Posts Tagged ‘avengers

02
May
18

‘Infinity War’ Shows That a Good Thing Can’t Go On Forever

avengers_infinity_war

I gots no mo’ money for Marvel.

Starring Chris Hemsworth, Robert Downey, Jr., Benedict Cumberbatch, Mark Ruffalo, Scarlet Johanson, Chris Pratt, and every-other Marvel character actor save Jeremy Renner and Paul Rudd.

Directed by Anthony and Joe Russo

*WARNING! THE FOLLOWING REVIEW MAY CONTAIN SPOILERS!*

Everybody dies!

Wait. Let me start over.

Comic book heroes and heroines for me growing up were mostly on TV. The only access I had to comic books happened to be my dad’s collection which harbored “Flintstones,” “Twilight Zone,” “Boris Karloff,” and others while the TV showcased the supers – “Superman,” “Spider-Man,” and “The Incredible Hulk.” While writing this sentence I just realized the irony of TV shows turned into comic books and comic book heroes turned into TV. But enough about me – my point is that I never really grew up following any Marvel or DC series so please understand that when I grade, or review, these films I come from a middle ground between cinema and understanding the comic book world as much as I can. With that being said let me go into this one:

I can’t really say where any of this left off because the Marvel movies go in the order they want to go instead of “The Avengers,” “The Avengers: Age of Ultron,” and “Avengers: Infinity War.” Trying to watch them strictly in that order is tantamount to playing “Another Brick in the Wall Part 1,” “Part 2,” and “Part 3.” Sure, you get the gist but there’s that feeling that a lot of crap is missing between the parts; same thing here. I could also go on and ask why “Captain America: Civil War” wasn’t renamed for the “Avengers” (it’s not a Captain America story!) but at this point it really doesn’t matter.

Our story starts off with purple galactic villain Thanos (played/voiced by Josh Brolin) having already obtained one Infinity Stone obtaining the second (a blue one) from Loki (Tom Hiddleston) while Thor (Chris Hemsworth) pleads against this. There’s some fighting and Hulk is tag-teamed to kick some Thanos only for things to go badly: Hulk is hurt and magically transported back to Earth to warn of Thanos while Loki is killed and Thor left to die in the vacuum of space. Moving on…

Meanwhile on Earth the Avengers, post-banishment, are scattered to the four winds. The Hulk arrives at Dr. Strange’s (Cumberbatch) place and together they go to contact Tony Stark (Downey, Jr.) who then wants to contact Steve Rogers (Chris Evans) but instead winds up in a melee against alien thugs sent by Thanos to retrieve the Infinity Stones left on Earth, one notably held by Dr. Strange because it can shift time. Joining that fight is Spider-Man (Tom Holland) who follows along to help Stark/Iron Man save Dr. Strange but even moreso to keep Thanos from getting that stone.

And on the other end of the galaxy happens to be… the Guardians of the Galaxy. Responding to a distress call they pick-up the free-floating body of Thor who commands them to a special place whereby he can have another hammer made that can defeat Thanos. Good idea in principle. Gamora, Drax, and Peter Quill decide to hunt down Thanos to try and keep him from getting another Infinity stone and which leaves Rocket and Groot to help Thor out.

Am I missing anyone? Oh yeah – Captain America, Black Widow, and Falcon are flying around evading capture by the authorities. Scarlet Witch (Olsen) and Vision (Bettany) are hunkered down in the Scotland. Hawkeye and Ant-Man are on “house arrest.” And let’s not forget Black Panther presiding over Wakanda.

“Everybody got that?” -Dark Helmet, “Spaceballs”

What follows is a mess of a film. Not even a fun mess like, say, “Smokin’ Aces.” A character from one set of circumstances will fall into the scene of another and vice-versa. Instead of all of the Avengers coming together its more like, Superhero Clique Number One stumbles upon either Thanos, a representative of Thanos, or one of the other superhero cliques. It’s two-and-a-half hours of this, folks. If all you want out of a film is superheroes fighting each other or taking swings at the latest villain, then this is your movie. There’s a lot of that to be had. If you’re wanting something a bit more… this is only slightly less disappointing than the prior “Age of Ultron.”

