This is it. The moment/movie we have been waiting for. Ever since Iron Man first came out and Marvel announced that this movie would happen, the build up and hype surrounding this movie just continued to grow. Animated movies revolving around super hero teams have been done before but to have a live action movie of this caliber, featuring heroes from individual movies being brought together, has never happened. I was chomping at the buit for this movie and could hardly wait until it came out. So let’s get right into what was Marvel’s biggest cinematic project to date with today’s movie, The Averngers (2012).
The Plot: Somewhere in space, a being known as The Other, leader of an alien race called the Chitauri, reports that the Tesseract has been discovered and sends Loki to retrieve it in exchange for an army to conquer the Earth. Back on Earth, Nick Fury arrives at a secret facility that is being evacuated due to the Tesseract’s powering up on it’s own. After giving orders to Agents Coulson and Maria Hill, Nick Fury speaks with Dr. Erik Selvig and Agent Clint Barton about what his happening. Suddenly, a portal opens up and Loki appears and begins attacking the S.H.I.E.L.D. agents, killing most while taking over the minds of Barton and one other agent as well as Dr. Selvig. Fury tries to escape with the Tesseract but failing that, tries stalling Loki so that he will be buried in a fail safe eruption. Barton shoots Fury then grabs the case with the Tesseract as he leaves with Loki and the others. Fury, still alive thanks to his kevlar vest, alerts Maria to what is going on and she goes after them but when the fail safe detonates, she barely escapes the blast, while Fury’s helicopter is shot down by Loki, allowing them to escape. In a abandoned warehouse, Natasha Romanoff has been captured by some Russian arms dealers and is about to be tortured when Agent Coulson calls her phone and threatens the arms dealers so that they give her the phone. After briefly talking with Coulson, Natasha takes out the three arms dealers then continues talking with Coulson, who tells her that she needs to get the big guy, which she at first believes to mean Tony Stark but Coulson says he has Stark and emphasizes “Big” guy, causing Natasha to pause. In Calcutta, Dr. Bruce Banner is working as a doctor in a poor neighborhood when a young girl comes to his office asking for help. She leads Banner to a house on the outskirts of town but then climbs out the window, leaving Banner alone when Natasha appears. Natasha talks with Banner , explaining how S.H.I.E.L.D. never lost track of him and kept some people off his trail, and explains what Fury wants him to do and Banner reluctantly agrees. Fury goes to see Steve Rogers as he works out in a gym and Steve recognizes the Tesseract as Hydra’s secret weapon and tells Fury that they should have left it buried. Coulson goes to New York to see Stark and hands him the file on the Avengers as well as Selvig’s research into the Tesseract. Meanwhile, at his hidden base, Loki gets in contact with the other, who grows impatient and wants Loki to hurry up and hand over the Tesseract but Loki refuses until he gets his army. Steve is taken to the helicarrier, where he meets Natasha and Banner and after the head up into the sky, Banner begins working on a way to track the Tesseract while the agents search for Loki, finally locating him in Germany and Fury sends Steve to capture him. In Germany, Loki attacks a charity event while Barton uses the distraction to break into a secure area and steal some iridium, an element needed to stabalize the Tesseract’s power. Loki holds a crowd hostage and is about to kill one of them when Captain America shows up and begins fighting with Loki. Cap finds himself overpowered by Loki but Stark shows up in his Mark VI armor to help fight Loki, who ends up surrendering. As they are flying back to the helicarrier, Cap comments on capturing Loki being too easy when a sudden thunderstorm surrounds the ship, causing Loki to grow nervous. Suddenly, Thor appears and grabs Loki before flying off, with Stark and Cap in pursuit.Landing in a forest, Thor questions Loki about the Tesseract but is interrupted when Stark tackles him and the two heroes begin fighting. Captain America is able to break up the fight and Thor agrees to allow Loki to be taken to the helicarrier. On board, Loki is placed in a cell intended for the Hulk while the assembled heroes try to figure out what his plan is and locate the cube. In the lab, Banner and Stark are working on locating the cube when Cap walks in and Stark and Banner both comment on how they feel Fury is hiding something from them and wonder why they didn’t bring Stark in to work with the Tesseract in the first place. After leaving the lab with Stark’s words still in his head, Cap heads down to a secure area and discovers prototype weapons based on Hydra’s old designs. Meanwhile, Natasha goes down to the cell to question Loki about Barton and manages to trick him into revealing that he plans to unleash the Hulk on the helicarrier. As everyone assembles in the lab, tempers begin flaring among them and they begin arguing with each other. At the same time, Barton leads a team onto the helicarrier, taking out one of the engines in the process. The explosion occurs just as Banner’s program locates the cube but ends up dropping Banner and Natasha into a lower area of the ship, where Banner transforms into the Hulk and begins chasing after Natasha until Thor arrives and begins fighting with the Hulk. Meanwhile, Stark works on clearing out the debris from the damaged engine and getting it restarted while