This review will not reveal anything not already given away in the various trailers. I promise.
Though Ant-Man is the official end of Phase 2 of the Marvel Cinematic Universe, this movie provides the true transition into Phase 3. Ultron’s plans for humanity pit extinction against evolution, so it is fitting that, by the end of Age of Ultron, the Avengers have evolved.
The end of Tuesday’s episode of Marvel’s Agents of S.H.I.E.L.D. ended with a lead-in to Avengers: Age of Ultron. The past several episodes, in fact, have included or mentioned H.Y.D.R.A.’s Dr. List and Baron Strucker, and their program of experimentation on “enhanced” individuals—people with super-powers. And so this movie begins with an Avengers assault on H.Y.D.R.A.
Following their return to Avengers Mansion, Tony Stark and Bruce Banner—two of the world’s most brilliant minds—set out to create artificial intelligence. They succeed, though they would wish they hadn’t.
Ultron, the result of Stark and Banner’s project, does not desire to aid the Avengers or protect humanity. His goal is salvation through extinction. Of course, the Avengers will not allow this to happen.
The movie incorporates several new Avengers, including Don Cheadle’s War Machine (introduced in Iron Man 2) and Anthony Mackie’s Falcon (introduced in Captain America: Winter Soldier), as well as the highly anticipated debuts of Marvel’s cinematic versions of Quicksilver, the Scarlet Witch, and the Vision. These characters will all likely play large roles in the Phase 3 movies.
Age of Ultron contains exactly what one would expect: extended super-hero action scenes, witty dialogue among the heroes, one-liners by Robert Downey Jr.’s Tony Stark/Iron Man, etc. Director Joss Whedon has perfected this blend since his 1992 film Buffy the Vampire Slayer, so this should come as no surprise. It’s one of the reasons he is the ultimate choice for this movie.
With a great director, great actors, great characters, a great plot, and great action scenes, Avengers: Age of Ultron has the recipe for a great movie. It definitely achieves this purpose.