“For me, one of the signs of a good movie is that it rewards repeat viewing. Avengers: Age of Ulton fits the bill.”
I’ve already reviewed Avengers: Age of Ultron here for Moviepilot, though I tend to be easily overwhelmed by spectacle–which this movie has in spades–so I saw it a second time, to better digest what was going on.
This time I saw the 2D version at the legendary Uptown theater in Washington, DC (quite possibly the best movie house in the city).
What I noticed is that Avengers: Age of Ultron, on the surface, is a battle between the Avengers and Ultron (motion-captured and voiced by James Spader), a homicidal robot who believes that the only way to save the human race is to force it to evolve, which sounds interesting, till you figure out he intends to kill the bulk of us to bring it about.
He’s taking ‘tough love’ to a whole different level, though if you think about it, in the long term Ultron actually has humanity’s best interests at heart.
Though the short term is a bit problematic.
He’s assisted by Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson, who actually can act, thought you probably couldn’t tell from Godzilla) and Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) Maximoff, known simply as ‘the Twins.” In the comics their alter egos are Quicksilver and the Scarlet Witch, though you never hear those names used in the movie (she’s called a ‘witch’ often enough, though it’s more an expression of anger than endearment).
They’re also called “Enhanced,” most likely because Fox has the rights to the term “mutants.”
Her abilities consist of telekinesis and the power to bring one’s fears and doubts to the surface. She sets events in motion, and directly leads to the creation of Ultron.
Age of Ultron has a lot of funny moments, most via dialog–though there’s a really cute joke that Whedon did between Hulk and Thor in the original movie that’s referenced between Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) and Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr,) in his Hulkbuster armor (known as “Veronica”).
The movie spends more time dealing with Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johannson) than the other Avengers, which makes sense because they don’t have franchises of their own, so any effort to better define them is welcome.
All in all, Avengers: Age of Ultron isn’t a perfect movie, but it’s a damn entertaining one that works like an well-oiled machine.
What’s also good is that there’s not a cynical bone in its body. Marvel Studios has time and again shown that nihilism is something better left to the competition, and the movie benefits immensely from its optimistic, hopeful worldview.