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"We've done the impossible, and that makes us mighty."
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April 30 2015

(SPOILER) Discuss Avengers: Age of Ultron (part 2). The movie is now out in the U.S. So if you have seen it, come tell us what you thought of it.

It's also out now in Canada, Bangladesh, the Bahamas, Colombia, Cyprus, Estonia, Ethiopia, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Lithuania, Latvia, Pakistan, Turkey, and Venezuela.

The first discussion thread can be found here.

I just watched AoU, and I have mix feelings about it.

On one hand, the dialogue contained the witty banter I’ve come to love and expect of Joss Whedon’s work. The action and fight sequences were much better than the first Avengers. I loved Clint in this movie; he received the best storyline. I was skeptical when I found out Joss was taking his inspiration from the “Ultimates” comic universe, which isn’t my cup of tea, but he made it work for Clint. I’m extremely pleased they gave him a family; so many comic book movies make it seem like you have to choose between a personal life and superhero life. I’ve been waiting for a superhero movie to do it since Danielle Cage was born and, the character was written/handled well. I loved Clint’s interaction with his fellow Avengers and I love the relationship he builds with the Maximoff twins. The scene where Ultron reveals himself to Wanda and Pietro was reminiscent to Ultron’s introduction to the comics. I didn’t see Quicksilver’s death coming and it was a great catalyst for Wanda joining the Avengers (although I think they did kill him off too quickly, I feel Marvel could have explored his character more). I thought Natasha’s ‘lullaby’ to the Hulk was sweet, and I loved that she was able to appeal to his humanity when he was green. Vision was amazing! I loved the Maximoff twins (my Ukrainian neighbor found them to be offensive and felt that they misrepresent Eastern Europe). I was getting a Simon-River vibe off of them. I’m really excited about the new roster of Avengers, and I really wish we could see them in action before Civil War airs. Also, I’m questioning Rhodey and Barton’s position in Civil War given the ending of AoU. I am very much looking forward to see how AoS ties into it and if Gonzales will fall in line with Fury/Hill/Coulson. I’m hoping we’ll be able to get some hints of Dr. Banner’s whereabouts in AoS or Ant-man since CA:CW is a longs way away and the Infinity Wars even further. I loved how they emphasized on saving and protecting civilians, but they could have done a follow-up on who is going to pay for all of the destruction and property damage. The movie left a lot of unanswered questions that I would love to see explored in AoS (and Ant-man) before Civil War.

What I didn’t like was the characterization for some of the characters.

1) The movie felt a bit like the AoS episode “who you really are”, except instead of saying ‘abomination’ all the time, they threw around the word ‘monster’ a lot. I was hoping to see Bruce feel more at ease with being the Hulk. The scene where Stark is telling Banner that they are both monsters because they are mad scientist felt weird. But what really pissed me off was Banner telling Natasha he couldn’t have kids and Natasha responding with “graduating the Red Room involved sterilization. I can’t have kids. It makes things easier. Killing too. So, you see, we’re both monsters”. Now I only watched the movie once, but the way I interpreted this scene is that apparently women that are unable to have kids are monsters or would be more willing to kill someone because of their lack of children. I found it to be insensitive, and I have a lot of issues with this implication.

2) In Avengers, Natasha tells Barton and Selvig it wasn’t their fault for what Loki made them do. In Winter Soldier, Natasha tells Steve it wasn’t his fault for what happened to Bucky. I was waiting for Dr. Banner to tell Natasha that it wasn’t her fault that she was kidnapped and turned into a child soldier. It wasn’t her fault that she was essentially property, a weapon for Russia to mold and use against their enemies. It wasn’t her fault that she was put into a situation where she had to kill to survive, and it says more about her that she defected and joined SHIELD/Avengers when given the opportunity. It says more about her that the Barton kids love their Aunt Nat, than it does her inability to have kids.

3) Natasha Romanova is my favorite character (if you couldn’t tell by now). I was hoping for more Red Room history. The Natasha I’ve come to love in the comics, if she isn’t with SHIELD or the Avengers, then she is acting like a one-woman A-Team. She takes on cases to help people, and the money she makes goes to a trust fund to help her victims and others in need to right her wrongs. She is resourceful. I mean, come on. She was able to get a message out to Clint without Ultron knowing, but unable to escape her cell? I wish they held off romantic relationships until she had a solo movie or Scarlet Witch had a more secure position on the team. I just hope they don’t have her pining for Banner in the upcoming movies. I think Bruce/Nat could have worked better, the potential was there, but it wasn’t handled properly. Honestly, I hope they never put her in a romantic relationship again. It truly felt like Joss butchered her character to try to get her into a relationship with Dr. Banner.

4) I was talking to my uncle, and we both think Steve’s characterization is disjointed between the Avenger movies and his solo films. My uncle prefers the Steve in the Avengers and I prefer him in his solo movies. We both read comics, so we got into an interesting debate about his characterization using the comics to back us up. What we realized is that the Captain America comics my uncle collected in the late 60s to 70s are the comics Joss is using for inspiration. And the Captain America comics that I started reading in the late 90s to present are what Christopher Markus and Stephen McFeely are using for inspiration. Looking at the MCU as a whole, his character is not as cohesive as it should be.

5) I was disappointed in the lack of development with Maria Hill. Also, I was expecting more Rhodey and Wilson.

6) The end scene between Fury and Natasha. What was that about? Does Fury have a secret algorithm that told him if he sent Romanoff to Banner that they would fall in love? Did he know all along that Natasha would what, ‘calm the beast’ and ensure his spot as an asset for SHIELD?

I plan on re-watching it over the weekend, hopefully, when I'm not so sleep deprived.
Saw the 3D version tonight; plan to go back and see the 2D in a few days (there are always things I miss in 3D that are easier to spot in 2D). The 3D did not seem as terribly dim for this movie as it often does.

Initial thoughts: this is an Act 2 movie (somewhat like The Empire Strikes Back in tone), so the 'victory' at the end feels less victorious than the one in Avengers Assemble.

Some great Joss-y quippiness throughout for the whole team. (Language!) And the Stan Lee cameo is fun. Also, great scenes with Ruffalo and Johansson.

Fight/action scenes were very complex -- will definitely have to get the DVD and frame-advance through them, as there was simply no way to take in all the action, it's all over the frame.

Definitely a more personal and thoughtful film than the first one; it's less about getting the team back together, more about how to assess the costs/risks of having such a team in place. The world of the MCU is much darker since the events in Winter Soldier and the effects are still rippling outward. They've faced down the external/extraterrestrial enemy; they've faced down the human enemy (Hydra) multiple times and that battle is still ongoing... this time the enemy is of their own creation, with both inner and outer manifestations. The repercussions will go much farther than just the billions of dollars of damage to multiple cities.

