fuck that. Fuck cynicism, fuck haters. I like to actually enjoy things in life. Unlike haters who go out of their way to hate things, I WANT to like things. Sometimes films are just too shitty or "meh" to like, but whatever. Avengers FUCKING ROCKED. Fuck anyone who says otherwise.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:20 p.m. CST

    Yeah that'll make a difference to the overall box office.

    by Kill List Hammertime

    I bet Marvels shitting themselves.

  • Oh, and FUCK YOU, Nordling. Suck a fucking jizz-lathered cock. Mine, to be specific.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:22 p.m. CST

    -- grandmofflameassname

    by MooseMalloy

    That and all the trailers and hype that I have seen made me think that this movie will not be as great as everyone thinks it will be. I will not consider your opinion regarding this movie because you are not American.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:23 p.m. CST


    by grandmoffpenis

    I'm in America, too, dude. Vegas, to be exact. I happened to see an advanced screening. And what the hell? I'm not saying to go see it this fucking second, OBVIOUSLY. Can you wait until the weekend? Is that physically possible? What in my statement said that you had to go see it right now? I'm just saying that you shouldn't be so set on "not giving the studios their money" for this one, as if you're proving a point or something. Fucking retarded. You haven't seen it yet you're set on ignoring ALL the positive reviews to focus on one single bad one. WHY?!? Why do you want to hate this movie? Especially when you haven't even seen it?!?

  • April 30, 2012, 7:23 p.m. CST

    re: Sometimes the masses are right

    by Winston Smith

    As someone who loved this movie, I will defend Beaks here. He didn't hate the film at all, and even praised it as good as could have been expected in the current market. He thought it was good rather than great. This doesn't make someone a hater. We ALL have some movies that are considered classics that we like but don't love. Come on now.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:26 p.m. CST

    Fucking hell, what a dick.

    by Kill List Hammertime

  • April 30, 2012, 7:26 p.m. CST

    Maybe hater was too strong a term

    by grandmoffpenis

    You're probably right, halfbreedqueen2.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST

    The one thing I think people should be pointing out is

    by Winston Smith

    "It's a massive movie, but not sprawling to the point that the studio will burn through a sizable chunk of its billion-dollar worldwide gross attempting to break even." That. This film cost $220 mil. That makes it one of the most expensive films of all time. And when you have an epic 25+ minute pure action scene with money shot after money shot like the last battle of The Avengers, well, what exactly tops this? Dark of the Moon? Lord of the Rings? The entire LOTR trilogy only cost a bit more than this single film. This wasn't a cheapie film at all. The numbers prove that, and my opinion is it looked like the money was on screen. In fact, this film overwhelmed me with a sense of epic awesomeness I haven't felt since Avatar, Dead Man's Chest and King Kong 2005 (not saying those films are masterpieces, just that they both had set pieces that were big in idea and execution).

  • April 30, 2012, 7:27 p.m. CST

    Moosemalloy that is.

    by Kill List Hammertime

  • April 30, 2012, 7:31 p.m. CST

    the first 30 minutes are awkward but ...

    by julia

    but i think that feeling relies on the expectations you have since the movie starts. Coulson dies of course, hulk(theotherguy)/banner is the shit, stark is the shit and some scenes from the trailer arent in the movie like the military in new york city, i just saw cops and there is some blonde girl spotted in the trailer that have IMO a lot of screen time in the city attack. 3d OK. advice: see it in imax!!!!

  • April 30, 2012, 7:32 p.m. CST

    -- muff

    by MooseMalloy

    I'm one of the few who thinks that most comicbook movies can never top the experience of actually reading the source material. I will not blindly go slap my money down at the box-office just because it is a superhero property. I'm glad that I waited to see both THOR and CAPTAIN AMERICA on disc rather than sit through them in the theater. I would have felt cheated and more importantly bored out of my mind if I had. But seriously, a Euro first release for THE AVENGERS? You realize some dumbass executive out there thought that this wouldn't be a big deal to long-time comicbook readers such as myself.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:34 p.m. CST

    3D made me go cross eyed...

    by deanbarry

    Kind of like when I read this review...

  • April 30, 2012, 7:35 p.m. CST

    This movie will make in excess of a Billion

    by TallanDagwood

    It is already tracking at close $600 million worldwide by the time it is all said and done. Add at least another 600 mil from domestic. That is just my guess.

  • All I read on the Mr. Beaks review is an unabashed Nolan fanboy trying too hard to unvalidate The Avengers thunder. It won't work. People aren't that stupid anymore and can smell bullshit coming from miles away. Mr. Beaks about the TDKR first 6 minutes last year: "Planes and Bane. In IMAX. That's what you're going to get next Friday (12/16) when you see the first six minutes of THE DARK KNIGHT RISES in front of MISSION: IMPOSSIBLE GHOST PROTOCOL. And as soon as it's finished, you're going to be screaming for the projectionist to run it again. While we've run a ton of DARK KNIGHT RISES news on this site, I've steered clear of most of it. Aside from casting, I want to remain unspoiled until I'm sitting in an IMAX theater next July, ready to watch the final chapter of Christopher Nolan's Batman trilogy. So I have no idea where this film is headed, who's going to die, who's going to get their back broken, and how Selina Kyle is going to figure into the narrative. But I saw Bane tonight. I also saw a stunningly complex, practically-staged action sequence in IMAX. And while I'd love to break it down beat-by-beat, Warner Bros. has asked all journalists to stick to generalities. So... Nolan introduced tonight's event, and he extolled the immersive virtues of the IMAX format before plunging us into footage - which starts in 35mm widescreen with Gordon eulogizing Harvey Dent. Then we're being whisked across a field. And a few minutes later, aboard a plane, we hear Bane speak for the first time in a horrible, strangled tone. Tom Hardy's Bane is a substantial, but strangely broken man. He's a bruiser, but not exactly massive. He also struggles with his elocution, which may be intentional, but nevertheless resulted in lots of puzzled post-screening discussions. Honestly, I caught probably half of Bane's dialogue, and every colleague I spoke with had similar difficulty understanding him. I hate to cause problems for Nolan at this stage of the filmmaking process, but if Bane sounds like this throughout the film, it could be an issue." Source: Mr. Beaks review of Nolan's Inception - the most overrated movie of all time, beating even Avatar - where he talks about "calculated risk" with a whole different light: "INCEPTION is Christopher Nolan's reward for a commercial assignment profitably executed: the opportunity to realize on a grand scale an idea that has intrigued him for the better part of a decade. In the studio tit-for-tat equation, this is the "one for me". It's the reason you start making movies in the first place. It's LAWRENCE OF ARABIA. APOCALYPSE NOW. GANGS OF NEW YORK. It's the the movie you stake your career on. It's the movie you make now. For most filmmakers, this project is a gamble; for Christopher Nolan, it's a shrewdly calculated risk. Though the narrative speeds ahead like a rapidly unfolding lucid dream, INCEPTION uses the familiar vernacular of the heist film to keep less attentive audiences engaged. Unlike other films that traipse across the boundless landscape of the unconscious mind, it's not a take-it-or-leave-it proposition. The central concept is simple: plant an idea in a character's mind in order to manipulate them into behaving in the best interest of a rival party. The particulars may be complex, but there's an emotional logic that drives the story forward. There are also wildly compelling action set pieces. In this regard, INCEPTION is a miracle: a multi-layered meditation on the unruly clutter of the subconscious that works sensationally well as a classical action film. It plays brilliantly on every conceivable level." Source: If this isn't a Nolan fanboy hate review of The Avengers, I don't really know how the hell I should call it. Inception isn't a brilliant piece of cinema, it isn't either creative to justify its hype. Shutter Island, The Matrix and many movies before Inception accomplished what Nolan tried to do in that movie first and better. And that's not coming from a Nolan hater, this is coming from one of his old fans, I've been following his work since Memento. Inception and The Dark Knight are by far the worst entries of Nolan's catalogue, but they're overhyped like hell. Mr. Beaks review just screams fanboyism all over, and someone should call him out on his bullshit. At least pretend that you didn't want to get caught, sir.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:40 p.m. CST

