The Avengers: Age of Ultron Parent Review
With relationships between characters already established, this movie goes straight for the action until about midway through when it makes an abrupt stop to interject a feeble attempt at storyline.
Marvel Comic fans likely won’t be disappointed with the franchise’s action-packed sequel Avengers: Age of Ultron. Gunfire, explosions, decapitations and hard-hitting punches plaster the screen in a video game-like hail of warfare. And it starts before the movie’s title even comes on screen.
The Avengers are on a mission to recover Loki’s luminous scepter that has fallen into the hands of Hydra. Once the ornamental staff is reclaimed, Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) asks Thor (Chris Hemsworth) to let him study it for a couple of days before it is returned to Asgard. With the help of Bruce Banner (Mark Ruffalo), Tony discovers an artificial intelligence inside the scepter’s stone. Without consulting the rest of his team, the wealthy former arms dealer decides to download the intelligence in order to complete his long-shelved global defense program.
However when Ultron (voice of James Spader) comes to life, he has his own ideas about humanity—most significantly that they must all be eradicated. That’s all the excuse needed for the next two hours of on screen mayhem and robot battles. Since machines are involved there isn’t an excess of blood. But we do still see some injured heroes and innocent bystanders with bloody wounds. And one character’s body is riddled with bullets after he steps in to protect another Avenger.
If you’ve seen any of the previous Marvel Comic movies, you likely won’t be surprised by this amount of violence. But you may be disappointed at the lack of story. Marvel’s The Avengers brought the whole gang together for one epic battle with aliens. While it wasn’t a deep plot, the first half of the movie was spent creating a cohesive bond between the super egos. With their relationship already established, this movie goes straight for the action until about midway through when it makes an abrupt stop to interject a feeble attempt at storyline.
The enormous cast is also a challenge. Along with Tony, Bruce, Thor and Ultron, we have Captain America (Chris Evans), Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) and Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) all vying for screen time. And then the script introduces the Maximoff twins, two war orphans that have a grudge to settle with Tony Stark. Pietro (Aaron Taylor-Johnson) moves extraordinarily fast. His sister Wanda (Elizabeth Olsen) can pry her way into people’s minds and initially they team up with Ultron. Together they threaten to take down the Avengers until they decide to change their allegiances. Actor Paul Bettany also joins the team as Vision, a man-made human with a solar jewel in his head that powers his body. Unfortunately this incredible amount of acting talent is too big for the script they are given to work with.
But these shortcomings don’t appear to be hindering the film’s success. Before the movie even hit North American cinemas, it had raked it over $200 million overseas. The studio’s desire to cash in on that foreign market may have contributed to the plot’s setting in the fictional European country of Sokovia and the inclusion of the twins.
Luckily the script still includes its tongue in cheek humor and that helps lessen the discomfort of audience members who are not blown away by the on-going conflicts between man and machines. However, in their attempt to avenge humanity, these superhero characters amass an inexcusable amount of collateral damage without so much as a backward glance.Directed by Joss Whedon. Starring Robert Downey, Jr., Chris Evans Chris Hemsworth, Mark Ruffalo Scarlett Johansson Jeremy Renner Aaron Johnson,Elizabeth Olsen. Running time: 142 minutes. Updated May 13, 2016
Get details on profanity, sex and violence in The Avengers: Age of Ultron here.
The Avengers: Age of Ultron Parents Guide
How might this film’s setting in a fictional European location be more appealing to audiences on that side of the world? Will the inclusion of the Maximoff twins also make the movie more interesting to foreign viewers? How has a worldwide market changed the type of villains a moviemaker uses?
In one scene, two of the Marvel heroes make a heroic attempt to save three individuals from plunging over the side of a cliff. However, hundreds of other innocent characters have already died during the battles between the Avengers and Ultron’s forces. Does the script try to justify why certain individuals are worthy of being saved while others are not? Is the huge amount of collateral damage warranted in this story?
The Avengers are accused of being freaks or monsters. Do you agree? Or do you think they are more of a savior character? What elements does the film use to support the savior interpretation?
From the Studio: Marvel Studios presents Avengers: Age of Ultron, the epic follow-up to the biggest Super Hero movie of all time. When Tony Stark tries to jumpstart a dormant peacekeeping program, things go awry and Earth’s Mightiest Heroes, including Iron Man, Captain America, Thor, The Incredible Hulk, Black Widow and Hawkeye, are put to the ultimate test as the fate of the planet hangs in the balance. As the villainous Ultron emerges, it is up to The Avengers to stop him from enacting his terrible plans, and soon uneasy alliances and unexpected action pave the way for an epic and unique global adventure. - Marvel Studios