Avengers Film Review

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A celebration of specialness, Joss Whedon's slick blockbuster "The Avengers" presents what may be the ultimate team: half a dozen Marvel Comics superheroes for the price of one. You don't need me to tell you it's the culmination of a five-year plan that began with Samuel L. Jackson's Nick Fury taking Tony Stark aside at the end of the first "Iron Man" to tip him off as to the "Avengers Initative." There is a bigger picture, he told him -- and here it is: The be-all but not (they're hoping) the end-all of the current craze for CGI-enhanced superheroics. Interspersing flip one-liners with a host of larger-than-life characters and the usual flurry of fight-and-flight scenes, the film is never less than amusing. Still, it's never more than amusing either. Marvel Studios has made it a point of pride to diverge from the grim severity popularized in the DC / Warner Bros Batman films. The lightness is fun but it doesn't offer much of a foundation on which to build an epic. And let's face it, there's more than a whiff of opportunism about a project that pits a defrosted World War II hero, Captain America (Chris Evans), an inventor-industrialist, Iron Man (Robert Downey Jr.), the pagan lightning god, Thor (Chris Hemsworth), a scientist with anger-management issues, Hulk (Mark Ruffalo), and SHIELD agents Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) against the Norse god of mischief, Loki (Tom Hiddleston) and a legion of marauding aliens. In 3-D. Meet the boss of 'The Avengers' Chris Hemsworth is 'Thor' Chatting with the 'Iron Man 2' cast Still, Whedon (who shares a screenplay credit with Zak Penn) is a very sharp operator. He knows which buttons to press and where there's room for a little diversion. The improbability of this misfit coalition becomes the movie's most rewarding asset. Imagine the bristling egos of so many power players cooped up

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