    Did you see the same film as everyone else, Beaks?

    by Logan_1973

    The contrast between your take and the rest of the entire world's is striking.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:43 p.m. CST

    Mr Beaks is spot on.

    by huskerdu2

    It's got just enough of Whedon's writing flair to lift it above average, but narratively the film is clunky, visually flat and - the final battle apart - lacks that all important zing. Totally agree about the Berlin sequence and how well Hulk works in the film. For me, the weak links are definitely Jeremy Renner and Chris Evans. Renner 'cos he's playing a nothing part and Evans 'cos...well, anything meaty for Cap to play has clearly been earmarked for his own movie. In fact, that's also true of Thor who doesn't really do very much at all in the movie. Hemsworth is pretty charismatic, but Thor's just sort of...there.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:44 p.m. CST

    I swear you can't please some people...

    by ShakaLaka Lambo

    You can't, Avengers rocked, the hobbit is on its way, batman is in great hands, supes is getting the star treatment he deserves, and Spidey will finally hit the big screen with Gwen, his web shooters and more practical effects! But you changes the suit a tiny bit and "fans" go nuts what exactly do you guys want!? I for one am so glad I'm alive for this summer...its a great time to be a comics fan! All the movies we sat around dreaming about after reading the latest issue of (insert your favorite comic title here) amazing, avengers, batman, superman wetc. Are here! Be thankful people and enjoy it! Btw, ang lee's hulk sucked. Fact.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:44 p.m. CST

    With that said...

    by Jack

    Not one single superhero movie so far has done what The Avengers did. Not one single one. The Avengers will be remembered among the greatest blockbusters of all time, and rightfully so. The Avengers doesn't take itself more seriously than it should, unlike Nolan's Batman, and that's exactly its biggest virtue. The Avengers is a movie that's proud of its origins, not afraid of them. The Avengers makes me want Warner to move fast with Batman's reboot and give us a Batman that has a larger than life feel like the Batman: Arkham Asylum/City games. I want two comic movieverses. I want a fucking Justice League movie. And I'm damn sure that Nolan isn't the right guy to delicer that.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:45 p.m. CST

    Norton and Roth were great imo.

    by ShakaLaka Lambo

  • April 30, 2012, 7:46 p.m. CST

    Interesting review, but I think Beaks is missing the point

    by No time for Haters

    I wondeer if Mr. Beaks had "fun" with the movie? I understand the issues he had with it, but isn't it better for the suits to make a relatively "safe" Avengers movie the first time out and really go all in on a second movie, than to just be haphazard about it? The fact that there are aliens in this movie i believe shows a willingness for the suits to gamble. If they were really playing it safe, they could've just kept it as Loki being the villian and him using the Hulk as a pawn. I don't think Beaks is giving enough credit to where it's due based on how bad it could've been. I'll take a good, but not great Avengers movie over a bad one any day.

  • While certainly problematic, it has so much going for it. It's a poor Hulk movie. But a fascinating big budget art house scifi hybrid. There's really nothing else like it. Only Lee could get away with that much character drama. Not to mention the camera work is still a favorite of mine. It's a fucking living comic book. It's different, so of course people are going to complain about it. I recently watched Nortans Hulk to prep for Avengers, and forgot how terrible that film truly was. Ya, it was more truer to the comics, but it was plain and forgettable. Absolutely nothing memorable. It was just an action movie going through the motions. It has some of the worst dialogue I can think off. "It could be... an Abomination!" Say what you will. Ang Lees Hulk had heart, style, AND substance. Nortans Hulk had none of those. If it didn't have Nortans involvement, the majority of people would have pissed on it like it rightly deserves to be.

  • Ang Lee's HULK is severely underrated. That being said, I don't give a fuck if EVERYONE hated AVENGERS: Thursday is my Christmas Eve this year, and I get to open my present on Friday at midnight.

  • April 30, 2012, 7:52 p.m. CST

    yeah avengers was "fun"

    by animas

    mindless, pointless, generic, canned "fun" what is the deal with you people not tolerating dissent about opinions?

  • April 30, 2012, 7:55 p.m. CST

    One thing I can't figure out...

    by Raymond Shaw

    Are beams of of light or power sent straight up from the Earth into the sky -- accompanied by the sound designer dialing up a whoosh sound -- and which provide a signal or portal for baddies to invade a cliche yet?

  • April 30, 2012, 8 p.m. CST

    Mr. Beaks is doing his Armond White impression

    by mongo126

  • April 30, 2012, 8:06 p.m. CST

    Marvel seems to have always...

    by Tyler Clark

    been about the marketing and not the story. Didn't we hear Raimi, Favreau, Branagh all allude to being pushed around quite a bit? This sounds totally like something Marvel would do. They don't try to actually make a story out of their movies, they simply turn them into episodes to push towards the next movie, and the next, and the next. Their last few movies have all pushed towards The Avengers. And now that it's finally arrived, what do I hear? They're setting it up for the sequel. It's just stringing along, that's all. The reason Marvel can't stand with the Batman franchise is b/c (of course, Nolan is a big part) DC doesn't give Nolan shit, they let him do what he does and all of the new Batman movies are movies are their own. They have actual stories and an arc to the trilogy. Marvel just wants to appease their crowd (which will be easy, no offense, b/c it's THEIR crowd) and keep 'em coming.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:09 p.m. CST

    why does everything have to become a religion

    by animas

    now movies are like politics and sports and religion. your movie is omnipotent and all must bow before it.

  • Inception is just a bunch of reworked ideas throw at the screen and overhyped like hell. And I did pay attention. I "get" what Nolan intended with Inception, but I'm not alone as a Nolan fan for thinking that's his worst movie. For Whedon and Marvel, The Avengers wasn't a calculated risk. It was a gamble, a gamble that paid off so well that we could actually seeing the birth of the most grossing movie of all time. Star Wars came first and Lucas had balls of steel for doing it. But so did Whedon and Marvel. At least admit that you're just mad that what will change the paradigm of blockbusters this year is The Avengers, Beaks, not TDKR. I'll be glad to read your predictable "by the numbers" review of TDKR later this year, Nolanite.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:16 p.m. CST

    "Whaaa... I just want to be different!" *SPOILER

    by Benjamin Allen

    You're not. *END SPOILER

  • April 30, 2012, 8:18 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    I'd respect an honest negative review, but I just debunked Beaks as a massive Nolan fanboy. I don't like the rivalry between fanbases as much as you do, but if your review will be partial, at least Beaks should have the guts to go ball to the walls in his troll review. He's a Nolan fan trying to dismiss this movie but was gushing over the 6 minutes presentation that Nolan did of TDKR last december. If his review will be a clusterfuck, at least admit that you're completely partial about the subject. All I've read from his review was "Nolan's TDKR", that even before I realize he was a Nolanite. If there's one thing that's predictable and by the numbers, it's Mr. Beaks review of The Avengers and subsequently the gushing fest it'll be his review of TDKR. I'm just calling as it is.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:19 p.m. CST

    Nailed it.

    by J

    Thank you Beaks!

  • April 30, 2012, 8:19 p.m. CST

    the problem with this review:

    by percane

    is reporting opinion as fact. "THOR was well cast, but undone by its unconvincingly CG Asgard and muddled storytelling" for you perhaps, but i thoroughly enjoyed thor, and find it more re-watchable than captain america.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:19 p.m. CST

    Lee's Hulk and Spiderman 2 were the golden age of marvel movies

    by mr.underwater

    As they contained both spectacle and emotional resonance.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:21 p.m. CST

    It's a good review

    by theblackvegtable

    And it reads very honestly. I don't agree with all of it, but that's why I come here because I like to discuss movies. Avengers was a great movie, I certainly don't think it's the greatest movie of all time like some people are implying, nor do I think it's better then TDK. But it's a hell of a lot of fun

  • April 30, 2012, 8:24 p.m. CST

    This is my favourite review so far

    by palinode

    I'm glad there's someone who has reservations about the film and is able to state clearly and fairly what those reservations are. The reams of offended ad hominem attacks only strengthen my conviction that Beaks has a case here.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:24 p.m. CST

    Film dark in places? Bullshit.

    by Douglas Kirk

    I saw 2 pristine screenings of this film in both 3D and 2D. It wasn't dark in places. I'm surprised Mr. Beaks that you blame this on the filmmakers and not the shitty theatre you must have seen it in.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:27 p.m. CST

    Beaks one problem with THE AVENGERS:

    by Le Vicious Fishus

    Not enough rape.

