06
May
12

Avengers Assemble for a Giant Circle Jerk

The forces of Photoshop are here to save the day!

Ever since the 2008 film Iron Man was a success, comic book studio Marvel has been trying to get people excited for a movie starring several of its most famous superheroes. Four years, and four movies, later Marvel has finally done it. Marvel has been cramming all their other movies with unnecessary Avengers bullshit, just for the sole reason of getting people interested in the upcoming Avengers movie. Did Thor need a huge Avengers sub-plot where agents of SHIELD took his hammer and he had to get it back? No. Did Iron Man 2 need a huge Avengers sub-plot with Samuel L. Jackson trying to recruit Tony Stark into SHIELD? No. In fact, that particular bullshit ruined the entire movie. And I won’t even get started on what a hokey piece of shit Captain America was. Every time Marvel shoe-horned in an Avengers sub-plot into one of their movies, all it did was serve as an annoying distraction from the rest of the film. It’s almost as if Marvel was telling the audience, “Don’t worry about all this origin story nonsense, we just want to get this out of the way so you can watch The Avengers later.”

I was certainly not excited for The Avengers. In my attempts to become a world-class blogger, I typically watch a film 6-12 months after theatrical release, just long enough for my review to be irrelevant. I figured I would try something new this time. And since I am such a big fan of Summer Shit Spectaculars, not to mention excruciatingly long lines, and headache-inducing 3D, I really had no choice but to see this movie opening weekend. And how did it turn out? Well, it wasn’t as horrible as I thought it was going to be. I didn’t feel like Marvel was taking a huge fart in my face. But that doesn’t mean the movie was particularly good either.

The key to making a movie like this is giving each of the superheroes their chance to shine. The Avengers does that. Equal amounts of screen time is given to each of the four superheroes: Iron Man, Thor, Captain American, and Hulk. We get to see them engaged in “clever” banter, and also see a few battles between them as they struggle to come to terms with working as a team. One of these scenes, the fight between Thor and Hulk, is probably the highlight of the entire film. The other key, and the more important one, is making sure things don’t get muddied with so many superheroes doing so many things at once. This comes about prominently in the third act when the superheroes fight against the generic evil alien/robot army. Fortunately, some skilled directing from The Great and Powerful Receding Hairline managed to keep everything flowing coherently. In fact, all of the battles are top-notch. The special effects are state of the art, and, most surprising of all, the 3D didn’t give me a headache.

Quick, let’s jack each other off for being so great!

And that, my friends, is where my compliments come to an end. Now let’s get to the reason you’re reading this in the first place: what I hated about The Avengers. And believe me, there’s a lot.

The movie starts out in a secret government lab/weapons facility. I’d be shocked if the government owned any other kind of facility. It seems like the only thing the government is interested in is making weapons in secret labs. Anyway, Samuel L. Jackson in an Eyepatch shows up and barks orders at people. It appears that SHIELD has been studying the mysteries of a very mysterious Macguffin. Suddenly, an alien/god named Loki beams in and kills a bunch of people. He steals the Macguffin, but not before using a mind control spell on a bunch of scientists and Jeremy Renner. Samuel L. Jackson in an Eyepatch is mad, but he never called anyone a “motherfucker.” I wish he would have dropped the f-bomb at least once. I think he’s getting soft in his old age. So, Samuel L. Jackson in an Eyepatch decides that he needs to get some superheroes to retrieve the Macguffin.

The first member of the team is Tits McGee, played by Scarlett Johansson. Apparently, she is a masterful Russian assassin and interrogator. You wouldn’t really know that because she goes through the entire movie like a robot. She has a dead look behind her eyes, and she delivers all her lines in the flattest way imaginable. Here’s a sample of some of her actual dialog from the movie:

Tits McGee: HEL-LO, HU-MAN. I AM A RUSS-I-AN SPY. I HAVE TO COME TO HAVE YOU JOIN THE A-VEN-GERS. BEEP-BOOP-BEEP.

