Avengers: Age of Ultron

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I dig on movies.  Going to a movie is an event for me…I plan it out in advance.  It involves a bike ride to minot (90ish miles), probably going for lunch somewhere..maybe some time in scheels…it’s an event.  I have been looking forward to this flick for almost a year.  It’s been hyped, trailered and marketed to death…I was looking forward to seeing this flick.  Sitting in the theater, I got about 1/4 of the way through it and thought it sucked.  This movie was not good at all.  I’m going to go in to a few things about it, all of which will be spoilers.  If you want to be surprised about anything that happens in this flick, don’t read this post.  I’m also going to assume that you know something about the marvel cinematic universe.  It’s going to take days to explain -everything- to the reader.  If you need to catch up, use google.

This flick was a popcorn throw away movie.  There was action, one liners and action.  If you are expecting any sort of character driven drama or anything that you can really get drawn in to you are going to be sorely disappointed.  The big area that marvel fails is villain development.  We know who the bad guy is, but we don’t really know why.  “I hate tony stark!” why?  You came out of nothing, for some reason hate your “creator” but we don’t know why.  We find out that ultron is a project that banner and stark are working on…but they can’t seem to do -something- with it.  What? where are they failing?  Tony has created JARVIS which is damn near conscious A.I…what more is needed for ultron?  What are you trying to do with ultron?  Stark says he wants to create something that will protect the world from some outer space alien invasion that earth isn’t prepared for.  But he wants to do that by using “earth tech” to create something that can suddenly be comparable to alien tech?  That makes no sense.  Then suddenly some program in Loki’s scepter comes to life and is ultron…but it has nothing to do with what tony and banner are creating…makes no sense.

What would have been more interesting?  Instead of the big opening scene with the avengers attacking a compound that is hiding the scepter…lets have some back story with banner and stark working on ultron.  Lets have stark take the JARVIS program, branch it and try to somehow integrate that in to some recovered alien tech from the first avengers that is designed to be -something- that will protect people from aliens.  Then he fails and fails..can’t make it work.  It doesn’t “come to life” or whatever.  Stark and banner working on some fancy ass computer shit with constant “integration failed” errors would be fine.  For whatever reason, it isn’t working.

Then, blamo, captain america shows up to give stark info that they think they have found the scepter.  Tony does -something- that summons thor, and they attack the compound retrieving the scepter.

OK, now we know they have been searching for the scepter, we get that they are working on the ultron project..we’re setup for some kind of story.

Now, they get the scepter and bring it back to the avengers tower.  Stark is trying to analyze it and we get basically how it worked out where they analyze it, JARVIS thinks it’s some kind of code…blah blah blah.  NOW stark and banner try to integrate this new code in to the branched off JARVIS code that they had been trying to use for ultron…fail fail fail…they go party and the real JARVIS keeps working on it, suddenly it succeeds.  Now we have basically an alien evil JARVIS who becomes ultron.  Suddenly we have a daddy issue between the stark created computer program that feels like it was “thrown aside” or something, gains consciousness from this scepter and we’re off an running.

Suddenly we have some back story on the villain, we can more easily identify with him and we see how this alien program is making this villain basically go nuts.  OK, now what?

Ultron goes after vibranium…it was essential for creating his unbeatable body.

How do we create the Vision?  I think somewhat how they handled it was semi ok, but lets up that a little bit.  We don’t need the whole scene back at the lab with stark trying to create yet another android.  Lets go to the same scene with ultron and the asian lady creating his new body in the cradle.  He breaks open the scepter, drops in the soul stone…then plugs in to have his conciseness transferred.  Now, lets have something go crazy with the transfer process, something ultron doesn’t understand.  Suddenly Vision “comes to life” and bursts out of the cradle.  Turns out JARVIS was not destroyed as previously thought, he was actually hiding inside ultron’s program…had an idea what he was going to do, because he’s living under the hood…and takes this chance to “break out” of ultron to try to battle him.  There is a confrontation between the two at the cradle, it’s a stand off and they both retreat.

I think both of those ideas are a much more cool way to introduce the characters and gives you a little bit of base development of them.  Now what about the Avengers?

After ultron is created and runs wild, thor goes ape shit on stark…it takes all of the other avengers to keep him from killing stark then thor takes off.  He’s searching for “something”.  Loki’s scepter is gone again and lets say he goes on a vision quest.  The pool scene basically works…but it’s more part of an old norse vision quest type thing instead of prompted by some scarlet witch hallucination.  After that he comes back to stark tower to find the avengers licking their wounds trying to figure out what to do.

I say have the entire vibranium battle scene and the scenes at hawkeye’s ranch without thor.  The team gets pounded.  There is no reason to have thor and captain america hallucinate “al la” the scarlet witch.  We’ve seen movies with them, we don’t need any back story.  And thor’s “vision quest” brings the infinity stones in play anyway.  The hallucination with scarlet witch on black widow makes sense because we have no back story on her…it’s interesting.  It also explains why thor isn’t helping stark battle the hulk.

Hulk buster battle…the only thing I would change about this is the amount of trailers the studio released with this one battle.  There was very little of the scene that we didn’t already see in the trailers.  The only thing that should have been seen in the trailers is the punch…when they both wound up and their fists hit, the shockwave takes out cars and shit…that was perfect.  A quick shot of the hulk, shot of the full hulkbuster then the punch…done and done.  Nerds are all in, people are excited for the action…done.  Don’t snow how it assembles, don’t show this big suit enveloping the little one…etc.  Full suit, hulk pissed, the punch…mic drop!

Now, everyone is at avengers towner…the vision shows up.  He’s a sentient jarvis…he knows where avengers tower will be…introductions are made.  And AND because he was under the hood inside ultron for so long, he knows the plan…fills in the avengers and their off!

The final scenes…trash battle.  How do you handle that?  There is no real story going to come out of there.  It’s just action.  I’m sure there are changes that might make things better…but overall, it’s just going to end up being a battle.  I would have liked to see less but tougher robots that the avengers have to work together more to beat.  They talked about how they had to “come together” to beat this guy, but the battles were still basically solo.

The premise of dropping a super massive vibranium cored chunk of earth to create an extinction level event was just retarded.  There has to be something better.  A vibranium enhanced bomb sure…but a global event makes no sense.  Have ultron be bat shit crazy, bombs all over the world, hell bent on creating terror and ruling the human population.  Blow up some cities…just massive carnage.  Something that is going to setup civil war big time…but blow things up all over.  Either way though, it’s still a big battle at the end.

Overall, the movie was no where near as good as it could have been.  It seemed like guys were mailing it in, just producing something that is going to make billions.  I think by Monday it was 680 million+.

But, I did pay to see it.  Next time though, I won’t be going on opening day…people are f’n crazy.  There were grown men showing up in tee-shirts that had props with them.  The king though, one dude showed up in this full on captain american halloween costume complete with steel shield.  Full grown adult man in a “muscle” costume, with fake shield.  Stupid ass people.

 

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