  • The majority of critics speak all within a few days of one another and to their horror they find that they're all saying the same thing. Oh, the humanity! What's to be done? Those who haven't already shot their wad suddenly feel the need to stand out and begin pulling quibbles out of their ass. It's absolutely about being different and not sounding like all the rest of the people out there talking about the film. No big deal really. It's a natural human reaction. We all want to be our own man. I doubt Beaks even knows he's doing it.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:35 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    Nolan's Batman is the best live action iteration of the character. But that isn't a brilliant feat, when you take in considerarion what it came before. I love Batman Begins. I love the promise of a Batman vs. Joker movie hinted at the end of Batman Begins. I didn't feel completely satisfied with TDK tho, and what the end of TDK hinted exactly? Oh, another movie, just like the Marvel movies do. I'm a comic book fanboy by heart, I love most of Nolan's movies besides Inception and TDK, but that doesn't mean that Nolan's take is the best Batman could hope for. The Batman mythos is bigger than what Nolan did with him so far, DC should stop paying attention to people that will rave anything Nolan does and start taking notes about what Marvel is doing. Batman can be a serious, dark and broody character and still have fantastical elements added to him. No one wants another Burtom or god forbid Schumacher movie, but Batman could be more like the one in Batman TAS and the Arkham Asylum games. Batman should be proud of the comic elements and Warner should capitalize of making a world out of this characters, because that's something that has been proved to be not only insanely profitable but also insanely entertaining, and in the end that's what movies are all about. Marvel's The Avengers will wipe the floor of the box office with Batman's cowl and I hardly doubt that TDKR will be able to beat TDK, let alone The Avengers. That unless Anne Hatheway is found dead, then TDKR will be able to catch the thunder twice. I just want Nolan to move on already and a Batman reboot where he's integrated in the same universe as Snyder's Superman gets a green light. It's about time for DC to build their own movieverse.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:43 p.m. CST

    Saw this in 2d

    by lead_sharp

    and the lighting was fine, if you are going to review stuff see the film in the best feasible way, and a post 3d off centre viewing isn't that. The first forty minutes were (paraphrasing) dull? What did you want a punch up all the way through? The Cap' character stuff will probably be in the next movie, the next CAP' movie were all the individual character stuff gets explored.

  • April 30, 2012, 8:45 p.m. CST

    That review is hilarious Beaks.

    by elgato73

  • April 30, 2012, 8:56 p.m. CST

    The plot thickens...

    by Jack

  • April 30, 2012, 9 p.m. CST

    The one-sheet omen

    by Atomic_Crusader

    "THE AVENGERS is minimum-bet entertainment." In other words, it's overwhelmingly mediocre. Ok, so the film is watchable, fine, but not living up to it's potential as a great or even very good film. Muddled first hour, lousy score, ouch. The sad truth is that most superhero films are squandered opportunities for great film making. Fans should take heed, just because the film got made without being embarrassing doesn't mean that it actually is "all that" - meaning anything close to what it could have been. Mr.Beaks, you are living up to your potential as a fine film reviewer, thank you. I'll catch this next fall, on disc, cheap, maybe. Batman is now looking that much better.

  • April 30, 2012, 9:06 p.m. CST

    The Nolanites now have a voice to represent them.

    by Jack

    Maybe the parts of Bane dialogue that no one can understand will be Beaks distorted voice explaining how BOLD Hunger Games is. Fanboys will be fanboys, it's such a shame that AICN would someone like Beaks to post his partial shit here. Then Harry wonders why no one respects AICN anymore.

  • April 30, 2012, 9:12 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    The bold thing about thg is that isn't as awful as Twilight. That's it. But the problem of beaks with The Avengers are clearly personal. Look for what I've posted above, entitled "Who's willing to bet 10 bucks" and you'll get what I mean. He's such a Nolan bitch that he's desperate because The Avengers is a juggernaut of critical and public acclaim. I sincerily never have seen someone do something like that, at least retain your dignity and refrain to post your review if it'll read this biased. Reading his review of Inception and The Avengers back to back is actually entertaining.

  • When I saw this movie and I thought it was pure super hero magic. Felt like I was 8 years old again watching a comic book come to life.

  • April 30, 2012, 9:38 p.m. CST

    Dying to read Harry's review

    by Blanket-Man

    C'mon, Big Red, we've read most of your minions' opinions, what'cha got? I'm predicting a gleeful, 5,000-word geekgasm that makes his infamous BLADE 2 review seem like it was written by George Will. And I'll love every word!

  • Batman should be a dark and broody movie, a detective story, but never forgetting the fantastical elements from comics that also make the character cool. Batman TAS is still the best iteration of the character outside comics, I just hope they embrace all that with the inevitable reboot.

  • April 30, 2012, 9:42 p.m. CST

    who the fuck is mr beaks???

    by danny rose

  • April 30, 2012, 9:50 p.m. CST

    Beaks ...I have some questions about how SHIELD is handled...

    by TopHat

    ...I don't like SHIELD, Fury, Widow or Coulson. I don't like how this military faction is COMMANDING around superheroes and, in the process, basically teaching children everywhere who watch this movie that shooting a glock is the equivalent of BEING a superhero. My problems come from the other Marvel movies I've seen and the trailer for THE AVENGERS: IRON MAN & IRON MAN 2: Fury breaks into Stark's house, gets Widow to inflitrate his business, confines him to his home, manipulates him to make something for SHIELD ...and Tony still wants "in"? To me this makes Stark a huge idiot. THOR: Coulson takes Jane's work on the premise that "They're the good guys" and its glossed over like its totally understandable for a private faction to break into your place and steal things from you ...yet, Thor actually pats Coulson on the back and tells him they "fight for the same things" ...which includes illegally stealing things from the woman he supposedly loves. CAPTAIN AMERICA & the AVENGERS trailer: Captain wakes up from being frozen basically being SHIELD's endentured servant. Why is he calling Fury "sir"? Does he just blindly follow anyone with some kind of authority? The AVENGERS trailer: Widow literally surrounds Banner with guys pointing guns, threatening him if he doesn't do what SHIELD wants ...and its supposed to be cute. Why doesn't he Hulk-out and kick her and all those guys' asses? That "prison" Loki is in ...that-was-made-for-Banner. Why would someone freely choose to help the people who were unapologetically going to take away their freedom? In short: Why don't these honest-to-God superheroes tell Fury to go FUCK HIMSELF.

  • Read it here: Now THAT'S a review of The Avengers!!! And THAT'S a true AICN reviewer. So full of win, a celebration of the movie that marks the golden age of superhero movies. God I miss Moriarty here. :(

  • April 30, 2012, 9:57 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    I can't answer you without spoiling the movie for you and others so... Wait and see. ;)

  • April 30, 2012, 10:01 p.m. CST


    by TopHat

  • April 30, 2012, 10:18 p.m. CST

    Who pissed in your cornflakes, Beaks?

    by seagrass

    This is the only negative review I've seen so far... which completely goes against what you said in your interview with Whedon... not to mention what you said in the TALKBACK... and I quote: "Sorry, guys. My review will go up Monday. Just got too much on my plate between now and tomorrow to do it justice. Spoiler: it's positive." This review is about as negative as it gets, which makes you either a liar or a pod person. Here's the whole thread, by the way:

  • April 30, 2012, 10:20 p.m. CST

    And before you argue

    by seagrass

    that you wrote a negative review - "This is THE AVENGERS, and they're blowing it. It's small, cheap and utterly devoid of wonder." That's not something you put in a positive review.

  • April 30, 2012, 10:20 p.m. CST

    Sorry, meant positive review

    by seagrass

    But I'm a little irritated over the flip-flopping.

