Going into the sequel Avengers film I had mixed expectations. On the one hand was the consideration that superhero movie sequels, with the exception of the Chris Nolan films, have almost endemically been worse than the original. Also, balancing multiple superheroes in one movie can prove tricky, and although Marvel pulled it off well in the first film, could they do it again? Read on to discover how Marvel did in this continuation of their franchise.
While enjoyable, the Avengers: Age of Ultron plotline is remarkably similar to the first film’s in many respects. Most of the same characters are present, and the movie follows the same path as the first by showing how the Avengers are broken up by internal strife and then re-unite at the end with a common goal. However, beyond these high-level similarities, there are some interesting twists: Hawkeye, who was largely eye candy in the first film and had no real depth as a character, is fleshed out more in this film (more than anyone else for that matter), and we gain insight into who he is and his relationship with Natasha Romanoff. Also, a romance subplot between two major characters adds some unforseen plot and character situations. Scarlet Witch and Quicksilver are very interesting, and have some of the most complex motivations of any of the characters.
Overall, while the story bears many similarities to the first film, the plot is different enough to be enjoyable and also fleshes out the character of Hawkeye who takes a more prominent role in this film than in previous, and also introduces two new players to the scene.
From the perspective of the theatre setting the movie was very enjoyable. Much like the first film, the movie offers big screen eye candy and massive battle scenes. If the film could be summed up in one sentence it would probably be: a continuous sequence of battles punctuated by witty one liners. And I’m not kidding about the one-liners, they are everwhere. The one-liners are so copious it is like Marvel took the idea of adding humor and multiplied it times ten. This humor works in the film for the most part. However, Ultron also cracks some one-liners, and this hurt the seriousness of his character. After all, what kind of artificial intelligence villain bent on world destruction would be cracking jokes?
If you can catch it in theatres the latest Avengers film is definitely worth seeing thanks to its cinematic battles and wittiness. However, the lack of original plot or character depth will prevent the film from ever making its way onto my super hero movie shelf with the Nolan Batman trilogy, latest X-men movies, and the Netflix Daredevil series.