Avengers: Age of Ultron — The superhero movies we continue to deserve.

How do you critique, evaluate or otherwise analyze a movie that you’re deeply inclined to love, even before the opening credits have begun to roll? Is an opinion that was already 90% formulated before viewing now invalid? The answer to both of those questions is I don’t know and who cares, but I’m going to share my thoughts on the matter anyway.

The Avengers: Age of Ultron is another slam-dunk in Marvel’s long list of winning efforts. Whether it can live up to the magic of the original is a topic of discussion best left for another day, but in the here and now we have a sequel to the greatest superhero team up ever to grace the silver screen. Spoiler Alert: its great! The movie starts off with the Avengers doing what they do best, avenging and looking cool as hell in the process. The action is tight, the choreography is stellar and the chemistry is off the charts in more ways than one. If watching this loveable bunch go to work with the now iconic Avengers theme playing in the background doesn’t bring a smile to your face, you may need to be evaluated. It’s that much fun and the cast seems to be having as much fun as the audience is.

Beyond the thrilling action sequences that are to be expected in a summer blockbuster, it’s the quieter, more intimate moments that help take the Avengers to another level of enjoyment. From the new dynamic between Black Widow (Scarlett Johansson) and Bruce Banner/The Hulk (Mark Ruffalo) to the forever-sharp quips of Thor (Chris Hemsworth), the internal struggles of Tony Stark (Robert Downey Jr.) or the constant need of a mission for Captain America (Chris Evans), this team of unlikely allies turned friends is firing on all cylinders. Hawkeye (Jeremy Renner) who was royally shafted (points if you get the joke) when it came to character development and importance in the first film also gets some much-needed love in the form of an interesting backstory and possibly some of the best lines in the entire film. Even the relative newcomers to the team are almost seamlessly integrated into the well-oiled machine. Also major props to James Spader (Ultron) for nailing a convincingly eccentric yet terrifying robot.

After several outings with this cast of characters it’s exciting to know that there are still further depths to be explored, especially when we’re so familiar with the regular beats. As big as this superhero team is, no one was cast aside this time and every character had a chance to grow in a meaningful way. The Avengers is great summer fun. You’ll go see it for the big explosions and hard-hitting action, but you’ll stay for the intimate and fun character moments. Leaving the theater I couldn’t help but wonder how anyone could say anything negative about such an exceedingly fun film. Sure, there may be information overload when it comes to all the activity on screen at times or deeper consequences for everything that takes place. But none of that can take anything away from what is a highly enjoyable film. If I had one complaint or request, it is that I want more. A need I’m sure Marvel will be more than happy to oblige.

Originally published at www.89pixels.com.

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