Just got back from seeing The Avengers (or Avengers Assemble, to those outside of North America), and I think my take on the film is as follows:
After the Blu-Ray DVD version is released, some 15 year old kid using Apple iMovie is going to use it to produce an amazingly cool 80 minute long Avengers movie that’s going to blow everyone away. Until that day, we’re stuck with is a lumbering 142 minute long workprint (rough draft) of a film that seems to be more about ego (giving all the actors equal screen time) and spectacle (lots of epic FX shots and sequences) than telling an actual story.
It has some great sequences, some good humour, and some pretty good acting, but my god are those sequences spaced out by unncessarily long passages that do little to actually advance the plot (what there is of it). If it was only put under the editing knife of someone who didn’t care about anything but making it an effective story, then I think it could be turned into something awesome, but as it is- meh.
As a side note, it also totally confirmed my estimation that Chris Evans (Captain America) doesn’t have anywhere near enough presence or charisma to carry his role. I wouldn’t follow this Cap into a game of paintball, much less a full-scale war.
Robert Downey Jr. was Tony Stark (or is that the other way around?) and rocked as usual.
Chris Helmsworth was so-so, same with Jeremy Renner as Hawkeye.
The two surprises of the film were Scarlett Johansen, who actually did have presence and style, and the (new) Hulk Mark Ruaffalo, who actually did a great job in the role. (In fact, the Hulk was probably the best character in the film. Maybe because we never had to see him brood or look angsty?) They may finally have a Bruce Banner who can carry a film or three.
In the end, I give it 6/10. Didn’t suck, but wasn’t especially good either.