Movies that lead up to The Avengers

This series of movies, sometimes referred to as the “Marvel cinematic universe,” is currently the sixth highest grossing series, and with The Avengers in theatres and raking in the cash it’s moving up the list.

You don’t have to watch all these movies to understand what happens in The Avengers, but since I’ve seen them all I thought I’d tell you about them.

{2/5} Hulk

After watching Crouching Tiger, Hidden Dragon I was ready to follow director Ang Lee anywhere. Origin stories are often less interesting, but this movie was boring. Eric Bana (Nero in Star Trek) was fine as Bruce Banner — he just didn’t have enough to work with.

{4.5/5} Iron Man

Because there was so much hype about this movie, I was a bit disappointed. But it was a great movie — and Robert Downey Jr. (Chaplin) is perfect as Tony Stark. Stark is a billionaire scientist who creates an armored suit. He’s also very funny.

{4/5} The Incredible Hulk

This movie is certainly more interesting than the previous Hulk movie but it does recover some of the same ground (in a similar way that Terminator 2 recovers some of the same ground but is more interesting than The Terminator).  The Hulk is still not that interesting a character. The big battle scene was a bit long — just because you make an action scene longer doesn’t inherently make it more exciting. Edward Norton (The Illusionist) plays Banner this time, and does a fine job.

{4/5} Iron Man 2

It’s a good movie, but it had the potential to be a better one. Stark has revealed himself to be Iron Man, and the US government wants him to turn over the suit to them. The plot is complex but not as interesting as it should have been — several threads that should have been expanded on were left unexplored.

{4/5} Thor

Like the Hulk, I found Thor to be a not-so-interesting character. And he undergoes a very quick and unbelievable transformation in this movie. The story was a bit simplistic. It might have been nice to see the special effects on the big screen. Chris Hemsworth (Kirk’s father in Star Trek) plays Thor convincingly.

{4.5/5} Captain America: The First Avenger

Even though the movie takes place during World War II, and we know how that ended, they still managed to make it exciting. Although Steve Rogers is more straightlaced than most heroes these days, I still found him a compelling character to watch. Rogers is played by Chris Evans (Sunshine).

My favourite piece of music from all these movies is the “Captain America March” by Alan Silvestri.

Each of these movies starting with Iron Man has a short sequence at the end of the credits.

To me the Iron Man movies are science fiction, where they make some attempt to make their technology plausible, and the others are fantasy, where clearly magical things are happening. But that’s only because I put things into those two categories — a more useful categorization would be to call them all superhero movies.

If you want the official version of what happened leading up to The Avengers, Marvel has created an infographic which you can find here.

Iron Man 3, Thor 2, Captain America 2, and The Avengers 2 have all been announced.

This entry was posted on Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012 at 8:08 pm and is filed under Reviews of movies. You can follow any responses to this entry through the RSS 2.0 feed. You can leave a response, or trackback from your own site.

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