All right. Just came back from the movie theater and after seeing the movie…. I’m not exactly sure what to think of it. It’ like 10:20 pm and this is probably not the best idea since I have to go to work tomorrow, but I going to write what I thought of the movie while it is still fresh in my mind. Now I’ll keep this spoiler free (ROSEBUD IS A SLED!! SNAPE KILLS DUMBLEDORE!!) but I would recommend seeing the movie for yourself first before reading the rest of this.
You have been warned….
First let’s rewatch the original teaser/trailer:
One thing that really caught me was how dark or even bleak the tone was in this. The music is very epic and ominous, there’s scene of panic and destruction, the Avengers are fighting each other, you can really feel this sense of despair and realize that thing went terribly wrong. The teaser is also filled with strange imagery, like the ballerinas and the beached boats (Small spoiler: that shot is mirrored is the actual movie, boats face right and camera moves to the left….). This is some serious stuff right there.
This gave the movie the opportunity to be a darker and more serious entry in the Marvel Cinematic Universe but to be frank, it didn’t…
I am not saying it’s a bad movie, quite the contrary, it is really good but it was not what I hoped it was. My problem with it is that it felt to much like the original Avengers movie. It even has the same overarching story structure. The movie has this sort of up beat attitude even when the main character are at each other’s throat. The dark tone of the teaser is nowhere to be seen in the final product. Even the great music from the teaser is not used (as far as I can remember). The best way I can sum it up is: the movie is not dark enough.
I am not saying it has to be super serious and “grimdark” like the upcoming Batman/Superman film but I think there could have been less jokes. The jokes are hilarious but they do undermine the more emotional aspect of the film. When ever something had the potential to have some darker tone to it, it is immediately followed by a joke. Ultron himself never truly feels threatening. He occasionally has spurs of anger where there are hints and glimpse of his true insanity but not enough for him to feel less one dimensional. They never really explain why or how he became so disillusioned by humanity and why he wants to destroy it. It feels like it happened because the plot demanded it.
In “Man of Steel” there were definite moments where you could think about the moral choices and decision of Superman and gave some depth to the movie. He had to choose between humanity and the possibility of recreating his world. It was a bit overdone at some times but it was there. You don’t have that depth in “Age of Ultron”. There is that very clear distinction between good and evil. The Avengers are here to save the world because the world happens to be in danger. There is no quantifiable character development. This is possibly due to the nature of the story. There are too many characters, and trying to give depth to each one of them would drown the overall story. By keeping them simpler, more can be done with the story, but I’m diverging now.
The last thing I want to talk about is the post-credit scene. It is not all that special, seeing how much they were already hyping up the upcoming movies throughout the film (Wakanda and Hel among other things). Supposedly, there will be an alternative ending on the Bluray release, which I can only assume is a new post credit scene rather than an actual alternate ending considering the current theatrical ending (it was rather bland if you ask me).
Overall: it was a great movie but not up to what I had hoped. It was both very satisfying and yet subtly disappointing at the same time. It is showing signs of the “trailer is better than the movie” syndrome.