In one of the earliest trailers, there was a small snippet of a scene, Scarlet Witch falling to her knees with an expression of immense anguish on her face. Or maybe anger (there was no context for it in the trailer). It was only a second or two but it was emotionally powerful for me. The scene plays out slightly differently in the finished film -- shot from a different angle and perhaps even in a different location. But now I have the context, and boy is that moment earned. Welcome to the Whedonverse, Ms. Olsen.

One quibble/question: Coulson sent Patton Oswalt off to implement the Theta Protocol several episodes back in AoS. In the most recent episode, Hill asks Coulson if Theta is ready -- he says "yes, it's time to call in the Avengers" (or something to that effect). Which sounds to me like Theta is some sort of precursor or prerequisite that had to be completed before the Avengers could be called together. But some of the reviews I've seen have suggested that Theta Protocol is equivalent to calling them together to go after Loki's scepter. I don't buy it. Does anyone know if there's more to it? Maybe Theta involved the steps needed to set up the new Avengers base in upstate NY as well as getting a new helicarrier operational -- things that would have to take some time and money but couldn't be done too openly while SHIELD was supposedly out of commission.
Loved it!!!

Thought it was way better than the first one. Can't wait to watch it again.

There was so much that it's hard to narrow down what made it so awesome. Loved the dialog, loved the action. I smiled for most of the third act, until it got to the point where you couldn't really smile anymore.
I thought it was outstanding. Fantastic dialogue, with a ton of laughs (to be expected, but still always a delight). Surprisingly emotional at times. I only say this because no other MCU movies have been particularly emotional to me.

Yeah at times it may have felt a little overstuffed, but it didn't particularly affect my enjoyment of the movie. And I certainly don't blame Joss for it. I think he did a wonderful job.
Hpgwbtvs- re 1) i hated that it came off that way at first too, but after a couple of minutes realized she was referring to being made into an assassin. Wish Joss could've noticed it and fixed it, but it sounds like the editing process was brutal, so... Yeah. But yeah it sure would be nice for her to realize that she has looong since cleared the red out of her ledger. And the conversation woth Fury was bizarre. I dont mind the pining too much as long as it doesnt become her only characteristic... I find it relatable. Coming out of the movie i felt like it was as good as the first, but still felt a sense of disappointment. I think I'm coming to realize that it's because there weren't nearly as many great moments for her. They were there, but nothing like the 'ah hell yeah' moments of her getting Loki to cooperate or her deciding to hitch a ride to the top of stark tower.
As I try to go to sleep, I'm realizing that Natasha's brief memories of her past and the surprise of Clint having a family is going to make me pine for a Widow/Hawkeye prequel even more. How do we make this happpppennnnn???
Captain America: "Avengers..."

"Written and Directed by Joss Whedon."
Just got back from it, and I thought it was super entertaining, and am very, very, very happy that this is Joss's last job for Marvel.

The job of juggling so many plotlines, character arcs, primary and secondary characters on top of intricate action scenes must have been an incredibly difficult one, and it's starting to show. I'm happy he's getting out while the getting is good!

It's amazing what the Marvel movies have done for Joss's career, but I'm actually way more excited to see what he'll do next, rather than Capt. America: Civil War/Avengers 3, etc.

P.S. the best parts of the movie, for me, are the Avengers just sassing each other all over the place. Who knew that Thor had such a cute sense of humor!

[ edited by dottikin on 2015-05-01 08:35 ]
Two words: meep meep.

Also, the hammer scene. Seen the movie twice (and I'm done seeing it as I don't want to spoil the thing) and both times people gasped.
Paul Bettany's Vision is a thing of a wonder.
I loved it.

I loved how the common tropes and expectations were subverted. For example: Hawkeye is married with two children and a third on the way. At one point, he looks at a picture of his family before battle. This should immediately result in him getting KILLED. Hawkeye should totally die in this film.

But he doesn't. His family doesn't die either (they die in the Ultimate Universe, which is where they appeared). Instead, Quicksilver, an awesome character whom everything thought was awesome, dies. Because Joss Whedon KNOWS what the audience expects...and sucker punches them instead.

I also love how at the end, the new Avengers consist of: two African-Americans (War Machine and the Falcon), two women (Black Widow and Scarlet Witch), one robot (Vision), and one white dude (Captain America), as opposed to the previous team which was five white dudes and one woman.
Isn't it roughly the same plot as Buffy's Once More With Feeling? Which I'm about to spoil? At the end of Once More With Feeling it becomes apparent that all the singing and dancing and death and the emergence of Sweet is as a result of Xander dabbling in magic. As he says, "I didn't know what was going to happen. I thought there would be dances and songs. Just wanted to make sure we'd work out, get a happy ending." In MARVEL's The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Stark and Banner meddle with science which results in action and death and the emergence of Ultron for similar reasons. They too don't really know what's going to happen. In both cases the super teams are actually spending most of the story clearing up a mess made by one of their own number.
I haven't seen it yet, but in addition to the US, it is also premiering in a little country called Canada today, along with (from IMDb) Bangladesh, the Bahamas, Colombia, Cyprus, Estonia, Ethiopia, Cambodia, Sri Lanka, Lithuania, Latvia, Pakistan, Turkey, and Venezuela. :)
I'm gonna post my general thoughts on the movie overall here momentarily, but I just wanted to throw my two cents into this real quick:

No. At no point did it seem, AT ALL, like the dialog was trying to imply that Natasha being sterile made her a monster. The film was ABSOLUTELY not trying to imply that the inability to have children makes a woman less human, more monstrous, or a more effective killer. It was QUITE SPECIFICALLY saying that, being a trained killer from childhood, being sterilized REMOVED a potential obstacle to that mission, and thus made the job easier. Having a child would potentially PREVENT her from being the monster that they CREATED, so they made sure to eliminate that threat. She was clearly made a monster, and sterilized to make the monster training stick permanently. Being sterile made killing easier ONLY BECAUSE that's what she was created to do. To believe or imply that the script was trying to say that "women who can't have kids are monsters" is an example of someone simply looking for some social justice cause to get offended over. People shouldn't go looking for outrage.
Completely agree. See also "rape joke."
" ... Which sounds to me like Theta is some sort of precursor or prerequisite that had to be completed before the Avengers could be called together. But some of the reviews I've seen have suggested that Theta Protocol is equivalent to calling them together to go after Loki's scepter. I don't buy it ..." -tomg

I DO buy it; it makes perfect sense, "Enact Theta Protocol" means "Call in the Avengers". So when Coulson told Keonig to "Enact Theta Protocol" if things went south trying to blow up the underground base in Peru, he was actually saying "call in the Avengers"...

... furthermore, I'm willing to bet that Coulson's secret project was building that shiny new Avengers Base. Given the hints like "100 bunk beds" and using up their budget, he was probably flying around the world interviewing people to work there.

