Here's a confession upfront: I'm a total dork for Marvel, movies, and for Marvel movies. I'd also, in spite of all my years of fandom, never made it to a premiere before, and so when the opportunity arose to attend the European unveiling of Age of Ultron, you can imagine… it was kind of a huge deal, guys. And on that front, it certainly didn't disappoint – the colossal event, at Vue Westfield in London, was attended by all the key cast and crew, and it was a totally surreal and amazing experience to see these stars (or shall we say ‘heroes'?) up close, and soak in the crazy atmosphere, so a quick thank you to James and Emily for making it possible. However… it's all kind of for nothing if the movie sucks though right? So maybe we should get into about whether Marvel's latest – and biggest – is actually any good.
Although saddled with the anticipation of following the third biggest film of all-time, Joss Whedon has really delivered the goods with Age of Ultron, his second Marvel movie in the director's chair. It's a surprisingly dark, intelligent film that also manages to provide a constant and winning humorous streak, as well as the kind of huge action that fans deserve and expect from a movie of this scale. The writing and plotting is much tighter and has some really interesting father/son thematics (as is the norm for Marvel, but given a unique spin here between Stark & Ultron, and Ultron & The Vision). It's much, much funnier too, with very loose and colloquial dialogue even for Whedon, and laugh-out-loud moments peppered continuously throughout the film, delivered by a cast who simply ‘are' these characters by now and clearly having an absolute ball. There's a much more assured hand to the action direction as well, with an opening sequence that's going to blow audiences' heads clean off. It's stunning.
Be prepared to come out of this completely loving different Avengers than you did the first time around – Hawkeye is pretty much centre stage here and Renner is fantastic, while Vision is brilliantly realised and performed by Bettany, and might just be the film's MVP. Questionable accents aside Taylor-Johnson and Olsen are also great as Quicksilver and Wanda, and there's real poignancy in the bond between Romanov and Banner which plays out beautifully. And of course, Spader is just delicious as Ultron. He's exacting, intelligent, nightmarish and very funny in a pitch-black way, and looks incredible.
While it lacks the roof-raising moments of the first – there's no action to match the helicraft sequence, or crowd pleaser as big as “… Puny god” – it's a mature, exciting, scary and funny time at the movies with your favourite faces of Marvel that ultimately outshines it's predecessor as a film, if not as a piece of iconography. Whedon did it.
See this on the biggest screen you can, as soon as you can.
To coincide with the release of the Avengers, Samsung have kindly offered one of our readers a chance to win a brand new Samsung Galaxy S6. Entries are via Rafflecopter and a random winner will be announced on the 11th of May and contacted via email.
Both myself, and Mighty Gadget as a whole would like to thank Samsung for letting us experience Avengers: Age of Ultron at the official EU premier in London. It was an amazing experience. Make sure to check out Samsung Mobile UK on Twitter for the latest mobile updates and any other competitions they might run!