FRED Watch Quickie Film Review: Avengers: Age of Ultron (2015)

AGE LEAVES AVENGERS A LITTLE SLUGGISH.

I’m a Wayne Stellini and welcome to FRED Watch, where we review everything from the mainstream to the obscure. Today’s film is Avengers: Age of Ultron

The Avengers reunite to protect the world when Tony Stark’s Ultron Program, created to protect the world, becomes hostile…

With the previous Avengers blockbuster making a big splash, Joss Whedon faced the unenviable task of replicating what made Marvel’s The Avengers (2012) an exhilarating experience. Unfortunately, Avengers: Age of Ultron doesn’t come close to its predecessor nor a significant number of other titles in the Marvel Cinematic Universe that have come before it.

For a relatively simple premise, Whedon’s script is a little cluttered and will leave the casual viewer confused. This is one for the fans, and those truly invested will get the most out of it, but even they may lose their patience with the unnecessarily excessive gestation. (It would have benefited from losing twenty minutes from the runtime.) Even the final battle is longer than it needs to be.

There are, however, more positives than negatives to take from Avengers: Age of Ultron and this is thanks to our perfectly cast heroes. Well and truly comfortable without being complacent, Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, and Chris Evans are in solid form, with Evans once again a particular highlight. As in the previous Avengers movie, Scarlett Johansson and Jeremy Renner are the absolute heart of the narrative, and their scenes—individually as well as together—are the most interesting. It is wonderful to see Mark Ruffalo afforded more material to work with, and his chemistry and budding romance with Johansson’s Black Widow is quite lovely… until you remember that Hulk/Bruce Banner’s feelings belong to someone else. (See: 2008’s The Incredible Hulk.) Supporting players Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen are welcomed additions to the franchise as Pietro and Wanda Maximoff, even if they aren’t given as much depth as they deserve.

Although falling below expectations, Avengers: Age of Ultron is good to look at, and is elevated by exceptional performances and some truly effective scenes. But a classic it isn’t. 3½ / 5

 

Starring: Robert Downey Jr., Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Evans, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Don Cheadle, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Elizabeth Olsen, Paul Bettany, Cobie Smulders, Anthony Mackie, Hayley Atwell, Idris Elba, Stellan Skarsgård, James Spader, Samuel L. Jackson, Thomas Kretschmann, Henry Goodman, Linda Cardellini, Claudia Kim, Andy Serkis, Julie Delpy, Kerry Condon [voice], Josh Brolin [uncredited], Stan Lee [cameo].

Director/Writer: Joss Whedon (based on The Avengers by Stan Lee and Jack Kirby) | Producer: Kevin Feige | Music: Brian Tyler, Danny Elfman | Cinematographer: Ben Davis | Editors: Jeffrey Ford, Lisa Lassek

 

Available: Blu-ray and stan

Let us know what you thought of this film in the comments!

 

I’ve been a Wayne Stellini and you’ve just experienced FRED Watch.

 

RELATED VIDEO: Non-Scripted Ramblings #14: Countdown to Infinity War—Avengers: Age of Ultron ⬇️


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