The biggest issue with this mess is that, overall, it’s dumb. It reminds me of the TV version of Stephen King’s “It” where Pennywise, the clown in the sewer, was finally shown to be a giant alien praying mantis. I was entirely with the whole shebang up to that point. “What?!? A friggin’ praying mantis?!? You gotta be kidding me!” “Infinity War” is very much like that. How come the 20+ superheroes can’t get together to take down the -supposedly baddest villain in the universe? Speaking of dumb if these Infinity stones are that important to Thanos then why even bother with Ultron? Here’s a creation, oversaw by Thanos, set to destroy the Earth by using a nuclear device to blow-up a city in Earth’s stratosphere. It’s like it was an afterthought. “Well, I couldn’t blow up the Earth… What? They have TWO Infinity Stones? I could use those. Good thing that Ultron didn’t blow it up.” Dumb. Dumb. Dumb.

“That ending was trash.” – Guy sitting a few seats away from me in the theatre.

Honestly there’s nothing more that I can tell you about this film. If I spoiled it for ya, sorry. I will say that not EVERYONE dies – I counted at least seven supers that survived but yeah, a lot of people die. If you want to know how, and why, check the movie out. Should you watch it? Sure, but prepare to be disappointed if you’re wanting some form of the “hero” arc. With that in mind I paid a little over $5 and I was still mad. Just sayin’

My grade: C-

 

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06
May
08

Marvel at the Box Office

 

 

 

Can I get some points for double-entendre?

 

With the release of “Iron Man,” (the first film solely financed by Marvel) having grossed over $100 million in the first weekend, the question comes: what’s next? It seems that Marvel is planning on tying all of their movies together, with the coupe de grace being an “Avengers” movie. With this summer’s “Iron Man” containing Nick Fury (agent of S.H.I.E.L.D.) and “Hulk” containing a scene with Tony Stark, Marvel is weaving their characters/franchises much like the comic books.

 

So what else should we be expecting? Here’s the rundown of what’s on Marvel’s plate. Please acknowledge beforehand that no release date is final, and that not all of the productions may follow through:

 

         Punisher: War Zone. Ray Stevenson is the titular hero going up against Jigsaw (Dominic West). Directed by Lexi Alexander (“Hooligans”). Release date is December 5, 2008.

         X-Men Origins: Magneto. Self-explanatory. Directed by David S. Goyer (“The Invisible,” “Blade Trinity”). Set for release in 2009.

         Spider-Man 4. No details. Set for release in 2009.

         Silver Surfer. Directed by Alex Proyas (“The Crow,” “Dark City”). Set for release in 2009.

         X-Men Origins: Wolverine. Directed by Gavin Hood (“Rendition,” “Tsotsi”). Hugh Jackman is helping to produce. Characters to include: Deadpool (Ryan Reynolds), Sabretooth (Live Schreiber), Beak (Dominic Monaghan), and Gambit (Taylor Kitsch). Release date is May 1, 2009.

         Luke Cage. Tyrese Gibson in the title role. Directed by John Singleton (“Four Brothers,” “2 Fast 2 Furious”). Set for release in 2009.

         Nick Fury. Samuel L. Jackson will play the titular character, which incidentally became based on him. Set for release in 2010.

         Iron Man 2. Downey said he would be back and Paltrow has signed on for 2 sequels. Aside from that, I pretty much expect just about everyone to return. No official word on what it’s about, but the release date is set for April 30, 2010.

         Thor. Based on the Norse god. It’s being directed by Matthew Vaughn (“Stardust,” “Layer Cake”). Release date is June 4, 2010.

         Captain America. Although dead in the comics, Nick Cassavetes (“The Notebook,” “Alpha Dog”) is bringing him to life to exact some American justice. Set to be released on May 6, 2011.

         The Avengers. Nick Fury, Ant-Man, Hulk, Thor, Iron Man… will they all appear? Scheduled for release sometime in July 2011.

         Ant-Man. Dr. Hank Pym is a scientist who develops an instrument that can communicate and control insects. Edgar Wright (“Shaun of the Dead,” “Hot Fuzz”) is set to direct. No given release date.

         Iron Fist. Ray Parks is the Martial Arts superhero. Directed by Steve Carr (“Next Friday,” “Daddy Day Care”). No release date given.

         The Hands of Shang-Chi. A young Kung-Fu master finds out that his dad is World Enemy #1. Directed by Woo-Ping Yuen.

 

What do you think? Which ones will you go see? Comment back!

 

Don’t forget to check out “Hulk” in theatres on June 13, 2008!