[ edited by Penthos on 2015-05-01 13:19 ]

- I liked how cohesive and fully formed the team felt for most of the film. Most of the "team members turn on each other and tear each other apart" story arcs you see in movies and TV and comics, it all seems so arbitrary. Even after years of working together and trusting each other, some little slight, and suddenly everyone's at each other's throats. I never felt that in this movie. Even with the more justified aspect of someone LITERALLY altering their minds so that they'd hate each other, and the characters still more or less worked out their differences and never let it all boil over, and it never felt like they were really going to split. Maybe some people think that diminishes the drama of the movie, but I thought it made the Avengers more believable and realistic. They may have different personalities, they may not even totally like each other, but they are professionals, they are a team, and it's going to take more than this crap to "destroy them from the inside." Ultron and the Twins vastly underestimated the comrades-in-arms bond.

- In line with the first point, I liked everyone snarking back and forth. Again, they felt like a team who really worked together, and could freely comment on each other, or make jokes to ease their tension in a life-or-death situation.

- I liked everyone's character development, particularly (obviously) Clint, Nat, and Hulk. Hulk SPECIFICALLY, not Banner (who really didn't change a whole lot from previous depictions, which is fine, because I liked both Norton's and Ruffalo's Banner, so more of the same is fine by me). The fact that they gave Hulk some actual qualities beyond "giant green rage monster" was excellent.

- On that note, Natasha . . . I'm actually PLEASED they added the love story aspect. I hear a lot of whining about "oh, they gave the female character a love story, that's so typical and sexist, waahhh, why can't they let her just be an action star, she doesn't NEED a love story, bloo-bloo-bloo!" Uh, it's called "dimension." Contrary to popular belief, you can have a strong woman character and still let her have a softer side and interest in a relationship. Being an action star AND having a secret love life? That doesn't make Widow weaker, it makes her well-rounded. I especially love how adding a love-interest and a softer side is the thing people complain about for widow, while doing the exact same thing for Hawkeye in the VERY SAME MOVIE gets praised as great character development. I'd understand the complaints if she ceased kicking butt through the whole movie and was demoted to love interest, but having romantic tension while maintaining her bad@$$? Hell, isn't that one of the things Whedon is famous for? I didn't think the romantic tension stuff felt tacked on at all, and I really enjoyed how he found a commonality in these two seemingly completely different characters, how they came together through their shared strength, pain, darkness, and heroism. It worked better than I'd expected.

- That said . . . I'm GLAD it went nowhere too. I know it might seem a contradiction, but I've said it before: at the end of the day, Banner is still holding a candle for Betty Ross. Even if the Marvel writers seem to have forgotten, she's still out there, and he's not going to shrug her off that easy. Beyond that, Banner's solitary "leave me alone" flight instincts are just too ingrained, it was inevitable, and I'm glad they took that route. He's not a soldier, and Widow is, and at the end of the day, as connected as they are in spirit, they will always come down on opposite sides. One's a duty-bound fighter, the other is a lone-wolf runner, they'd never work.

- I liked the new characters. I never felt like Quick, Witch, or Vision were tacked on or half-@$$ed. They all felt like proper characters, not just components of the story.

- I liked how, at the end, it's Cap and Widow, back to work, old soldiers. Nice call-back to their partnership in Winter Soldier. And this just goes back to how the love story stuff didn't diminish her character at all, and she's still a great, strong woman role. At the end of the movie? She and Cap are the last ones standing.

- And of course, most of the action scenes were awesome.


- Was I the only one who felt that opening assault run up to the HYDRA base looked a bit . . . well, fake? I mean, obviously it was all effects and CGI, but it looked a bit on the shoddy side, all the CGI powered armor guys attacking the Avengers as they were tearing through the forest . . . it didn't feel like anyone was moving naturally. I know they're all digital puppets, but it just seemed like they did it all a lot more smoothly in the first Avengers, and even during the rest of this movie. The into just felt a bit jerky and rushed.

- The pacing of the movie felt a bit too fast. I think it could have stood to be 10-15 minutes longer overall, adding five minutes here or there to break up the NUMEROUS action scenes a little, just a bit more down time. But maybe it'll feel better on repeat viewings.

- Ok, I get the whole "Whedon kills someone in every work," and I get that a character death ups the drama, and I get the whole "never give the audience what they're expecting," but . . . c'mon, REALLY?? The whole Hawkeye thing was bad to the point of PARODY! Great for character development, don't get me wrong, but as a story device? Oh, here's my secret family, and I'm having a kid, and there's all these god-like beings on my team so maybe I'm not needed, only I really am 'cause I'm the team conscience, and I have just ONE MORE PROJECT to do to finish the house, and I'll get right on that after this ONE LAST MISSION . . . we're just laying that "CLINT'S GONNA DIIIEEE!!" lampshading on there just a tad thick, aren't we? It was so ridiculously highlighted that it was obvious 1) they were painting a target on his back, and 2) they were blatantly NOT going to do it because it would have been so obvious, thus making it obvious they were ABSOLUTELY gonna kill someone in the process of SAVING him from his plot-inevitable death! And again, don't get me wrong, of all the options, Quicksilver was probably the BEST choice, and I applaud the decision (he was developed enough to be liked and feel like a punch, but not so much that he feels like a betrayal and an irreplaceable loss), and his death really sets up future plotlines (crazy Scarlet Witch), but the over-the-top approach to the moment, the blatant stuff setting up Hawkeye . . . I half expected him to say "Only three days 'til retirement!" at some point, that's just CORNY! Maybe we coulda made it all a little less obvious? Or maybe, just maybe, surprise the audience for a change and NOT kill someone? Just a thought.

- I felt the movie relied a little too heavily on Deus ex Machina. In one case, quite literally, a god and a machine fixes the plot. Every time the plot got just a little heavy, in swoops some savior character, and they fix everything. Avengers fracturing at the farm house? BAM! Nick Fury gives a pep-talk and saves the day! Avengers fighting amongst themselves about activating Vision? BAM! Thor shows up and hits the robot with lightning, and they have a new super ally who can TOTALLY beat Ultron completely! All these civilians on this floating city, how do we survive? BAM! Nick Fury AGAIN, with a Helicarrier no less, and everyone is saved! It seemed like the plot was a little convenience-heavy, the exact character we needed at the exact moment we needed them.

- I felt Falcon was criminally underused. Seriously, we're bringing War Machine in for the final battle, but NOT Falcon? Bit of a slap in the face. At least they made him an Avenger at the end.

- This is more a personal gripe than an actual commentary on the movie itself, but I'm annoyed that the scepter did turn out to be the Mind Gem. I think it makes Thanos seem less competent (he actually has FEWER stones than he started with, really?), and I wanted everyone's speculation on that point to be wrong. Oh well, it fit, and worked in the context of the story.

As a whole, I liked the movie, and felt it was as good as the first Avengers, though not for the same reasons. It had more flaws than that movie, but I feel it also had more successes to balance those flaws. I do think they tried to do more with this movie, and actually had some commentary on the real world, beyond just the whole "this is a great summer action flick." I think they could have done better . . . but I'm not disappointed. It's a good movie, and a worthy continuation of the MCU. I'll see it again.
I loved It so much.
Better in a lot of ways than the first one (which was great but in additional views began to lose some of the magic).
I have to see it again it had so much going on.