Cap deals with some men trying to stop them. As the Hulk and Thor’s fight threatens to destroy the helicarrier, Maria has one of the escort fighters fire on the Hulk, causing the Hulk to leap onto the offending jet and begin tearing it apart before it explodes, sending the Hulk crashing to the ground. Barton uses the air ducts to make his way to the bridge, where he manages to disable a second engine, causing the helicarrier to begin falling from the sky. Hearing that Barton is heading her way, Natasha goes after him and manages to free him from Loki’s control before she knocks him unconscious. Thor finds Loki trying to escape his cell but when he tries to stop him, he winds up being trapped in the cell himself as Loki had tricked him with a mirage. When Thor tries to escape, he sets off the cell’s security feature and Loki prepares to open the flooring which would drop the cell to the Earth below but he is stopped by Coulson. Coulson warns Loki but it turns out to be another mirage as the real Loki stabs Coulson with his spear from behind, then releases the cell containing Thor but Thor manages to break free from the cell before it hits the ground. Loki manages to escape and Fury announces that Coulson had died, then tells Cap and Stark about the Avengers Initiative being his preferred idea as opposed to Phase 2, which was using the Tesseract’s energy to make weapons. As Cap and Stark are talking, Stark realizes that Loki has taken the Tesseract to Stark Tower in order to use it’s arc reactor to open the portal. Stark flies off, followed by Cap, Natasha, and a recovered Barton, and it is revealed that Fury had used Coulson’s death to help motivate them into working together. In New York, Stark tries to stop the portal from being opened but it is protected by an energy shield. Seeing Loki outside his penthouse, Stark decides to switch out his armor and confronts Loki but Loki tries to take control of Stark’s mind but failing that, he throws him out of the building but he is saved when his Mark VII armor launches and attaches to him. Suddenly, the portal opens and the Chitauri begin flying out so Stark turns his focus on them. Thor arrives and begins fighting with Loki while Cap, Natasha, and Barton show up to help Stark before Loki shoots them out of the sky. AS they are regrouping, Banner shows up and when Stark leads a giant living transport to their location, Banner changes into the Hulk and stops the transport long enough for Stark to destroy it. When Loki sends in the rest of the Chitauri army, Cap gives out assignments to the assembled heroes and they head off to do their part. Natasha decides to try and go after the portal and Cap gives her a boost onto a passing Chitauri air sled. Reaching the portal generator, she finds Dr. Selvig snapping out of Loki’s control and he tells her that he built a failsafe into the device and Loki’s scepter is the key. Meanwhile, S.H.I.E.L.D.’s governing council has elected to use a nuke to stop the invasion and when Fury refuses to allow it, they override him and issue the command to a pilot. Fury stops one plane from leaving but a second one takes off and Fury contacts Stark to warn him. Natasha retrieves the scepter and announces that she can close the portal but Stark tells her to wait as he plans on sending the nuclear missile through the portal. Stark succeeds in guiding the missile through the portal and watches as it detonates, destroying the Chitauri fleet that has not reached Earth. Natasha closes the portal as Stark falls out of the sky but he is caught by the Hulk and safely brought back to the ground. After Stark regains consciousness, the heroes converge on Loki and take him into custody. Later, Stark gives Thor the Tesseract, which he uses to take him and Loki back to Asgard while the other Avengers go their separate ways while on the helicarrier, Maria questions Fury on if it is wise and he says if they are needed, they will come back. Meanwhile, somewhere in space, The Other is speaking to his master and says the Earth was not as easy as they were led to believe and to attack it would be to court death, at which point his master turns to face him and the grinning face of Thanos is revealed.
The Averngers (2012) was met with high praise by the critics as shown by the 92% certified fresh rating on Rotten Tomatoes. The critical consensus was that “Thanks to a script that ephasizes its heroes’ humanity and a wealth of superpowered set pieces, The Avengers lives up to its hype and raises the bar for Marvel at the movies.” The movie was an absolute box office phenomenon, breaking several records at the time, including highest opening weekend and quickest movie to reach $500 million, and still holds the record for the highest grossing super hero film (domestically), opening weekend for a super hero weekend, and May opening. The movie was definitely a box office success as it made over $1.5 billion off a $220 million budget, making it the 5th highest grossing film in history.
In a word, HOLY CRAP THIS MOVIE IS AWESOME. Ok, so that was more than one word but that was my opinion when I first saw this movie and I am still amazed by it now. All of the characters did a good job reprising their roles from earlier movies. The plot did a good job of bringing the various characters together and setting up a future encounter with Thanos, one of the biggest villians in the Marvel Universe. The special effects were incredible and really made this seem like a comic brought to life, and not just a movie. Without a doubt, one of the best comic book movies to come out in a long time and lives up to all of it’s hype.
Rating: 5 out of 5