Of course, the only time we get a hint of life from her is just after she “tricks” Loki into giving her some information. She tells him, “I’m Russian”, and of course this is the one place she tries out a human accent. Naturally, as a Russian her accent sounds like she’s from North Dakota (facepalm). Johansson gives one of the worst performances this side of January Jones in X-Men: First Class (and everything else she’s been in).

This is my serious acting face.

Tits McGee recruits Bruce Banner AKA Hulk into joining SHIELD. It isn’t clear why he agrees to go with her, other than the fact that she has his house surrounded by a hundred guys with machine guns. I suppose that’s motivation enough to go along, until he later reveals that HE CAN’T DIE. Yes, that’s right, Bruce Banner in both human and Hulk forms is indestructible. This immediately drains the movie of tons of potential suspense. Loki and Thor are immortal alien/gods, and Hulk can’t be hurt. Half the fucking characters are invincible. It’s not like I went into this movie expecting any of the superheroes to die at the end. Of course they won’t die. They are obviously going to save the day and be fine at the end. But have them be mortal, so the action scenes will be suspenseful. At least give me the illusion that they could die.

By the time they got around to getting Tony Stark AKA Iron Man to join, they just weren’t trying any more. Stark talks about how he hates SHIELD and Samuel L. Jackson in an Eyepatch. But he says, “fuck it” and shows up to battle anyway. The only logical reason for this was so Stark could get away from Gwenyth Paltrow. I suppose that reason is compelling enough. If I were Stark, I’d want to get as far away from that out-of-touch-with-reality bitch as possible. Her scenes are terrible too, filled with enough cheesy acting to give Kraft a run for their money. Thankfully, she doesn’t have a lot of screen time.

I suppose the only character’s motivations that made any sense were that of Captain America. He just got unfrozen, and finds himself rescued by his own government. As far as he’s concerned, he’s still a soldier, and he’s going to fight for his country. At least that part was logical.

There were a couple of boring, unnecessary side characters. One of those was Jeremy Renner who plays Bow and Arrow Guy. He’s got excellent skills with a bow and arrow. Believe me, if Earth was going to be invaded by a technologically superior force of alien/robots, the first person I’d want to protect the planet is a dude who is good at archery. That shit is definitely going to come in handy. The other unnecessary side character was Robin Scherbatsky, who inexplicably shows up to spout off some random nonsensical dialog and shoot a few bad guys with a sidearm. Agent Phil Coulson is also fairly useless, but he does have a couple of funny lines and his death becomes important for the characters. Well, at least for Captain America. Stark doesn’t seem to give a shit about him, Hulk is already gone, and Thor didn’t know him. So, you know what, fuck Coulson, who cares if he’s dead?

Sorry folks, wrong Avengers. But I did love the 60s, and Diana Rigg can star in my fantasies any time she wants.

While the early parts with the superheroes bickering/battling each other, and the climactic battle were both entertaining, the middle portion of the film was a bloated mess. Nearly an hour of screen time was dedicated to them fucking around on a giant flying invisible aircraft carrier (big facepalm). For some reason that is never fully explained (good job, screenwriters!), Loki decides to infiltrate the flying aircraft carrier in order to turn Bruce Banner into Hulk. He is able to successfully infiltrate it because Jeremy Renner has a special arrow designed to fit into the aircraft carrier’s computer and can hack its computer system (huge facepalm). Eventually, a bunch of shit goes down, and the superhero team is separated. Nothing is gained by Loki. No plot points occur. The separation was pointless because they immediately got back together. This entire sequence exists solely to pad out the already lengthy running time.

The thing that irritated me the most was how Stark’s Iron Man suit got trashed, so he had to use his new prototype. The prototype has a circle on the chest plate. The old suit had a triangle. This is really fucking annoying, because half the plot of Iron Man 2 was dedicated to Stark changing that circle into a triangle to save his life. As we all know, triangles have inherent healing properties. But now that his newest suit has a circle, it negates that entire stupid fucking subplot. None of it was necessary! It’s like Marvel is giving us a huge middle finger and telling us to suck their collective dicks. Assholes.

Incredibly drunk is the only way Robert Downey Jr could get himself through this movie.