About tropes - I also loved how Ultron doesn't just tell the good guys all his evil plans (a nd jokes about why would he). That was actually one of the very few bad things abot Winter Soldier.

"I also love how at the end, the new Avengers consist of: two African-Americans (War Machine and the Falcon), two women (Black Widow and Scarlet Witch), one robot (Vision), and one white dude (Captain America), as opposed to the previous team which was five white dudes and one woman."
Wow, I didn't think about that, it is great... but how many of them are Jewish (Kidding)
Isn't it roughly the same plot as Buffy's Once More With Feeling? Which I'm about to spoil? At the end of Once More With Feeling it becomes apparent that all the singing and dancing and death and the emergence of Sweet is as a result of Xander dabbling in magic. As he says, "I didn't know what was going to happen. I thought there would be dances and songs. Just wanted to make sure we'd work out, get a happy ending." In MARVEL's The Avengers: Age of Ultron, Stark and Banner meddle with science which results in action and death and the emergence of Ultron for similar reasons. They too don't really know what's going to happen. In both cases the super teams are actually spending most of the story clearing up a mess made by one of their own number.

Hard to say but my version of the movie had a bit less singing in it. :P

Um, I don't remember any rape joke at all. Before, I heard "Oh, there's going to be a rape joke in it" but nope, none of that I can remember.

No. At no point did it seem, AT ALL, like the dialog was trying to imply that Natasha being sterile made her a monster.

That scene was a bit clunky and unclear. Now, being a Whedon fan and a fan of Black Widow (the comic "The Name of the Rose" is all about why Black Widows are infertile), I know that that wasn't the message they were trying to get across. But it SOUNDED like that. The scene felt rushed. They should have spent more time on Banner and Natasha talking about her red room past as opposed to Natasha stuck in a cage. Again, I think Bruce and Natasha romance has a lot of potential, but trying to cram their relationship into AoU, which is already jam packed, didn't really work,IMO. I would rather have had a Black Widow/Hulk movie to take the proper time to explore the intricate nuances of these characters' backgrounds, personalities and beliefs.
@ alliterator. It's near the bottom of the other AoU thread. I don't really have the energy or the inclination to go through it all again. But to summarise (to my mind) it's people looking for something to be offended by.
It's a gorgeous day. Do I see it again in a matinee while kids are at school and parents work, or do I see Age of Ultron again? (I'll probably be seeing it Sunday and Monday.)

I must be easy to please, because I loved everything about it, except that one cheesy Thor flip at the beginning.
I loved it!! I wish it was about 20 minutes longer to flesh out some montages and dream sequences, but otherwise it was great. Def watching again.
The rape joke was Stark saying he would instate Prima Nocta (AKA jus primae noctis or droit du seigneur) when he became the ruler of Asgard upon lifting Mjolnir.

Prima Nocta is the tradition of granting a lord the right of taking any subordinate woman's virginity on her wedding night.
And has never been proved to have ever existed:

... "Enact Theta Protocol" means "Call in the Avengers". So when Coulson told Keonig to "Enact Theta Protocol" if things went south trying to blow up the underground base in Peru, he was actually saying "call in the Avengers" ...
-- Penthos

It still doesn't work for me -- if Keonig was supposed to enact Theta (read: call in the Avengers) then the Avengers should have been called together way back then. But, per the conversation between Hill and Coulson in the last ep, calling in the Avengers couldn't happen until after Theta had been fully implemented.

After sleeping on it, I do think it may have had something to do with the prep necessary to set up the new Avengers facility (given all the talk in AoS eps about the budget outlays). So Theta Protocol could mean "start spending all the money necessary to set up new bases/support infrastructure so that the Avengers have a home once we're ready to call them up." But I'd like to hear it explained on the show.
Also, here's a short but interesting comparison of themes between Age of Ultron and the Netflix Daredevil series: Tony Stark, Wilson Fisk and the limits of good intentions.
Theta Protocol could be assembling "enhanced" people and building the new Avengers Facility. Or I tight just have something to do with what Fury has been up to.
I really liked where the movie left Cap at the end. With him realising that his home is the Avengers, and after Thor & Iron Man have left he's the guy who steps up to ensure that there's still going to be a team. That's very true to the comics and how his character felt in making sure the Avengers continued after the breakup of the original team.
I also liked that whenever Quicksilver & the Scarlet Witch were teaming up with the Avengers it was usually with Cap or Hawkeye. Cap's 'kooky quartet' as I believe they were called in the 60es issues.
I love the effort Joss puts in to have the films mirror the original books as much as possible. It shows how much of a true fan he was of the material. He really does know his stuff!

Also had to laugh as how he's effectively ensured that the final Avengers story will HAVE to have a big moment where we hear "Avengers Assemble!" That was a very clever move to tease the audience, and give them another thing to look forward to next time.
I'm pretty sure what the Theta Protocol is will become clear in the next episode of AoS.

But to summarise (to my mind) it's people looking for something to be offended by.

Could be. I've read through the objections on the other thread, and it seems there has been misinterpretation of certain scenes. Joss would never imply that not having children makes women monsters. What that scene does speak to is the idea that having children takes one's focus off of work. One can't be a monster with complete resolve to complete a job (in her case, to kill people), if their priorities turn to raising children and keeping them safe. Natasha was raised to be a killing machine. The whole Black Widow-making process includes removing the possibility that a Black Widow would change her focus away from her mission.

What she was talking about was female reproductive mutilation. It was abuse. It was prepping a child soldier, not a commentary on women and motherhood.

The new Avengers are awesome. Love that they are such dynamic characters, and that the racial and gender balance have shifted. They still need more women, but that will happen.

Just wish it was Joss doing the next ones, because his action scenes are not boring. As much as I loved CATWS, the action scenes went on too long, and were pretty standard special effects scenes. I found myself wishing they would be over with, and wishing Joss had written and directed them.

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2015-05-01 17:32 ]
Just saw the film and loved it.A worthy followup to the first Avengers.
Really enjoyed it. Avengers 1 is undoubtedly a tighter, better-structured film, and I think it really benefitted from being the product of Joss loving these characters and having his own theories and ideas about them over the previous 50-odd years. There is no, "I'm always angry" in Avengers 2, and I suspect it's because Joss put all of those great character things he'd always pondered into the first one.

That being said, I might overall prefer this movie, or at least find it much more interesting structurally. I love how off-kilter and weird it is--you don't have the normal, staid formula of the Marvel films heretofore where you have your mid-movie action sequence and your final action sequence. It really felt unpredictable, like Ultron could come out of nowhere at any moment. Spader is incredible, and I love his parallels to Stark, both in his way of thinking and just his speech patterns.

I really loved it.
urkonn, actually Scarlet Witch is jewish(and isn't Johannsson jewish irl?)
The action scenes feel organic to the story, which doesn't always happen in superhero movies. You don't see them coming, which makes them more interesting than formulaic action scenes. I loved them, and I'm one who would be very happy with a superhero film that has no action, as long as the story is good.

