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Avengers [May. 8th, 2012|10:01 pm]
So Saturday, Jerry & I met up with Jason & Gideon to have dinner at an excellent middle-eastern place down by DU, where we were joined by their roommate Mythica and her girlfriend, after which we zipped over to the Continental to sit on the stairs for a long time so we could get really good seats to see The Avengers in 3-D IMAX.

Which we did. (We were the second group in line. It was a long wait. I was glad I put a copy of Space Fluxx in my pocket.)

Anyway, the movie! I liked it. A lot. And I want to talk about what I liked in spoileriffic detail, so all the rest of this is behind the cut.

So first off, while we were in line, Jerry noticed something veddy eentedestingk about the movie poster. You remember how there was some promo art poster a while back that had Black Widow doing that obnoxious spine-twisting show-the-camera-my-ass-but-also-my-face "sexy" pose that, like, io9 and people totally called them out on? Well, here's what the (4x8') poster in the lobby looks like:

Now she's facing the camera straight-on: no cleavage or butt on display, weapons clearly visible. And, please to be noting, which character is now pointing his butt camera-ward but also turning to face us?

That's right, it's the Hulk. As Jerry said, "I don't think that's an accident."

And I felt like that carried through the whole movie. There isn't really a star, but Black Widow is in a sneaky way kind of the most central, or perhaps most pivotal character. And the way she gets information out of other characters is amazing. And in the end, she's the one who actually gets the gate closed. She's a vital and equally-important character and not sexually objectified. So that was very pleasing.

Also! The female characters were all fully-clothed! There may have been catsuits, yes, but the guys showed at LEAST as much skin as the women, overall, and the camera was just as happy to linger on Chris Evans' butt as ScarJo's.

The movie managed to make both Black Widow and Hawkeye, the two non-metahumans, feel just as important and valuable as the rest of the team, which I thought was a pretty good trick. It would be easy for them to get lost, but they didn't.

And they made the SHIELD helicarrier, which is kind of dorky on a conceptual level, into something *really cool*! Nick Fury totally deserved his $10.

Mark Ruffalo as the Hulk was, of course, absolutely wonderful. The way he delivers the line "Well, this all seems compltely horrible" is just the best. *That* is the Hulk movie everyone wants to see now. Also, Bruce and Tony as science BFFs makes me squee like nothin'.

There were lots of great lines, but Whedon also managed to keep all the characters' voices distinct, and it was neat to see Thor's Shakespearean declamations playing off Tony's snark and Cap's earnestness and yet all fitting together and *working*, because I think that could easily have been a big mess.

And there was a bunch of interestingly revelatory stuff about character motivations that was demonstrated through the dialogue. Like, you can watch Tony just drop the snark in the middle of a sentence as he gets an idea and you realize oh, he's only an asshole when he doesn't have something to THINK about! And similarly all of Thor's stuff with Loki and family, and BW + Hawkeye having a background and a relationship but not being all IN LURVE with one another (and hooray for that), and so on.

I was quite distraught over Agent Coulson's death, even though it was quintessential Whedon *and* retrospectively obvious from a scrip-construction POV, but nevertheless I hold out hope that he may not actually be dead. After all, Fury faked the baseball cards, and we didn't actually *see* the medics pronounce him dead; we heard Fury *say* it over the comms -- and he admitted that the team needed something personal to bring them together. So I'm going to believe him alive, because his crush of Captain America is too adorkable to die.

Did everybody notice the two ravens circling about when Thor confronts Loki on the mountaintop?

Hakeye's auto-quiver thingy was pretty awesome.

When they revealed Stark Tower being converted to Avengers Tower I kicked myself for not seeing it coming. They even had the camera lingering on the letters getting knocked off earlier!

And the shawarma scene was an absolutely perfect ending.

I'm sure there are more things, but yeah. I liked it, is what I'm saying. It was really good.

My last note is that I think I'm over 3-D. They did a good job with it, but still I spent as much time being distracted by it as I did feeling it was an enhancement, so I think from now on I'll just see the 2-D versions, thankyouverymuch.

[User Picture]From: k8cre8
2012-05-09 04:16 am (UTC)
Yeah, and one thing I noticed is that Stark *lands* by the schwarma place earlier in the battle, which, sure, he "lived" in the neighborhood, but, I like to think that's when he learned about the place.

There's some other Whedon-y bits that made me squee, Ashley Johnson as the bank lady saved by Cap, and Enver (of dollhouse fame) was a cop, plus Alexis Denisof (Wesley Wyndham-Price, not that you could tell) was the go-between with Loki and our Man of Titan...

Mostly, like you, it was those character bits that won the day, and the characters sounded like themselves, and just, yeah. Happiness.

We didn't do 3D, because I've really only seen it done well once, and mostly, I don't like spending the extra money, for what mostly amounts to "eh." And, since we went before noon, it was only $6 a ticket.
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[User Picture]From: drdeleto
2012-05-09 01:27 pm (UTC)
Oh, you can actually see it in non-3D? That's good news. (Obviously, I don't get to the theater very often.)
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[User Picture]From: k8cre8
2012-05-09 02:25 pm (UTC)
Oh, totally, you can. I also don't get to the theater very often, admittedly, but, it's my preference. I hate that they make you pay for the experience, even if you were to keep the glasses, and bring them back. It seems so wasteful, and just another way for them to put in an up-charge.

Yes, I'm cheap, but, I prefer the term "frugal." Worse? I've only paid for 3 movies in the last year. (I think I've got to six movies)
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[User Picture]From: tbass
2012-05-09 03:26 pm (UTC)
A lot of people keep mentioning the fact that Hulk went crazy on Black Widow but then later controlled himself. For me, it seemed to be pretty obvious. If he gets hurt or is uncontrollably angry, he goes nuts... like he did on Black Widow... but, if he purposefully changes into the Hulk like he did at the end (when he says, "My secret is, I'm ALWAYS angry" and instantly changes into the monster, he can control himself as much as he wants. For me, that one line of dialogue completely explained it.
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From: detailbear
2012-05-09 05:08 pm (UTC)
RE: a strong Black Widow - Whedon doesn't write weak female characters.

He's also said that he always has to have a 'conscience' character. In Firefly it was Kaylee. If she believed something was 'right' or someone was honest, they were. Who do you think is his conscience character in the Avengers?
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[User Picture]From: goddessdster
2012-05-09 05:51 pm (UTC)
Captain A.
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[User Picture]From: goddessdster
2012-05-09 05:56 pm (UTC)

I unfortunately saw it in 3-D, so I am so going to see it again. I find unnecessary 3-D distracting and I feel I missed a lot as a result.

Whedon's Tony Stark is the character I've wanted to see through two Ironman movies. The Hulk was perfect. Captain America wasn't annoying. Black Widow was exactly what I expected from A Whedon female character (strength in vulnerability). And Hawkeye. Hawkeye! Loved him.

Oh yeah, Thor was still hot.

I know, not the deepest thoughts, but I'm, waiting til I see it again to get thinkier about it.
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[User Picture]From: putzmeisterbear
2012-05-09 08:08 pm (UTC)
The current issue of Wired has a good article about Joss Whedon and the making of this movie. A lot of insight into the production.
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