Yahoo! reviews The Avengers

Karen Vera
Yahoo! Special Projects

The Yahoo! team got to see The Avengers on Monday (April 16th), but no one at the media screening was allowed to publish reviews or reveal any plot points until today, April 21st, at 5PM.

Well, folks, the embargo is over, and here’s the lowdown on the shiniest, superhero-iest (hey, there are six of them) movie the planet has seen.

There’s no question in most people’s minds: you ARE going to see this movie, no matter what the reviews say. It’s an easy sell — there are four comic book legends that have already starred in their own respective superhero movies (Iron Man, Hulk, Thor, Captain America) united together into one story. There’s a tiny nation of charismatic but no doubt ego-driven actors playing the major roles, and there are action sequences that can’t help but be kick-ass, all put together by Joss Whedon, a writer-director who has something to prove/eager to please.

With all that practically pre-defined gloriousness going for The Avengers, the big question that surrounds this movie essentially is: Did they screw it up?

Whedon and Marvel Studios really went all out in the Go-Big-or-Go-Home stakes, and they gave us a movie that is HUGE-NORMOUS (we made that up, okay?), ready to give the hardcore fans a new movie to love and dissect and start flame wars over, as well as super-dee-duper fantastic even for those who just love a really great time at the cinema.

Plot, schmlot. Basically, god of Mischief Loki (2011 breakout star Tom Hiddleston, who is mega-talented enough to spar with Samuel L. Jackson, Robert Downey, Jr et al) is stirring up trouble and wants all of Earth to be his minions. Nick Fury and his eye patch starts collecting all the Avengers together to try and stop him.

Even before they confront errant Asgardian, the Avengers have to start playing as team, and the movie spends a good amount of time making comic book fans’ dreams come true by pitting them in (spoiler alert!) various head-to-head battles (Thor vs Hulk, Iron Man vs Captain America and so on).

They finally pull it together when [spoiler we wouldn’t even dream of telling of you here] on the Avengers team gets hurt and goes down for the count.

Joss Whedon walked on water and did a miraculous job of giving equal time and weight to such a heavyweight cast. Captain America’s Chris Evans sell sincerity like it’s ultra sexy, Chris Hemsworth as Thor is truly the God of Thunder (and cute dimples), Robert Downey Jr remains the master of all-eyes-on-me energy, Scarlett Johannsen as the Black Widow is the best girl in black leather to kick ass, Jeremy Renner’s Hawkeye is someone who holds up despite being merely excellent with a bow & arrow, and Samuel L. Jackson gets to be very Samuel L. Jackson-y.

Mark Ruffalo though, should be in jail — because he basically stole this movie! Whether he’s low key as Dr Bruce Banner or the biggest and most destructive guy in the room as the Hulk, Ruffalo will be the guy you’ll be talking about when you leave the cinema.

Even the Avengers support team, Agent Coulson (Clark Gregg), Agent Hill (Cobie Smoulders) and Thor’s Dr Selveig (Stellan Skarsgaard), are indispensable and get moments to shine in the movie.

The dialogue is endlessly entertaining and the special effects are spot-on. The 2-hours-plus running time have very few wasted moments. If there was something to nitpick, there’s two minor things: a) the enemy forces that are present in the movie get kind of Stormtrooper-like: faceless, disposable punching bags for our heroes to conquer. (There’s just a boatload of them invading Earth!); b) Whedon gets eco on us, as he semi-recycles a major plot resolution with a trick he’s used in his movies before. Oh, Joss.

But they’re nitpicks because they’re nitpicks. Your butts will be in cinemas for this, so see you there.

Tell us what you thought of the movie, and post them in the comments below.