Hating that I'm not going today, but I plan to see it many times in the next few weeks.
As a father, I immediately understood how parenthood is the one thing that can most effectively undo the monster-making process. Motherhood is the anti-monster.
I wonder if there's a particular reason Drew Goddard got a special thanks credit.
@Trentaferd, I imagine Joss chatted Drew up about a story concern and received some helpful advice. Could be all sorts of reasons, but I get the impression that Joss does this with his "inner circle."
my few cents:
- I dug how we got to see everyone's biggest fear in a scarlet witch vision, except Banner's. I take it that banner's very public destruction of that city is him LIVING his biggest fear.
- I felt like the opening action sequence was the best (much preferred it to the robots and ships at the end, which more felt like a big fake empty cartoon fx to me). I think it's very EmpireStrikesBack to start off with a huge action sequence in the snow.
- Black Widow reminded me a lot of Angel. A character who's done so many bad things they can never forgive themselves. that their struggle to redeem is what makes them such a great hero.
- Felt like widow and hulk's love story was sort of a reverse Beauty and the Beast. Where hulk is the innocent beauty, and Widow is the disgusting monster.
this controversy around the sterilization scene is a misread i think. Banner is saying he can't have kids because he's a monster, and she's replying that she chose to not have kids so she could be better at murder - so who's the bigger monster here?
i don't think there was meant to be any commentary in there that any woman who can't have kids is some kind of monstrous thing.
but i need to see it again to chew over that scene. Like, when she says "her final trial" was the sterilization, it seems lik we keep seeing this image of her shooting a target then shooting a man with a bag over his head. So you expect her final trial was murder (which often seems to be the final trial for trained agents). I think the core of the sterilization/monster debate is maybe : did she choose to pass this final trial, or was it forced on her.
(i think she felt she chose to do all these bad things, while fans of her think she was brainwashed and forced to do all these things).
- can someone please make a 3D file of that final credits statue so i can print it out? I'm guessing they were going for a classic marble sculptured classy angle, but it's an obvious nerd merch thing. want.

+ really dug how Tony's "we're mad scientists. embrace it" talk to banner echoed his advice in the first Avengers (to embrace his hulk). I adore mad scientist stories, who typically exist on the edge of acceptable human morals (thinking of The Black Hole, or that Star Trek episode "what are little girls made of?"). So for them to hold back and make sure every new invention is best for humanity would be to deny their core nature. DELICIOUS.

+ kinda creeped out that Thor flies in and activates the Vision. seems to send a message that these heroes just aren't about putting it to a vote or checking with the team. They're individuals who don't care about discussion.
i get that it's kind of what makes them THE Avengers. And makes them opposite to the hive mind that is Ultron. but. still seems to shine a light on how super heroes in general are not in sync with modern society. meh?

anywho. loved the *#$^@% out of the movie. it was SO MUCH MOVIE!

[ edited by WarrenEBB on 2015-05-01 20:40 ]
Notice how Joss can make the story go dark, without actually making everything in the movie dark? It's so much easier for the eyes.
@WarrenEBB: Don't know if you saw "Agent Carter," but that show indicated that the Black Widow program was geared toward completely brainwashing the girls from early childhood. There was no choice as to what was done to them. I doubt they would have freely chosen to kill or be sterilized if they had not been kept prisoners or gone through years of intensive indoctrination.

I've seen some people complain about everyone being too snarky, but one of the biggest laughs the movie got, was when Hawkeye attempts to explain their situation to Scarlet Witch.
I have a question about a joke that Tony Stark made that drew a huge laugh from a gentlemen in front of me. Tony mentioned referenced a man's name during the Vision awakening scene, I think but I even though the name sounded familiar I couldn't place it. I know that this incredible vague and not a lot to go on but if someone could help, I'd really appreciate it. So again, all I really recall is Tony basically comparing another character with a man who's name I can't recall.

I'm pathetic, guys. I'm sorry lol.

Btw, loved the film especially Vision.
"A man faces the consequences when his attempt to do better puts the world at the mercy of a soulless machine," I write in my review. "Roughly, this is the plot of Avengers: Age of Ultron. Arguably, it's also the possible fate Joss Whedon sought to avoid when making this followup to the franchise’s first installment."

Shorter: I enjoyed it, but...

(Yes, the review has SPOILERS.)
@Destructo Girl: I don't know about the Vision scene, but the only vague reference I recall is the scene in the Barton family barn between Stark and Fury. Fury mocks Stark about bringing the tractor to life, and Stark says "It's been a long day, like, Eugene O'Neil long," and asks Fury if he's going to be useful at all.

Eugene O'Neil was a playwright who wrote "Long Day's Journey into Night," which, in addition to being named "long day," is a heavily depressing drama about drug addiction and alcoholism and sickness and inevitable mortality. Also, it's a bloody long piece to boot, with the film of the play clocking in at three hours, and stage versions being even longer. So, Stark mentioning that his day has been "Eugene O'Neil long" is a reference to the name of the guy's play, the extreme length of the work, and the general misery of the day he's been having, all at once.

A clever joke, but an obscure one for people not deeply into classic American literature and stage work. A very niche English Major geek genre writer joke. Very Joss.

Is that the one you're thinking of?

[ edited by Batman1016 on 2015-05-01 22:57 ]
I may have laughed out loud at the Eugene O'Neill joke... you basically feel really sorry for anyone who would compare their situation to a Eugene O'Neill tragedy!

I have to say, I didn't interpret Black Widow's monster comment as implying that childless women were monsters, although now I can understand why someone would read it that way. The implication is very unfortunate. My personal interpretation of that line is that it's very personal, and all about how Black Widow sees herself. The monstrous thing is that she's been made to see herself as a monster. As less than human. It's something that was done to her without her real control and yet she feels implicated in it. And, well, if the people who did that to her can convince her she's unworthy of having children (not simply unable to), all the better for their creation of a perfect killer.
Just saw it and:

A better more confident movie than Avengers - Joss juggled the moving pieces quite adeptly, better than I expected

As always the banter was a thing of beauty. You forget what "pure" Joss is like. Often imitated but never duplicated. When I see it again that will be primary reason

Really liked "the twins" Liked how Joss edited the Scarlet Witch stuff, especially early with the jump cut/twitchy vibe of modern horror movies. Liked the Quicksilver/Hawkeye bits. LOVED Olsen's scene when she ripped out Ultron's "heart" Am absolutely devastated that Quicksilver is dead (damn you Joss!)