  • April 30, 2012, 10:24 p.m. CST

    More Beaks pullquotes

    by seagrass

    "Whedon’s affection for these iconic characters is evident throughout THE AVENGERS, but it really comes shining through down the stretch, as Earth’s Mightiest Heroes band together for a Manhattan-decimating showdown with Loki and his otherworldly friends. If you had concerns about a guy most renowned for his TV work (BUFFY THE VAMPIRE SLAYER, ANGEL and FIREFLY) delivering the requisite big-screen bang, forget about it. The final forty minutes of THE AVENGERS are spectacular (though I’d highly recommend that you stop watching trailers and commercials, because they’re giving away some of the best beats). Whedon’s stepped up to the plate and put just enough lumber on the ball to knock in the game-winning run." What happened between the time you wrote this and the review you just posted? Seriously.

  • April 30, 2012, 10:27 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    Agreed completely. Read the Moriarty's review of The Avengers I've posted above, but here's an excerpt: "Even if you factor in all the other superhero movies that weren't made by Marvel, this goes on a very short list of the very best of them ever made.  Whedon's affection for the conventions of the genre are evident, and he makes every scene feel like a stand-alone lesson in how to treat comic book source material with respect.  He grounds things in a real and recognizable world, but he's not afraid to indulge the weirder, pulpier side of things.  His comic book world is big enough to include the strangest corners of deep space and the most mundane stretch of New York City street, and it all feels like it works together.  Christopher Nolan has been rightfully praised for his work on the Batman films, but he's always made it a point of pride that he has taken the more outrageous elements of that world and twisted them so that they fit into something closer to "reality."  Whedon doesn't do that.  Instead, he embraces the nature of the world he's creating, and he simply treats it seriously, with respect, and in doing so, he is bound to spur the imaginations of young viewers worldwide." Batman needs a director that's bold enough to drink from the source and make something amazing. I feel like Nolan is holding Batman back and I'm glad that his run is ending. We need a bold take on Batman, not more pseudo-realism and military vehicles porn. By the way, glodene just brought my attention for the Whedon interview tha Beaks did: He indeed says that he's writing a positive review for the movie. Now this just brought this thing to a whole new level. Since when AICN allows to post troll reviews? God, did I mention that I miss Moriarty on this website? I love Harry's reviews but goddamn, he was indeed the best AICN writer. It's such a shame I can't keep up with his reviews now as I used to.

  • April 30, 2012, 10:30 p.m. CST

    What the fuck?

    by seagrass

    Seriously... April Fool's Day was a month ago.

  • April 30, 2012, 10:55 p.m. CST

    Funny how everybody's crapping on Beaks

    by kaoteek

    ... when around my parts (France, to be exact), most fans and critics share his views : the movie's good, fun, spectacular, but there's a bunch of problems. Not only are all the usual Whedon gimmicks present (if you've ever seen a Whedon show or movie, you can almost guess the entire Avengers movie's twists, turns, and who'll-do-what-and-when, just from the trailers), but the first half is, indeed, unfocused, clumsy & clunky, overly technobabbly and aimlessly chatty. Also, not particularly well shot (during some close fights, or in the forest), but it doesn't really detract from the whole. Not only that, but there's also a blatant lack of stakes in the huge final battle : yeah, NYC gets destroyed, buildings collapse, nondescript bland aliens shoot on crowds... but there's not a single death to be seen. Also, the Asgardian designs don't mesh very well with the reality of the other characters : Thor & Loki's costumes seem even cheaper and tackier than before, even with the lame Captain America redesigned suit (a massive fail, there). The Avengers is unbalanced, heavy-handed at times, and could have benefited from some more inspired art direction at some points... but it's still fun as hell, and at the top of the Marvel movies. Also, Hulk is really awesome (even though his funnier scenes are walking on the thin line between great and over-the-top), and if Marvel manages to make the next Hulk movie as fun as his scenes here, it'll be a winner.

  • April 30, 2012, 10:59 p.m. CST

    Wow, what a piece of shit review.

    by dahveed1972

  • April 30, 2012, 11:05 p.m. CST

    kaoteek: we aren't crapping on him because his review

    by seagrass

    was negative. We are crapping on him because he flat-out said that his review was going to be positive, and it turned out negative. "THE AVENGERS is minimum-bet entertainment." and "It's small, cheap and utterly devoid of wonder." are not what one puts in a positive review.

  • That is just laundering money out of the American middle class, to pay for a billion chinese babies, who's government supports the undermining of the American precedent, that will be jockeyed into taking the place of the opportunities the American system of wealth and privileage provides and was established for it's own children.

  • April 30, 2012, 11:13 p.m. CST

    Can't wait

    by adzigjo

    This and TDKR.... great time to be a CB fan

  • April 30, 2012, 11:22 p.m. CST

    are the chitauri robots? that part was a WTF!!!!

    by julia

    an explanation please!!! and the first appearance of the MARK VII was so cool, amazing, the audience went nuts.... and america haven't seen it yet ....LOL... keep waiting :)

  • and their inner 12 year old telling them to get back in line and see it again. I'm guessing Beaks really enjoyed the Matrix sequels and high school.

  • April 30, 2012, 11:41 p.m. CST

    @ ijacksparrow: I agree on Batman: AA

    by chronicallydepressedlemming

    Batman should have a dark twisted down-the-rabbit-hole feel to it. It has a great lewis carrol/insane asylum mood to the whole thing.

  • April 30, 2012, 11:52 p.m. CST

    Marvel 2099?

    by DukieMichaelNamondRandy

    I remember how cool it was to see futuristic versions of all my faves in Marvel's 2099 series. Of course, they were inconsistent in quality, but the 9-year old in me LOVED them. X-Men 2099, with a different ensemble of KickAss mutants, and Ghost Rider 2099, with its take on Cybernetics and the digitalization of souls, are still actually pretty good. Then they combined all the series' together because they weren't making enough dough separately and TOTALLY screwed the pooch if ya ask me. Sure, the whole "Let's move everybody to the Savage Lands!" plot was kind of a neat way to unite the crews, but they ended up killing off underdeveloped characters and leaving too many plots hanging. Seriously, whatever happened to Meanstreak?! He ran so fast he broke through to another DIMENSION, and the last we saw of him he was face down on a canyon floor! Anyways, point being, I see Marvel trying to mine that cave in the future if these movies don't work out. And hey, if the company's made 10 movies and only 3 of them were worth the time and effort, I'm glad they got one of the latter ones RIGHT. Let's hope they choose Quality over Quantity from this point forward.

  • April 30, 2012, 11:59 p.m. CST

    Powers Boothe was so recognizable btw

    by julia

  • Y'all can checkout his video blog review of The Avengers via a link on WHEDONESQUE.COM.

  • May 1, 2012, 1:18 a.m. CST


    by Perceptor

    First Beaks says they got it right, then he proceeded to tear it apart. This isn't the first time I've read a review that did the wavering routine on this site. Any more like this and I'll stop coming to AICN altogether.