While all the superheroes had their moments to shine alone, and together, it is clear that Tony Stark is really the main character of the movie. He has the most lines, the most interesting things to do, and sacrifices his life to save the planet. I was surprised to see Iron Man fall dead at the end. Although, this being a superhero movie, I knew he’d come back to life before the credits rolled. Earlier in the film, we saw Thor transfer a lightning bolt into Iron Man’s suit, and increase his power by “400%.” I figured Thor would do the same thing again, and he would recharge Stark’s arc reactor to bring him back to life. That would make sense, right? Well, The Great and Powerful Receding Hairline must have thought that was too logical, so instead of that, he decided to have Hulk scream in Stark’s face to bring his corpse back to life. Everyone then has a big ol’ laugh. The fucking end (mega facepalm).

Overall, The Avengers is a mixed bag. There are some genuinely good moments. The acting isn’t atrocious (except for Tits McGee), and the directing, especially in the frantic battle sequences, is surprisingly adept. But there is one thing that I hated in this movie above all else. It was the general vibe the film gave off. While watching it, you can almost see the Marvel executives congratulating each other for a job well done. This is the culmination of four years of work for them, and they are going to high-five each other into oblivion now that it’s finished. And since this movie is going to make a killing at the box-office, those high-fives are going to turn into a massive Hollywood circle jerk which will undoubtedly lead to all sorts of unholy crossover films. Batman & Superman, James Bond & Jason Bourne, and The Cast of Friends vs The Deadly Traps from Saw, although that last one sounds promising.

Here’s how I imagine all future Hollywood executive meetings going:

Executive 1: Cocaine and hookers, assemble!

Executive 2: Hand-jobs for everyone!

*they high five each other, cash undeservedly huge paychecks*

Verdict: Average

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39 Responses to “Avengers Assemble for a Giant Circle Jerk”


  1. May 6, 2012 at 5:28 pm

    *Shrugs, I liked it :P

    Still, this was a funny ass review. Your impression Johansson was hilarious.

  2. May 6, 2012 at 11:48 pm

    I’m thankful that you have some criticism about this film. I was getting tired of seeing nothing but praise.
    I’ll see it… eventually. And when I do, I’ll remember how you spoiled a certain significant character death but it probably won’t be significant because it isn’t like there is anyone else who we care about who can actually die.

    • May 7, 2012 at 7:10 am

      Well, like I said earlier in the article, I knew that nobody important was going to die. The scene could have actually been emotionally powerful, had they not decided to fuck it up by resurrecting Stark with a stupid joke.

      • August 31, 2012 at 4:26 am

        *bump*

        I saw The Avengers tonight with my parents. The first half hour – or maybe more than that – was really ordinary. I expected for it, at any moment, to switch into the ‘grand, sweeping comic book movie’ that all of the hype and reviews made it out to be.

        It never did.

        It is a well-made movie (for the most or better part of it) and it is a good movie if you’re JUST in it for the action sequences, and the part where Iron Man and Captain America fix an engine, and the part where Thor and the Hulk have a fight on a floating fortress. I liked the setting of the fortress, but something about didn’t feel right – probably the whole ‘weapons’ conversation, that was annoying. Bick Fury and Coulson seem sensible enough characters but for some reason ‘the avengers initiative’ wasn’t the first thing they talked about when they brought everyone together – which, apart from having Bruce Banner run a program in a lab (which I think at some point was made evident that neither he nor Tony had to be in the room to run it), is the reason why they brought all the super-peeps to the ship. So that is, at least, two holes in that.

        But I’m getting ahead of myself, because the first thing that bothered me was how, after being approached by their respective shield agent, and given dossiers (were they all like the one Tony got?) each of the super-peeps knew all of the others… too well. We never get to see what each of the characters thinks and feels about the others – everybody knows first impressions are important! So why don’t we see theirs? I know that when they meet in person a few of them have arguments, and have a bit of a fight, but really, none of these feel like they have any significance.

