Bigger, but definitely not better than the first Avengers, Age of Ultron actually shows Whedon’s capability to turn around a movie with a wafer-thin plot and a sometimes underwhelming villain into a magnificent, entertaining romp for the non-fans. It also has enough fan service to make hardcore Marvel fans giddy with excitement.
I’ll be honest. It’s hard for me to review anything Joss Whedon does objectively. So I’m going to keep this review as SHORT as possible.
Whedon gave us Firefly, Serenity, Buffy the Vampire Slayer and possibly the finest team-up superhero flick in the first Avengers – the X-Men don’t even come close.
That’s not to say Age of Ultron is flawless. It has flaws, lots of flaws. And it nearly isn’t as memorable as the first one. But it has moments. And what moments they are!
Hardcore Marvel fans will be able to see clearly the points where Whedon has diverged from the original comic book story in order to serve the MCU. There are also little references, nods and mentions of new and old Marvel Universe characters to keep the hardcore fans going. Don’t worry though non-fans – it has enough action and explosion to keep you guys entertained too – watch out for Hulkbuster v/s The Hulk!
I’m not going into too much detail for fear of spoiling the film.
The (Funny?) Villain
Ultron (voiced by the super-cool James Spader) is great – until he tries to be funny. That sort of dilutes his character a little and you tend to take him a little less seriously – Loki was a far more potent threat.
There are two, no, THREE characters that really stood out for me.
First, the Maximoff twins. In an ideal world, they would be X-Men and we would all have that dream X-Men/Avengers crossover we’ve been waiting for. Well, it’s not an ideal world, and both Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) and Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) are called ‘The Enhanced’ – meaning they are the result of HYDRA experiments. The performances as brilliant, as is the attention to detail with their Eastern European accents – they’re from ‘Sokovia’.
Then, what made me giddy with excitement – the creation of Vision. Whedon has handled this situation more deftly than any other in the entire film. There are also moments between him and Thor that will make you smile wider than the Cheshire Cat. I’m really excited to see what Paul Bettany does in the forthcoming films.
The Mid-Credits Scene
No, I’m not giving away anything here – all I’ll say is that we might see a lot of forces ‘hand in glove’ with each other. *Evil grin*
To sum it up – Age of Ultron is more about everyone else and less about Ultron. It may not be the best or even great, but it is still essential viewing for anyone who’s been part of the Marvel Cinematic Universe’s journey. And it’s a whole lot of fun. Watch it and enjoy!