  • May 1, 2012, 2:20 a.m. CST


    by Tyler Clark

    Nice reply. I should have probably mentioned this in my first post as to not mislead, but I'm not big Nolan fan either. The Prestige is pretty good, Begins is pretty good, and TDK feels epic enough that it should be pretty great (and quite a few scenes are in the movie, and it's probably the best comic book movie) but it's far from perfect: - One of Batman's biggest strengths (and some of his best stuff in Begins) is his use of fear and being scary (the scene where he strings Flass up is a pretty good example), and he's not scary or fear-striking in TDK. That hurts it some for me. - Maggie Gyllenhaal's first few lines aren't delivered very well (and on that note, I'm not a fan of Nolan's dialogue. It feels like he takes three or four phrases ("Nice Coat," "Didn't you get the memo?" "I told you so,") and uses them a couple of times at different points in most of his movies). - The ferry segment was faaaar too long for a scene that was intended to add suspense, yet any half-intelligent movie-goer would know there was no way a ferry of civilians was going to die in a Batman movie, thus making the scene flat. - With Nolan (or the editors, or the producers or all three) being self-conscious of its running time, TDK pushes through too many scenes in a complicated movie too quickly. It's not hard to understand, but it moves so fast on the first viewing it's hard to let it all sink in. - And really, for me, just the whole Two-Face part isn't interesting to me. I hate cgi and the realism of the movie is threatened after seeing Two-face. Couldn't they just have put make-up for burns on him? Or have his face half covered in gruesome gauze until a final reveal? And Harvey Dent, to me, turns from rational (though a tad angry) good guy to raving mad man too quickly. Inception, Memento, and especially Insomnia suck to me. The first two being overrated. I also don't like the little teaser bit at the end of Begins, but it's such a short bit that it doesn't make me wince as much as say, how many minutes of Iron Man 2 being devoted strictly to Fury and co. trying to recruit Tony for the Avengers and helping him out? Or the entire ending of Captain America, that seems to totally trivialize the arc of the story? TDK felt pretty standalone to me. Of course, there's the opening for another movie, but it doesn't point and say "hey, I promise there's another!" In fact, I believe Nolan said he didn't have any plans for a third movie initially. To better reiterate my problem with Marvel movies, it's that basically all of their produced movies only, ONLY, seem like film recreations of the comics. Film is a better, more expensive, and (to me) artsier medium, so there should be growth and depth to these characters that Marvel simply doesn't give them. All you get are the same things the comics gave you except in a new form. With the Batmans, you get to see a deeper, psychological side to Batman. Nolan ADDS more to the Batman character, he doesn't simply copy and paste. All Marvel movies feel exactly like comics: little teasers to the next teaser. As far as Box office returns will go, I'm not sure Avengers will be so huge. Not counting myself (not a big fan, but will go see it), most of my real comic fan friends don't seem too interested either. Everyone seems to have the mood of "I'll go see it b/c I can't not see it, but I'm not too excited for it." And if the movie goes the way I think it will (as in, not a stand alone or very deep [and how could it be? There's not enough screen time to give these characters additional depth]), I don't see the general public returning to see it a 2nd or 3rd time like TDK. But I also don't see TDKR doing this either. I'm not that excited for it, and Bane is a much lesser known villain that the general audience aren't going to be too psyched to see.

  • Actually understanding the appeal of the character(s) and showing the masses why they're cool to begin with (like Whedon's Avengers is able to do). Fuck Ang Lee and unfocused experimentation. If a superhero movie doesn't increase the audiences appreciation for the characters and themes then it is a waste of time.

  • May 1, 2012, 3:42 a.m. CST

    funny to see the geeks getting their panties in a bunch

    by chien_sale

    because oh someone decided that their geek film was not good enough

  • May 1, 2012, 3:44 a.m. CST

    Everyone was screaming that Thor and Cap were Great!

    by chien_sale

    And I saw them and they were a bunch of overrated junk. So I have more confidence with someone like Mr. Beaks saying he's just competent corporate stuff than some of the fools saying it was Citizen Kane. I've been burned too many times.

  • May 1, 2012, 3:49 a.m. CST

    Needs rape

    by PTSDPete

    Hire Gaspar Noe, so this fucktard could 'critically acclaim' it. I'll punch his goddamn mouth, if y'all wouldn't mind.

  • May 1, 2012, 3:51 a.m. CST

    Hifalutin piece of shit

    by PTSDPete

  • Because he's making up the movie in his head, projecting pieces from other styles of filmmaking and wondering what the resulting film would be, instead of actually looking at what the film is on screen. Here's some protips for, ya, Beaks! It's called Wikipedia. And here's the introductory sentence to the article on Criticism! "Criticism is the practice of judging the merits and faults of something or someone in an intelligible (or articulate) way." Y'know what that means, big boy Beaks? It's that you have to actually, shockingly, judge something on it's own merits. Not some random criteria that you made up in your head, but what the actual film is. Trippy concept, ain't it cool? Sorry if you can't take the heat & ban be again, Beaks, but I truly do believe you need to re-evaluate how you actually go about doing your job. And don't point to sheer number of reviews you've posted. How about something of critical analysis that is actual analysis? You. Chump.

  • May 1, 2012, 4:06 a.m. CST

    Having seen the film, this review is very fair...

    by Desk

    Personally, I don't get the euphoric praise for the film. It's great fun, to be sure, but it is also very flawed - with some of those very accurately highlighted in Beaks' critique.

  • May 1, 2012, 4:30 a.m. CST

    Beaks is a nolanite

    by Volllllume3

    Avengers is fucking awesome.

  • May 1, 2012, 4:37 a.m. CST

    Taking chances?

    by redteeb

    What *exactly* are you talking about when you say that? Sorry, I'm not too sure what you mean... The film's great fun, a proper SUMMER BLOCKBUSTER which has become very rare in the last few years. Hell, the last decade! This is the first time in years I've went to the cinema and actually had fun with a film. Usually a so-called fun Summer blockbuster movie has me rolling my eyes and resenting paying any money to see it. Meaning, I've been going to the cinema less and less, and watching more 'intelligent, serious' films. I thought I was getting old but after seeing the Avengers I now know it's cos Hollywood has been producing tripe. Now I know it is possible to make an entertaining film which makes money! So when you say it didn't "take chances" you're talking out your arse. If you think it's by the numbers, if it's so easy to do, then why are there not more films as entertaining as this? Rather than a festering pile of shit like Battleship. (Incidentally, I actually cried when they started playing Battleships in that movie, what in the name of christ on a bike were they thinking. Fucking terrible.) What did you want, anal sex? Did you want it to be more 'serious' and 'grounded' like the Dark Night(which I love btw)? You ask me, the fact that they didn't 'ground' it is in itself a chance. Surely, Schneiders upcoming Superman flick, with all the talk of making him more 'grounded' and 'gritty' sound to me like no chances are being taken there at all. They're just too scared to present Superman in the manner in which he should be presented. I just don't get what you mean. The thought of an actual Avengers movie being made by Marvel themselves which is true to the characters is still a complete mindfuck. I still cant quite believe it happened. I mean, you thought it was OK, didn't love it, that's cool, I can deal with that, or even if you thought it was shit, I don't really mind. But saying it didn't take chances is just verbal diarrhoea.

  • May 1, 2012, 4:38 a.m. CST

    I very rarely say this (opinions and all), but...

    by eighthours

    This review is actually hopelessly wrong. The Avengers was a total joy.

  • May 1, 2012, 4:47 a.m. CST

    "How DARE you not like it!" snarl the fanboys

    by No Respectable Gentleman

    Whoever said above that this comic-book craze had become like a religion is spot on. Personally I find it disturbing that such a conspicuously juvenile and occasionally downright sloppy film (e.g. the first reel) is being hailed as the second coming. But everything is relative, I guess, and the appetite for a "new RAIDERS" is so voracious that anything half-decent will be blown completely out of proportion. Cue indignant fanboys and Whedon-strokers calling me "an elitist fuck" or whatever.

  • Give me a fucking break. Here's the truth about your God. Making fast paced confused scenes don't make a good film. If there's one movie based in comics that it's worthy of the public and critical praise, this movie is The Avengers. Now you can resume to jerk off whike thinking you're sucking Nolan's balls.

  • May 1, 2012, 4:55 a.m. CST

    Mori's review

    by redteeb

    ""The Avengers" may not literally save the world, but they are a definite reminder that you have to aim high and dream big if you want to do something truly special." Polar opposite of Beak's review...

  • May 1, 2012, 5:05 a.m. CST

    @no respectable gentleman

    by Jack

    People that praise The Aveners aren't whedonites. Do you honestly think most of people who have seen this movie actually know who Joss Whedon is? But the public and the critic is praising THE MOVIE. Because it's a blockbuster masterpiece, the comparisons with Star Wars and Raiders are completely fair, because as countless people have said, it's a movie that when you leave the theater you just can't believe what your eyes and ears have witnessed. That's why people are so excited about this movie, and you'd be a fool for thinking this is coming just from geeks. The Avengers is already a blockbuster juggernaut, and that's a reward for the merits of the movie. But you're right, there are fans like the Nolanites that will treat movies like a religion. I'd not doubt there's people here that have posters of Chris Nolan on their bedroom walls, because for some rabid zealots he can't do no wrong. That's the case of Mr. Beaks, as it was debunked here earlier. Mr. Beaks wrote a very similar review like this one, using almost the same elements he uses to talk shit about Rhe Avengers, to praise the hell out of Inception. Not only that, he went on record of saying it that The Hunger Games is a very bold movie, while saying that The Avengers played safe. That's not the case, as anyone with their right minds and the whole fucking World and critics alike are attesting.