        Speaking of significance… I can’t shake the feeling that the whole film is like a promo reel for an ACTUAL Avengers film – and by film, I of course mean STORY. Only, that’s the thing – what are the Avengers comics like to begin with? Having not read any of them – I haven’t read any Marvel comics – it’s hard to see what the comics could have done that this movie hasn’t already done. Perhaps they have better character arcs (or actually have character arcs – sorry Captain America, your bit at the beginning had no purpose other than to show people what happened in a movie they haven’t seen), but as this movie rather unsubtlely makes clear, the form of the ‘Combined Superhero Movie’ is not built for character arcs or ‘character’ stories.

        Unless you’re Loki. He has all of the development, but … he is just odd in this film. He is convcincing as a villian, but when it is hard for us to figure out why he even matters other than as a literal embodiment of the plot, you’re left with a bunch of characters that, in the context of the film, are all too thin for the seasoned moviegoer to grab onto. And after that, well… I guess you can appreciate the colours of their uniforms? Or how it is shot and edited? Except when whenever Whedon tries to do a shot of someone being hit in the face… he doesn’t do those shots well. At all.

        I have little doubt that Marvel fanboys thoroughly enjoyed this film as it is. After all, because of their supreme geek knowledge of the Marvelverse, they can insert themselves into the role of whoever their favourite super-peep is and have a great time – and it’s made all the more comfortable for them to do so since the characters aren’t really developed. Again, for all of how much this film looks and plays the part of the grand comic book film it sold itself as, its subject matter isn’t strong enough or involving enough for it to achieve that goal.

        It’s presented well, though. Really well.

        I guess I could sum it up by saying that, at best, it is a ‘good’ movie for all that it is… not great, no no no, not great. I wouldn’t mind seeing it again with people other than my parents (because they don’t say much about films) to clear up my thoughts on it.

        One last bit. The hyped up ‘humour’ of the Whedon-dialogue… for people who were REALLY into the film right from the start (come on, really?) it probably helped ease the tension (…really?), but for me, almost all of the banter/humour/pun dialogue were in scenes where it didn’t belong, and wasn’t all that good outside of ‘ha-ha, he acts like he knows the other guy but all he did was read a dossier’

        Hope this wasn’t too much for you to read. Also it was good to get some additional mileage out of your review, thanks again for that.

      • August 31, 2012 at 8:33 am

        Thanks for writing up your review. I’m not sure what else I can say about this movie. I think we are on the same page with this being nothing more than an “average” film, at best. Comic-fags most likely think it’s the greatest movie ever made, but for people who don’t know the characters that well (i.e. people who don’t read comic – like myself), it’s hard to argue that this could ever be considered great.

  3. 8 Person
    May 7, 2012 at 1:25 am

    I’m so glad I’m not the only one who hated this movie. I’m not into the Avengers by any means, but I thought that I might enjoy it because I can usually sit through mindless crap and find something. But I was just so bored. I didn’t care whether anyone lived or died and I was disappointed because I love Joss Wheden. I just found your blog and I love the way you review things. I don’t always agree with what you say but the way you do it is very entertaining :D

    • May 7, 2012 at 7:11 am

      Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment. I’m sure you’ll find many more of my reviews that you will simultaneously love and hate.

  4. May 7, 2012 at 12:00 pm

    During that scene with Iron Man and Loki having their battle of wits, not once do you see Iron Man’s shiny light heart thing shining through his shirt. And yet, when Tony and Bruce are having their heart to heart, it’s clear as day. Figure that one out!

    Still, I fricking loved the film. I come here to read your awesomely shitty reviews – they amuse and actually … give me a little food for thought!

    • May 7, 2012 at 3:45 pm

      Jaina, it’s good to hear somebody likes these reviews ;) I noticed that Stark’s arc reactor wasn’t shining during his scene with Loki. Did they forget to add in the special effect? I find that hard to believe, but who knows?

  5. May 7, 2012 at 1:19 pm

    “The Cast of Friends vs The Deadly Traps from Saw.” I’d watch the crap out of that movie.