Hawkeye was great ... lots of good lines, the family stuff was totally unexpected. Outside of The Town, was never that big a Renner fan, but he impressed me. I also have a crush on Linda Cardellini, so that was fun

The Vision. The FREAKING Vision! One of my favorite Avengers, right up there w/ Quicksilver (damn you Joss!) Soooooo perfectly realized

I actually liked the Banner/Romanoff romance, it really did make sense as to what the attraction would be, and liked the movie was ballsy enough not to settle for a happy ending. Clearly the MCU is willing to depart from Comics Canon (like killing Quicksilver - damn you Joss!)BTW - I am astounded what people got from the "monster" line reading. It seemed clear as day to me, and NOT in a woman-without-children-are-monsters way.

Seems like the next Captain America movie will amount to Avengers 2.5 - I do like the new team (with exception of missing Quicksilver - damn you Joss!) I expected a deeper riff between Steve and Tony at the end of the movie setting up Civil War, so we'll see how that gets handled

My quibble (aside from Quicksilver being dead - damn you Joss!)... I'm not thrilled with the Thanos design, was hoping that'd get fixed a bit from Avengers to now but .... meh

Anyway - loved it and will see it at least once or twice in the theatres again

[ edited by TallMichaelJ on 2015-05-02 02:14 ]

"To believe or imply that the script was trying to say that "women who can't have kids are monsters" is an example of someone simply looking for some social justice cause to get offended over."

I didn't interpret it that way myself, but infertility is an extremely emotionally-laden subject. Not Joss's fault, and I have no issue with the line as it stands, but I would personally not be inclined to be quite so scathing toward anybody who misinterpreted a single line in a very densely packed film.
I. Effing . LOVED. It.

I spent a lot of time scanning negative reviews prior to watching this today, to find out why people didn't love it. To me, this was a perfectly COMIC BOOK-style movie. Too many of these super-hero flicks re-imagine the heroes for the movies, jettisoning much for the sake of being palatable to the non-comic fan parts of the audience. But Joss, being an actual fan, seems to have made a movie for the fans who want to finally see the comics they read come to life in the movies (and I think he suceeded). It felt like he brought a 3 comic story arc, with all its sub arcs, foreshadowings, and world building in it, and put it on screen. And for the non-nerds out there (cough! critics cough!), that might be a bit too dense to digest, although I feel Joss does a great job of balancing it so that you don't need to have read 20+ years of comics to be up to speed.

The funny thing is I'm not really a fan of the Avengers in the comics even if I read and collected them too. But I went as a Joss fan, so it's a nice overlap.

re: Natasha's judgement of herself as a monster: I think she means her being an assassin who has killed many in her career is what makes her monstrous. But my take is she can't absolve herself of sin completely (the oft-mentioned ledger) and blame it on brainwashing, because she had her doubts from the beginning, as evidenced in her dream sequence. No one seems to be mentioning it but in her dream sequence, she 'fails' a test intentionally when she taps out of a choke hold, and her superior calls her out on it. It implies that Nat wasn't fully brainwashed and may have wanted to make her own choices contrary to her training. She became a Black Widow eventually, sterility and all, so to me the implication is she actively chose the life she was trained for because she chose to go through with it. Her sterility is a scar of the mistakes she's made, and the reminder of her monstrous choice. But it is not the reason she deems herself a monster. At least that's how I understood it.
Stray observations:
-Cap's "language" was the gift that kept giving.
-Fury needed to yell more. I fiercely believe that any movie can be made better by Sam Jackson yelling at a main character.
-Great how Nat, Barton, and hulk(not necessarily Banner) characters were developed.
-I really liked the music, the helicarrier take off from the first Avengers during the helicarrier appearance made me especially happy.

[ edited by garyyager on 2015-05-02 03:23 ]
Thor mentioned now having 4 of the infinity stones. Aside from the one in Guardians of the Galaxy, and the one in AoU, what others have we seen? Is the Tesseract one? Is that separate from the thing in the first Thor movie? (Please save me from having to re-watch every Marvel movie before this one!)
The aether from thor 2 and the tesseract.
Thanks, Trentaferd.
I'm surprised to see only 52 comments, most of them mine. Hopefully everyone is out seeing the movie, and will be coming back here loving it.
I'm loving it and I've been loving it non-stop since I saw it last night.
Hooray, I finally saw it! I effing loved it too. I was also perusing all the reviews - negative and positive --and had adjusted my expectations.

Ultron superseded them. I simply loved seeing Joss's characters on screen. I felt such joy at such fully realized characters.

I also loved the weirdness in the movie. In fact, that strangeness and darkness, might put this one over the top of the first one for me.

I need to see it again to fully process but here's what I really enjoyed:

- the banter

- Bruce and Tony being ultimately responsible for the Big Bad

- James Spader's voice

- The Vision -- I had no clue about this character but fell in love with him. There was such power in seeing Jarvis's voice come to life.

- The Scarlet Witch - Olsen was flat out amazing. She does weird really well.

- Hulk/Natasha - I enjoyed the interaction of the two characters and how well they just fit.

- The elevator joke.

I think the only drawback that I saw was QuickSilver. I much preferred the Xmen Day's of Future Past version. I think his effects were better and the actor was more interesting.

Anyone wonder if Banner left not just to take the Beast away but to prevent Tony and him from working together anymore? They really were bat shit crazy and Tony had him under his thumb -- not unlike Warren. Just saying.

Go Joss. You did a good. Enjoy your siesta!
Nebula, I've only seen the movie twice now and am still formulating my thoughts of the film. I missed alot on the first viewing and caught alot of stuff I missed on this 2nd viewing tonight.(I liked it even more the 2nd time.) I will see the film one more time tomorrow in iMax 3d and then I'll probably post my full thoughts on the film.
- The Vision -- I had no clue about this character but fell in love with him. There was such power in seeing Jarvis's voice come to life.

That voice worked so well with Paul Bettany's body, too. Beautiful character in every way.

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2015-05-02 05:32 ]
Vision was definitely the MVP of the film. AMAZING character. His final scene with Ultron was my favorite in the whole film. Just beautiful and haunting. It was pure Whedon.
Anyone wonder if Banner left not just to take the Beast away but to prevent Tony and him from working together anymore? They really were bat shit crazy and Tony had him under his thumb -- not unlike Warren. Just saying.
-- hann23

That seems reasonable. What I took from it was that, sometime after the first movie they developed the "lullaby" sequence to talk him down, and he may have become overconfident that he could safely hulk out to support the team without unnecessary collateral damage. The events of this movie proved that his very presence was a danger that could be exploited against his will.

The contrast with Hawkeye and his family was especially poignant. iirc, the first "we shouldn't try to be together" conversation between Bruce and Nat took place in one of the kids' bedrooms. That brought back the first Bruce/Nat scene in the first movie, when he's looking at the baby bed while saying "we don't always get what we want."
I see why it's not going to do as well as the first one. It's faster paced, has more characters, and doesn't spend enough time to get everything perfect. It simply tries to do too much in too little running time. I still loved it, but it's not going to end up as popular as the first Avengers. Ten more minutes or one less fight scene would have done it, I'm sure. To the hardcore geeks like us who already knew the new characters, it's not a big deal, but to the rest of the world it's going to feel like they don't really know The Vision, for example.
I didn't know the Vision, but I loved him.