  • May 1, 2012, 5:07 a.m. CST

    I love the 'Mr. Beaks is wrong' fan boys.

    by BlueLando

    It comes across as a petty 'HOW DARE YOU NOT LOVE THIS FILM' retort. Grow up!

  • May 1, 2012, 5:12 a.m. CST


    by Jack

    Yes, because Nolan is BRILLIANT. I honestly don't think there's any other fanbase as annoying as the Nolan fans. At least Twilight fans don't pretend that thise movies are some kind of high piece of art.

  • May 1, 2012, 5:22 a.m. CST

    seen it in 2D twice

    by barnaby jones

    It's very good, but i agree with beaks, there are sections that seem bathed in shade for no apparent reason. Lines of dialogue that are inaudible or make no sense. Americans going into this need to remember, unless your under 11, this film will NOT change your life, but you will be entertained for a couple of hours +

  • Because that's what exactly what the Nolan fans think of his Batman. Don listen to the naysayers, I've watched two times, one time in 3D and another in 2D. Go for the 3D or IMAX 3D, pick a good theater and enjoy the best blockbuster movie your eyes have ever witnessed. Is it life changing? No. But so isn't Nolan's Batman movies, no matter how their weird fans like to think. Is The Avengers a better than all the previous movies based on comics? FUCK YES. Best movie theater experience I've ever had as much as I did had my dick sucked while watching Black Swan. That was rad too.

  • May 1, 2012, 6:44 a.m. CST

    Surprised at Roeper's review

    by Blanket-Man

    He's positively giddy! It's fun seeing how much even the snootiest of critics have enjoyed this movie.

  • But Beaks is brave and honest for dissing Avengers (96% on rottentomatoes)? What a load of bullshit.

  • May 1, 2012, 7:44 a.m. CST

    Movies "changing your life"

    by Hipshot

    Would hopefully be seen before you are 18, let alone 21 and officially an adult. A film that "changes your life" after that point is possibly indicative of a lack of maturity and experience in the viewer. A comic book movie changing your life? Oooh. Let's hope you were abut 12, shall we? Personally, I can't wait for Avengers...(and any Talkbackers in L.A. looking for a group...I'll be at the Universal Citiwalk show at 1:15 on Saturday, seeing it with family and friends), have waited decades for it, and intend to enjoy the hell out of it. But change my life? Wow. That's...almost sad.

  • May 1, 2012, 7:54 a.m. CST

    Some walk in WANTING to dislike it

    by Steve

    and they generally do, going all nit-picky, dickish, and end up having a lousy time. There is nothing you can do with folks like this. They enjoy going to the picnic with a fork up their ass and then bitching about how they don't have anything to eat with. Geez.

  • May 1, 2012, 8:28 a.m. CST

    Good lord, a lot of you people are idiots

    by seagrass

    Once *again*, we aren't upset at his negative review. That would be just fine. However, Beaks said this: "Sorry, guys. My review will go up Monday. Just got too much on my plate between now and tomorrow to do it justice. Spoiler: it's positive." This is completely at odds with his review, which has more negative things to say than positive. Trolls (such as bluelando) need to read the following thread (including the talkback) before you start making uninformed posts.

  • May 1, 2012, 8:32 a.m. CST

    So, did Beaks lie?

    by seagrass

    Or was he paid to post a (mostly) negative review? I don't see any other explanation, and I don't understand. Why else he would say one thing and post another that is almost the complete opposite. I've been coming here for a long time and I've never seen him do something like that before.

  • May 1, 2012, 8:32 a.m. CST


    by seagrass

    That should have read "why else would he". Need coffee.

  • The opening DEEP VOICE EXPOSITION is almost Transformers bad.

  • May 1, 2012, 8:51 a.m. CST

    fortunesfool: did you even read the review?

    by seagrass

    The only positive thing he had to say was about the performances. He tore most of the movie a new asshole and there was exactly one positive sentence about the end of the film. There's only one actual positive paragraph (number 7) - out of 10. If i had to give the movie a grade based solely on Beaks' review, it would probably rate a D or *maybe* a C. That's not positive. Not even remotely.

  • May 1, 2012, 9:44 a.m. CST


    by BlueLando

    I love how the standard MO is to either trash the reviewer for having an opinion that's contrary to yours, or act like Nolan is to blame. Ya know what? The Avengers has great moments. But not all of us think that alone makes something a great movie. It's not a crime, it's not infringing on your enjoyment, and it's not nit-picky... it's just a different opinion. But considering how batshit insane some of you come across as, meh!

  • May 1, 2012, 9:46 a.m. CST

    So funny people need Beaks to agree with them...

    by tintab

    ...You've seen the movie folks, the review is not for you! There is another talkback for you to geek out over your favourite bits. Just because you thought it was awesome doesn't mean everyone else will respond like you! And box office is no indication of quality. For those who haven't seen the film and are not necessarily fully predisposed to seeing it, Beaks' review is a welcome bit of fresh air against the hype. The "agenda" and "prejudice" angle regarding Beaks' review is laughable. All the best reviewers here basically want every film to be great but unfortunately it's not always the case. Pointing out shortcomings in the story or structure doesn't mean the film is bad. The "meta" discussion around the "safeness" of the Marvel films is interesting because it's an angle few have mentioned. I plan on seeing The Avengers, but I expected some awkwardness as the filmmakers try to perform fan service for so many characters. This review doesn't confirm my suspicions. Seeing the film might. The point of a talkback is to have some differing opinions. If you don't want any, is it because you have an "agenda"?

  • May 1, 2012, 9:58 a.m. CST

    Captain America WAS very much a Joe Johnston movie

    by Mr. Giant

    Bland and fairly forgettable. They did the character well, but all of the action or villainy or general plot was pretty standard and whatever.

  • Bitch, please.

  • May 1, 2012, 10:37 a.m. CST

    Somehow I trust Neill Cumpston's review more...

    by Xian

  • May 1, 2012, 10:44 a.m. CST


    by MandrakeRoot

    You are being WAY too extreme in your defense of this movie. I'm all for someone championing a film they love, but your forgetting a certain thing called objectivity. You seem to be unable to take any criticism of this movie at all, and you've established your view of the movie as the bottom line. You use many examples of the films positive reception at this point as your evidence, but you could do the exact same thing with TDK, (even perhaps to a more convincing degree), a movie you state underwhelmed you. So in other words, it's great that you find Avengers to be a modern masterpiece, but understand a lot of people will not, and that doesn't make there opinion "wrong", and throwing all of the positive reviews out you want ain't gonna change that. Just like I could link to the very negative Miami Herald review just put up, but that wouldn't change how you feel about it.

  • May 1, 2012, 10:56 a.m. CST

    As for Beaks

    by MandrakeRoot

    Some of you aren't very good readers. This is a positive review, something that would absolutely come up as fresh on Rotten Tomatoes. Most of his complaints seemed to come from an early section of the film that he found was lagging, but he clearly says the ship rights itself and finishes strong. This is a well balanced review with a lot of praise, but leave it to obsessed fanboys to pick out one or two negative lines of the review and instantly declare hater.

