Monday, October 17, 2011

Some Assembly Required

So this showed up on the Internet last week, to much anticipation and fervor. I suppose that many of you have already taken a gander at it, but just in case you haven't, here's the official first trailer for The Avengers, next summer's massive superhero-team-up movie that we've been seeing feature-length commercials for all summer.

I'm trying not to get overly hyped about this. I don't read a lot of comics, but I do love superhero movies, especially when our hero gets to be an original and a character in a real story and not a cookie-cutter, one-note construct meant to sell tickets without any heart (*cough* Green Lantern *cough*). And with so many superhero movies in the past decade and so many more to come, it's easy to get fatigued by them all and just wish they'd go away. The unfortunate truth is that with so many being produced, for every great superhero movie made (Superman, Spider-Man, Batman Begins) there's been two or three unfortunate ones (Catwoman, Batman & Robin, Fantastic Four).

So what of The Avengers? Well, the trailer only gives us a bit to go on. It looks like it will be plenty explosion-y, as the first few bits suggest. I'm concerned that we're only given minimal glimpses of Mark Ruffalo's Hulk, Jeremy Renner's Hawkeye, and Scarlett Johannsson's Black Widow. But that could be because as a trailer, it's trying to draw us in with a focus on the characters we're already familiar with, i.e. the ones with their own movies.

I am stoked, though, that Joss Whedon is directing this. He's proven himself to be terrific with ensembles, and hopefully this will prove to be in the Buffy/Firefly vein of a Whedonesque makeshift family. I'm also hoping, given Whedon's talent with crafting incredible female roles, that Johannsson's Black Widow proves to be the breakout character. Johannsson, despite what some people say, is actually a very talent actress, and I really want this to prove that (besides, Iron Man 2 did the character and the actress no favors). What I fear, though, is that this is going to become the Robert Downey Jr./Iron Man show, with everyone else relegated to background noise.

But then check out 1:26 - Cappy's fighting Thor! How could I not be excited about this now?

So the final verdict, for now at least, is that I'm plenty excited to see this, though I probably should catch up with Thor/Captain America before jumping in. And when it breaks all kinds of absurd box office records when it opens next May, I hope someone will finally let Whedon make that Wonder Woman movie he's been talking up for years.

What's your take?

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