I had no problem with the pace of the movie, and this is the first one I where I wasn't bored with the action. Avengers 1 had entertaining action, but I feel like the action flowed better and felt less formulaic in this one.

I guess I'm just not seeing the problems other people have with it. I just kept thinking "I really love this movie," and then remembering "Oh, yeah! It's because of Joss!"
Batman1016 Yes, that is exactly what I was thinking of. Thanks so much!
Coming back from my 3rd watch and now I want a film starring just Vision being philosphical and Scarlet Witch being weird and creepy. Anyone else in here other than me?

[ edited by eddy on 2015-05-03 01:26 ]
Only if Joss writes and directs it.
I think I need to see it again.
First off, Guardians of the Galaxy was a really tough act to follow.
Ultron seemed like less of a threat than Loki in Avengers.
No Coulson.
It really was paced funny.
Too much time on Widow/Hulk.
Vision was not exciting.
Never explained why he was good and not Ultron.
Is this a parable about the New Testament?
The ending was same as Avengers but boring.
Looking forward to what Hulk is doing...maybe he will end up with Amamdeus Cho...maybe some Hercules?
The post credits was a let down, but still glad it was Thanos!
I can't stop thinking about the movie. The action scenes were some of the best I've seen. I'm not a huge action fan but this movie kept me engaged the entire time. I think the reason people are less excited about this one is that they knew what to expect. I still think this is the stronger movie by far. Near perfect in my opinion.
What happens when this round of discussions gets pushed off our screens?
LOVED it. Nothing much to add to the points above, but glad to have stayed spoiler free. Planning to go for a second viewing soon!
I'm clearly in the minority here, but I didn't really care for it, and I quite enjoyed the first one. I thought there was about 50% too much story, to the point where I could barely keep up with what was going on; I thought the action sequences were overlong, and I hated the rapid-jumpcut editing (contrast with Skye's amazing sequence in last week's AoS); I felt like the final sequence was a less-interesting repeat of the first movie; and although there were certainly many great bits of Jossian dialogue, I found a lot of it cliche and boring.

I'm glad Joss is moving on.
Having too much story was a strength of the movie, IMO.
I definitely feel like this movie has to be watched more than once. There is so much happening and at such breakneck speed that entire plot points are being overlooked by people. I did not catch where Friday came from til my 3rd watch.

I think the editing could've been better. Also one thing I believe is that the score could've been better. A great score can save a film and make cinema moments. The train sequence should've been amazing but the composers failed the film at the end of that scene when Wanda stops the train and the music just comes off as flat.

Now to be fair to the composers there was some great music in there with really haunting themes especially with vision, the twins and Ultron but it could've just been better.
Hello lovely peeps :)

Saw the movie, enjoyed the hell out of it, in spite of a few shortcomings, but left the cinema with the same sense of irrational pride and totally rational respect for Joss.

Now, I was wondering if some of you could help me clarify something. I might have missed something, or perhaps y'all are as confused about it as I am. I haven't seen Iron Man 3 since the one time I saw it in the cinema (which is sad, since I really loved it and definitely wanna watch it again). But as I recalled, Tony was kind of saying he is finished with everything, and got rid of all his suits. Or not? Didn't something like that happen? How did he get back to being full on Iron Man for AoU? Did I misunderstand the ending of Iron Man 3? Do I recall it falsely? Was there any explanation in AoU as to why he is back in action?
Would be thankful for any help in solving that question :D
love you folks

Also I just went back and reread Joss old post from when Avengers first got released and it made me all teary eyed again

Edited to add: I mean, after the events of tWS of course it was mentioned that Maria works for Stark now, etc, but I can't recall and would've wished for a proper explanation as to how he decided to take this work up again

[ edited by Illy on 2015-05-03 20:03 ]
Man you guys make me wanna go see it again. I've had an extra week to digest since I'm in EU but I really wanna see it again. If only tickets weren't so expensive (and the only theater showing the English version anywhere close to me showed it at a time when there are still trains going afterwards but noooo...).

Might do it anyway, though. Aaaaaaaaahhhh!
I might be wrong, but I'm inclined to believe that posting at whedonesque increases the chances that this might actually be read by the w. from effectively 0% to maybe 0.05%. Perhaps 0.1%. Whatevs. I’ll take it.

Thanks for the movie! Please keep making intelligent art that’s ridiculously fun. Because really, you know....why not? The night is apparently dark and like.. full of a lot of terrors, so I'm very glad you continue to make new stories (and now with a budget) about the hero’s struggles. Good stuff man.


PS. That Jurassic World clip was so shitty it physically hurt.
Just saw the movie. There's not much I can add to the praise here (LOVED it!), so I'll say that at the beginning I felt a little sorry for people who don't watch AoS. The lead-in of the show added a lot to the movie for me.
Illy: it was implied at the end of Iron Man 3 that he hadn't really given it up. I don't know if I should say here, in case someone didn't see it, so maybe in invisible text? . Plus, you have to figure that he's got all sorts of backups under construction at Stark/Avengers Tower.
The gasp in the crowd when Vision handed back meow meow to Thor was awesome.

Turns out I still have a hard time watching buildings collapse. Even fake ones.
Finally saw it. I loved it.
And so I can finally read this thread, and am relieved to find some other people love it, too! I seem to be following the wrong crowd on Twitter.
I was a little worried when I started seeing negative reviews. But not everyone is going to like the same things, I guess.

I did like that they made actual effort to prevent civilian casualties in any situation. From Tony trying to pen Hulk in, then fly him away, to them all trying to evacuate the town before taking on Ultron.
You can see this leading the Civil War, because they obviously can't save everyone, especially when Hulk and Tony Stark have wreaked havoc between the creation of Ultron, and Hulk and Iron Man doing so much damage in their battle. Plus, Cap and Tony are at odds with each other over the morality of Tony's using technology to do what Cap thinks needs to be done by people.
I saw the sci-fi film Ex Machina before this and...that may have been a mistake (but I had a few hours to kill before getting together with friends to see the 7pm IMAX showing on Thursday night to get the shiny IMAX-exclusive poster). I loved Ex Machina, it is the superior of the two (though very different) robot movies. Seeing something THAT good before a less brainy action flick turned out to be bad timing. Age of Ultron...I had issues.

It needed to be longer, my expectations for what it could've been and how I wanted it to make me just never reached those heights except in some of the awe-inspiring action scenes...and I didn't like how seemingly standalone it felt in comparison to how tie-in-ish everything else has felt these past several films.

And I had major battle fatigue. I got this way with the second Lord Of The Rings film as well (some hold it up as their favorite, for me it's the least-good of the three). I love the final LotR--maybe it has just as many minutes of running time devoted to battles, but it also had more worthwhile character and emotional scenes. And less of the fights happened at night (hard to make out night fights suuuck! Stop doing them so often, Hollywood).