  • May 1, 2012, 11:33 a.m. CST

    Beaks got it right.

    by ridleyscott-ite

    I saw this movie last week in Sydney wanting to love it, but it's just an above average film. Beaks review hit the nail right on the head. It is still a positive review. I thought it was funny this movie was mentioned at work today, and 3 of 4 co-workers felt the same to my amazement. I think if you took away the fact this is a Marvel movie people on these talk backs would be singing a different tune. I felt the beginning was clunky and uneven. A lot of the development built up in the individual movies is dropped, to be iterated or forgotten all together. Thor can't even be bothered calling Natalie Portman and has a scene or two where his arrogance gets the better of him to the point where he would hit a human, and Cap just forgets about his love lost through the passage of be addressed in the sequel I suppose, but then that's just half assed. Let's just throw in some fights between the heroes for comic nerds to masturbate to. That part where Thor hits Cap's shield in the forest, just came off as lame. At that moment I was thinking "Fuck you Joss Whedon, you overrated bastard! You made me pay $18 to watch TV at the cinemas so you can throw your crap "I'm 12 and have just discovered sarcasm" humour in every 2 seconds. It was a straight up 1.5-2/5 movie at that point. It greatly improves in the 2nd half. Thank fuck for that, but by no means is it an amazing movie. Threat and tension mean nothing as there are no deaths, Black Widow uses her martial arts and guns to take out the invaders effortlessly, the action is confined to 3 blocks, and the camp, contrived humour is always at the forefront. I actually prefer the movies that led up to it more. Basically it's just a better Dark of the Moon movie (basically has a similar plot). It's the independence day of our times. I really don't see this movie aging well within the next couple of years. Especially among non-comic fans. There's a lot of fan service, and fancy movement, but as a comic book movie, it's lacking. I was more excited for the movies that had trailers play before Avengers. Amazing Spider-Man (really enjoyed the new trailer), Prometheus, Hobbit and TDKR. Also, I want to keep the rat fuckery of comics leading into one another to the point they become events out of my movies, that kind of shit made me drop comics in the first place. Imagine as you're watching Captain America 2...a text box pops up when a reference comes up and the movie abruptly brings in characters and story archs from other movies you just don't want to fucking watch. Just so you can get the whole story. Fuck that bullshit. I can see people getting tired of this idea quickly. Anyway. I did enjoy it in the end, but I don't think this is going to be the best movie this year no matter how well it's box office takings will be.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:18 p.m. CST

    mandrakeroot: I read perfectly fine, thank you

    by seagrass

    And what I read was a mostly negative review that only had a few positive points. Hell, only one out of the ten paragraphs really had anything positive to say! A positive review would have focused on the good, but Beaks focused only on the bad. I'll be more than happy to prove you wrong. Also, Beaks himself said this: "Sorry, guys. My review will go up Monday. Just got too much on my plate between now and tomorrow to do it justice. Spoiler: it's positive." I even posted the link to that entire thread/interview - TWICE. It appears that you are the one who can't read.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:20 p.m. CST

    This is this generation's Raiders. Show some fucking respect.

    by Volllllume3

    And yes I'm being serious.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:22 p.m. CST

    by AllThosePowers

    ...sure, the 144 minutes flew by, great direction - camera work is genius particularly the seamless flow as it captures the action character-to-character, epic. The humour could've been toned down, it is the end of the world after all and one wise craack after another is okay for a while but it prevents the film from building up real concern and tension because the humour depletes it of the seriousness it demands because of the looming peril and possibile extinction of the human race. I didn't feel any of that the eyes did not inflate and nor did the ears prick-up, so this is DEFINITELY NOT A THRILLER, not like Superman 2 or even Spiderman 2, where the menace of the villan(s) are felt and their evil intentions build layer upon layer of mystery and foreboding intensity. The story is by far the weakest element in Avengers, in part due to the equal prominence of the characters sharing the same screen for 144 minutes and the directo/writer's melting pot is stirred perhaps far too many times to accomodate the superheroes personas, rather than focusing on the main story arc, which tends to get diluted or to put it more accurately, contaminated with individual superhero issues and comedic banter. It would've been more engaging for me if the story drove the dialogue, instead the story was far too simple - an mind-numbing invasion typically nothing different to any other sci-fi invasion flick - and this bored me to tears. Why? Because the complexity of characters on show here, deserved a far more complex and rich story and a plot with decent realistic twists. What I got instead was more CGI thrown on the screen than necessary, rich characters with rich backgrounds and personalities I cared about, which in the end amounted to very little concern for what would happen to them. Not once did I feel planet earth or the avengers were ever threatened, despite the Coulson tragedy, which did bring a tear to the eye and it was good, but that's it, no check boxes left to tick off. Also, the film features very little of the public, hardly ever do I sense people of the planet or even NYC are in great danger. This is not like the first two Superman films where Donner actively went out of his way to ensure the street sounds and colours of the general public of metropolise were heavily scipted and featured with prominence in his films. Avengers suffers from the same lack of public awareness that other modern superhero films suffer with; there are simply no people anywhere. Sure, in the end peopel are seen screaming and running for their lives, but there are no street sounds like traffic, NYPDs stopping for donuts, car horns, people talking, remember how the fruit stall man in superman? Well, you get nothing like that here. And this just makes the film into a cartoon IMHO, I can't engage with it as I am a normal person in the street. FInally, many of you who are avid comic book film fans will immediately notice how Weadon takes scenes from other comic book films and slots them into Avengers. I'm not sure whether this was done as a homage or to pay respect to far more superior films that came before this, but I think it's lazy to incorporate scenes from other far more superior stories. I mean Superman Returns failed because it took what a previously made superior product and rehashed it, and this is essentially what Avengers is doing but it thinks it's doing it in a smarter post-modernistic way, unfortunately it's not, it is obvious to me and countless others who will watch this film and not notice these things upon first viewing but will undoubtedly pick up on it on any number of re-watches. Depondency will setin after you realise the story was weak as was the tension all in favour of rich characterisation and dialogue that depleted the film of being a true thriller, but then again this is disney so if you're looking for a superhero flick that has a worhty plot and complex story arc I'm afraid this is not it, superman 1& 2, spiderman 1 & 2 this is not and I doubt any film will ever come close to those superior products.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:28 p.m. CST

    Goddammit, allthosepowers - spoiler warning, PLEASE

    by seagrass

    Fuck. Thanks a lot.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:29 p.m. CST

    Not that I'm surprised

    by seagrass

    Since Whedon has a track record of doing that, but still... I was hoping against it.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:37 p.m. CST


    by name

    What a moron you are. Do you not see the irony in accusing Beaks of having this Nolanite agenda whilst you spend your day repeatedly bashing Nolan in the comments. I guess by definition your actions make you a Whedonite because somebody couldn't possibly enjoy the output of both directors. I saw Avengers over the weekend and I have to say I really really enjoyed it. I've found most of the previous franchise features involved to be either quite over-rated(Iron Man) or complete shit(Captain America) so I was pleasantly surprised by how much I enjoyed it. But Beaks review is fairly spot on. For one there's basically no plot, I'd even go as far as saying the first hour and a half are comparable to a child mashing together all his favourite action figures. However it is relentlessly funny and the dialogue, even in the more meandering early scenes remains sharp and enjoyable. Too much time spent on Black Widow that could have been used to flesh out Cap, because he desperately needs it, at least Whedon has the common sense to sideline Hawkeye for most of the movie because he's pretty irrelevant. Also Loki is just never believable enough as a villain, considering he get's beat down in literally every scene he's in, Hiddleston plays him well at least. Iron Man and Hulk steal the show. To wrap up, it's an awesome summer pop corn flick and definitely one of the best comic book adaptations yet, definitely up there with the TDK and X2.

  • May 1, 2012, 12:53 p.m. CST

    I Disagree

    by Stuart-Renton

    I think Beaks saw a different movie... The Avengers was the only movie in a decade where the audience clapped and cheered and actually gave a standing ovation at the end. Sure, it wasn't two and a half hours of deep and gritty movie making, but it did its job and then some. I think it's fashionable to hate popular things and that certainly seems to be apparent here.

  • May 1, 2012, 1:29 p.m. CST

    leaked hulk scenes on youtube

    by foree forehead

    look terrible. ang lee's desert hulk-tank-smash-hulk looks far cooler, moves slower, and appears heavier. in short as if he's part of the world. this one in avengers bounces around like the other ang lee hulk from the other parts of that movie. hulk punches thor in the head and he flies away! humorously! ohh the laughs.

