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Whedonesque - a community weblog about Joss Whedon
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April 20 2012

(SPOILER) Trade magazines give The Avengers rave reviews. The reviews are full of spoilers, so non-spoiler versions: Hollywood Reporter say "(joss) pulls off a stunning feat in bringing balance to this superhuman circus, engineered to charm the geek core and non-fans alike." Variety say: "'s a clean-burning, six-cylinder entertainment that exudes discipline in every particular, from the script's balance of sincerity and self-effacing humor to the well-integrated visual effects to the keen sense of proportion that governs the ensemble. Whenever the possibility of boredom or excess rears its head, Whedon finds an elegant solution." Empire Magazine say: "A joyous blend of heroism and humour that raises the stakes even as it maintains a firm grip on what makes the individual heroes tick. "

I really can't wait to see the movie; from everything I've read, it's that rare beast, a crowd-pleasing summer blockbuster that is actually a ton of fun. And every review starts off the same: this movie is really the hardest thing to pull off, but Joss did it.

My favorite fan reactions have been those that are calling it akin to Raiders of the Lost Ark or that it's what The Expendables should have been.
I'm excited at the prospect of seeing a summer blockbuster with a plot.
SFX's review is up:
Watched a trailer of Iron Man vs. Thor last night. Yep, pretty much as you figured.

Joss really did an excellent job here, itching for this movie to be released!
There was also a review in The Times today; five stars. I'll see if I can find it - has it already been posted?

Might not be able to get it online without a subscription, but the review basically said it was great, and said the only flaw was that genre-wise it differed in no way from the typical superhero blockbuster (I think meaning in terms of structure and format; three acts, the final one feeding into the possibility of a sequel).
That's the 1998 Avengers, Simon.

100% after 14 reviews:

[ edited by Opti on 2012-04-20 14:24 ]
Haha, you made me click on that Rotten Tomatoes link.
I thought review were embargoed?
US reviews I think, however the UK premier was last night. Sometimes trades get people in the UK to review to get around embargoes.
IGN has their review up.
Kind of weird that both The Guardian and SFX, who have always championed ( = used him for page views?) Joss in the past, arrive at 3+ star reviews.
Have a lot of you guys watched that Iron Man/Thor scene? Humor, spectacular effects. There's so much awesome stuff in that one minute scene. That scene alone makes me confident this movie will at least be worth going to the cinema for.
Ouch to that SFX review... I mean I know (in my head) that reviewers are different independant people with their own views, fetishes and predjudices etc. (and in a lot of ways that's a fantastic thing) but I always find it hard to see such diverging views of the same film from different people. I think it especially stands out in the case of a magazine like SFX that generally supports quality genre entertainment.

I'm rambling a little but I think the point I'm trying to make is that if SFX as a company had sent a different reviewer (of which I assume they have many) to see that film, the star rating would possibly have been very different. If the film is as good as the general concensus seems to suggest, it feels a bit like SFX are doing their readers a disservice with a lukewarm review.

Random rant about the nature of criticism here brought on by obsessive reading of a lot of the negative reviews of Cabin in detail, but if you have someone review a film, do they need to "get" it in order to be able to give an informed review? Or, is their inability to "get" it a valid review in and of itself, indicative of the portion of the population that would also not "get" it.

It feels like the SFX reviewer here doesn't "get" Avengers. They cite their opinion that the film has no need to exist "beyond an intriguing experiment in franchise-mashing" without understanding that The Avengers *is* the franchise, planned out from the very beginning and rooted in Iron Man but built on and deliberately planned toward through each of the subsequent films, and that it's not just something cobbled together like that for the films, but that the Marvel Universe has always been a cohesive whole like that, and it's part of what makes it fun.

It's not even that it's a lukewarm review that winds me up but more that I guess I feel like SFX of all people should have more time for this sort of thing and that "I don't get it" style reviews have more place in, say, Knitting Quarterly.
Well, I don't know about the knitters of the world not getting Joss and genre and sci-fi, but at least we know that CrochetMe would get it. That divide must be one of the reasons for their rivalry. ;)
It sounds like the SFX reviewer doesn't care for genre mashing, in which case this production was never going to work for him. Also, there's that whole 'looks like TV' comment again. I'm starting to think people with that complaint watch too many Michael Bay movies. Personally, I like being able to see what's going on in a scene without things exploding in tight close-up every five seconds.
Heh, yeah - not trying to take anything away from the Whedony knitters of the world :-) Hey, Joss' fandom is so broad that I could have picked any fictional non-scifi publication and there'd be people that would stand up and say "oi!".

Cement Quarterly, incorporating Bollards Digest: "Hey, I mix cement for a living and I happen to love Joss! Check out my bollards in the shape of the Mutant Enemy mascot"

Synchronised Swimming Independant: "See this youtube link of us performing River's battle with the reavers"
So, we have this comment: "...except for one crucial beat where he gives in to one of his more infamous impulses." I wonder, who dies?
Goodness, the worst reviews are still very positive. 17 fresh versus 0 rotten, though Rex Reed hasn't reviewed it yet. The SFX review is just written in a glass half empty mood but it still comes through as a recommendation.

My biggest fantasy was that this movie would be good enough to work for people who didn't grow up cherishing a pile of Avengers comics. Well, it looks like that happened. I hadn't been genuinely excited about a summer movie this century and now I'm more excited for a movie than I may ever have been.

I've tried to avoid any spoilers but Kevin Fiege has already claimed personal responsibility for any mortality that does or does not occur in the movie.
Rex Reed's review: The Avengers tries to be the ultimate superhero movie, however Green Lantern is completely unbelievable. And those vampires were not as funny as the director, Josh Wheldon, likes to think.
Can't be Reed's interview, it doesn't give away the plot twist in the first line.
I glanced The Times while on my paper round this morning and got goosebumps when I read "5-Star Avengers" at the top!
gossi left off the part where Reed says that Thor departs in his eight reindeer pulled magic sled (named "Rosebud").
My favourite quote from The Times review: "Avengers Assemble has emerged as the smartest, wittiest and most unapologetically entertaining comic-book adaptation of the modern era."

'Modern era' means since about Shakespeare, yes? ;)
I'm not too worried about the SFX review, I remember often being disappointed that they never seemed to like Buffy, Angel and Firefly more.. until those shows were off the air.
It just got its first rotten review on Rotten Tomatoes. Although the review gives it 3/5 so i'm not sure why it's being counted as rotten.
Let's be honest here, there's not a single human being on the planet Earth who will avoid seeing this film based on one negative/lukewarm review. And given the box office returns of the TRANSFORMERS films, I'm pretty sure a thousand negative reviews wouldn't deter many people from seeing what's arguably the most anticipated film of the summer. So there's little reason to get worked up over any less-than-stellar AVENGERS reviews that pop up.
Bluelark said:
'Modern era' means since about Shakespeare, yes? ;)

I know there's a 'chasm there but I think the modern era of comic book films started with the first X-men movie. :)
Yes, and there's no piece of art or entertainment on earth that will inspire a unanimous response; I bet even The Godfather gets a "meh" once in a while.

In fact, I do have a friend who didn't really like The Godfather. I think it was too slow or something for him.
I can not wait to see this movie! No way it will be any less than brilliant. :)

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