Review: Some Thoughts on Avengers: Age of Ultron
So last night I finally checked out Avengers: Age of Ultron and figured I’d share my two cents with y’all (it’s certainly cheaper than it’s $11 ticket price). Overall, I thought it was pretty entertaining and will satisfy fans of the ever expanding Marvel Universe. But that’s funny enough the problem with this movie: it’s just satisfying. It kind of lacks the awesomeness of the first Avengers film and it’s nowhere near as fun as something like Guardians of the Galaxy was last summer.
At the risk of sounding like a boring baby boomer, our generation’s urge for immediate gratification is at one of it’s fullest forms while watching Age of Ultron. All the cool stuff happens, the one-liners are spoken, the action sequences are played out (and sometimes go on for too long if you ask me), but none of it really has any staying power. When people left the theater for the first Avengers, people were laughing over moments like the Iron Man vs Thor vs Captain America fight, or the Hulk tossing Loki around like a rag doll, or Phil Coulson’s death scene (if I’m spoiling this for those who live under a rock you have my sincerest apologies). The point is there were things about it that were memorable, but in the sequel, nothing truly sticks out. And the ones that do stick out in my mind are not good things.
The first of which is of course the feminist arguments over the way Black Widow’s character was handled, aka the reason Joss Whedon deleted his Twitter account. If you haven’t heard already, some people are angry because Black Widow was an excellent opportunity for Marvel to do something compelling and interesting since she’s one of the few female superheroes but instead they reduced her to that ridiculous stereotype in the media that a woman who can’t conceive is not a true woman. Part of her backstory is that part of her assassin training was getting sterilized, and in one scene where she reveals this information to Bruce Banner, she evens calls herself “a monster” which just makes it all worse. They made her character so that her conscious is not haunted by the loss of innocence through killing or being forced to live a life of betraying people, but it’s the loss of motherhood that makes her feel less than whole. Like I understand that forced sterilization could have an affect on her, especially if she wanted a family one day, but it’s such an insult to her character and to women in general to depict that as the worst thing about her, and how it’s this big dark secret she has to hide from the world.
The other thing that annoyed me was the way the twins were handled. Wanda and Pietro Maximoff are given a whole new backstory for silly legal reasons, and it’s not a good one. Long story short, the Maximoff twins are actually the spawn of Magneto from X-Men, but since Fox owns X-Men and Marvel technically can’t use them, they worked around some loophole in the legal agreement, so they can’t even call them “mutants” for that reason. Instead, Joss Whedon decided to make them human experiments and volunteer/work for a neo-nazi science organization which makes no fucking sense because they’re Jewish-Romani so why would they work with a group of people that actively hate them? I don’t even know if Whedon even thought about their background because he cast two very white actors to play them (gotta love white-wash casting in Hollywood). It’s such a tacky way to handle two otherwise very interesting characters in the Marvel Universe.
Now I know sound like I’m shitting on this otherwise entertaining flick (alright let’s face it I mostly am), but I will say that if you’re looking to kill two and a half hours and aren’t expecting a masterpiece and you’re not like me and have a bad habit of looking into things too much, I’m sure you’ll have a good time. And if you can don’t watch it in 3D because it’ll be just as good in 2D I promise (personally I only pay for 3D for films like Gravity or Life of Pi where I know the 3D enhances the experience). Oh and you should also see it because it’s always a lovely experience to stare at Chris Evans’ beautiful face on a giant screen.