  • May 1, 2012, 1:55 p.m. CST

    If you're watching a leaked version of the film...

    by Blanket-Man really give up your right to criticize, as you're not seeing the version the director (and literally thousands of others who put this thing together) intended you to see. This movie was MADE to be seen on the big screen. Watching a grainy version on your laptop can never do it justice.

  • May 1, 2012, 2:01 p.m. CST

    what, no, wait

    by foree forehead

    leaked/unleaked doesn't make hulk move any slower does it?? they still have him bouncing around like a bloody green ball.

  • May 1, 2012, 2:09 p.m. CST


    by foree forehead

    hulk still moving too quickly and hoppity.

  • May 1, 2012, 2:23 p.m. CST


    by name

    People clapped at the screening of avatar I attended and JJ's Trek, people also clapped, whistled and bawled their eyes out at the Titanic 3D screening my missus dragged me to last week, sure seals clap for no reason. No one clapped at my avengers screening, people definitely buzzed excitedly, deservedly so. In fact I'd say it's on a par with Abrams Star Trek.

  • Batman Begins. And there's a thin line between a Nolan FAN and a Nolanite. There's people spoiling this movie like crazy, just hoping it will fail. There's people here saying that no one gave a stand ovation to this, when you just need to ask any foreign that it did have. It happened at my screening two times and people were excited like that was the fucking World Cup final. I respectfully disagree of negative reviews about this movie, but I call the bullshit where I see it. Beaks wrote a bullshit review. He thinks The Hunger Games is a bold movie while saying that this is by the numbers? He praise Nolan like the second coming of cinema and people here blindly buy into that crap. There's something wrong when you can justify your excitement for a movie just because. People have expresses why The Avengers is a brilliant movie countless times here and everywhere around the globe. All I'm saying is, don't buy into that crap. Judge both movies on it's own merits, unlike the Nolanites around here are doing.

  • May 1, 2012, 5:23 p.m. CST


    by Tyler Clark

    You're not respectfully disagreeing. You've been called out on this by others for the same thing. If it's a negative review, they're just a Nolanite who sucks him off and reviews Avengers unfairly. You're saying it isn't fair. Yet, you went over and started trolling TDKR trailer unprovoked, doing the same thing, making fun of Nolan fans. It's highly hypocritical that you're telling everyone to judge movies fairly when you're not doing the same thing.

  • May 1, 2012, 5:26 p.m. CST

    Ang Lee can eat macaroni and cheese out of my asshole

    by Queefer Sutherland

    But it'll cost him.

  • 'nuff said

  • May 1, 2012, 5:46 p.m. CST


    by Jack

    This review is a plant of a Nolanite that isn't even trying to hide his bias. I respect negative reviews, not THIS one. And honestly, being "called out" by Nolan crazy fans isn't a bad thing on my book. It's a compliment. You seem to think that Nolan is beyond right and wrong, some sort of filmaker messiah, what makes people really have a problem with your "cult". About the TDKR trailer talkback, I've read people saying that the TRAILER was better than the whole The Avengers MOVIE. This is blind and childish fanatism. I can't stand a fanbase that just like the movie take themselves so seriously like Nolan fans. TDKR trailer is boring, at this point Nolan fans are justifying the hype with hype itself. What's the point of watching a movie if you've decided that you'll hate it before hand? What's the point of watching a movie if you know that you'll blindly love, with no critcism attach? Fanatism and subservience are dangerous. Loki was right, after all. Some of you indeed were made to be ruled.

  • May 1, 2012, 7:04 p.m. CST

    Whedonites and Nolanites both suck!

    by Joe Plumber

    Long live the Lynchians!

  • May 1, 2012, 7:43 p.m. CST


    by Tyler Clark

    I think you missed my first reply to you from last night.

  • THE DARK KNIGHT proved that a dark, psycho-dramatic movie with very scant action pieces could be completely embraced and extremely profitable. I'm not suggesting AVENGERS should aspire to be a DARK KNIGHT dramatically, but that this isn't a zero-sum game for the genre. There's room for many kinds of stories to be made, and to be financially successful. Faithfully submitted, YackBacker

  • Whenever a reviewer bolsters their love or hate for a new movie, and they back it up by stating opinions about other movies that are polar opposites to my own experience ... Guess I'll love Avengers.

  • It's not that hard to believe that The Avengers might be a little underwhelming to some degree.

  • May 1, 2012, 10:18 p.m. CST

    Reading these threads makes me hate...

    by Eric Shea

    comic book fans all over again. This DC vs. Marvel bullshit was sad and tired when I was reading funnybooks twenty years ago. Now it has morphed into an even sillier Christopher Nolan vs. the Avengers flame war that has managed to make imdb and aint it cool even stupider. I've enjoyed most of the recent comic movies (except Catwoman and Elektra, of course) and I'll most likely enjoy both Avengers and Dark Knight Rises when I see them. It's possible to enjoy characters from both universes seeing as they were all created by the same six brilliant Jews 70 years ago, that would be Kane, Siegel, Shuster, Lee, Simon, and Kirby. It is also reasonable to dislike one of the movies based on these comics. Attacking somebody on the internet for an opinion you disagree with is a huge waste of time. We should be glad that Hollywood is finally giving us all the big budget superhero movies we wanted to see when we were twelve, which is how old I assume ijacksparrow is. Either that or he has fetal alcohol syndrome, nothing else could explain somebody naming themself after a character Pirates of the freaking Carribean. P.S.- I'm neither a Nolanite or Whedonite, I'm a Bondarchukian. P.P.S.- My favorite comics back then were the cosmic Jim Starlin books, so I can't wait to see Thanos and the Gauntlet. Hopefully they don't pussyfoot around anything like they did with Galactus.

  • May 2, 2012, 1:55 a.m. CST

    The first Iron Man was definitly the only Great one

    by chien_sale

    After that it's factory-producing crap

  • May 2, 2012, 2:06 a.m. CST

    sparrow I saw no fans going in Avengers hoping it's bad

    by chien_sale

    I think you are making stuff up. Everyone was excited to see The Avengers because it's the first assembly of disparate super-heroes we've ever had on screen. But as a critic you have to analyse the film the way it is and putting the fanboy aside. It doesn't mean because as a fan you thought that Dark Knight was great - and it was - and you don't like Avengers that you suddenly are a "Nolanite" whatever that means. It's the worst type of fanboy argument.

  • May 2, 2012, 6:48 a.m. CST

    all you yet-to-see bitching bitches...

    by Obscura

    stop bitching about how you hate the fact this movie exists, even though you're still going to go see it just to give you something else to bitch about afterwards. If you're so convinced its awful, stop wasting your time talking about it!

  • May 2, 2012, 7:17 a.m. CST

    Millions of Europeans can't be wrong.

    by leonardo_dicraprio

    Yeah, there's no problem with the light in the film--at least in 2-D. Totally good flick, but I left it feeling like 1) I'd much rather see what JW could do with The Avengers across a 22-episode arc and 10% of the budget, and 2) While it's full-on Whedon, it is also played a bit too safe. But then I'm among the minority that would much rather see more lead-up than pay-off, more talking than fighting--honestly, did anyone watch Buffy for the fight scenes? But all-in-all, it's at least as entertaining as you have any right to expect. The first appearance of Loki is pretty damn fantastic, though.

  • May 2, 2012, 11:45 a.m. CST

    beaks is right

    by loonatic

    it's a fun movie but there's no emotional weight. Agent Coulson's death was one of the many by-the-numbers beats in the first half of the movie. Robert Downey Jr was great in the first Iron Man but since then [in Iron 2 and Sherlock 2] he's been incredibly smug and cheeses up the whole place. the aliens were nothing more than superhero-fodder. they reminded me of the JLU cartoon + Howard the Duck. Close the portal!!! And everyone got their cutesy moment like Firefly or Buffy...

  • May 2, 2012, 7 p.m. CST

    For what it's worth this late in the thread...

    by rocnathan

    I agree completely with tallandagwood.

  • May 27, 2012, 8:07 p.m. CST


    by Devin

    But seriously, the movie was awesome.