Release date: September 17th, 2012
Certificate (UK): 12
Running time: 137 minutes
Director: Joss Whedon
Writers: Zak Penn, Joss Whedon
Cast: Robert Downey Jr, Scarlett Johansson, Chris Hemsworth, Chris Evans, Tom Hiddleston, Samuel L. Jackson, Mark Ruffalo
I’d like to think we’re free, but over the years I’ve come to realise we only live under the illusion of freedom. At first glance it seems we have so many choices in our daily lives; from the types of juice to go with our breakfast, to the rulers we elect to govern us. In the end however, it’s still just juice and we’re still gonna be ruled no matter who we elect.
Marvel Avengers Assemble sees Loki (Tom Hiddleston) arriving on Earth and ready to rule. He also wants revenge on his brother, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), who thwarted his previous plan to overthrow the throne of Asgard, and he plans to harness the power of the Tesseract, a blue cosmic cube, to achieve these goals.
First, he needs to get the Tesseract from Nick Fury (Samuel L. Jackson) who’s testing its properties deep in a heavily guarded underground base. Once Fury realises it activates a portal to the other side of the universe, it’s too late, Loki succeeds in obtaining it and after taking Dr. Erik Selvig (Stellan Skarsgård) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) under his control, he destroys the base.
Fury is left with no other choice but to assemble an elite team to save the world from what else Loki might unleash or whomever he’s working with. Natasha Romanoff, aka Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson), is sent to enlist Dr. Bruce Banner, aka Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), while Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg) is sent after Tony Stark, aka Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.). Fury already has Steve Rogers, aka Captain America (Chris Evans), and no one is sure of the whereabouts of Thor (Chris Hemsworth).
The Avengers head to their new secret base, the giant air-borne Helicarrier, from where they’re able to track Loki’s movements. He isn’t exactly hiding from them, making the team suspicious about why he wanted to be captured.
From here, the epic battle begins, not just between them and Loki, but also with each other. There’s a grand fight between Iron Man and Thor – when he finally arrives. Scarlett Johansson makes an impressive entrance as Black Widow, balancing strength, charisma and beauty effortlessly as a complicated character who just wants to wipe the red off her ledger. The camaraderie between the men develops once they finish tussling with each other. Banner tries at all times to keep himself composed so as to not let out “the other guy” – meanwhile Stark is keen to see him go green. Once that happens, it threatens to take down the Helicarrier and everyone in it.
The action eventually takes us to New York – where else – as a portal opens up above the Stark tower. With destruction raining down, the Avengers do everything in their power to put an end to Loki’s madness before Fury’s superiors step in and nuke the city.
Although Marvel Avengers Assemble begins with the question of whether or not human beings live under the illusion of being free, it never comes back to answer it. Loki’s speech in Düsseldorf, right before he’s interrupted by Captain America, was spot on. We have freedom, but we just don’t know what to do with it, we need to be ruled, we need to be told what to do. Fury, in his attempt to prevent Loki from ruling, never addresses the fact we’re already being ruled and his superiors aren’t ready to give up that power.
Despite this (intentional?) oversight in the story, as a superhero movie, Marvel Avengers Assemble is everything you could ask for.
There’s lots of action and Whedon keeps the pace sustained with splashings of humour and slapstick comedy in places you wouldn’t expect. The characters are all extremely likeable and the fight scenes are well choreographed. Altogether, it makes for an entertaining couple of hours as the Earth, once again, lies in peril.
The founder of Static Mass Emporium and one of its Editors in Chief is a composer and music producer with a philosophy degree. Static Mass is where he lives his passion for film and writing about it. A fan of film classics, documentaries and World Cinema, Patrick prefers films with an impeccable way of storytelling that reflect on the human condition.
You can find his music on Soundcloud .