  6. May 13, 2012 at 5:42 am

    Finally I can read a good review of this movie, before going to the movies, I heard that this movie was almost perfect, then I went finally to watch this damn movie and…well, it was a little disapinting: johanson’s acting was awful, there was a lack of story, and some scenes were pointless. I really liked the SFX but the “story” was so flat that for me was like: blah, blah, blah, aliens invade earth, avengers kill them and we all are happy…

  7. May 14, 2012 at 5:33 pm

    Funny stuff, as always. There’s barely two sentences back to back at any point in time that I agree with consecutively, but your humor never fails to amuse. LOL

  8. 19 Chris
    May 15, 2012 at 2:46 pm

    shut uppppppppp!!!! comic book nerd. its made a billion dollars. it was good and funny. and im pretty sure these actors dont care what you think. they made million even scarlett johannson

    • May 16, 2012 at 7:04 am

      Well, I am a huge nerd, but surprisingly I don’t read comic books. I suppose this is your first time to Awesomely Shitty. You should realize that a verdict of “Average” is pretty good. You should be happy I didn’t rate it as “Shitty.”

      Also, I know the actors don’t care what I think, precisely because this movie has made a billion dollars. I also realize that “they made million scarlett johannson” but that still doesn’t mean her acting was any less terrible.

  9. 22 fuzzy_bear
    May 25, 2012 at 1:35 pm

    Thank u for an awesome, on point review… I was hearing all these awesome reviews so I decided to check out the movie today…. I was so bored and I kept thinking to myself am I the only one who thinks this movie is crappy? Glad I wasn’t lol

  10. May 29, 2012 at 3:39 pm

    “Earlier in the film, we saw Thor transfer a lightning bolt into Iron Man’s suit, and increase his power by “400%.” I figured Thor would do the same thing again…”

    EXACTLY. Why bring it up if you aren’t going to use it? Same thing as when Thor hit C. America’s shield and it blew everything away.

    Still thought the movie was awesome.

    • May 29, 2012 at 5:29 pm

      As far as superhero movies go, “Avengers” was pretty good. In general, though, it was still riddled with problems and can’t get a score above average. Especially, when it does crap like that.

  11. August 30, 2012 at 12:07 am

    Average, I’d say. Not much memorable, but some parts stood out, like between Loki and the Hulk… and that was the only best part in the entire movie with the best two words.

  12. 27 Shoshanna
    July 20, 2013 at 6:09 pm

    The only good thing about The Avengers is Hulk beating the shit out of that dude with the horns, and then saying, “Puny god.”

    Apparently Joss Whedon learned nothing from the Iraq invasion. Just because you kill the main bad dude, all the other bad dudes don’t suddenly and forever power down.

    Also, chair fights like the one Johanssen was in have been done to shit. See, e.g., Alias, Charlie’s Angels, Killer Elite, &c.

    And the only thing dumber than a flying aircraft carrier is repairing a flying aircraft carrier.

  13. January 9, 2014 at 9:22 pm

    I just watched Iron Man 2, 3 and the Avengers on consecutive nights. It’s interesting that the Iron Man franchise has really taken off (excuse the pun). Robert Downey Jr is a class act; I struggle to understand why this film was so huge. OK, the comic book movie is a good money spinner these days…but how many people actually went to see this….are they all Marvel fans?

    I liked this, a bit predictable, but I’m not going to get too analytical about it. I like switching my brain off and appreciating something for what it is…perhaps this is why I love Oasis and the Beatles. Some nice, uncomplicated absorption.

    But, I remember the Avenger movie was out…I wasn’t so fussed about seeing it…in fact I knew almost nothing about it, apart from Scarlett Johanssen was in it, BORING, geek boy paradise.

    Asa I say, I did kind of enjoy the film for what it was worth, I don’t know personally anybody who said they went to see it, neither was it a narrative among my friends (it could have been) but I still can’t help but wonder why so many people went to see it. The Avengers, boring concept, comic book nonsense. over the top gruff guys with hammers and ridiculous hamming, cheesy lines. Saved by Tony Stark. Who knows, maybe I’m talking shit.

    Cocaine and hookers, assemble!

    • January 11, 2014 at 8:47 am

      Thanks for the comment. I never even bothered to watch Iron Man 3 after the colossal disappointment that was Iron Man 2. I also struggle to see why these films were so popular. They aren’t very good. But they do appeal to the target audience of “retarded masses” so I guess that would explain a few things.


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