I would have liked more Ultron and/or Vision (though since it turned out that Ultron was just insane, maybe less of his rambling and more Vision). Vision did feel tacked on and late to the party, but I love his design, I love Paul Bettany, and I love that we get to keep Jarvis around in a sense.

The bar was set so high with Winter Soldier and Guardians last year, I guess it's gonna take some doing to top or at least match them (I definitely like the first Avengers a lot better--I wasn't looking for a repeat of that, I'm fine with the second one feeling like a different kind of film-). I have a soft spot for the first Thor film, Iron Man 1 & 3 are both excellent IMO (I thought #2 was awful in theatres, but lessened my disappointment in it when I finally re-watched a year ago). Cap 1 is great too, IMO. Agent Carter and the highlight episodes and moments of Agents Of SHIELD have brought me more joy, excitement, emotional response, and provoked more thought than the second Avengers film did. I didn't hate it, I was just underwhelmed by it. It's on par with Thor 2 (which I still enjoyed for the characters I love from that franchise and in spite of one of the most boring villains in the MCU) or the apparently jettisoned Incredible Hulk flick (guess they're just pretending Betty Ross doesn't exist?).

Will comment more after I watch Mad Men, Game Of Thrones, and Last Week Tonight.
@Kris: I love that you brought up Ex Machina. It really was a wonderful movie, and it makes me a bit sad that I like it more than something from Joss (and Marvel).

I was excited about Avengers (I couldn't wait to watch it again and again at the theaters), but I don't feel that same excitement about Age of Ultron. I'll certainly watch it again (there were plenty of fun bits), but there's something missing from the sequel.

Joss had a ton to balance in this movie, and I considered it a minor miracle that it had the same running time as the first Avengers. After watching it, I'm not convinced it should've been as short. Three hours may be pushing it, but I think the extra time would've helped flesh things out some more- Ultron creating his bodies/army, the whole Natasha/Banner romance, the Vision in general. It's like a lot of the subplots got 80% of the screen time they really needed.
Nebula1400: thank you! I had completely forgotten those bits. Guess it's time I rewatch that one :D

NYPinTA: it's been almost 14 years, but when I saw that building collapse, people running from the dust, the rubble, I also thought "wow, that is bold"
I thought about the WTC collapse when I watched the movie, NYPinTA and Illy. I know people who were there when it happened, and they were traumatized by it. I imagine that scene is hard to watch, as it is too close to the real thing.

[ edited by Nebula1400 on 2015-05-04 23:13 ]
I really enjoyed seeing what the Scarlet Witch saw inside Tony Stark's head. That is the closest to a scene from the Infinity Gauntlet that we have seen. I think that it will happen...fate is inexorable, Tony.
The party scene was probably my favorite. It slowed down the action enough to really appreciate the actors and the camaraderie between them.
Also liked how Vision was inspired by Thor to create his own cape.
And I liked how at the end we saw that Falcon was still getting used to his gear.
Joss Whedon is a cool dude.
I loved that after all the romantic tension, Natasha pushed Bruce into a pit so he would Hulk out. It was a terrible betrayal and exactly what the team would need to win an awful fight, at the same time. It was very Natasha.
^Yes! I loved that moment. She looked at him all gushy and said,"I adore you," and I was thinking "Uh..." and then "bam!" Sorry dear, the mission comes first. It was great.
I really don't want to imagine how it must feel for them, Nebula1400 :(

Just rewatched Iron Man 3. Incredible how wrong I remembered the ending. Now everything makes sense :)

I also really wish I could rewatch AoU. There were some kids/teens sitting behind me, who just wouldn't stop babbling, even during the amazing first scene with Vision. It was incredibly annoying and I missed a lot of things, as the characters were a bit hard to hear. But tickets are so expensive :( will resign myself to waiting for the Bluray release. I dreamed it was released the same day as the film came into theatres. Alas, that was not reality :D
Fortunately, I have seen it 3 times, and only had to pay for one ticket. I tend to go to morning matinees, because they're cheapest. I still can't see why so many people are not in love with it. I kind of think Joss was put under pressure to have a lot of action, and he had to sacrifice some story for it, but he still managed to put more story and character moments into this one than the first Avengers movie. I think the actors had more moments to shine in AoU.

I have seen it with 4 of my kids, plus my son's girlfriend. Every single one of us understood what was going on in the story, never got confused, and could follow the different story threads and twists.
Yeah I also think he had to put in way more action than he would've liked. I remember an interview from the early days of (pre?) production where he was asked something along the lines of, how do you top Avengers/make it better? And his response was "by going smaller" and focusing on the characters and their struggles, I believe. But you can't have a big Marvel Blockbuster without a whole bunch of big actiom sequences, sadly. I personally would've been fine with no more than 2.

Still loved it though :) maybe I'll find a good excuse to go see it again.
BTW, no one can tell me that Ant-Man wasn't at the assembly at the end. He was just small.
Maybe that was what Natasha was looking at on the wall when Steve came in...
I saw it again last night with someone who'd never seen a marvel movie before, and the movie totally worked for her. That's a job well-done I think.
Okay went for my rewatch, and totally loved it more the second time through. I still think the action sequences could have been cut way back (I'm with you there Illy), but this time I did enjoy some of the banter (completely missed "Can I have a hand Veronica" the first time) and more of the choreography of the fights. And knowing the story-line meant less confusing stuff going on and more attentiveness to the focus on character. Maybe it's a darker, richer movie than Avengers I. The theme of having children was signaled right from the start, when Ultron talks about people creating smaller people to replace themselves, and then corrects himself that he means they create "children" he'd just forgotten the word. The people who are enraged that Joss had Natasha talk about not being able to have children missed that and how the theme about children runs throughout the movie, with Bruce Banner first rejecting Natasha because he tells her he can't have children, there's the many references to Ultron as being Tony Stark's child, and the question of whether the Vision is Ultron's child. Steve Rogers, a man who wanted a home and family went into the ice, Captain America, a man who is only at home while preparing for a battle, the leader of the Avengers, came out - ironically the one who is most aware of the dangers of being prepared to fight a war. And running alongside, a second thread, what makes a monster?

I think I would have liked a little more interaction with Pietro once he and Wanda joined the good guys fight, only because I thought he was such a cool character and it would have heightened the power of his death. (I know complaining that Joss didn't make a painful enough character death!) It's just a shame that there wasn't more opportunity to use him - again, I think that's where less time on blowing things up and more on people could have been given.

Overall, seeing it a second time improved it, and I'm betting it would get better with repeat viewings.
@urkonn - "I also love how at the end, the new Avengers consist of: two African-Americans (War Machine and the Falcon), two women (Black Widow and Scarlet Witch), one robot (Vision), and one white dude (Captain America), as opposed to the previous team which was five white dudes and one woman."

Well, at least the white dude is managing the team.

What? Nick Fury?
No, he can't be the commander in chief. He must be from Kenya or something.
Well, he's "dead." He's not really on the new Avengers team.

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