<Review by: Daylynn DeSouza>
Directed by Joss Whendon. Starring Robert Downey Jr, Chris Evans, Mark Ruffalo, Chris Hemsworth, Scarlett Johansson, Jeremy Renner, Samuel L Jackson, James Spader, Elizabeth Olsen, Aaron Taylor-Johnson, Paul Bettany, Don Cheadle, Stellan Skarsgard, Cobie Smulders, Anthony Mackie, Thomas Kretschmann, Hayley Atwell
The 11th movie in Marvel’s cinematic universe, Avengers: Age of Ultron, does not disappoint and keeps the funny and awesome on the slightly bigger scale than the first movie, although it will never be able to recapture the magic of seeing your favourite superheroes team up for the first time because let’s face it, your first time is always more memorable.
As a standalone movie, this movie is not as good as the first one though. However, since this was never meant to be a standalone movie and is obviously a sequel that has quite a rich lore behind it already, it is brilliant! There is a bit of a darker tone along with the usual fun and it will be giving us a huge push towards Avengers: Infinity Wars Part I & Part II. And of course, Captain America: Civil War.
Age of Ultron is the classic tale of A.I. turned against its creator; which in this case happens to be Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr) and Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo) with a little help from Loki’s Sceptre. But the only difference is that Ultron (voice of James Spader) has the deadly combination of emotion and intelligence, a potent cocktail for disaster if ever there was one. Ultron believes that the human race needs to evolve and change in order for there to be peace and he thinks the best way to do it is to create an extinction level event; killing off the people who are too weak to adapt or evolve.
This however needs to be done after he disposes of the one thing standing in his way: The Avengers. Enter my two new favourite characters, Scarlet Witch (Elizabeth Olsen) and Quicksilver (Aaron Taylor-Johnson). Quicksilver is as cool as the one from X-Men: Days of Future Past and lets-forget-about-that-horrible-Brett-Ratner-X-Men-movie-that-spawned-a-whole-bunch-of-pointless-Wolverine-Movies-that-were-even-more-painfull-to-watch-because-that’s-all-in-the past.)
The twins decide to help Ultron rip-apart the Avengers because they blame Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr) for the death of their parents. A whole lot of ‘mind games’ ensue, we learn a little more about Black Widow’s (Scarlett Johansson) past and Hawkeye’s (Jeremy Renner) personal life while the team is almost torn apart. But, they manage to band together once more to save the world before they head their separate ways, leaving Cap (Chris Evans) and Black Widow to start training new recruits. There is a lot of foreshadowing towards Infinity Wars and future movies.
As far as the acting is concerned there’s nothing that can be said about most of the actors in this film that hasn’t been said about them before. Aaron Taylor-Johnson and Elizabeth Olsen are the perfect versions of Quicksilver and Scarlet Witch respectively; cockiness, a smidge of psychosis and Russian accents all included. James Spader as Ultron is formidable, menacing and charming; but it’s safe to say that nobody had any doubts about him. Paul Bettany (the voice of Jarvis) makes his first onscreen debut in the Marvel cinematic universe as The Vision, and yes he’s very good indeed.
There are a few cons to the movie and though the pros heavily outweigh them, they do exist. Like, Nick Fury having access to a S.H.I.E.L.D. Helicarrier (though I suspect that’ll be explained in the TV series Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D.) and the whole Black Widow and Banner (Mark Ruffalo) complicated romance thing, which had no role to play other than to just make Banner’s life more miserable.
But it’s safe to say that watching people trying to pick up Thor’s (Chris Hemsworth) Hammer, Ultron’s demeanour, the Hulk vs. Iron Man Hulkbuster fight, Quicksilver and a whole bunch of easter eggs and fan service more than make up for that.
The IMAX 3D that we were treated – and, I use the word lightly – to was completely unnecessary. There is maybe a good 5 seconds of footage that justifies it in the movie but that’s about it. Do yourself and your eyes a favour and watch it in 2D.
PS: There’s only one extra scene after the initial end credits; there’s no bonus scene at the end so no need to wait around after you’ve seen the first mid-credits scene.